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Rich Dark Fruit Cake

Author/Submitted by: Carol
Servings: 40
Categories: Cakes / Christmas / Desserts / Nuts

Ingredients:
6  cups  sultana or golden raisins
3  cups  dried currants
1 1/2  cups  pitted dates
6  cups  raisins
3  cups  candied mixed citrus peel
1/2  pound  candied cherries
2  cups  almonds
2  cups  butter
3 1/4  cups  all-purpose flour
3  teaspoons  baking powder
1/2  teaspoon  baking soda
1/2  teaspoon  salt
2  teaspoons  ground allspice
4  teaspoons  ground cinnamon
1  teaspoon  ground nutmeg
1/2  teaspoon  ground cloves
1  tablespoon  vanilla extract
2  cups  sugar, white
12    egg yolks
1/2  cup  molasses
12    egg whites
1/2  cup  grape juice
1/2  cup  coffee, brewed, strong

Directions:
1. Wash and dry the raisins and the currants. Wash, dry, pit, and chop the dates. Chop the raisins and the citrus peel. Slice the cherries. Blanch the almonds, and slice them lengthwise. Combine fruits and nuts in large bowl.

2. Grease and line 3 standard Christmas cake pans (these round pans are at least 3 inches deep and come in a set of three sizes- 5, 7, and 9 inch across) with 4 layers of heavy waxed paper, or 3 layers of brown paper. Grease again. Preheat oven to 275 degrees F (135 degrees C).

3. Sift together flour, baking powder, soda, salt, and spices onto a piece of waxed paper. Remove 1 cup of this flour mixture, and combine with fruit and nuts. Mix until fruit is well coated.

4. Cream the butter until fluffy. Add extracts. Gradually add sugar, mixing until creamy. Beat egg yolks until light and lemon-colored, and beat into the butter mixture. Stir in the molasses, and beat together well. Add half of the remaining flour mixture, and blend thoroughly.

5. Beat egg whites until stiff but not dry; fold into batter. Stir in lightly the remaining flour mixture alternately with combined fruit juice and coffee. Add floured fruit and nuts, blending in until fruit is well distributed.

6. Turn batter into prepared cake tins, filling each about 2/3 full and spreading batter evenly. Bake in center of oven. Bake small cake 2 1/2 hours, medium cake 3 1/2 hours, and large cake 4 to 4 1/2 hours. Remove from oven and allow to stand 5 minutes, then turn out on wire rack to cool.

"This is my mother's very old recipe, at least 60 years old. My mother baked this for my wedding, and it sure is delicious and also a great Christmas cake. This is a very long recipe, but well worth the trouble. If 2 cups of butter seems too much for you, substitute shortening for 1 cup of the butter. Other fruit juices can be substituted for grape juice. You can also use 1 cup of drained maraschino cherries in place of the candied cherries. Originally submitted to CakeRecipe.com." Original recipe yield: 1 - 3 tiered wedding cake.


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