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Fruitcake Bars

Bake these brandy-spiked bars up to two days ahead, and cut just before serving.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Yield: Makes 24

Source: Everyday Food, December 2007

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, (spooned and leveled)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup brandy
  • 5 cups dried fruit (see cooks' note), coarsely chopped
  • 2 cups packed light-brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Confectioners' sugar, for dusting (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brush a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with butter. Line with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on two sides; butter paper, and set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour and salt; set aside.

  2. In a medium saucepan, heat brandy until simmering. Remove from heat, and stir in fruit; cool to room temperature. Toss brandied fruit with 1 cup flour mixture; set aside.

  3. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition; mix in vanilla. With mixer on low, add remaining flour mixture; mix just until combined. Fold in fruit mixture; transfer batter to prepared pan, and smooth top.

  4. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool in pan for 1 hour. Using paper overhang, lift out of pan; transfer to a wire rack to cool completely (still on paper). Invert fruitcake, and peel off paper; flip upright, and cut into 24 diamonds with a serrated knife. Dust with confectioners' sugar, if desired.

Cook's Notes

Use an array of dried fruits, such as raisins, apricots, cranberries, dates, prunes, cherries, or pineapple for a traditional fruitcake flavor. Pick 2 or 3 of your favorites to create your own version.

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