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Christmas cakes to put a smile on one’s face

This week's recipes include Cream Cheese Christmas Cake and Candied Fruit Cake
From the Kitchen by Joyce Walter

To some, they are Christmas cakes. To others, they are festive or holiday cakes.

And to others, they are simply not to be tolerated.

But traditional Christmas celebrations will feature the family’s Christmas fruit cake, the recipe passed from generation to generation.

This week’s recipes come from friends who have shared samples of their cakes, with the recipes provided upon request.

Both recipes should be made soon

• • •

Cream Cheese Christmas Cake

  • 1-8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsps. vanilla
  • 1 1/2 tsps. cinnamon
  • 2 1/4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsps. baking powder
  • 1-8 oz. jar maraschino cherries, drained and chopped
  • 1 cup chopped pecans, optional
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tbsps. milk, more or less

In a large bowl, beat cream cheese, butter, sugar, vanilla and spices.

Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each egg.

In a small bowl combine flour and baking powder. Gradually add 2 cups of the flour mixture to the butter mixture. Add cherries and 1/2 cup of the chopped pecans. Fold gently.

Grease a 10 inch bundt pan or large loaf pan. Mix the remaining pecans in the remaining flour and spread the pecans on the bottom of the pan. Pour the batter over the pecans.

Bake in a preheated 350 degrees F oven for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Do not over bake.

Let cool in pan on wire rack for five minutes. Loosen edges and remove from pan to cool completely on the rack.

In a small bowl beat the powdered sugar and milk until smooth. Spoon icing over cake and garnish with candied cherries.

If not using pecans, use a few more cherries in the cake but do not use in place of pecans in the bottom of the pan.

Cake should be stored in a cool place, or sliced and frozen to retain the freshness of the cream cheese.

• • •

Candied Fruit Cake

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 6 eggs
  • 4 cups flour, sifted
  • 2 tsps. baking powder
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup brandy or grape juice
  • 1/2 cup candied pineapple
  • 1 cup golden raisins, washed and patted dry
  • 2 cups green candied cherries, chopped
  • 2 cups red candied cherries, chopped

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Cream butter and sugar together. Add the eggs, one at a time and beat well.

Sift the flour and baking powder together. Slowly add to the butter mixture.

Stir in milk and brandy or grape juice. Fold in raisins and cherries.

Pour into well-greased pans and bake for 1 1/2 to 2 hours. A toothpick should come out clean. Cool before removing from pans. Wrap in foil and allow to sit for several days before slicing.

Joyce Walter can be reached at

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