Make Ahead

Holiday Fruit & Nut Cake

December  8, 2010
2 Ratings
  • Serves 8-10 each cake
Author Notes

Growing up my parents always received fruit cakes at Christmas. I would pick out the yucky green and red chunks and eat what was left of the cake (which wasn't much). This fruit cake is filled with chunks that I love surrounded by moist tasty cake. This cake does come with a warning, however: DON'T eat half the cake in one sitting like you'll be tempted to do. It's very rich and the alcohol will make you light headed. —nannydeb

What You'll Need
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup crystalized ginger, chopped
  • 1 cup cashews, chopped
  • 1 cup pecans, chopped
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons Grand Marnier liqueur, brandy or rum
  • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground mace
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  1. Starting a day in advance, combine cranberries, golden raisins, ginger and liqueur in a medium bowl. Cover and let soak over night.
  2. Next day, preheat oven to 300 degrees.
  3. Place a 9x13 cake pan full of water at the bottom of the oven. This will help keep the cake moist.
  4. Line2 loaf pans with buttered wax paper. Set aside.
  5. Coarsely chop cashews and pecans. Set aside.
  6. Sift together flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, mace, cloves, baking soda and baking powder. Set aside.
  7. In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Add eggs and molasses.
  8. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix until combined. Fold in fruit with any liqueur left and nuts.
  9. Spoon batter into prepared pans.
  10. Bake cakes for 40-45 minutes or until tester comes out clean.
  11. Place the cakes on a wire rack and let them rest in the pans until completely cool. Carefully remove the wax paper.
  12. If you are serving the cakes right away (or giving as gifts), melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and add remaining 2 tablespoons liquer. Brush the tops of the cakes with the mixture.
  13. If you are letting the cakes "ripen", cover the cakes with plastic wrap and store in a cool dry place.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • aargersi
  • drbabs
  • nannydeb
  • Stacie North
    Stacie North

Recipe by: nannydeb

Former restaurant manager (and waitress, bartender, etc). I love food: eating, trying new recipes, shopping for it, talking/emailing about it, etc. My foodie friend and pen pal got me interested in recipe contests and also turned me on to food52 and now I'm obsessed!

5 Reviews

Stacie N. January 16, 2022
I followed the basic recipe for the cake, but used what I had for booze and fruit and it came out great!
ellenl December 21, 2010
I soaked my fruit and got sidetracked for a week---the fruit was so juicy and wonderful. We love your cake!!! I plan to make it again soaking just a day. Thanks for a delicious treat.
nannydeb December 21, 2010
You're welcome! I'm so glad ya'll enjoyed it!
aargersi December 8, 2010
I hope you have mine ripening! Yum!
drbabs December 8, 2010
A fruitcake I can like! Yum!