From Rome to Royals: The Illustrious History of Fruitcake and Why We Hate It Now

Fruitcake has a bad rep. It’s hard to think of another food, aside from broccoli, that’s on the receiving end of as much open derision as fruitcake gets.

But it wasn’t always this way. Just a couple of centuries ago, fruitcake was the cake of kings and nobles, gracing the dining tables of the powerful and wealthy.

A History of the Not-So-Humble Fruitcake

Fruitcake is ancient and it has its ingredient list to thank for that. The dense, alcohol-laden cake can last for months, sometimes even years, without spoiling because of its low water and sugar content.

Modern fruitcake recipes incorporate nutmeg without a second thought, but during the Middle Ages, a cake made with nutmeg was a way of telling all that your family was loaded.

Why Do We Hate Fruitcake Now?

Again, fruitcake is ancient and somewhere along the way from satura to today, our idea of cake has evolved to encompass a dessert that’s rich and moist or airy and soft.

Aside from changing tastes, you have inferior quality to blame. fruitcake is hard to mass produce while maintaining quality.

Redeeming the Fruitcake With A Recipe That’s Actually Good

Panettone, a fluffy Italian fruitcake made of raisins, almonds, and citrus, may just change your mind on fruit-packed cake and bread.

Alternatively, you can try the 1950s Pineapple Upside Down Cake that keeps the richness and denseness of classic fruitcake without the cloying sweetness and weird textures many of us dislike so much.

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