Chilebrown at home

Saturday, November 22, 2008


Fruitcake, Love it or Leave it, most people fall into either of the two categories. Fruitcake has been the butt of many jokes. There is even a novelty blow up fruitcake, called the INFLATABLE FRUITCAKE, of course. You may have had a fruitcake with citron and maraschino cherries that is dry and hard as a brick. This has slighted the image of fruitcake. There is another school of fruitcake thought.

Thanks to my Mother, who introduced Me to quality fruitcakes. These are made with dried fruits, nuts, sweet butter, flour, sugar, and a whole lot of love. It is not cheap to make fruitcake. Nothing but quality ingredients will do. Once you have tasted a piece, you will be a convert too. You may even join the 'Society" for the Protection and Preservation of Fruitcake'.

    Ms. Goofy and I traveled to to the Alemany Farmers Market to purchase the bulk of the ingredients. We bought fresh eggs and a bevy of dried fruits. Some of these fruits included; Raisins, Apricots,Figs, Plums and Peaches We found some great Medjool dates. A quick pit stop to the liquor store for an optional bottle of Brandy. Did I mention this cake is for Adults Only. We made it home to the Chilebrown Fruitcake Factory and got down to the first step off marination. This step is crucial. Sample your brandy for quality control. Good luck!


    1. 4 pounds of dried mixed fruits
    2. 1 pound of mixed whole nuts
    3. 1 cup of brandy
    4. 1 tablespoon instant coffee
    5. 1/4 cup of molasses
    6. 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon ground cloves, ground allspice, ground mace
    7. 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
    8. 3 1/2 cups flour
    9. 1 tablespoons baking powder
    10. 2 sticks butter
    11. 1 1/2 cups white sugar and 1 1/2 brown sugar
    12. 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
    13. 6 large eggs

    Take all the dried fruit and cut into chunks. Place in large bowl with nuts. Add instant coffee, molasses, spices and salt. Pour cup of brandy over mix and let marinade overnight.

    The next day, mix in 1 cup of flour into fruit mixture. Mix well and reserve.

    Beat the butter and sugars until light and fluffy. When fluffy add eggs one at a time until well blended.Blend the rest of the flower and baking powder. Add vanilla. Take mixture and add to fruit and flour mixture. You probably will have to use your hands. It is a stiff mixture.

    This will make 16 cups of fruitcake. Find some appropriate baking pans. I have used store bought decorative paper pans. You can purchase these at Sur La Table. You can use small loaf pans. Whatever you use, butter them well so the fruitcake will not stick. I line the bottom of loaf pans with wax paper and butter both sides.

    Bake at 275 for 2 to 2 1/2 hours. It may take longer. Test with a clean knife. Insert knife into cake. It should pull out clean. Remove from pans and let cool on cookies cooling rack.

    This next step is to lace with brandy. This is optional but necessary to experience the fruitcake at its best. Take a skewer and poke holes in the top of the loaf. Take a quarter cup of brandy and brush into top of cake. Wrap in plastic and then tin foil. Let rest for a couple of weeks. The resting gives the cake time to soak in the alcohol and mature the flavors.

    Fruitcake is a labor of love. A quality cake is to be cherished. A tiny piece will go a long way. The cake will last a long time if properly stored. I will leave you with a parody song about fruit cake.

    Sung to Last Train to Clarksville (Monkees) and Modified by Chef Frank

    Eat the last piece of fruitcake

    that we got from Auntie Mabel

    We can't keep it in the kitchen

    'cause it broke right through the table

    and the floor

    Oh no no no

    Oh no no no

    "Cause your father lost a filling

    and your sister broke a cap

    And I lost a half a filling,

    the rest is on a string tied to the door

    Oh no no no

    Oh no no no

    And I don't think I can chew gum anymore

    Eat the last piece of fruitcake

    that came via forklift

    Or use it for a doorstop

    Might as well get some good use out of this gift.

    Oh no no no

    Oh no no no



    Eat the last piece of fruitcake

    That we have in our homeI don't know how old it is

    But I bet that it was baked by Wilma Flintstone

    Oh no no no

    Oh no no no

    And I don't think that I like her anymore.


    Zoomie said...

    My Aunt Virginia sends us a fruitcake each year and hers is soaked in brandy, too.

    PresidentofCookies said...

    Message from your Mother: "Thank you for making the best fruitcake ever----it has surpassed mine."

    cookiecrumb said...

    Just beautiful, ChileBrown. We're going to have to change the name of your blog.

    I'm going to try to make panettone this year. If I can learn to spell it right. Pannetone?

    Chilebrown said...

    Zoomie, "But Officer, I only had a piece of fruitcake."

    President of Cookies, Nothing will ever beat Mom's.

    Cookiecrumb, I am afraid to ask. "Mad Fruitcake"? I still like your original. "Mad Meat Genius"
    I am grateful!!

    Anonymous said...

    Dang, Chile. That's the real deal right there.