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Applesauce Fruitcakes

Holiday 2003
200306061.jpg
food and drink

BY: Dana Speers

These luscious cakes are filled with an assortment of dried fruit rather than the sugary candied variety. It is essential to let the fruitcakes rest for 5 days before serving so the flavours have a chance to meld. Wrap the cakes tightly in plastic and foil so they remain moist. You can purchase individual loaf pans at kitchen supply stores.

1 1/2 cups (375 mL) unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup (125 mL) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup (125 mL) sugar
1/4 cup (50 mL) molasses
3 tbsp (45 mL) honey
1 1/3 cups (325 mL) golden raisins
1 1/3 cups (325 mL) dark raisins
1/2 cup (125 mL) dried currants
1 cup (250 mL) dried cherries
1/2 cup (125 mL) dried cranberries
1 1/4 cups (300 mL) dried apricots, chopped
1 cup (250 mL) walnut halves, roughly chopped
1 cup (250 mL) pecan halves, roughly chopped
2 1/4 cups (550 mL) all-purpose flour
2 tsp (10 mL) baking soda
1 tsp (5 mL) cinnamon
1/2 tsp (2 mL) nutmeg
1/2 tsp (2 mL) allspice
1/4 tsp (1 mL) mace
1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt
3/4 cup (175 mL) brandy


Garnish
1 cup (250 mL) seedless raspberry jam
1/4 cup (50 mL) water
Gold leaf

1. Preheat oven to 275°F (140°C). Butter and flour twelve 4 x 2-inch (10 x 5-cm) miniature loaf pans and place on a baking sheet.

2. Heat applesauce in a medium pot over medium heat until boiling. Add butter and stir until melted. Add sugar, molasses and honey and cook, stirring, for about 1 minute or until sugar dissolves. Pour mixture into a large bowl and let cool. Add raisins, currants, cherries, cranberries, apricots, walnuts and pecans. Stir to combine.

3. Sift flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, mace and salt into a large bowl. Fold dry ingredients into applesauce mixture until combined. Divide batter evenly among prepared loaf pans. With the back of a wet tablespoon, press batter into pans and smooth the tops.

4. Place baking sheet in middle of oven and bake fruitcakes 55 to 60 minutes or until a skewer inserted in centre comes out clean. Turn cakes out onto a wire rack and let cool.

5. With a pastry brush, coat fruitcakes liberally with brandy. Wrap fruitcakes in a layer of plastic wrap and a layer of foil and let rest at room temperature for 5 to 8 days.

6. Put raspberry jam and water in a small pot over medium heat and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down to low and gently simmer for 5 minutes. Pass mixture through a strainer. Unwrap cakes and brush the hot glaze on top. Once the glaze has cooled, decorate the cakes with bits of gold leaf.

Serves 12 (1 cake per person)

200306061.jpg
food and drink

Applesauce Fruitcakes

Holiday 2003

BY: Dana Speers

These luscious cakes are filled with an assortment of dried fruit rather than the sugary candied variety. It is essential to let the fruitcakes rest for 5 days before serving so the flavours have a chance to meld. Wrap the cakes tightly in plastic and foil so they remain moist. You can purchase individual loaf pans at kitchen supply stores.

1 1/2 cups (375 mL) unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup (125 mL) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup (125 mL) sugar
1/4 cup (50 mL) molasses
3 tbsp (45 mL) honey
1 1/3 cups (325 mL) golden raisins
1 1/3 cups (325 mL) dark raisins
1/2 cup (125 mL) dried currants
1 cup (250 mL) dried cherries
1/2 cup (125 mL) dried cranberries
1 1/4 cups (300 mL) dried apricots, chopped
1 cup (250 mL) walnut halves, roughly chopped
1 cup (250 mL) pecan halves, roughly chopped
2 1/4 cups (550 mL) all-purpose flour
2 tsp (10 mL) baking soda
1 tsp (5 mL) cinnamon
1/2 tsp (2 mL) nutmeg
1/2 tsp (2 mL) allspice
1/4 tsp (1 mL) mace
1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt
3/4 cup (175 mL) brandy


Garnish
1 cup (250 mL) seedless raspberry jam
1/4 cup (50 mL) water
Gold leaf

1. Preheat oven to 275°F (140°C). Butter and flour twelve 4 x 2-inch (10 x 5-cm) miniature loaf pans and place on a baking sheet.

2. Heat applesauce in a medium pot over medium heat until boiling. Add butter and stir until melted. Add sugar, molasses and honey and cook, stirring, for about 1 minute or until sugar dissolves. Pour mixture into a large bowl and let cool. Add raisins, currants, cherries, cranberries, apricots, walnuts and pecans. Stir to combine.

3. Sift flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, mace and salt into a large bowl. Fold dry ingredients into applesauce mixture until combined. Divide batter evenly among prepared loaf pans. With the back of a wet tablespoon, press batter into pans and smooth the tops.

4. Place baking sheet in middle of oven and bake fruitcakes 55 to 60 minutes or until a skewer inserted in centre comes out clean. Turn cakes out onto a wire rack and let cool.

5. With a pastry brush, coat fruitcakes liberally with brandy. Wrap fruitcakes in a layer of plastic wrap and a layer of foil and let rest at room temperature for 5 to 8 days.

6. Put raspberry jam and water in a small pot over medium heat and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down to low and gently simmer for 5 minutes. Pass mixture through a strainer. Unwrap cakes and brush the hot glaze on top. Once the glaze has cooled, decorate the cakes with bits of gold leaf.

Serves 12 (1 cake per person)

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