Growing up I was never a big fan of any type of dessert that had fruit or nuts in it. Like why would you ruin a perfectly good brownie by putting walnuts in there.
But as I get older my palette is becoming a bit more sophisticated, i.e. I’m not only craving Kraft Dinner anymore. Which brings me to the short stint of time in my life where I lived abroad in the UK, the land of Cadbury milk chocolate, but around Christmas it was the land of the old lady fruit cake.
At Christmas our family’s tradition is always that we do a gigantic Turkey with all the fixings, but then for dessert it’s always been a mixture of Canadian classics like Nanaimo bars, Butter tart square and maybe even some shortbread cookies, the way Christmas is meant to be. One year my sister even made a vinarterta which is layers and layers of thin almond cake with a prune filling. My palette was noticeably changing at this time because I ate a whole half of the cake in one sitting – hello my name is Alexis, and I have a problem. But back to the UK and this Fruit cake tradition of theirs.
The excitement I felt with the thought of sinking my teeth into a cake filled with dried fruit and nuts was right up there with having to see my lady parts doctor. But because I’m a trooper I thought “Alexis, don’t be a pain in the ass and just eat the damn fruitcake”. After all my ex’s mom had gone out and picked up a special gluten free fruitcake just for me. The mistake was that she dropped it off at our place the night before the big Christmas lunch.
That same night there I was on my own, wrapping gifts and I thought maybe I should just try a tiny slice. At least this way i’d give myself a chance to know what I was going to be up against tomorrow and could practice my best “Mmmmmmmm this is so delicious” face. But to my tastebud surprise the cake was actually pretty flippin’ good. So my next thought was – since it’s MY cake what would be the harm in going back for another little sliver??? This back and forth went on for most of the evening until I found myself knife in hand licking the wrapper of the now empty cake container. Yep, I ate the entire cake in one sitting, Merry Christmas to me.
So, the moral of the story… Sometimes it’s good to have an open mind and to “try” new things, just don’t leave me alone with them if you’re hoping to have a taste.
Flippin’ Fantastic Fruit Cake
1 cup almond flour
1/2 cup coconut flour, sifted
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp honey
2 tbsp molasses
1/2 tbsp gluten free baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp all spice
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
1/4 cup pecans, chopped
1/4 cup of apricots
1/4 cup of dates
1/4 cup of cranberries
1/4 cup of raisins
1/4 cup of prunes
Zest and juice of 1 navel orange
3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
3 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 jar of crofters apricot jam
Pre-heat oven to 350F and line a spring form pan with parchment paper. I cut a disc shape for the bottom and then long rectangular strip to lay around the inside of the pan.
Next add all your dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix well to combine. Then in another bowl add all of your fruit and wet ingredients mixing well to combine. Pour wet mixture into dry mixture and you guessed it… Mix some more. I beat my eggs before adding them in at the very end.
Pour your batter into your pan and then even it out as much as possible. Pop it in the oven and bake for about 1 hour or until a knife comes out clean. You may want to cover the top with foil to prevent it from burning; I covered mine up at the half way mark.
Allow the cake to cool for about 20 minutes and then remove from the pan.
Heat up your apricot jam to thin it slightly and then cover the top of your cake. Old lady fruit cake at it’s very best.
This time I only went back for a teeny tiny second piece, ok that’s I lie I had three but that’ll be between you and me.