Classic Christmas Fruit Cake – Part One

I am personally not a fruit cake fan, but it is my dad’s very favourite treat. Every Christmas when I was young, he used to make himself a fruit cake from a boxed-mix because my mom didn’t have a good recipe. For the past few years, I have experimented with various recipes to try and find the perfect cake for my dad, and last year I finally succeeded. Both my parents said it was the best fruit cake they have ever had.

Because this classic Christmas fruit cake needs to be made at least a month before it is served, it is the first thing I make to kick off the Christmas baking season.

By baking this cake in mini-loaf pans, it makes for perfect little Christmas gifts. This recipe will make either one 9″ round cake, or six small loaf cakes (mine are 5″ x 3″).

ceramic mini-loaf pans

There is a ton of fruit in this cake! Be prepared to spend around $50 on ingredients, plus a bottle of dark spiced rum.


The cake comes together in various stages and the first involves assembling the fruit and letting it soak in rum and orange juice.

fruit and rum


  • 1 orange
  • 1 3/4 cups seedless California raisins
  • 1 3/4 cups seedless golden raisins
  • 1 cup dried blueberries
  • 1 cup dried apricots
  • 1 3/4 cups dried currants
  • 1/2 cup dried dates, stoned and chopped
  • 1/2 cup red glace cherries
  • 1/2 cup green glace cherries
  • 150 mL dark spiced rum


  • Juice the orange and set juice aside
  • Finely grate orange rind
  • Mix fruit with orange rind in a large container with lid
  • Add rum and orange juice and mix well
  • Seal container and leave fruit to absorb liquid for a couple of days, stirring once or twice a day.

For part two, you will need: dark brown sugar, butter, eggs, flour, allspice, nutmeg, ground hazelnuts and chopped hazelnuts; as wells as your pans and parchment paper.

Once your fruit has absorbed all of the booze, see part two for baking instructions.


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