Dowager Duchess Fruitcake
Make sure to plan ahead: This cake needs to sit for at least one month to allow the flavors to develop. To serve, slice it as thinly as possible.
Martha Stewart Living, December 2000
Yield Makes five 5 3/4-by-3-inch tea loaves, or two 9-by-5-by-2 1/2-inch tea loaves
- 1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
- 2 pounds plus 4 ounces candied citrus peel (6 cups), such as grapefruit, orange, or lemon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 15 ounces (2 1/2 cups) whole almonds, blanched
- 2 1/2 cups sugar
- 5 large eggs
- 3 tablespoons dry sherry, plus more for dousing
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Zest of 1 orange
- 4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line bottoms of pans with buttered parchment. Combine candied citrus and almonds in a mixing bowl, and set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down sides of bowl at least twice. Stir in 3 tablespoons sherry and the citrus zest.
- Reduce speed of mixer to low. Add flour, 1 cup at a time, beating until just combined. Fold in candied citrus and almonds.
- Pour the batter into prepared pans. Bake until golden and set and a cake tester inserted into the middle of each cake comes out clean, about 1 hour 15 minutes (20 to 30 minutes for larger cakes).
- Remove the cakes from oven, and douse each with 3 tablespoons sherry. Cool the cakes completely on a wire rack. Remove cakes from loaf pans, and discard parchment paper. Wrap the cakes in muslin or cheesecloth. Store in a cool, dark, dry place, dousing cakes with several tablespoons of sherry once a week for at least 1 month before serving.
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