ROYAL WEDDING 2011

Royal wedding sparks craze for fruitcake

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Americans typically think of a frequently re-gifted, not so tasty Christmas treat when we refer to fruitcake.

(Photo: Associated Press)

But it turns out in England, fruitcakes are traditional for weddings and fortunately, they're not quite the same as our gelatin version.

Royal Watchers around the world were left confused when word surfaced fruitcake would be the prince- and princess-to-be's confection of choice.

Ritz-Carlton pastry chef Daniel Mangione constructed a seven-tiered creation in honor of the Royal wedding. It had rhinestones, lattice work and free-hand piping.

The British version is quite different from what we eat stateside. It has much more heavy cake and a lot more alcohol too. Liquors such as Grand Marnier and Amaretto are, in fact, the primary ingredients. The fruits are marinated in cognac for six months or more.

Then, there are the usual cake ingredients - flour, butter and brown sugar. A mixture of pistachios, almonds and hazelnuts offer texture. But the savory kick comes from marinated dried fruits such as oranges, apricots and dried cranberries.

It tastes surprisingly delicious.

The Ritz-Carlton is seeing lots of requests for fruitcake with spring and summer wedding ceremonies. They're serving fruitcake as tiny treats or full-on cakes with fondant and anything else the bride desires.

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