Well it is time for a fruitcake reminder!!! There is only a few items I make year after year and my cherry chocolate fruitcake is one on them. It is a favorite and if you do not like fruitcake, you will love this one. This fruitcake has both sweet and sour cherries, dried figs (because they have a bit of a cherry flavor themselves), a hint of orange to perk things up and hunks of bittersweet chocolate to gild the lily. I find the reason most people do not like fruitcake is because of the candied citron. This recipe does not have citron but it does have candied orange peel. If you do not like candied peels you can leave them out and use the zest of two oranges instead. Feel free to play with the combo of fruits, just end up with the same total amount, 2 cups. The same goes with the nuts.
I like to use bittersweet chocolate and sour cherries to make up for all those sweet candied cherries. Even though they are very sweet, they are Christmas'y to me. Of course the better the chocolate you use, the better your fruitcake will be. I use port wine because it mirrors the taste of dried cherries, figs, raisins, etc. and helps add a depth of flavor. You can use good old rum or brandy too. I have gotten a lot of feedback since I first posted this recipe 5 years ago and I have gotten nothing but rave reviews. So I encourage you to give it a try xox
Chocolate Cherry Fruitcake
Makes 2 loafs or 4 mini loafs
¼ cup golden raisin
½ cup sour dried cherries, cut in half
½ cup candied cherries, cut in half
¼ cup dried figs, cut in small cubes
½ cup candied orange peel or the zest of two oranges
1 generous cup bittersweet chocolate, chopped or chips
½ cup hazelnuts, toasted, skinned and chopped
½ cup pecans, toasted and chopped
½ cup (one stick) softened butter
¾ cup sugar
1 TBL. vanilla extract
¼ cup port (or milk)
¾ cup milk
1 ½ cups all pourpus flour
¼ cup coco powder
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
bottle of port
Pre-heat oven 350˚F
1. In a large bowl mix all fruit, nuts and chopped chocolate.
2. In a mixer bowl cream butter and sugar together.
3. Then mix in eggs and vanilla, scrap down sides.
4. Sift in separate bowl flour, coco, baking powder, and salt.
5. Mix milk and port together.
6. Add in half flour mixture to the butter. Then add milk, then the rest of four. Now add fruit and nut mixture to the batter.
7. Spoon into greased 2 -8 inch round pans or 2 loaf pans or 6 mini loaf pans (that is what I use). Bake until center when poked comes clean, 60 minutes or so. Let cool 10 minutes then un-mold.
When cakes are completely cooled, wrap each fruitcake in piece of cheese cloth and set in container to keep. Brush top and sides with port. Next day turn over and brush bottom with port. Next day turn over and keep repeating for a week. Once a week brush with port, unless you feel the cake it feeling too wet then stop.
Keep covered in a tight container until you are ready to enjoy. The cakes will keep about three months.