Cooking with Cathy: Greek Fruit Cake Part One 

Cathy Speronis was in for this month’s Cooking with Cathy segment, and she made a Greek Fruit Cake to celebrate St. Nicholas Day.

Greek Fruit Cake


1 cup red wine (merlot)

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 cinnamon stick

6 whole cloves

3 1/2” strips of orange peel

3 1/2” strips of lemon peel

1/2 cup raisins

1/2 cup chopped dried figs

1/2 cup chopped dried apricots


3 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup almond flour

1 Tbsp. baking powder

1 tsp. baking soda

1/8 tsp. salt

2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp. ground cloves

1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg

1 tsp. orange zest

3/4 cup olive oil

1 egg

2/3 cup granulated sugar

1 1/2 cups orange juice

1/2 cup brandy

3/4 tsp. vanilla extract

1/2 cup chopped walnuts


In a small saucepan combine the wine, sugar, cinnamon stick, whole cloves, orange and lemon peels.  Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat and stir cooking until the sugar is dissolved.

When the sugar has dissolved turn off the heat, strain the aromatics from the liquid and set aside.  Return the wine syrup to the pot and add the fruit.  Steep the fruit in the hot liquid for 1/2 hour off of the heat.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350° F.

Prepare two 8” loaf pans by greasing them well and then flouring; set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg.  Mix in the orange zest.

When the fruit has finished steeping, strain over a bowl reserving the wine syrup; set aside.

In a large bowl whisk together the olive oil, sugar and egg until smooth.  Add the orange juice, brandy and vanilla extract.  Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and whisk just until incorporated.  Fold in the drained fruit along with the walnuts.

Pour into prepared pans and bake in the center of the oven for 55 – 60 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean.

While cake bakes return the wine syrup to the saucepan along with the aromatics.  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Reduce heat and simmer until liquid is reduced by half – strain and reserve.

Cool cake completely and serve with wine syrup.