Fruitcake...it's that time of the year!

Post
Sandy Thruthegarden
Double Cheeseburger
2005/11/06 18:08:24
I'm one of those people who like a good fruitcake. I think they've been unfairly maligned. The best I ever had was a homemade one that had been made the previous year and periodically drenched in rum throughout the year. Are there any good storebought ones that you folks would recommend?
GordonW
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/06 18:17:47
Absolutely about fruitcake being unfairly maligned. Nothing like a good homemade fruitcake -- a GOOD one. And not one of those things, either commercial or homemade, that has all the radioactive-colored preserved fruit things in them. Or the dry, cakey ones that you need the cider or eggnog to lubricate down. Doesn't have to be rum- or brandy-soaked, just good. I believe that there are are as lot of good fruit cakes out there that have had their names sullied by all the bad ones! There...I said it.
John B
Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/06 18:59:34
Don't know what others may think, but for the past two years the fruit cakes at Costco have been excellent.
Poverty Pete
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/06 19:03:54
I always liked the ones from Collin St. Bakery, even if they DO have radioactively-colored ingredients.
berndog
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/06 19:09:08
I also enjoy well made fruitcake. However, there are enough poorly made ones out there that it's easy to see where the story about there being only one cake which keeps getting passed around came from.
Sandy Thruthegarden
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/06 20:48:10
It's heartening to read that there are other fruitcake fans out there. I don't have any baking skills so homemade is out for me. Has anybody had one from the Trappists in Kentucky? Someone told me they make good (but expensive) fruitcakes. If so, do you know if they have a website?
linus
Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/06 21:26:25
Wow, if you like fruitcake, I would be happy to send you the one my english mom makes. Dark as night, covered in marzipane and confectioners sugar icing. YUCK. it's nasty. sorry.
tmiles
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/07 10:21:50
quote:
Originally posted by Poverty Pete

I always liked the ones from Collin St. Bakery, even if they DO have radioactively-colored ingredients.
I like those too, but the one I got last year was not as good as usual. The fruit and nuts on top are placed by hand, and are usually quite artistic. My cake last year looked like it was done by a 10 yr old. It tasted the same as usual though, and we will reorder this year.
Scorereader
Sirloin
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/07 17:02:50

I think I'm going to give Emeril's fruit cake it a try. I'm not a huge baker, but I watched him make this last year, and I'm dying to try it out.

Hopefully, I can have the patience to do it right.
saps
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/07 17:26:55
There are presently 685 fruitcakes circulating around the earth. Many of these were made prior to 1955, although when some fall out of circulation (eaten), they are quickly replaced from the International Fruitcake Depository located on a covert island off of Greenland.

When most people receive fruitcake, they keep it for a year or so and then send it to someone else, returning it to circulation. If you ever throw away a fruitcake, it will be removed your garbage by special fruitcake agents and promptly returned to circulation. If it is too beaten up or is out of the wrapper, it is burned and is replaced by a new old fruitcake.

Studies have shown that people that don't like fruitcake generally receive them the most, and the more you complain about them, the more you are likely to get.

Last year, 6 people died in fruitcake related accidents. Two suffered fatal hyperglycemic episodes just by handling the fruitcake through a plastic wrapper, and 4 people choked to death on bright green unidentifiable sweet squares that released itself from the cake (like a jumping cholla) and entered the windpipe on contact.

Some consider fruitcake to be a gift, especially during the holidays. It is not. It's the same as the neighbors dropping off the crap that they didn't sell at their garage sale off at your front door, as if they are doing you a favor. What it really says is "I didn't know what the hell to give you, and I didn't have time to get you anything, but I had this fruitcake and didn't want it, so I sent it to you."
ScreenBear
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/07 17:41:18
Funny essay, Saps.
What confounds me, however, is all the lore about fruitcake.

I.E.- Monks making it; which Monks make the best ones; how old can a fruitcake be before it is truly dangerous to your health?, etc.

That said, I truly like 'em, specially one that seems to be a great example of the cake species it belongs to.

That said, I wouldn't mind hearing more about them from experts, including opinions of what is considered to be the Ferrari of Fruit Cakes.
GordonW
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/07 17:44:48
quote:
Originally posted by Sandy Thruthegarden

It's heartening to read that there are other fruitcake fans out there. I don't have any baking skills so homemade is out for me. Has anybody had one from the Trappists in Kentucky? Someone told me they make good (but expensive) fruitcakes. If so, do you know if they have a website?

These guys, maybe? http://trappistmonks.com/

I would think that the Trappist have made a overall greater contribution on the liquid side.
Sandy Thruthegarden
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/07 18:36:48
quote:
Originally posted by GordonW

quote:
Originally posted by Sandy Thruthegarden

It's heartening to read that there are other fruitcake fans out there. I don't have any baking skills so homemade is out for me. Has anybody had one from the Trappists in Kentucky? Someone told me they make good (but expensive) fruitcakes. If so, do you know if they have a website?

These guys, maybe? http://trappistmonks.com/

I would think that the Trappist have made a overall greater contribution on the liquid side.




Thanks for the link. I was actually thinking of the monastery in Central Kentucky but I guess they all make the same kinds of fruitcakes...looks the same and just as pricey. No direct mention of the liquid side at that site but how else would you age them "under careful supervision" without some hooch? Otherwise wouldn't they just get dry and stale? Actually it looks pretty good to me.
Sandy Thruthegarden
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/07 18:47:24
linus -Is it that you don't like fruitcake in general or just your mother's? I'll admit I've had some bad fruitcake at holiday parties...way too sweet and dried out. It's the rare good ones that have sent me on this quest.

saps - I enjoyed the essay. One of my friends swears that many a door is held open by fruitcakes that came as Christmas gifts.
trudyn
Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 01:59:32
Fruitcake. Unfairly maligned? Impossible.
linus
Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 03:59:15
Sandy, I've tried a few that were good, i.e., not really dark, a lot of pineapple and butter in the mix.
I love the mom, but her Fruitcake is awful, and normally she's a really good cook. It must be an english thing, the cake is dry, dark, covered in marzipane and the confectioner's sugar icing is awful!
mek
Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 07:47:56
I have actually eaten this fruitcake. It was delicious-


http://www.monasteryfruitcake.org/productsfruitcakes.asp

Tedbear
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 08:08:19
Obviously, fruitcake is one of those unique items that polarizes people. Personally, I love them, as does my brother and my S.O. In past years, I have given them the ones from the Collin Street Bakery, and they were, indeed, very good, if pricey. This year, I am going to try the ones from the afore-mentioned monks in Kentucky. The link for their Kentucky Bourbon Fruitcakes is:

http://www.gethsemanifarms.org/fruitcake.asp
jmckee
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 09:17:36
quote:
Originally posted by Tedbear

Obviously, fruitcake is one of those unique items that polarizes people. Personally, I love them, as does my brother and my S.O. In past years, I have given them the ones from the Collin Street Bakery, and they were, indeed, very good, if pricey. This year, I am going to try the ones from the afore-mentioned monks in Kentucky. The link for their Kentucky Bourbon Fruitcakes is:

http://www.gethsemanifarms.org/fruitcake.asp


It's fantastic. And their Bourbon fudge and Trappist cheese are excellent as well.
Terry_Q
Junior Burger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 11:15:07
Well, I will concede that a really good fruitcake (like my late grandmother used to bake) can really be delicious.

However, I think everybody will grant me that MOST of the ones you see in the stores are "wretched at best". So what to do if some ignorant relative gives you one of those for Christmas?

How about visiting Manitou Springs Colorado on the first Saturday in January??

Check this out:
http://www.colorado-for-free.com/FreeStuff/FruitcakeToss.htm
berndog
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 11:53:31
saps, great story. Certainly gets rid of the old "there is only one which keeps getting passed around" fruitcake theory.

I wonder if the CIA* or FBI** is involved in this conspiracy?

*Culinary Investgative Association
**Fruitcake Benevolence Instigators
saps
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 12:19:21
Fruitcake Facts:

-The closest relative to the fruitcake is the Australian boomerang. While dissimilar in structure, when both are released, they eventually return to the exact same point.

-While usually only 8-12 inches in diameter, an average size fruitcake generally weighs around 400 pounds.

-Contrary to popular belief, fruitcakes are not actually poisonous.

-People who say that they have eaten fruitcake are probably telling the truth. People that say they enjoy eating fruitcake are certainly
lying and probably hang around your house trying to pick up your spouse while you are at work.

-Fruitcakes are neither "fruit" nor "cake". Headcheese is neither "heads" nor "cheese".

-Fruitcakes often come in metal tins in order to protect U.S. Mail employees from their harmful radiation.

-In the unlikely event that you have to eat fruitcake, wear pants. Little pieces can embed themselves in moist nether regions and grow to a fullsize fruitcake within days.
UncleVic
Sirloin
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 12:43:07
Yuk...
bcory
Hamburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 16:59:21
Any Fruitcake can be made better by drowning it in Rum and or Brandy!
msp
Junior Burger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 18:04:44
i have to agree that the fruit cake is something you must love to eat or joke about. i have also heard that costco has a very good one and i remember a company called klackston ? made a very good one that was actually sold at sears! my brother who loves to bake , has made many fruit cakes which have been very good but the cost of ingreidients was extremely high and it was eaiser to just go buy one instead of spending all the time and money to make them enjoy it now as you will not see them for a good 11 months
Bonzmoose
Junior Burger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 18:44:57
Sandy, we have tried both the Collin Street Bakery and Gethsemani Farms fruitcakes. They are both very good. I soak them in bourbon once they arrive. Many years ago I made my own fruitcakes but they are so much trouble I save my energy for baking other goodies at Christmas. As mentioned by jmckee, the monks at Gethsemani Farms also make excellent cheeses and bourbon fudge. We've tried just about everything they sell. I will probably order one of their fruitcakes again this year as well as some cheese. In fact, I'm getting hungry thinking about all those great flavors right now.
Sandy Thruthegarden
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 18:45:38
quote:
Originally posted by jmckee

quote:
Originally posted by Tedbear

Obviously, fruitcake is one of those unique items that polarizes people. Personally, I love them, as does my brother and my S.O. In past years, I have given them the ones from the Collin Street Bakery, and they were, indeed, very good, if pricey. This year, I am going to try the ones from the afore-mentioned monks in Kentucky. The link for their Kentucky Bourbon Fruitcakes is:

http://www.gethsemanifarms.org/fruitcake.asp


It's fantastic. And their Bourbon fudge and Trappist cheese are excellent as well.


That's what I was looking for! I've had the cheese and it was really good. It's good to hear that their fruitcake is good too. Bourbon instead of brandy or rum sounds appropriate. I think the abbey is located not far from Bardstown and Lawrenceburg, both of which are home to several distilleries.

Thanks!
Sandy Thruthegarden
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 18:53:56
Bonzmoose (and bcory),

I'll go ahead and order one now...and soak it in bourbon the minute it arrives. It's gonna be a warm and bright Christmas. I promise not to drive after a couple of slices.
bcory
Hamburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/08 19:08:53
Better yet use Canadian Rye Whiskey! hehe
TxConnie
Hamburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/09 14:49:40
I love Collins St. This other Texas company is hard to beat. They have a regular fruit cake that is to die for and one with less fruit and more pecans that is also very good.

[http://www.yahoocake.com/cgi-bin/yahoo/index.html]

mr chips
Filet Mignon
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/10 07:04:46
quote:
Originally posted by bcory

Any Fruitcake can be made better by drowning it in Rum and or Brandy!
Almost anything can be improved by adding rum.
jmckee
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/10 08:17:16
quote:
Originally posted by mr chips

quote:
Originally posted by bcory

Any Fruitcake can be made better by drowning it in Rum and or Brandy!
Almost anything can be improved by adding rum.


Except my in-laws.
Sundancer7
Fire Safety Admin
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/10 08:25:43
Mamaw Smith makes a mean fruit cake which I generally enjoy one slice a year with some coffee that is spiked.

She makes it about a week before Thanksgiving and adds a healthy covering of rum, butter and sugar.

It is potent.

Regarding Mamaw Smith, she is in therapy three times a week trying to regain motion in her crushed arm. Unfortunately it was her right arm and she has very limited use. She has yet to regain enough strength to start her car and has had to rely on her next door neighbor for all transporation. That is me. I am glad to be able to do it.

Paul E. Smith
Knoxville, TN
Sandy Thruthegarden
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/10 18:52:19
quote:
Originally posted by Sundancer7

Mamaw Smith makes a mean fruit cake which I generally enjoy one slice a year with some coffee that is spiked.

She makes it about a week before Thanksgiving and adds a healthy covering of rum, butter and sugar.

It is potent.

Regarding Mamaw Smith, she is in therapy three times a week trying to regain motion in her crushed arm. Unfortunately it was her right arm and she has very limited use. She has yet to regain enough strength to start her car and has had to rely on her next door neighbor for all transporation. That is me. I am glad to be able to do it.

Paul E. Smith
Knoxville, TN


Hi, Paul- Mamaw Smith's fruitcake sounds heavenly. I'm sorry to read that she was injured. It is good that you're her next door neighbor. It is a privilege to be of help to someone you care for and respect. Best wishes to you both.

Sandy
CNW
Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/12 03:53:14
I love a good Fruitcake, however here in Kansas you can't buy one with the necessary preservatives. It all has to do with a stupid state law outlawing the use of alcohol in food. So, about six years ago I did some serious research (i.e. recipe testing) and found this recipe on Mastercook that makes a very good fruitcake.

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
1 1/2 c Butter, softened
1 pk Confectioner's sugar
Flour
6 lg Eggs
1 c Bourbon (or rum)
4 T Vanilla extract
1 lb Golden raisins
1 lb Glace cherries
1 lb Glace pineapple
1/3 lb Glace citron (or more,
-up to a pound)
1/4 lb Candied orange peel
1/4 lb Candied lemon peel
1 qt Pecan halves
14 oz Coconut, flaked

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.
Chop coarsely the raisins, cherries, pineapple, citron, orange peel, lemon peel and pecan halves.

In large bowl, soften the 3 sticks of butter. Cream in a box of
confectioner's sugar, then fill box to the same level with flour. Pour
half of the flour over the fruit and nuts; mix thoroughly so all are
well-floured.

Add six eggs to butter/sugar, one at a time, while beating. Add vanilla
extract and fold in flour. Stir in fruits and nuts; fold in liquor. Pour
into 8 inch decorated cake tins and bake approximately 2 hours. Let cool. Pour one cup of your favorite bourbon, rum, or brandy over the top and seal the container. Let marinate for at least three weeks.





fabulousoyster
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/17 16:06:44
I'll take a Black Cake as it's known in the Caribbean, a friend from Guyana gives me one every Christmas. The fruits are put through a grinder, lots of rum, after the cake is baked, it is continues to be embalmed lovingly with lots of rum for days (maybe weeks or more.
RubyRose
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/17 17:31:15
I will be making fruitcakes on Sunday from my stepfather's mom's recipe. They consist of pecan halves, candied cherries and pineapple, with just enough batter to hold them together and a monthlong soak in Makers Mark bourbon. Those who like fruitcake really like them and those who don't won't miss not getting one.
Diner-Lover
Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/17 17:46:32
RubyRose, that recipe sounds similar to one my Mom used to make, except she also added chopped dates to her fruitcake, and there's no liquor in it. (I've never cared for booze in my sweets anyway.) They were very moist and delicious and so pretty when sliced since they were so full of fruit. I think she stopped making them a few years ago, so maybe it's time I took over the tradition.
alb
Junior Burger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/18 21:43:45
OK, I even like the bad ones. But the best I have had are Collin St Bakery in Texas and my sister-in-law's mom's. Oh man, it's moist and chewy, and full of nuts and dried fruit but not the fluorescent kind. I'm salivating on my laptop.
RubyRose
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2005/11/18 22:33:51
quote:
Originally posted by Diner-Lover

RubyRose, that recipe sounds similar to one my Mom used to make, except she also added chopped dates to her fruitcake, and there's no liquor in it. (I've never cared for booze in my sweets anyway.) They were very moist and delicious and so pretty when sliced since they were so full of fruit. I think she stopped making them a few years ago, so maybe it's time I took over the tradition.

I forgot to type it in but the 3rd fruit in mine is halved dates so maybe it's the same recipe. I don't add the bourbon to the batter but pour it over the hot cakes while they're still in the pans and it seeps into the spaces between the nuts and fruit.
oDey in LA
Hamburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2009/12/30 21:26:06
Poverty Pete

I always liked the ones from Collin St. Bakery, even if they DO have radioactively-colored ingredients.


It just would not be Christmas Season for me with out my Collin Street Bakery fruit cake. I discovered them when I first moved to Irving TX in 1967. I don't believe I have missed one since. We traveled to my son's home in SC for the past two Christmas Holidays and he HATES fruit cakes. So I just have one shipped to his home for his Mama and I and then we bring what is left home with us. He is big on both Pecan Pie like his Daddy and Pumpkin Pie like his Mama so he makes out like a bandit. Of course his Mama home cooks the traditional Turkey with all the fixins.
 
Life is good down South 
oDey in LA
Hamburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2009/12/30 21:40:47
Diner-Lover

RubyRose, that recipe sounds similar to one my Mom used to make, except she also added chopped dates to her fruitcake, and there's no liquor in it. (I've never cared for booze in my sweets anyway.) They were very moist and delicious and so pretty when sliced since they were so full of fruit. I think she stopped making them a few years ago, so maybe it's time I took over the tradition.

 
When I was a kid growing up  on a farm in Arkansas, my Mama always made a huge fruit cake then soaked it inside a wrapping towel. She would use Welch grape juice since she was a good WCTU teetotaling Baptist Lady. When I was about 16 or so, I talked her into using Mogen David wine instead of grape juice. I told her that our Jewish friends used MD and that it  was a religious thing and that since Jesus was Jewish and all, that I thought we should use it too.
 
I was  her baby boy and I could sweet talk her into just about anything. After that first time she always used MD on her cake for as long as she was able to cook and bake. That was the only thing alcoholic that she allowed in her home.
 
I would give a fortune to once again taste my Mama's fruit cake. 
boilermaker
Hamburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2009/12/30 22:20:58
alb

OK, I even like the bad ones. But the best I have had are Collin St Bakery in Texas and my sister-in-law's mom's. Oh man, it's moist and chewy, and full of nuts and dried fruit but not the fluorescent kind. I'm salivating on my laptop.


Same here. I stumbled upon Collin St. Bakery when I moved to Texas. I've always gone to the bakery to get mine - this year is the first I've had to order it.
Ralph Melton
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Fruitcake...it's that time of the year! 2009/12/31 13:01:14
My family would get the Collin Street Bakery fruitcake every year.

I miss it at this time of year. Unfortunately, I know that if I were to order one of those fruitcakes, I'd probably only enjoy about a sixth of it over the holiday.

I guess I ought to find a great fruitcake recipe, make several mini-loaves, and share all but one with friends and neighbors.