California Fig Fruitcake
This is an exceptional fruitcake, worthy to give only to those who can appreciate its 'fruitcake perfection'.
2 cups chopped California dried figs
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped dates
1/2 cup chopped dried pears
1/2 cup dried pineapple wedges
1/4 cup sherry
1/2 cup dried apricots
1/2 cup apricot nectar
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
5 large eggs
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour - divided use
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 tablespoon lemon extract
3/4 pound (3 cups) coarsely chopped pecans, lightly toasted
- Combine California dried figs, raisins, dates, pears and pineapple in a large bowl. Add sherry. Cover and marinate overnight.
- Cook apricots in apricot nectar in small saucepan, about 10 minutes. Cool.
- In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until light. Beat in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir together 1 1/2 cups flour, baking powder and cinnamon. Blend into creamed mixture. Mix in vanilla and lemon extracts.
- Combine apricots with marinated fruit and add pecans. Dredge fruit and nuts with remaining 1/4 cup flour
- Add batter to fruit-nut mixture, blending well.
- Turn into 5 greased and brown paper-lined baby loaf pans (5 5/8 x 3 1/4 x 1 7/8-inch). Place in cold oven on middle rack. Turn oven temperature to 250°F (120°C) and place a pan of hot water on bottom rack.
- Bake 2 hours until golden and tester comes out clean. Cool cakes on wire rack. Loosen, then turn out, remove brown paper.
- Wrap each in cheesecloth moistened with sherry, then foil. Refrigerate 2 to 4 weeks, moistening as needed.
- For gift-giving, over wrap with red cellophane or foil, top with a bow.
Makes 5 mini loaf fruitcakes.
Recipe provided courtesy of the California Fig Advisory Board.