City Palate

The Harvest Issue - September October 2017

Post-Modern Fruitcake
Nov/Dec 2008
This recipe appeared in the New York Times a few years ago and the name of the recipe appealed to me. The method is more traditional than the name would suggest, as it's baked in a water bath and the fruit mixture is marinated overnight.

1 1/2 c. chopped Medjool dates
1/4 c. each chopped candied grapefruit peel, orange peel and lemon peel
1/4 c. candied cherries or dried cranberries
1/2 c. hot, strong coffee
1/4 c. cognac or armagnac
3 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 t. each ground nutmeg and cinnamon
1/8 t. ground cloves
1/2 t. salt
1 t. each baking powder and baking soda
3/4 c. unsalted butter at room temperature
1/2 c. dark brown sugar
2 t. vanilla extract
2 large eggs

Special equipment: 12-cup angel food cake pan or bundt pan, electric  
mixer with paddle attachment.

Combine the dates and candied fruit in a small bowl and pour the coffee and cognac over them, stirring to combine. Cover and allow to marinade overnight.

Place the oven rack in the lowest position and a large roasting pan on the rack. Fill the pan halfway with hot water. Heat the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour the tube pan.

Combine the flour, spices, salt, baking powder and soda together in a
medium bowl and set aside. In the mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter at medium speed until light and fluffy. Scrape down the bowl, add the brown sugar and beat again until fluffy. Mix in the vanilla. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Turn the mixer to low speed and gradually add the dry ingredients, mixing just to combine. Mix in the fruit with its marinating liquid. Turn the batter into the cake pan, smoothing the top. Bake in the water bath until the cake has risen and the top is brown, about an hour. Remove the cake from the oven, cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then turn the pan right-side up onto rack and cool completely.

Un-mould onto a plate and dust top with icing sugar. Serves 16.