Holiday Fruitcake

Fruitcake gets a bad rap. It’s the gift that keeps on giving, the ultimate white elephant, Aunt Barbara’s annual dessert that gets shoved into a napkin and then the nearest trash can. But fruitcake doesn’t have to be bad, in fact fruitcake can be the perfect holiday treat. img_8275
We never had fruitcake growing up, the closest thing we got was an assortment of mixed nuts. I didn’t even know what a fruitcake was until sixth grade when Mr Teal told us how gross it was. That’s all it took for me to never want to eat fruitcake…until this year. I mean seriously, dried fruit and nuts soaked in alcohol and smothered in sugar. What’s not to like?img_8277

Fruitcake

  • 1/4 cup dried cherries
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup dried blueberries
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup dried apples, diced
  • 1/2 cup pecans
  • 1/2 cup pistachios
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup bourbon
  • 1 orange, zested and juiced
  • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar

Place the dried fruit in a medium bowl and bring the bourbon to a simmer in a small saucepan. Pour the hot bourbon over the dried fruit and let sit for 10 minutes. Strain the fruit, reserving the bourbon.

Preheat the oven to 350º.

Place the nuts in a food processor and pulse until the nuts are medium-small pieces.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs, one at a time, scraping the bowl after each egg. Add in the vanilla and zest.

Mix and sift together the flour, baking powder, nutmeg and cinnamon. Add in half of the flour mixture and half of the bourbon on low speed. Repeat. Add in the fruit and nuts and mix until just combined.

Pour into a greased 8 inch round cake pan and bake until a toothpick comes out clean, about 1 1/2-2 hours.

Remove the fruitcake from the oven and bring the orange juice and powdered sugar to a simmer. Poke holes in the fruitcake with a toothpick or fork and pour the hot orange juice over the fruitcake, allowing the cake to soak in all of the juice.

Cover the fruitcake and let sit for 12 hours. Dust with powdered sugar and enjoy!img_8280

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