It’s the Christmas season and one of our beloved treats is fruitcake! I know fruitcake is a divisive topic – some people love it, some people hate it. I happen to love fruitcake – but not just any old fruitcake – the fruitcake has to be fudgy, flavorful, not too sweet, and positively alcoholic.
Ju.D Lao’s Fruitcakes
This year, a friend introduced me to Ju.D Lao’s Fruitcakes. I tried the Ju.D Classic Fruitcake (Original Recipe, P1,200) and I love it! I’m eating slice right now while I’m writing this.
Ju.D’s Classic Fruitcake is a big hunk of fruitcake. It comes in a red box. When you open the red box, there is a protective cardboard fruitcake holder in place to keep the fruitcake from moving around during transport. The fruitcake itself is sealed in plastic.
I recommend refrigerating the fruitcake first before slicing – I got too excited and sliced it out of the box and I wrecked the first few slices before I remembered to refrigerate it first.
Out of the box, the fruitcake is tender and delicate for a fruitcake, but after refrigerating overnight, it became dense and moist and fudgy. It is not too sweet, which I like about it, and even eaten cold, Ju.D’s fruitcake is aromatic with warm spices and brandy. The alcohol is not overpowering, in fact – there’s only just a hint of it.
I also like that it has just the right nut / dried fruit to cake ratio. I like the actual fruitcake cake, so I like that the fruitcake is not too full of nuts nor dried fruits. This is not to say that Ju.D scrimps on the ingredients, she doesn’t. She uses dried fruits, big raisins, walnuts, glazed cherries, etc… there’s none of the cheap red and green glazed fruits here.
Ju.D Lao started selling fruitcakes in 1975. Through the years, Ju.D’s business has endured the scarcity of imported ingredients, rotating brownouts, devaluation of the peso and all sorts of calamities.
Her classic recipe, which took six months to develop was inspired by a trip to Switzerland where she was introduced to fruitcake that she enjoyed. “I’ve never attended cooking classes, but I love to read cook books. I do a lot of experimentations on recipes that catch my fancy. And since I’m from a big family, we’re never short of guinea pigs or should I say, brave and curious souls,” explains Ju.D who has authored two Vegetarian cookbooks for the TzuChi Foundation which are available in the different TzuChi chapters all over the world.
In the 1980s, Ju.D came out with fruitcake cookies which she has called “Chewy Chewkies”. The kids of her customers loved them because they tasted like fruitcake but without the brandy. In the 90s, Ju.D experimented some more and worked on different flavors for fruitcakes giving birth to Ju.D Gold- with apricots and red cranberries; Ju.D Blue- Blue Mountain Coffee fruitcakes; and Ju.D Coffee Prune Cake. Her box of mini fruitcakes offers a sampling of the different flavors.
For orders and inquiries, you may call (02) 633-1188 or (02) 633-0260. Products may be picked up from #50 Greenmeadows Avenue, Quezon City. They can also send via courier.
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