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Although I realize Fruitcake is maligned the world over, it remains one of my favorite Christmas traditions, although not one recognized every year, nor celebrated by the rest of my family. I aspire to bake a moist, dense delicious cake, reminiscent of my Childhood treats – although to be honest, I was in College before I could fully appreciate the beauty of fruit in a cake.


2 cups brown sugar
3 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking soda
2 tablespoons cinnamon
2 tablespoons ground cloves
2 tablespoons allspice
2 tablespoons nutmeg
4 eggs
2 tablespoons lemon zest
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup brandy
1 1/2 cups raisins
1 1/2 cups chopped nuts
1 1/2 cups dried mixed fruit
1 1/2 cups butter, melted
1 3/4 cups brandy

Heat oven to 225F.
Grease and flour a tube pan.
In a large bowl, combine sugar, flour, soda, spices, eggs, lemon rind, vanilla, 1/2 cup brandy, fruit, nuts and melted butter. Mix thoroughly, and pour into prepared pan.
Bake for 1 hour, or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool on a wire rack.
Wrap cooled cake in foil. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of brandy over the cake every day for 2 weeks.

Recipe adapted from The Morning News, December 2005