There’s still time to bake fruitcake!


Any time of the year one might spy a tasty treat on the counter in the Pastoral Center’s kitchen. Colleagues in this building are ever so generous with sharing sweets and garden produce. But, a stroll through the kitchen around Christmas is especially gratifying as samples of holiday baking appear.

Janet Brinkman, director of human resources, brought in a lovely assortment earlier this week. Her “Jeweled Fruitcake” was filled with scrumptious fruits and nuts — moving way beyond traditional fruitcake “territory.” (While many recipes suggest that fruitcakes should be baked at least one month before they will be served, Janet said this one does not need to age but the fruits and nuts need to steeped overnight in some “good spirits” and that the measurements of all the fruits in the recipe are approximate.) There’s still time to bake it before Christmas Day!

Jeweled Fruitcake

First day:
Soak the following fruits and nuts in brandy and rum overnight:

2 cups dried apricots
1 1/2 cups pitted dates
8 oz. mixed candied fruit
8 oz. red candied cherries
8 oz. green candied cherries
1 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup dark raisins
1/2 cup golden raisins
1 1/2 cups walnuts (don’t chop)
1 1/2 cups Brazil nuts (don’t chop)

1/4 cup brandy
1/4 cup rum

Ingredients for second day:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
6 eggs
3 tsp. vanilla

On second day, heat oven to 300°F. Grease 8 or 9 mini loaf aluminum foil pans with non-stick cooking spray.

Mix dry ingredients, eggs and vanilla. Fold in fruit and nut mixture. Spread in pans. Bake the loaves for 55 minutes at 300°F. Remove loaves from pans and cool. Wrap in plastic wrap and store in refrigerator.

Carol Jessen-Klixbull is a copy editor at The Visitor. She is a former Family and Consumer Science teacher who has a passion for all things “food.”

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