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Dark Fruitcake

Yields1 Serving

 3 cups all-purpose flour (you can get away with using part whole wheat flour)
 1 tsp baking powder
 ½ tsp baking soda
 ¼ tsp salt
 1 tsp cinnamon
 ½ tsp allspice
 ½ tsp nutmeg
 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
 2 cups packed brown sugar
 ½ cup dark molasses
 Grated zest and juice of 1 orange
 Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
 ¾ cup brandy, rum, or grape or orange juice (or even red wine!)
 2 ½ cups mixed dried or candied fruit of your choice (I use dried cranberries, dried cherries if I can afford them, figs, dark raisins, real candied orange peel if I have it, and finely chopped apricots if I’m in the mood)
 2 cups coarsely chopped walnuts and/or pecans
 1 ½ cups dates
 1 ½ cups currants
 1 ½ cups golden raisins

Preheat the oven to 300° F, and grease a bundt or tube pan really well; coat with flour and tap out the excess.


In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar for a few minutes, until light and creamy. Beat in the molasses and orange and lemon zest and juice.


Add the flour mixture in 3 parts, alternating with the brandy, rum or juice in 2 parts. Stir in the fruits and nuts and scrape into the pan.


Bake for 3 ½ hours. Joy instructs: “The cake may appear done at 2 ½ hours; simply ignore this.” If the cake is darkening too quickly on top, cover it loosely with foil for the last 30-60 minutes. Cool in the pan on a wire rack, then invert onto a plate.


Store well wrapped at room temperature.