Classic Fruitcake Loaves
For a nonalcoholic version, use root beer instead of brandy as the soaking liquid.
Yield: 3 loaves
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- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1 tablespoon orange extract
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 7 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 3 1/2 cups chopped candied pineapple
- 1 (8-oz.) container red candied cherries, chopped
- 1 (8-oz.) container green candied cherries, chopped
- 3 cups pecan halves, coarsely chopped and toasted
- 1 cup walnut halves, coarsely chopped and toasted
- 1 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup golden raisins
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- Garnishes: additional candied cherries and pecan halves
- 3 tablespoons brandy (optional)
- Additional brandy (optional)
- Beat butter at medium speed with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer until creamy; gradually add sugars, beating well. Add molasses and orange extract, beating well. Combine flour and next 3 ingredients. Add to butter mixture alternately with beaten eggs, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat well after each addition.
- Combine candied pineapple, chopped cherries, and next 4 ingredients in a large bowl; sprinkle with 1/2 cup flour, stirring to coat well. Stir fruit into batter. Spoon batter into 3 heavily greased and floured 8 1/2" x 4 1/2" loaf pans. Arrange additional cherries and pecans on top of batter, if desired.
- Bake at 250° for 2 1/2 hours or until a wooden pick inserted in center of loaves comes out clean. Brush each loaf with 1 Tbsp. brandy, if desired. Let cool completely on a wire rack. If desired, wrap loaves in brandy-soaked cheesecloth. Store in an airtight container in a cool place up to 3 weeks. Pour a small amount of brandy evenly over loaves each week, if desired.
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