Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 35 minutes
- 2-1/2 packages (6 ounces each) dried apricot halves (2-1/2 cups), cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 cups pecans (8 ounces), coarsely chopped, plus 2/3 cup pecan halves
- 1 Tablespoon plus 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup butter or margarine (2 sticks), softened
- 1-1/4 cups sugar
- 5 large eggs
- 1/2 cup brandy
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup apricot preserves
In medium bowl, toss apricots and coarsely chopped pecans with 1 tablespoon flour. In another medium bowl, combine remaining 2 cups flour, baking powder, and salt.
In large bowl with mixer at low speed, beat butter and sugar until blended. Increase speed to high; beat until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes, occasionally scraping bowl with rubber spatula. Reduce speed to low. Add eggs, brandy, vanilla, and flour mixture; beat until well blended, scraping bowl. Stir in apricot mixture.
Spoon batter into prepared pan; spread evenly. Arrange pecan halves on top of batter in two concentric circles. Bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 1 hour 10 to 20 minutes. Cool in pan on wire rack 10 minutes. Run thin knife around cake to loosen from side and center tube of pan; lift tube to separate from bottom of pan. Invert cake on to wire rack and remove center tube. Turn cake, right side up, onto rack to cool completely.
In 1-quart saucepan, heat apricot preserves over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until melted and bubbling. Strain through sieve set over small bowl. With pastry brush, brush cooled cake with preserves. Or wrap cake and refrigerate up to 1 week, then brush with preserves before serving.
Yield: 24 servings
Cranberry Raisin Fruitcake:
Prepare as directed but substitute 2 cups walnuts (8 ounces), toasted and coarsely chopped, plus 2/3 cup walnut halves for pecans and 1-1/2 cups golden raisins plus 1 cup dried cranberries for apricots.
Each serving: About 300 calories, 4g protein, 35g carbohydrate, 17g total fat (6g unsaturated), 65mg cholesterol, 233mg sodium.
Recipe Source: The All New Good Housekeeping Cookbook edited by Susan Westmoreland (Hearst Books)
Reprinted with permission.