It’s origin a source of myth and mystery, somebody always sends fruitcake for the holidays. This rock-hard, sweet concoction was most popular in the 1940s and 50s. Rumors circulate that the same fruitcakes from that golden era are still being gifted and re-gifted every year. Celebrate this strange, yet familiar, food every year on Dec. 27–National Fruitcake Day.
There are essentially two ways to celebrate this psuedo-holiday: enjoy a slice of fruitcake or give a fruitcake to someone else. You may have a gifted fruitcake on hand that you’d like to pass off, but if not, you can make one that’s actually edible, using real dried fruit.
The fruitcake our grandmothers used to make included these chewy, candied fruit bits that could be classified somewhere between dried fruit and Jujubees. I don’t subscribe to that philosophy. Try Alton Brown’s fruitcake recipe for a fruitcake that uses identifiable ingredients with natural sweetness, like raisins and dried berries. Although his ingredient list is lengthy, this fruitcake is worth the effort!