The Better Homes and Gardens Holiday Cook Book (1959) features multiple recipes for fruitcake. All the variations are shown in a photo of what the cookbook calls a “fruitcake window.” I call it a glimpse into fruitcake hell:
The half of the lighter fruitcake ring on the bottom has marzipan scattered on it. If there’s one thing I hate more than fruitcake, it’s marzipan.
As a palate cleanser (and an apology for inflicting the photo of all the fruitcakes), here is the cookbook’s recipe for fudge, which is very similar to the recipe my grandfather used for years.
I would eat the fudge—but not the fruitcake!
4 cups sugar
1 14½-ounce can (1⅔ cups) evaporated milk
1 cup butter or margarine
. . .
1 12-ounce package (2 cups) semisweet chocolate pieces
1 pint marshmallow creme
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup broken California walnuts
Butter sides of heavy 3-quart saucepan. In it combine sugar, milk, and butter. Cook over medium heat to soft-ball stage (236°), stirring frequently.
Remove from heat and add chocolate, marshmallow creme, vanilla, and nuts. Beat till chocolate is melted and blended. Pour into a buttered 9x9x2-inch pan.* Score in squares, while warm; cut when firm. Makes 3 dozen 1½-inch pieces.
*For thinner pieces, pour fudge into 13×9½x2-inch pan.