Tuesday, January 3, 2012


Our next item is one that gets kind of a bad rap during the holidays... it is also an item that I somehow managed to skip when we were still in Sorcerer's Stone. But too bad, here's the the second time it's mentioned in the series:

"He [Hagrid] poured them both large mugs of boiling water (he had forgotten to add tea bags) and was just putting a slab of fruitcake on a plate when there was a loud knock on the door" (Chamber of Secrets 260).

The first time fruitcake is mentioned in the series, Uncle Vernon is using a slice of it to pound nails into the flap of the mail slot so Harry cannot receive his first Hogwarts letter. So we technically should have made it awhile ago. Whoops, guess we're making it today!

There are two recipes for fruitcake in The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook. We'll use the "Nutty Fruitcake for Kids" recipe.

You Will Need:
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup finely ground almonds
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp salt
2 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups packed dark brown sugar
grated zest of 1 orange
grated zest of 1 lemon
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1/2 cup orange marmalade
1/2 cup dark raisins
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup dried currants or sweetened dried cranberries
1/4 cup apple juice (or brandy)

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9" round cake pan that is at least 2 inches deep (I used a round casserole-ish dish, because my cake pans weren't deep enough).
2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, ground almonds, spices, and salt.
3. In another large bowl, cream together the butter, sugar, and zest of the orange and lemon with an electric mixer, scraping down the sides as needed, until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. 

4. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each until incorporated. 

4th egg

5. Beat in the marmalade.
6. Stir in the flour mixture, then the raisins and cranberries, then stir in the apple juice.

7. With a spatula, give one final stir to be sure the batter is evenly mixed.
8. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 2 hours.

9. Remove the cake from the oven and leave it in the pan to cool for awhile.

10. Flip the cake out onto a serving platter. It should either be eaten then day it is made or wrapped really well in plastic wrap and freeze it for up to 2 months.

Definitely eat this cake the day it is made! And I think it is better served warm. I really think that fruitcake gets its reputation as a paperweight because (aside from being chock-full of fruit and very dense and heavy) it dries out very quickly, and thus gets very hard. But if you eat it quickly, it's the perfect compliment to a cup of tea or cocoa! Enjoy!

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