Thursday, November 12, 2009


A lot of people believe that there are two camps when it comes to fruitcake.  You either like it or you don't.  There are even camps within the "like" group - whether you fancy light fruitcake or dark.  I read a Debbie Macomber Christmas book a few years ago that was completely premised around fruitcake.  I keep meaning to try the recipes found in that book, but I haven't so far.


Because while I'm of the camp that likes fruitcake, I don't like to make it.

Growing up, by the way, I hated it.  Citron peel, mixed peel, mixed fruit, cherries, in a loaf so dense you could use it as a brick.  I might tolerate light but never dark.  Even at our wedding, when fruitcake should have been used as the customary "grooms cake", I said no.  We had War Cake instead.  (For those of you who don't know what War Cake is, it's a gorgeous dark, raisin type cake that is lovely with tea and the recipe comes from the war when rationing was in effect.)  It's also struck me as a bit funny that we had War Cake at our Wedding.  Doesn't it look yummy - it's also called Boiled Raisin Cake.  MMMMMMM.

Anyway, I've matured.  Grown older.  My tastes have expanded.  Especially when it comes to my Mother Inlaw's fruitcake.  I'm converted.

I think the recipe is actually my husband's paternal grandmother's, but I'm not sure.  All I know is that for the last few years, "Mom" has been so kind as to send us some light and dark fruitcake close to the holidays.  I think we're all in agreement as well - the dark fruitcake is our favourite.

Mom-in-law struck a deal with me this year.  If I bought all the fruit, she'd make the cakes.  So when we visited at Thanksgiving (Canada, so in October) I took with me 2 large bags of fruit and raisins.  When we visit this weekend (they are 3 hours away), I will pick it up.  As well as mincemeat (which I'll save for another post).

I'm guessing it's not going to last until Christmas.  Especially if the weather turns cold and we put on a pot of tea....

In the meantime, I'm enjoying the release of my seventh Harlequin Romance this week!  Montana, Mistletoe, Marriage is out in stores and while you won't find any fruitcake recipes inside, you will find recipes to a few other treats!  I was so hungry writing this book!

I hope your month leading up to Christmas is fun and stress free and fruitcake filled if you so desire!


Linda Henderson said...

Well I'm in the I don't like fruitcake section. Although I do admire anyone that fixes them because they have got to be a lot of trouble. I look forward to reading your book.

Virginia C said...

Hello! Thanks for this post : ) I love fruticake. I come from a fruitcake family : ) There are a lot of different fruitcakes out there, and some are pretty scary! I love the old-fashioned dark fruitcake, rich with candied fruit, nuts and spices. A slice of this cake, along with a glass of eggnog, is a must for the holidays! I have a really great recipe which is also simple to make. I don't use much citron, mostly candied cherries & pineapple, nuts and raisins. Happy Holidays!

Donna Alward said...

Virginia - me too! And yes to the eggnog, though I get tired of it faster than I get tired of the cake.

Linda - they ARE trouble and expensive! But for once a year I can deal. :-)

Caroline Storer said...

Love fruit cake. Come to think of it I love most cakes! BTW good people of the world - Montana, Mistletoe, Marriage is a great read! Go out and buy it today! You won't be disappointed. Take care. Caroline x

Christina Hollis said...

I'm not keen on traditional heavy fruitcake, but Mary Berry's apricot and cherry cake is really lovely, and light. My Christmas cake is therefore the traditional basic keeping mixture with brandy, and her combination of fruits and added Golden Seedless sultanas. But definitely NONE of the treacle and molasses my sister in law uses!

penney said...

Great blog today I love fruit cakes your book sounds great I'll be getting it.
Thank you

Emmanuelle said...

I don't like fruit cakes AT ALL. Maybe it's just that I haven't acquired this particular taste yet... we'll see ;-)

Biki said...

Whenever I look at fruitcake I always have the urge to either chuck it like a brick (really, fruitcake has such a bad rep now :() or make biscotti, lol!

Donna Alward said...

For those of you who don't like it:

The Rum Helps.

Thanks for being here today!

Mary said...

I don't care for fruit cake all that much but I do like pumpkin bread.