Throwback of the House: Fruitcake Slices, All the Fun of Fruitcake With None of the Booze

Robin Wheeler
I hate two things about Christmas food. I hate fruitcake, which doesn't make me unique, and I hate baking cookies, which makes me Satan.

I'm married to a fruitcake fan. He raved for years about how his mother's fruitcake was different. It wasn't. Like most modern-day fruitcakes, it's a brown cinder block dotted with fruit-like substances the color of a fever dream. She puts whole Brazil nuts in it, so every now and then it feels like you're biting into a fossilized thumb. Merry Christmas!

This year I'm not feeling the holiday spirit. Might as well make Fruitcake Slices from Pillsbury's 1976 Festive Baking for All Seasons. It's fruitcake in cookie form. I want to wedge myself in the chimney until late March.

Robin Wheeler
Make a basic spice dough with flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, allspice, butter and eggs. You can save yourself the money on the expensive candied fruit and cut your heating costs by spackling your leaky windows and doors with the dough. But if you insist, add chopped nuts, some of that sticky candied fruit crap and sugared dates.

Dump the sticky dough onto a work surface and marvel at how much it looks like the piles in the back yard after the dog ate pecans and Crayons. It's not quite as festive as the time she ate the one-pound bag of Hershey's Kisses and all over the yard left silver wrappers that shimmered in the moonlight. That level of showiness is best reserved for New Year's Eve.

Robin Wheeler
Roll the dough into a log that looks like a giant turd and refrigerate until firm. Cut into rounds. Top with red and green candied cherries and then bake.

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