1 lb shortening
1 lb brown sugar
1 cup molasses
12 egg yolks, well beaten
3 cups all purpose flour
4 tsp cinnamon
4 tsp allspice
1.5 tsp mace
2 tsp nutmeg
1/3 cup flour
**(see note below re fruit quantities)
3 lbs seeded raisins, cut in pieces
2 lbs sultana raisins
1.5 lb candied citron, sliced thin and cut in strips
1 lb currants
1/4 cup chopped preserved lemon rind
1/2 cup chopped preserved orange rind
1 cup brandy
4 oz chocolate melted
12 egg whites, beaten stiff
1/4 tsp baking soda, dissolved in 1 TB hot water
Cream until light and fluffy: 1 lb shortening
Beat in, little by little: 1 lb brown sugar
Stir in: 1 cup molasses, 12 egg yolks, well beaten
Sift together – 3 cups all purpose flour, 4 tsp cinnamon, 4 tsp allspice, 1.5 tsp mace, 2 tsp nutmeg and add to first mixture [note: I tend to be heavy handed with measuring the spices, using heaping measures. Also, I don’t usually have mace around and use fresh ground nutmeg for both]
Mix: 1/3 cup flour, **(see note below) 3 lbs seeded raisins, cut in pieces, 2 lbs sultana raisins, 1.5 candied citron, sliced thin and cut in strips, 1 lb currants, 1/4 cup chopped preserved lemon rind, 1/2 cup chopped preserved orange rind
Add the flour and fruit mixture to the batter.
Add: 1 cup brandy, 4 oz chocolate melted
Fold in: 12 egg whites, beaten stiff
Just before putting the batter in the pans,
add: 1/4 tsp baking soda, dissolved in 1 TB hot water
Fill the pans and cover the tops closely with aluminum foil. Set the oven at 250F. On the oven bottom place several shallow pans filled with hot water to a depth of one inch. Set the pans of fruitcake on the shelf above. Bake 3 hours, remove the pans of water and remove the foil from the cakes. Bake 1.5 hours to dry out the cakes.
There’s a note on the original recipe “If your oven is too small to bake four large loaves at once, add half the soda to half the batter and bake two. Then add the remaining soda to the remaining batter and bake the remaining two loaves.
It’s best to line your pans with parchment paper, and to turn on the oven part way through the mixing process so that you can start baking immediately.
This is a large process. The good news is that it makes a LOT of fruitcake and fruitcake, by nature, keeps very well.
Every year when I make the fruitcake I get two chuckles. The first when I fold in the large pan of beaten egg whites into the large mass of fruit, the next when I add the soda and water to this HUGE amount of fruit and batter. To mix all this stuff I use the bottom of my rectangular turkey roasting pan AND my 16″ X 5” stainless mixing bowl AND a few other bowls along the way.
** HOW MUCH FRUIT DID YOU USE???
In the past I have put in between 114 and 152 oz of different fruits in the cakes. On Nov 14 1999 I added 178 oz:
3 lbs raisins
30 oz golden raisins
20 oz currants
4 lbs “fruitcake mix”
1 lb lemon and orange peel and citron
HOW MUCH FRUITCAKE DID THIS MAKE???
7 large loaf pans and 4 small loaf pans
IN 2005, I went with a little bit different idea and decided not to add all the normal fruitcake mix sort of fruit. Instead, this year’s cakes included:
60 oz raisins
60 oz golden raisins
30 oz currents
12 oz citron and lemon peel
9 oz chopped apricots
16 oz dried red cherries*
4 tb dried orange peel*
* these items were soaked well in brandy and the brandy that remained after the soaking was added to the batter. As luck would have it, it was just a little over the cup called for. Sure smelled good!
HOW MUCH FRUITCAKE DID THIS MAKE???
5 large loaf pans and 8 one pound loaf pans
AND YOU EAT ALL THIS?