Seems a little early for the holidays, but did you know that fruitcake can be made months in advance? Up to about two months, which is especially handy for the busy Christmas season.
Besides adding delicious flavour to this fruitcake recipe, the rum acts as a natural preservative and pairs perfectly with coconut – hence my decision to top it with coconut cream cheese icing.
Make in a Bundt pan (The one I used can be found here)…
… or as cupcakes topped with coconut flakes. A few fondant holly leaves and berries add a pretty splash of holiday color, and are really so easy to make! I used this cutter (smallest one) for the holly leaves, and just rolled out small balls of red fondant for the berries.
I’m thrilled to have been asked to make the recipe for the LCBO’s Food & Drink magazine! Their holiday issue is out now, and you can find my rum fruitcake on page 21. (Happy dance over here!).
If you haven’t seen Food & Drink, it’s a magazine dedicated to the art of entertaining, including the latest recipes and information on wine, spirits and beer. It’s a real treat for the eyes and is so inspiring – no matter what the season, it always manages to get me in the mood for trying new sweet and savoury dishes.
The magazine is only available in Canada, so if you live elsewhere, below are the recipes for you. Hope you have fun baking, decorating and eating this fruitcake as well!
Rich Rum Fruitcake Recipe
Making this recipe weeks before serving allows the rum flavor to intensify and can be a big time saver during the busy holiday season! If desired, unwrap occasionally and brush with more rum.
Rich Rum Fruitcake Recipe
- 1 3/4 cups (425 mL) Thompson raisins
- 1 3/4 cups (425 mL) currants
- 1 1/2 cups (375 mL) pitted prunes
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) mixed candied fruit
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) candied citrus peel, orange and lemon (or another cup of mixed candied fruit)
- 2 cups (500 mL) + approx ½ cup (125 mL) Captain Morgan's Original Spiced Rum (or your rum of choice)
- 1 cup (250 mL) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 3/4 cups (425 mL) brown sugar, packed
- 3 large eggs
- 1/2 tsp (2 mL) coconut extract
- 1/2 tsp (2 mL) almond extract
- 2 cups (500 mL) all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) slivered almonds, coarsely chopped
- 1 tsp (5 mL) baking powder
- 1/4 tsp (1 mL) ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp (1 mL) ground cloves
- 1/4 tsp (1 mL) ground nutmeg
- 1 pinch salt
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) red glacé cherries, coarsely chopped
- In a food processor, pulse together raisins, currants, prunes, candied fruit and citrus peel until a smooth, thick paste forms. Transfer to a large bowl and stir in 2 cups (500 mL) of the rum. Cover tightly and keep in a cool, dark spot, stirring once a day, for at least 2 days, or for up to 2 months.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment, beat butter and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time. Mix in coconut and almond extract.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, almonds, baking powder, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and salt; slowly stir into butter mixture until incorporated. Stir in raisin mixture and glacé cherries.
- Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).
- For cupcakes, line cupcake pans with liners, and using a ¼-cup (60-mL) measuring cup (or a #16 / 2 oz ice cream scoop), scoop the fruitcake batter into each liner. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- For a Bundt cake, spray the Bundt cake pan with a nonstick cooking spray and pour the batter into the pan. Use a plastic spatula to evenly spread out the top of the batter. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Using a skewer, poke holes in the top of your cupcakes or cake and brush with rum. Let cool in the pan for 24 hours. Dust with icing sugar or top with luscious coconut cream cheese icing and sweetened coconut flakes.
Coconut Cream Cheese Icing Recipe
Add a little more coconut extract if you’d like a more intense coconut flavor to your icing. And here’s a little secret: if you’d like your icing to look whiter for the snowy holiday season, add a few drops of white food colouring.
Cream Cheese Icing Recipe
- 1/2 lb cream cheese, softened or room temperature
- 1/2 lb unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 lb icing sugar (confectioner's sugar), sifted
- 1 tsp white food gel coloring (optional)
- Cream the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.
- Slowly add the icing sugar and beat until smooth.
- Add 1 tsp white food gel coloring and mix until incorporated.
- Once cupcakes have cooled, ice as desired.