1 pound whole candied cherries
1 pound candied pineapple, coarsely cut
1 1/2 to 2 pounds pitted dates, coarsely cut
2 pounds (8 cups) pecan halves
2 cups sifted flour
4 eggs, separated
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
Combine fruits and nuts in a very large bowl; cover with 1 cup flour and mix well, coating fruits and nuts.
Beat egg yolks; add sugar and remaining 1 cup flour resifted with baking powder and salt. Combine with fruits and nuts and mix well. Fold
in spices and beaten egg whites. (Don't worry - there is hardly any cake batter in proportion to the fruits and nuts - that's the way it should be.)
Line 3 (6x3 1/2x2-inch) loaf pans or 2 (8x4x2 1/2-inch) loaf pans with brown paper greased on both sides. Pack in fruitcake batter so no holes are left.
Bake at 250 degrees F on middle rack of oven 2 to 2 1/2 hours or until done. (Place shallow pan of water below cakes to keep from burning on edges and to keep moist.) Let stand 15 minutes. Remove cakes from pans and cool on rack. Remove brown paper. Sprinkle with brandy. Cool completely and wrap in plastic wrap, then foil.
Store cakes in refrigerator 2 to 3 weeks, sprinkling with brandy two or three times during this period. For longer storage, freeze cakes. Makes 2 to 3 cakes, depending on size.
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