Best Fruit Cake
This is not your average fruit
cake recipe… it’s the BEST!
A classic fruit cake with soaked
Fruit Mix, nuts, dark chocolate
and a sweet apricot glaze.
Soaked Fruit Mixture:
4 1/2 cups Tasti Fruit Mix
1 cup (160 g) Tasti dried figs chopped
1 cup (150 g) Tasti red glacé cherries chopped
¾ cup (180 mL) dark rum
Fruit Cake Ingredients:
1½ cups (180 g) all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
115 g unsalted butter softened
¾ cup (160 g) packed light brown sugar
5 large eggs room temperature
¼ cup Tasti mixed peel
½ cup (120 mL) freshly squeezed orange juice
1 Granny Smith apple peeled and coarsely grated
¾ cup (90 g) slivered almonds (or chopped pecans or walnuts)
3 tablespoons (36 g) finely diced Tasti crystallized ginger
One batch soaked fruit mixture (see above)
⅔ cup (100 g) chopped bittersweet chocolate or dark chocolate chips optional
medium sherry or triple sec for soaking
Decorative Glaze (Optional):
¼ cup (72 g) apricot preserves
¼ cup (60 mL) water
whole pecans walnuts or almonds for garnishing
The Day Before Baking: Combine the dried fruit in a large mixing bowl. Add the dark rum, cover, and allow the mixture to soak at room temperature for a minimum of 12 hours, or ideally 24 hours prior to preparing the fruit cake batter.
Prepare the Fruitcake: Preheat the oven to 150°C with a rack in the centre position. Set aside two lined 8x4 loaf pans.
In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, baking powder, spices, and salt. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the softened butter and light brown sugar together over medium-high speed for 3 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to medium and add the eggs one at a time, beating just until each egg is incorporated.
Over low speed, slowly add the flour mixture until just absorbed. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer. Add the lemon zest, orange zest, fresh orange juice, grated apple, slivered almonds, diced crystallised ginger, soaked dried fruit mixture (along with any liquid if it hasn’t already been absorbed), and chocolate (if using).
Stir the mixture with a large spatula, scraping the edges and bottom of the bowl several times, until all of the ingredients are evenly incorporated.
Transfer and divide the batter evenly among the loaf pans. Use a spatula to smooth the batter into an even layer. Set the loaf pans on the centre rack, several centimetres apart from one another. Bake - rotating the pans halfway - for 75 to 90 minutes or until the batter is set and the tops are golden brown. The edges of the cake may also start to pull away slightly from the edges of the pan. Remove from the oven and place on a rack to cool completely before removing from the pans.
Storing and Aging: Once the cake has cooled, carefully remove the cakes from the loaf pans and set it upright. Soak two large pieces of cheesecloth in medium sherry or triple sec (*they should be lightly damp, not soaking wet when you wrap the cakes, so you may need to squeeze out any excess liquor). Wrap each cake tightly. Cover loaves with wax paper and foil before transferring to a large Ziploc bag. Store in the refrigerator for up to 6 to 8 weeks (it can often last even longer). You can serve this cake right after it has cooled, but the flavours improve greatly with time. Unwrap and re-soak the cheesecloth once a week.
For Garnishing: If desired, you can top the fruitcake with a light apricot glaze and nuts before serving.
To Prepare the Glaze: Combine the apricot preserves and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a light simmer, stirring until the glaze is shiny and thin. If it is too thin for glazing, reduce it to the desired consistency. If it becomes too thick, add a teaspoon of water. Brush the tops of the fruitcakes with apricot glaze and garnish with nuts.