My husband Steingrim makes this fabulous fruit and nut cake every year for the holidays, and it's one fruit cake that you won't find people using for a door stop! No, our family members tussle over pieces of this stuff. :) The cake originates from Siena, in the Tuscan region of Italy, where it is very popular and is exported to many countries. It is a perfect accompaniment to after-dinner coffee.
- 4 ounces almonds
- 4 ounces hazelnuts
- 2 ounces dried apricots
- 2 ounces candied pineapple
- 2 ounces candied citrus peels (orange and lemon)
- 2⁄3 cup flour
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon good ground cinnamon
- 2 ounces semisweet baking chocolate
- 1⁄3 cup sugar
- 1⁄2 cup honey
- powdered sugar (for sprinkling)
- Chop almonds, hazelnuts, apricots, pineapple, orange and lemon peel.
- Mix well with flour, cinnamon, and cocoa.
- Put sugar and honey in a saucepan, stirring over medium heat until sugar is dissolved.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add chocolate to saucepan, stir until melted, and remove from heat.
- Combine with fruit and nut mixture; cut parchment paper circle to fit bottom of 8" well-buttered round cake pan, then butter the paper and evenly spread the batter into the pan.
- Bake at 300 degrees F for 35 minutes.
- Let cool in pan.
- Remove cake from pan, wrap in foil, and let stand overnight.
- Sprinkle with powdered sugar and cut into thin wedges.
- Wrapped in aluminum foil to stay air-tight, it will keep for weeks, refrigeration not needed.
- Note: the Julesong photo accompanying this cake was taken about a month after it was made, because this cake can keep for so long and we forgot to take pics when it was newly done and the powdered sugar was still all pretty. :) Please excuse the slightly messy nature of the cake in the photo - we'll replace it with a good one, next year.