Cook1 hr 15 mins
This is my version of a recipe originally found in an old issue of Taste of Home magazine. I make this each year and it is always a hit. My family likes this particular version because only contains fruit & nuts they like(cherries, dates or raisins and pecans)plus chocolate chips - no tangy sour bits of rind and also no alcohol so children can enjoy this as well. You also don't need to make this too far in advance as it requires no aging - I make this the day before Christmas Eve and serve it as part of our holiday meal. You can substitute any finely chopped nut you prefer for the pecans if they are not available in your area. They should be chopped finely, but still have some texture - do not use ground nuts. Prep time assumes you have already shelled and chopped your nuts. Cook time is 1 1/4-1 1/2 hours.
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup finely chopped pecans (measure after chopping)
- 1 cup chopped dates (get the moist kind on a tray and chop by hand) or 1 cup raisins or 1 cup sultana
- 1 cup candied red cherries, halves (also known as glazed fruitcake cherries)
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 5 -6 extra candied red cherries, halves,to taste,for garnishing the top of the loaf
- Preheat oven to 325 F and have ready a greased 9x5" loaf pan.
- Beat eggs and sugar in a large bowl until well combined.
- In another large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Add flour mixture to egg mixture and mix well.
- Add nuts, dates or raisins, 1 cup cherry halves,& the chocolate chips and stir gently to combine.
- Pour into a greased 9x5" loaf pan(mixture will be very thick).
- Garnish top with a row of cherry halves down the center of the batter- press gently so they stick.
- Bake in a preheated 325 F oven for 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours or until golden and a toothpick inserted near the center comes out mostly clean (there will be streaks of melted chocolate but not gobs of beige batter) - DO NOT OVERBAKE or it will be as hard as a rock.
- Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then remove from pan and let cool completely.
- Usually I slice the loaf after it has cooled and seal it in a plastic zip-top bag, which helps keep it from hardening up.