I think one of the things I like most about Christmas time and the holiday season is the traditional component. The fact that it’s the season for gingerbread and heaps of homemade cookies. That it’s the time to fill the house with baking and holiday candy cane treats and decorate with silver and gold.
That day in December when it’s time to put up the tree and decorate it with the ribbon and balls and lights and all your favourite ornaments and when all the christmas decorations get spread out around the house, making you smile every year for the brief month or so that your favourite reindeer and Santa get dusted off and set out by the fireplace again.
And sometimes, it’s the traditions that I don’t even necessarily love, but that I just know need to happen. Like fruitcake for example. I’m not really a fan of traditional fruitcake – loaded with candied fruit, packed with sugar and butter . . . and while fine as a treat, and indeed a favourite for many, it’s not really my thing.
But the idea of having fruitcake for Christmas is there. And in fact, maybe having fruitcake for Christmas is essential one might say.
So in the spirit of Christmas traditions and the need for fruitcake, the desire to make it a healthier option and of course, this whole not really turning on the oven thing much here, I’ve come up with the perfect solution: raw fruitcake.
To me, fruitcake looks best when it has that real authentic look about it when you cut it. That look where you see the nuts and seeds and dried fruit in abundance, and all the heartiness of the fruit and crunchiness of the nuts sings out in every piece. Combine that with dates and some spices for the fruitcake flavour and colour and this raw fruitcake, looks and tastes like the real thing, with far less time and effort. And that means far less time you have to wait between when you make it and when you get to eat it.
So whether you aren’t sure about doing fruitcake because the real thing takes too long, isn’t really your style, or has too much candied fruit. Or whether you’ve simply never tried fruitcake and are keen to make a traditional treat this year, this recipe is for you. And then the fruitcake you make can be all yours as well!