Has anyone made a "white fruitcake"?
I've seen these mentioned in some Southern cookbooks that reference older recipes. I'm intrigued, but haven't tried one yet.
They typically omit dark fruit and the common "fruitcake" spices. Bill Neal mentions some versions that use all egg whites rather than yolks--though he says he prefers the whole egg version.
Add-in ingredients might include the following:
grated fresh coconut,
The liquor of choice: bourbon or brandy...
Yes, I make a white fruitcake. I inherited the recipe by way of my mother and her mother. I don't know if mine is a Southern recipe, but I grew up in Virginia and that is where I learned to make it. Oddly enough, the name it was christened with is California Fruitcake.
This fruitcake has apricots, figs, white and dark raisins, citron, orange and lemon peels, and pecans. It also called for maraschino cherries, but as dried tart cherries became available, and as I am now the sole remaining baker of this fruitcake, I changed the cherries to dried cherries. I plump them in kirsch now.
After I learned to make this fruitcake at my mothers side, we found an edited recipe from my grandmother that also had pineapple in it. I now use fresh pineapple chunks in it, well drained.
The batter doesn't have any spices in it, and the liquid is the liquid from cooking the apricots and various fruit juices and nectars. It is a whole egg version.
We have never put any liquor on it, and it seems just fine that way. If I had to choose a liquour/wine to put on it, I think sherry would be the best. But I haven't really experimented with doing this, as the fruitcake is very good without it.
I haven't made it in a few years, as there seem to be very few fruitcake lovers that I know, and I have been traveling around. It takes about two days to make, as the fruit needs to sit overnight in a dusting of flour.
However, I have introduced this fruitcake to some fruitcake "haters", and they seemed pleased with it. It has a little bit of tartness to it, and is not overwhemingly sweet.
California Fruit Cake
2 cups dried sliced apricots -- boil 1 minute in
1 thin syrup:1/2 cup sugar to 1 cup water:
cool and dry
1 cup dried figs -- cut small
2 cups white raisins
1 1/3 cups dark raisins
2/3 cup dried cherries or maraschino cherries -- cut
dried cherries in Kirsch .
2/3 cup orange peel -- cut small
2/3 cup lemon peel -- cut small
2/3 cup citron -- cut small
2 cups broken nut meats -- preferably pecans
24 cubes pineapple -- cut in 1/4's and
4 1/2 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 tablespoons corn syrup
5 eggs -- well beaten
1 1/3 cups fruit juices -- use syrup from
apricots, plus pineapple juice, plus
whatever juices you have
Dust fruit mixture with some of the flour and set aside covered until ready
to add to batter. It is even better if the fruit is left
overnight like this. Mix remaining flour and dry ingredients (minus the
sugar) and set aside. Cream the butter and sugar well.
Add the corn syrup and beat well, then mix in well beaten eggs. Add the
flour mixture alternately with the mixed fruit juices,
beating well between each addition. Then add fruits, mixing well past each
addition. Pour into prepared pans. * Bake at 325
degrees for 10 minutes then reduce heat to 275 degrees. If you have used 2
tube pans, continue baking for another 2 hours. If
you have used 1 large angel food pan, bake for 5 hours longer. When done,
cool completely in the pans. Remove cakes from
the pans when cool, but leave paper on the cakes until ready to serve. Wrap
* Use two 9"by 3" tube pans or one large angel food cake pan. Line sides
with greased brown paper: I use brown paper bags.
Fill pans 1/2 to 2/3 full .
Edited by artisan02, 30 September 2004 - 01:51 AM.