Old Testament Fruited Pound Cake
Serves 8 - 10
- Fruit Mixture:
- Hot orange juice, as required, to cover fruit
- 1/2 cup dried California apricots or dried mango, chopped
- 2 tablespoons dried cranberries
- 2 tablespoons dried sour cherries
- 1/4 cup yellow raisins
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3 eggs
- 2 tablespoons cognac or brandy
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 cup yellow cornmeal
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Orange Syrup Glaze:
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon orange floral water
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 2 tablespoons brandy or ginger ale
Instructions:Prepare the fruit (chopped what needs to be chopped/minced). Place in a large bowl and cover with very hot orange liqueur or orange juice. Let stand 30-45 minutes. Drain well.
Preheat oven to 350 F. Generously butter a 9 inch spring form pan with butter. Line the bottom with parchment paper and butter the paper. Place the pan on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
In a mixer bowl, cream the butter with the sugar until light and fluffy. Blend in the eggs, Cognac or brandy, and then fold in the flour, baking powder, cornmeal and salt. Blend to make a smooth batter. Fold in the drain fruit gently. Spoon into the cake pan.
Bake until done, about 60-70 minutes or until cake springs back when gently pressed with fingertips. As cake bakes and seems cracked on top and begins to brown but doesn't seem set, lower the oven temperature to 325 F and bake until it is firm to the touch.
To make the glaze, add water with sugar, honey and orange oil and heat in a small saucepan 5 minutes on simmer to reduce to a syrupy glaze. Let cool.
Stir in brandy (or ginger ale)
Once cake is cooled, poke holes in it with a cake tester or fork and drizzle syrup over top.
This fruity golden cake is a cross between old and new world. It uses dried fruits (old world) but new fruits such as cranberries, dried cherries and mango (new world). It also uses baking powder to help lighten the rich crumb. It's topped off with a honey and orange blossom floral water syrup, orange blossom water being another ancient flavoring agent. The Greeks considered it 'bridal' and it symbolized purity but in this instance, I see the orange blossom water as pure as new starts and beginnings.