The first Christmas I was dating Rob, he invited me to try some of his mom's fruitcake. I wrinkled up my nose and wondered what I was getting myself into.
But a taste of Mary Dickinson's fruitcake revealed a fruity, nutty treat I'd never experienced before.
Instead, it's a sweet, rum-flavored confection that anyone on your list would love. Mary said she found the recipe in the December 1984 Ladies Home Journal. "Interestingly, the article in which the fruitcake is mentioned is excerpted from Breakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capote," she said.
Here's the recipe:
1 pound pecan halves
1 pound Brazil nuts
1 cup coconut
2 pounds whole pitted dates
1/2 pound candied cherries cut in half
1/2 pound candied pineapple wedges
1 pound dries apricots quartered
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 14-ounce cans sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup light rum plus additional for aging the fruitcake
Grease two 9x5 loaf pans and line with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In very large bowl combine nuts and fruits. Add flour and toss.
Then add sweetened condensed milk and rum; mix well. Spoon into prepared pans and press down evenly. Bake 1 hour and 15 minutes.
Cool in pans on wire rack for 1 hour. Remove from pan. Turn right side up and cool completely.
Drizzle 2 tablesppons rum on each loaf and wrap in foil.
Let stand 24 hours before slicing.
To serve, slice each loaf into nine 1 inch slices. Cut each slice in thirds (or fourths). Enjoy.
This blog post originally ran Dec. 9, 2010.