This is based on a recipe that I cut out of the newspaper many years ago, so I don't know who the original author is.
1 c butter
1 c light brown sugar, packed
1/2 c honey
1/2 c apricot nectar
1/4 c half-and-half
2 c all-pupose flour
1 t baking powder
1 1/4 t ground cinnamon
1/2 t ground allspice
1/2 t salt
2 pounds dried fruit of your choice. For example:
- chopped, pitted dates
- dried apricots, coarsely chopped
- golden raisins
- dried cherries
- dried blueberries
- dried cranberries
1 pound walnut halves or pecan halves or a mixture of both
1/4 cup brandy (+ additional, as needed)
1/4 cup Grand Marnier (+ additional, as needed)
Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees F.
Cream butter, sugar, and honey.
Beat in eggs, one at a time.
Add apricot nectar and half-and-half.
Mix in flour, baking powder, cinnamon, allspice, and salt. Blend well.
Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Fold in fruit and nuts.
Grease and flour 2 9x5 loaf pans or 6 5x3x2 loaf pans.
Divide batter between the pans. Calling it "batter" is really a stretch; it's a bowl of fruit and nuts, lightly held together by batter.
Bake 2 hours for the large loaves or 1 hour for the small loaves or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
Let cool in pans on a rack.
In a small bowl, combine the brandy and Grand Marnier.
Sprinkle each cake with some of the mixture, then let cakes stand 1 hour.
Remove cakes from pans.
Wrap each in cheesecloth soaked in addition brandy/GM, then wrap in foil.
Let the fruitcakes rest for a few days before serving.
The Johnson Family Cookbook