Japanese Fruitcake Recipe

Check out this Japanese Fruitcake Recipe for a cake very fond during the 40’s and the 50’s.

March/April 2015

Ralph Couch, Villa Rica, Georgia, sends a favorite recipe that has been in his family for 60 years or more. “I sold GRIT in the early 1950s, when the paper sold for 10 cents. I made 4 cents a copy. I had no bicycle, so I walked, and a lot of the time I was barefoot.” Ralph also writes that he doubles the recipe for the icing/filling.

Japanese Fruitcake



• 1 cup chopped raisins
• 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
• All-purpose flour
• 1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, room temperature
• 2 cups sugar
• 4 eggs, room temperature
• 3 cups self-rising flour
• 1 teaspoon cinnamon
• 1 teaspoon allspice
• 1 teaspoon cloves
• 1 teaspoon nutmeg
• 1 cup buttermilk


• 2-1⁄2 cups sugar
• 2 tablespoons flour
• Grated rind and juice of 2 lemons
• 1-1⁄2 cups hot water


• 2 cups flaked coconut, frozen
• Whole pecans, optional


1. Preheat oven to 300 F. Grease and lightly flour three 9-inch layer pans; set aside.

2. To make cake: In small bowl, dust raisins and nuts with a little all-purpose flour; set aside.

3. In large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. (Be sure the eggs are at room temperature.)

4. In another bowl, sift together flour and spices. Add alternately with buttermilk to creamed mixture. Stir in floured nuts and raisins.

5. Divide batter evenly among prepared pans. Bake for about 1 hour, or until cake leaves sides of pans. Cool in pans on rack. (If they are removed from the pans when warm, the cakes will fall apart.)

6. To make icing/filling: In saucepan, combine sugar, flour, lemon rind and juice, and hot water. Cook until thick. Remove from heat and cool slightly.

7. To put it all together: Poke holes in cooled cake layers. Spread filling between layers of cake, making sure the filling gets soaked into the cake layers. (It will be messy.)

8. Sprinkle coconut between layers and on top and sides of cake. Garnish with whole pecans on top, if desired.

Interested in more fun recipes? Check out Recipe Box: Sweet Potato Cake Recipe and More for cookie and cake recipes containing unusual dessert ingredients including navy beans.