Ethel’s Fruit Cakes

For the best fruit cakes you need to make them around Thanksgiving (4th Thursday of November for everyone else), and then baste them well with alcohol of some kind. I have always made my great-grandmother’s fruit cake recipe, but the Jackson’s Vanilla Wafer recipe is a very popular one on this site. Add to the rolls of fruit cake recipes, this one from Irene Bartz’s friend Ethel. This recipe looks like it will make several cakes, as was tradition. Make several fruit cakes and give them as gifts, serve at holiday gatherings, etc. I suggest reading a couple of the other recipes for reference before making this one because there is no method here.

A few notes about fruit cake ingredients. One, buy it when you see it. The candied fruit doesn’t really spoil, but it is only around in October/November and usually sells out quickly. Two, if you don’t like one of these fruits, skip it. This particular recipe has a lot of fruit, but I think I wouldn’t use this much. Three, cook the raisins & dates otherwise they will be rock hard in the finished cake.

Ethel’s Fruit Cakes

3 cups brown sugar

1 cup shortening

1 cup sour milk, a teaspoon soda

5 eggs beaten hard

a teaspoon salt

strong cup of coffee

spices to taste – nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, and all spice

1/2 glass wine

1/2 glass brandy

1/2 lb chopped walnuts

2 lbs raisins

5 ¢ citron (you can purchase candied citron usually in the produce department of your local grocery store)

5 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 lb cherries, pineapple, dates, figs, lemon, orange (If you purchase the citron above, you don’t need the additional lemon & orange listed here)

Bake about 1 1/2 hours

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