Friday, November 13, 2009

Only the recipe for this fruitcake is 150 years old - not the cake!

Tradition!  *with a bit of music from "Fiddler on the Roof" in the background*

Here is one of our Thanksgiving traditions - one that my sister and I try to do every year.  We make fruitcake!

Some eggs, some flour, sugar, butter, molasses and lots of candied fruit, nuts and raisens.  This fruitcake is real fruitcake!  And - it is a family tradition.  The batter is so thick that the spoon stands up in it very easily....  for hours, if you really wanted to leave it there!  LOL!  This, by the way, is The Fruitcake Spoon that my Nana gave me so that I could carry on the family tradition.  The batter is so thick that you need a serious spoon to stir it! 

That wooden bowl was Nana's.  It's the same one that she used to make all her fruitcakes when we were growing up.  My sister and I use it every year when we get together and make our fruitcakes.  We make cakes in both loaf and tube pans - and they take a long time to bake.  Sure does make the house smell good, though!

Seriously!  I did not know that there were people in the world who didn't like fruitcake until I was in high school.  And, seriously, the recipe is about 150 years old - it was a gift to my grandmother from her first landlady in her first apartment.  Back then family recipes were guarded and receiving a family recipe was an honor.  Nana took that honor seriously and guarded that recipe very well.  It took me a long time to get it from her!  And then, only with a promise that I would not give it to anyone without her permission.

Making the fruitcake before Thanksgiving was our family's way of starting all of our holiday celebrations.  First the fruitcake, then the Thanksgiving feast, then the preparations for Christmas, Christmas Day, and finally New Year's Day.  The main thread in all of these celebrations was our family.  Sometimes our cousins would join us for the Christmas and New Year's celebrations.  We used a ping pong table for our dinners then, because nothing else was big enough to seat us all.  It was lots of fun and a great way to celebrate what we were most thankful for ~ our family!

Even though our feasts are smaller and our gatherings not as frequent, the main thing that we all still enjoy celebrating is having a chance to come together as a family.  It's fun to carry on the family traditions that have made the Fall holidays so special over the years ~ including the traditional fruitcake!

Hope you are having a wonderful Fall and that you are enjoying the preparations for many celebrations, too!

PS This is part of the Etsy Bloggers Blog Carnival ~ to share what you celebrate at this time of year!  What are you celebrating?


  1. Okay, finally found out the one person in the world who actually likes and makes fruitcake! LOL

  2. Family traditions are so wonderful. What a great way to spend time with your sister.

    Oh, eat it too?!? ;0)

  3. What a wonderful tradition! And how special to have your grandmother's bowl and spoon :)

  4. That's incredible, Kathy. Loved the pix!

  5. Sounds good, Kathy...but I hate fruit cake...LOL

  6. How well I remember the fruitcake - do you remember my Swedish Rosettes, using my Great-Grandmother's Rosette iron? Wow - the memories........thank you for bringing traditions to the forefront!

  7. ROFLOL! You guys crack me up! LOL! But, hey - after all of these years, I am very used to those who are not so fond of fruitcake *winks* and I am here to save you all! - but!!! ONLY if I can limit my fruitcake consumption to the ones that we make!

    I agree, Verdant - family traditions are really wonderful =)

    memories - it is very special to be able to use this particular bowl and spoon - really adds to the fun!

    Glad you liked the pictures, Sue =)

    I totally remember those, Karin! And how about the taffy pull =p roflol!

  8. I will pick up the little goodies tomorrow - eek... um, later today *rolls eyes and dashes off to get some sleep*

  9. To me fruitcake is hit or miss - some is good, some not so good. I instantly related to the "Taffy Pull", I had just explained to my DH what one was just a few days ago. That is one tradition I would like to have my grandchildren participate in just once. I am horrible at making candy however and never get it right!

  10. Karin and I made more mess than taffy, if I recall correctly! And in her mom's kitchen, too. We had 'sticky' everywhere - but it was a lot of fun!

  11. Oh my - MESS does not adequately describe what we made! But it was edible - albeit not exactly the consistency of taffy! We did have a LOT of fun though, and that is what it's all about. This Friday night I will be at church helping the youth group bake for their bake sale. Now if you want to see a MESS, come on down! LOL!!! And, although I generally do not care for fruitcake, Kathy's Nana's was very tasty (although I did pick out the candied fruit - ICK).

  12. hehe - that fruit seems to stop a lot of people! Have fun with the kids =)

  13. Tulips has spoken too soon! I love fruitcake, too! There must be a HUGE difference between commercially available fruitcake and homemade. My aunt made fruitcake every year and soaked it in booze. Oh, I should have gotten that recipe! (Maybe I can find it among my mother's recipes.)
    Family is what we celebrate!

  14. There is a huge difference, Splendid ~ a HUGE difference! This one is soaked in Brandy, too =) I remember Nana making her own peach brandy to use for the fruitcake. Look for a blog post soon with the recipe - I think it's time to spread a little fruitcake joy!

  15. Love Fruitcake, its the best. Looks delicious. My gran would always take out a slab of fruitcake with a cuppa tea to my uncles while they were working, as an in between snack. Lindax

  16. It is a hearty snack, and that is for sure! We used to have a slice every night during the holidays. The fruitcake would last from Thanksgiving through New Years.


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