So I've tried a few recipes, and let's see if this particular one satiates my grandfather and my mother's boyfriend. This recipe is based mostly off of the free recipe that came with my "Sunripe Fruit Cake Mix".
I've been soaking fruits for about a month. The recipe calls for 72 oz of fruit, I had 56 oz. of mixed fruitcake fruit (prechopped) and 15 oz. of dried currents. I used madeira to soak the fruits.
"Festive Holiday Fruit Cake"
72 oz fruit (recipe calls for 12 oz. fruitcake mix, 12 oz. candied pineapple, 16 oz. red and green candied cherries, 8 oz. dried apples, coarsely chopped, 8 oz. pitted dates, coarsely chopped and 16 oz. currants or dark raisins)
1 c. slivered almonds (*omitted)
1 c. walnut halves
1/2 c. butter, softened
3/4 c. granulated sugar
3/4 c. packed brown sugar
5 eggs, room temperature
2 Tbs. dark molasses
1 3/4 c. flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. baking soda
(*I also added ground nutmeg, cloves and mace)
The recipe originally called for dumping everything in a bowl and mixing. Here is how I made it:
Preheat oven to 250F.
Cream butter. Add granulated sugar and mix until fully incorporated. Add brown sugar, ditto. Add eggs one at a time, beating for a minute after each egg. Add molasses and stir to combine.
Whisk or sift together the dry ingredients. Add dry ingredients to wet a little bit at a time, stirring slowly to incorporate. When fully mixed together, beat together for an extra minute.
Stir in fruits and liquor. Stir in nuts. Spoon into prepared pans (two loaf pans lined with aluminum foil, a pie plate for excess batter) and bake in preheated oven until toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, 3-3.5 hours. While baking, place loaf pans in 9x13" pan half filled with water to prevent overbrowning on the bottom.
When done, cool on wire rack 20 mins. Immediately after removing from oven, pour a bit of light rum over the top of the cake. After 20 minutes, invert onto wire rack and cool completely.
N.B. -- DO NOT PUT TIN FOIL IN BOTTOM OF PYREX AS IT MAKES IT TAKE 12 HOURS TO COOK. Just FYI.