There is a standing joke in my family about how the women would take their husbands' expensive brandy and put it into fruitcakes. My father used to say that that half a cup of liquor costs more than all the other ingredients put together. Last year, I heard the same complaint from my uncle about my aunt helping herself to his quality stash for her cake. I don't know much about alcoholic drinks - I don't drink mainly because I don't enjoy the taste, and also because I'd get rashes if I have any more than half a glass of wine - and I definitely don't know how expensive good brandy can be. But I know I love fruitcake, and I love them adequately laced with brandy. *Ahem*
So, Papa, don't mind me helping myself to your Martell V.S.O.P., yea?
The reason I am writing this post is some friends have requested for the recipe I used. Here it is:
2½ cups (400g) sultanas
1½ cups (375g) chopped raisins
1½ cups (240g) currants
½ cup (90g) mixed peels
¾ cup (150g) glace cherries
¼ cup (55g) glace pineapples
¼ cup (55g) glace apricots
1 cup (155g) brown sugar
½ cup (125ml) brandy
½ cup (125ml) water
The rest of them:
1 tablespoon treacle
2 teaspoons grated orange rind
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1¾ cup (~200g) plain flour
½ cup (~58g) self-raising flour
½ teaspoon bicarbonate soda
1. Combine A in a saucepan and cook until the butter and sugar have melted. Simmer covered for 10 minutes. Remove from heat, let cool to room temperature.
2. Add eggs, treacle and rind to fruit mixture and stir to combine. Add dry ingredients and stir once more until combined.
3. Bake at 120°C for 2½ hours.
4. Cover the cake in foil and let cool in pan. Serve after 2 - 3 days.
1. The original recipe came with all measurements in cups and the above conversions to metric were determined by me with the help of Google, so they may not be very accurate. Anyhow, that didn't matter much to me because I found it quite difficult to get all the dried / glace fruits where I live, so I used a 1kg pack of Mixed Fruit that bakery supply shops commonly carry. To that, I added 200g of golden raisins because I love the colour and the taste =)
2. The first time I made this, I use the exact amount of sugar stated in the recipe and the cake turned out sweeter than I would've liked. So, the second time I did, I reduced the sugar to 120g, and it turned out fine. If you'd like to further reduce the amount, do it in small decrements... sugar contributes to the moisture of the end product (so I think I've read somewhere before) and a drastic reduction may affect the texture of the cake.
3. You may need to adjust the baking temperature and time according to the size of your baking pan and also your oven.
There. Reader, if you happen to attempt this, do let me know how it turned out and how you liked it! Happy Sunday, everybody...