- 2 cups dried apples, finely chopped
- 6 ounces dried apricots, chopped
- 8 ounces pitted whole dates, snipped into small pieces
- 1 cup currants
- 1 cup raisins
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- 3/4 cup calvados (or apple juice)
(Note that this totals to about 8 cups of fruit but the volume will vary depending on how it is packed and how large the pieces are cut.) Let mixture stand 1 hour.
Meanwhile, stir together and set aside
- 3 cups flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1 tsp ground allspice
Preheat over to 300º F. Make batter by creaming
- 1 cup butter
- 1 cup sugar
One at a time, beating after each, add
- 6 eggs
Add flour mixture in 3 parts, alternating with a total of
- 16 ounces applesauce
Stir in fruit after incorporating flour. Grease and flour pans: I use 2 9- by 5-inch loaf pans, but you may choose to make one large cake in a 10-inch tube pan. The tube pan takes 2 hours to cook and the loaf pans take about 1 hour 45 minutes.
Cool cake(s) and remove from pan(s). Soak cheesecloth in
- brandy as needed
wrapping cake(s) in cheesecloth, then in a plastic bag. Store the cake at room temperature, but avoid hot places. Check back on the cake every 2 weeks and if the cheesecloth has dried, be sure to re-soak the cloth and re-wrap the cake. The cakes will need about 6-8 weeks of aging before they are ready to eat.
The brandy you choose will change the flavor of the cake. A fruit-flavored brandy, such as Calvados or Grappa would probably be great. I’ve used Metaxa and been quite happy, but I’ve also had great results with cheap blackberry-flavored brandy, which is what my mother always used.