Tis the season for fruitcakes and if you’d like to try your hand at making one yourself (or troubleshoot any problems), here are a few tips and recipes I’ve collected to help achieve the best results possible…

Part 1

  • Completely dust the fruit and nuts with flour so they don’t fall to the bottom of the batter while baking. Shake off excess flour before mixing in the recipe.

  • Oven temperature should be low enough to cook the batter fully without drying out the cake (250°F).

  • First line the cake pans with several layers of brown paper, this insulates the batter against excess drying.

  • Baking pans should only be filled 2/3 full of batter, not full.

  • After baking, the cake should be thoroughly cooled on a rack, then removed from pan and wrapped in aluminum foil. Store in a cake box. Cake may be wrapped in several thicknesses of cheesecloth. Brandy or fruit juice may be poured on the cloth occasionally.

  • Make fruitcakes at least 3 weeks before using, this allows them time to ripen.

  • Don’t freeze a fruitcake right away. Let it age at least 3 to 4 weeks first so it has a chance to build its flavor (ripen).

  • Use the best spices, nuts and dried fruits you can afford. Spices should be fresh.


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