Diana's Desserts - www.dianasdesserts.com

Old-Fashioned Fruit Cake

Servings: Makes 1 (9 x 5-inch) loaf cake, 12 servings
Fruit cake, a favorite during the holiday season. Lovely served with coffee, tea or hot cocoa at a festive Christmas party or for other seasonal holiday parties. Also makes a cheerful gift for friends and family during this season of giving.

Remember, just a small piece goes a long way (the cake is quite rich), so slice into about 1/4-inch pieces.

2 tbsp. (1/4 stick/1 oz./28g) unsalted butter, melted
3 cups walnut halves
8 oz. candied or glacé cherries (green or red or combination of both)
8 oz. chopped dates
4 oz.) candied pineapple
3/4 cup sifted all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3 eggs, lightly beaten
3 tbsp. dark rum or rum extract
1 tbsp. freshly grated orange peel (optional)
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Position a rack in the lower third of oven and preheat oven to 300 degrees F/150 degrees C. Brush a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan with the melted butter and line with parchment paper.

Combine walnuts and fruit in a large bowl; set aside.

Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in medium bowl. Sift over walnut mixture; toss gently until walnut mixture is well coated.

Blend in eggs, rum, orange peel (optional) and vanilla. Spread in prepared pan.

Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour and 45 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool in pan on wire rack for 10 minutes.

Tap the pan gently on a work surface to loosen the fruitcake. Invert the pan onto the rack and lift off the pan. Peel off the parchment paper and let the fruitcake cool completely on the rack. Wrap the fruitcake in plastic wrap and aluminum foil, then refrigerate for at least 1 day or up to 2 months.

Makes 1 (9 x 5-inch) loaf cake, approximately 12 servings.

Date: October 9, 2006