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Whole Wheat Christmas Fruitcake

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This fruitcake is made with a variety of fruits and nuts, along with whole wheat flour and spices.

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup dried apricots
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup chopped dried figs
  • 1 cup chopped dried apples
  • 1 cup apple juice
  • 2 cups currants
  • 2 cups chopped walnuts or pecans
  • 2 cups whole-wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup corn oil
  • finely grated peel of 2 lemons & 1 orange
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 to 1 cup dry red wine
  • brandy, for soaking

Preparation:

Prepare 2 8 x 4-inch loaf pans by greasing and lining them all the way to the top with parchment paper or brown paper. Grease the paper.

Place the apricots and orange juice in a small saucepan over medium high heat. Bring to a boil, then cover the pan and turn off the heat. Let sit for 5 minutes.

Drain the apricots, reserving juice in a 1-cup measure. Put the figs and apples in the same saucepan along with the apple juice, bring to a boil, then cover the pan and turn off the heat. Let stand for 5 minutes, then drain, adding any extra liquid to the 1-cup measure. Meanwhile, chop the apricots.

Combine the chopped apricots, figs, apples, currants, and nuts in a large mixing bowl.

Preheat the oven to 300°.

Sift the flour with the spices, baking powder, soda, and salt.

Combine the eggs, oil, lemon and orange peel, vanilla, and sugar. Add the wine to the reserved fruit juice in the 1-cup measure, up to the 1-cup mark, and stir into the egg mixture.

Stir the flour mixture into the egg mixture, then stir batter into the fruits and nuts.

Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake on the lowest rack of the oven for about 1 hour and 45 minutes. Insert a toothpick or cake tester near the center of the cake to test. It will come out clean when the fruitcake is done.

Let the cakes cool in the pans on racks until they reach room temperature, then remove from pans. Carefully pour brandy on all surfaces, then wrap the cakes in layers of brandy-soaked cheesecloth and aluminum foil. Once a week during storage, moisten the cloth with more brandy. It will keep at least three weeks.
 

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