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DARK FRUIT CAKE

3 cups seedless raisins
3 cups sultana raisins
1 cup chopped glace cherries
1 cup dates, chopped
1 cup lightly toasted chopped nuts

1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. allspice
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. mace
1 cup shortening
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1/3 cup jam such as strawberry
6 eggs
1 cup of dark rum
1/2 cup molasses

With 3/4 cup of the dark rum, pour over chopped fruit and nuts.
Cover and let soak for at least 48 hours. The fruit should be
stirred once a day or so. Keep remaining rum for after baking
directions. Stir flour, salt, baking soda and spices together Set
aside. In separate bowl, Cream shortening and brown sugar together
till fluffy. Add eggs and beat one at a time. Add molasses, jam
and mix well. Blend in dry ingredients. Fold in fruit Prepare your
round fruit cake pan by oiling and line pan with paper. Oil and
flour again lightly. Ensure the top of the paper is about 1 inch
or so above the top of the pan. Fill prepared pans 2/3 full. Bake
in a slow oven 300 F. for 2 hours or so. Place a shallow pan of
hot water on the bottom rack of the oven during baking. This will
ensure the cake stays moist. Remove this pan of water during the
last hour of baking. Cool completely before removing paper.

Storing and mellowing of fruit Cake: Wrap a cheese cloth that has
been soaked in the remaining 1/4 cup of rum over the cake, covering
it completely. Next wrap the cake and cheesecloth in aluminum foil
wrap. Place in a cool place. Taste of cake is best when stored
for 4 weeks or so!

If desired, brush egg white over the cake, roll out almond paste
and lay over the top and sides of cake, then ice.

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