The bushwalkers’ quick and easy fruit cake

This fruitcake is another of the favourites on the local bushwalking club afternoon tea menu. It also tends to appear on my mother’s table when unexpected guests turn up; and it makes a great dessert. Warm it up and pour a little custard over it, and there it is. Perfect!

It’s a very easy-to-make treat—no boiling and overnight soaking of fruit for this cake. It joins the orange poppyseed cake and the much-loved chocolate caramel slice on our list of family must-haves.

This week, rather than scoff the lot ourselves, I’m taking it for everyone at this week’s Fiesta Friday to enjoy with some traditional egg-yolk custard. Thanks to Angie and her cohosts, Fae@Fae’s Twist and Tango and Suzanne@apuginthekitchen for their work in pulling this week together.

Bushwalkers' fruitcake: perfect for afternoon tea or after dinner

Bushwalkers’ fruitcake: perfect for afternoon tea or after dinner

So here’s my mother’s recipe. It has egg (sorry), but this is how it is when we visit. I’ll have to get around to creating an egg-free version sometime soon. In the meantime, here it is.

The bushwalkers' fruit cake

  • Servings: a dozen or more hungry bushwalkers
  • Difficulty: easy
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Bushwalkers' fruitcake recipe

Bushwalkers’ fruitcake recipe

As you can see, the recipe has gradually changed over the years: the tomato became a banana then reverted back to tomato (so that’s not 2 tins of tomatoes, in case you’re wondering); and the orange juice was eliminated fairly early and never replaced.

The cake was based on a recipe from a diabetes cookbook, but it’s probably changed a bit too much to qualify any more.

Bushwalkers' fruitcake

Bushwalkers’ fruitcake

30 thoughts on “The bushwalkers’ quick and easy fruit cake

  1. Pingback: Fiesta Friday #20 | The Novice Gardener

  2. Wonderful looking fruit cake, love the ingredients in this recipe. Thanks so much for bringing it to the party! Happy FF! 🙂


    • I wondered about the size of the tin too when I put this up. We get something here called crushed tomatoes, and you can just use the cheapest 400-gram tin you can buy. Some of them have a lot of sugar and you might not need quite as much brown sugar.


  3. Happy Fiesta Friday #20, Mermaid! Thank you for bringing this bush-walkers’ fruit cake to the party. Tomato is considered a fruit after all, and I love well ripened tomatoes. I am so curious the taste tomato adds to the cake. I guess there is only one way to find out! 😀 )))


    • You can’t really taste the tomatoes, but the cake might be terrible without them. I’ve never tried it. One thing though, it’s still very filling. Iguess you’ll have to have a slice to find out: let me pass you the plate!


    • I love this because it’s so easy to make. I have to admit, though, I usually don’t have to cook it at all thanks to a generous mother. It’s always there when we visit.


  4. Well..I’m reading along, and then I see a tin of tomatoes? You have me intrigued!! Can you actually taste the tomato? And at one point, the tomatoes switched to banana, but then back to tomatoes… You know what I love the most about this post? That you shared the actual true recipe…notes and all. You made it so personal..I love that. Wonderful post. 🙂


    • No, you can’t taste the tomato. I think you can taste the richness of it, though. It’s still a work in progress for my mother, even after 30 years of her making it! She was telling me today that she thinks she might try taking out the sugar altogether and upping the flour. The bushwalkers will give their verdict tomorrow, and I’ll add a few more notes here if it was successful.


    • We have a more traditional boiled fruitcake too, but we haven’t made it for years. Mum found this recipe and that’s become the family favourite. I can’t even remember what the other tasted like it’s been so long!


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