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Christmas cake, love it or lump it

Sudbury Living Magazine December 5, 2018 Holiday, Savour Sudbury 2 Comments on Christmas cake, love it or lump it

The earliest fruit cake recipe is from ancient Rome, and lists pomegranate seeds, pine nuts and raisins mixed into barley mash. Fruit cake proliferated all over Europe, with recipes varying greatly by country and depending on available ingredients. In England, fruit cake is traditionally served at Christmas or weddings. The tradition of eating fruit cake at Christmas also exists here in Canada, especially among those of British heritage. If fruit cake is soaked in alcohol, it could remain edible for many years. In 2003, Jay Leno of “The Tonight Show” famously sampled a fruit cake baked in 1878 and kept as a heirloom by a Michigan family. Johnny Carson, Leno’s predecessor on “The Tonight Show,” turned the long-keeping nature of the fruit cake into a joke, saying there’s really only one fruit cake in the world, passed from family to family. 

Betty Crocker’s recipe for Christmas cake 2 cups dried apricot halves (11 ounces) 2 cups pitted whole dates (12 ounces) 1 1/2 cups Brazil nuts (8 ounces) 1 cup red and green candied pineapple, chopped (7 ounces) 1 cup red and green whole maraschino cherry, drained (12 ounces) 3/4 cup all-purpose flour 3/4 cup sugar 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla 3 eggs Light corn syrup, if desired     1 Heat oven to 300°F. Line loaf pan, 9x5x3 or 8 1/2×4 1/2×2 1/2 inches, with aluminum foil; grease foil. Mix all the ingredients except corn syurp. Spread in pan. 2 Bake about 1 hour 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. If necessary, cover with aluminum foil for last 30 minutes of baking to prevent excessive browning. 3 Remove fruitcake from pan (with foil) to wire rack. For a glossy top, immediately brush with corn syrup. Cool completely before cutting, about 24 hours. Wrap tightly and store in refrigerator no longer than two months.

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  1. Prachi November 1, 2013 at 12:33 pm

    Hi Dana,

    I loved this recipe and i am going to try it out on this Christmas. But i want to ask that can we use something else instead of candied pineapple? and if yes then what can be used?

    Sure, you can just omit the pineapple, or use another candied fruit.

  2. Vicki Gilhula November 7, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    Try dried mangoes or apricots.

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