The Traditional & The Fast

There are many variations to fruitcakes.

There is not one, but many types and recipes for you to try out. Most of the recipes I have come across were, honestly, inedible to me! But trying recipes I have come across a few that made a wonderful base that we can build on. After many attempts, additions and a few tossed cakes, I have reached my favourite combination and what I like to call: “The Delightfully Edible Fruitcake” the one that you will actually enjoy having.

It is also customary to offer your fruitcake some drinks, perhaps a bit over its tolerance, which leads to what is known as the drunken fruitcake! :)) NO! really, drunken fruitcakes are the ones that have been injected with alcohol (very similar to alcohol filled chocolates). These are usually served on special occasions like Christmas and New Year’s, while the regular fruitcake is a pleasure to have with tea anytime! So, for those who fancy this option I wanted to present you with a treat and therefore sharing this recipe with you!! However, if you are not into this kind of affair, don’t be discouraged, I thought of you too so I shared my Best Virgin Fruitcake recipe on this link, check it out.

This recipe here is the traditional method for the drunken fruitcake, which entails covering the cake with the soaked cheesecloth and repeatedly injecting it with brandy. This makes this cake fatal! But that is what a drunken cake is about. Yes, this is the longer route, the traditional, old school way, however this never fails. The fact that the alcohol is injected after the baking means it does not evaporate and is actually present at every step.

With that said, you might not have the time nor the patience required for this process, and are looking for a simpler and more instant fruitcake recipe. No worries I got you covered too. (sharing the love with everyone this Christmas), so I have included a video below for a relatively instant fruitcake recipe that does not require injecting and waiting… Check it out and hope you like it. While you are at it, the video shows you a clear and excellent demonstration on how to prepare the pan for baking fruitscakes.

You guys, make sure to mention the alcohol content to your guests before serving. It is always a good idea to have another dessert that is alcohol-free, for those who do not wish to consume anything alcoholic.

Happy Christmas Baking!


  • 180g flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • ½ cup apple juice
  • 2 tbsp brandy
  • 2 tsp rum-based vanilla syrup
  • ½ cup chopped pecans
  • ½ cup candied red cherries, quartered (or dried cranberries)
  • ½ cup chopped dates
  • ¾ cup chopped assorted candied fruits and peels
  • Clean 100% cotton Cheesecloth
  • Brandy, extra

Preheat oven to 300F-150C. Line Loaf tins with baking paper and set aside.

In a large bowl, stir together the dry ingredients, add the fruits, peels, cherries/cranberries, dates and nuts to dry ingredients and toss to coat.

In a separate bowl, beat the eggs, add the brown sugar, butter, juice and brandy until combined. Stir into the fruit mixture until all is well incorporated.

Pour the batter into prepared pans and bake in the preheated oven for 1 ¼ hours for 8” loaf tin or until done.

To prevent over-browning, you can cover the cakes loosely with foil the last 10 minutes of baking. Cool the cakes thoroughly in pans on a wire rack.

Once completely cooled, remove the cake from the pan. Cover with brandy-moistened cotton cheesecloth. Wrap with foil and store in the fridge for 2-8 weeks to soften the flavours. Re-moisten cloth with brandy weekly and inject a little brandy into the cake when re-moistening the cloth.

This recipe is not your average everyday fruitcake recipe, but it definitely says celebration. It is the perfect dessert for Christmas Eve.The recipe Best Virgin Fruitcake on this link, is one that you can prepare at any time, and is in fact a treat not limited to the festive season!

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