1 pound dates
½ pound candied cherries
½ pound candied pineapple
1 pound pecans
1 cup slivered almonds

2 cups butter
3 cups sugar
4 eggs
5½ cups flour
2 teaspoons soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon

Chop fruit fine, mix with nuts. Cream butter and sugar gradually, beating until light. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each. Add dry ingredients, stir until smooth. Add fruit and nuts, mixing in dishpan with hands. Drop by spoonfuls on greased baking sheet and bake at 375° 10-15 minutes. Makes 12 dozen.

Anna Mary McVaney deGruyter

I believe this recipe came to my mother from Jean Matthews via the weekly recipe exchange disguised as the First Baptist Church choir practice.  Once we had a real Hungarian graduate student friend who came to our Christmas open house, and he disavowed any knowledge of anything vaguely similar in Hungary.

For years I made these with whole-wheat flour, and dried cherries and apricots instead of the candied fruit.  They are equally good that way, but I’m not sure it really is a significant improvement for our health or the environment.  Use real butter for the flavor, and because fat is fat, and artificial butter is not better for you and may be worse.

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