This cake is a rich, moist fruit cake, perfect at Christmas. Try icing with marzipan for a more festive touch. Ideally, make this cake in November to let the flavours mellow before Christmas.
LOVE this cake! I suggest only a couple of modifications, but if you can't make the changes, make this cake anyway because it is a real crowd pleaser. First, use Demerara sugar instead of brown sugar if you can. It's usually found in regular grocery stores, next to the other sugars, and it doesn't cost much more. It's is a light brown sugar that provides a stickier texture and a really rich aroma-- perfect for this cake. Second, marinate the candied fruit in the brandy for as long as you can. You really want the fruit to be plump. Third, follow the directions for a long baking time in low heat. Don't try to speed things up by increasing the temperature (like I once did...)! Fourth, top with Royal Icing-- there are some very good recipes for it on this website. Royal Icing is a bit tricky to work with, but it's worth the effort! - 05 Nov 2007 (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)
I've been making fruitcakes for several years, dutifully wrapping them in liquor-soaked cheesecloth which I refreshed on a regular basis. Well, all I can say is 'Thank you Carol! I'll never soak a fruitcake again!' This is the most moist, delicious fruitcake I've ever eaten. No need to wrap in cheesecloth. I do recommend letting it 'mellow'. I soaked my fruit for a full 24 hrs. rather than overnight. I also mixed some dark rum in with the brandy. Being allergic to nuts, I omitted them and slightly increased my fruits. I baked in a tube pan, too. Anyway, the yummiest fruitcake around and it will make a believer out of the most vocal critic. >>>>>>>>>>>December 2010 update: Used Grand Marnier to soak the fruit this year and Muscovado sugar. Increased my dates to abt. 1.5 cups. Didn't think it was possible, but even yummier this year! - 19 Dec 2003 (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)
I made this recipe about 6 weeks before christmas and then resisted eating it until then. This is truly the best Christmas cake ever! It is really rich and moist. It did make a lot and I had to put it in a 26cm or 10inch square tin which fit perfectly. We thought we would never get through it it was so huge but it was gone within a week or so. It was so delicious. As my husband is allergic to almonds I substituted brazil nuts which worked just as well. I let the cake cool in the tin with a teatowel over the top to keep the moisture in then when it was cool I basted it in brandy and wrapped up in greaseproof paper and tin foil. Also for all you Aussies, after hunting around shops looking for Molasses with no luck I did some research on the net and found out that what they call molasses in the US is what we call treacle over here - if they ask for blackstrap molasses then that is what we call molasses. Hope that helps when you find it hard to find molasses on the shelf in Aus. Will definately be making it again this year (and also planning on making smaller ones for gifts keeping the big for myself of course)- can't wait! - 12 Nov 2006 (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)