Sunday, December 24, 2006

Christmas Fruitcake Muffins


1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup milk
4 tablespoons (1/2/ stick) butter, melted
1/2 cup diced red and green cherries
1/2 mixed diced candied pineapple
1/2 cup raisins
2 teaspoons lemon zest
2 teaspoons orange zest


  1. Preheat oven to 400º.
  2. In a mixing bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  3. In a second bowl, mix together the egg, milk, and melted butter.
  4. Add the egg/butter/milk mixture to the flour to make a lumpy batter (do not over mix).
  5. Fold in the rest of the ingredients.
  6. Spoon the batter into muffin cups or tins, filling each cup about two thirds full. I usually line the cups with paper muffin shells.
  7. Bake at 400º until the muffins are plump, golden, and a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean; about 30 minutes.

Makes 12 muffins.

Sunday, December 17, 2006


"First they came for the verbs and I said nothing, for verbing weirds language. Then they arrival for the nouns and I speech nothing, for I no verbs."

Attributed to Peter Ellis (via Diane Duane)

Saturday, December 9, 2006

Candied Fruitcake


3 7 1/4 ounce packages of pitted dates
1 pound candied pineapple, red and green, and yellow
1 pound whole candied cherries, red and green
2 cups sifted all purpose flour *
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
2 pounds pecan halves (Taste them; they must be fresh)

*Mom says you can get by with "fluffing" the flour with a fork.

This makes roughly four loaves, depending on the sizes of the pans.


  1. Prepare the pans by oiling them and lining them with brown paper cut to fit. Then oil the paper.
  2. Preheat the oven to 275 F.
  3. Chop the dates into three pieces or so. (It’s about 3 1/2 cups cut)
  4. Chop the candied pineapple into about 1/3 of inch wide wedges (about 2 1/2 cups)
  5. Put the chopped fruit in a large mixing bowl. Add the candied cherries, whole (about 2 cups).
  6. Lightly spoon the flour into a measuring cup.
  7. Add the salt and baking powder to the flour.
  8. Sprinkle the flour mixture over the fruit.
  9. Mix fruit and dry ingredients until all the fruit is well coated.
  10. Using mixer, beat four eggs until frothy.
  11. Gradually add one cup sugar to eggs, beat until well blended.
  12. Add eggs and sugar to fruit mixture, mixing well.
  13. Add two pounds (eight cups) of pecan halves.
  14. Mix until nuts are evenly distributed and well coated with batter.
  15. Pack into pans, pressing down with the back of a spoon. If necessary, rearrange pieces of fruit and nuts to fill up empty spaces. This should be a dense cake, without holes.
  16. Bake one and a half hours at 275 F. When done, tops of cakes should look dry. If there is any doubt, leave cakes in oven longer, as a little extra baking does no harm. Watch for the edges of the cake to pull away from the pan; that’s a sign of doneness.
  17. When cakes are done, remove from oven and place on cake racks.
  18. Let stand about five minutes.
  19. Turn out on racks, and carefully remove paper.
  20. Cool cakes, and turn top side up.

Traditionally you would douse the cake with sherry, or bourbon, or brandy, and wrap the cake in several layers of cheescloth and put it in a container for at least two or three weeks. It isn't requires. You may use the same method to freshen a dry or over cooked cake.

Wrap cakes in plastic food wrap and then foil to freeze them; they freeze well. Thaw at room temperature.

After making the cake the first time, you may find you prefer more nuts or fruit, in which case you may need to add extra batter, using the instructions above. You can use half the eggs, sugar, etc. to make more batter if you don’t need quite so much.

From LRS; originally from Woman’s Day December, 1954.