No-bake California fruitcake
Angela Martino makes this "holiday must" a few times a year to serve as dessert and give as gifts. It is a family favorite because of its ease of preparation and mixture of tempting flavors.
Martino FamilyBella Viva Orchards
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2 lb. assorted Bella Viva dried yellow peaches, white nectarines and apricots, chopped
1 1/2 cups Bella Viva red flame raisins
1 lb. graham crackers, crushed fine in a food processor
1 lb. marshmallows
3/4 cup canned evaporated milk
4 cups whole Bella Viva almonds
2 cups Bella Viva walnuts, chopped in large pieces
Bella Viva dried cherries and dry bay leaves, for garnish
Using fingertips, mix peaches, nectarines, apricots, raisins and graham cracker crumbs in a large bowl; set aside. In a saucepan, heat marshmallows and milk over low heat until marshmallows are melted; pour over fruit and nut mixture in bowl.
Cut an ample piece of plastic wrap and line a small loaf pan (approximately 8 by 4 inches). Press mixture firmly into lined pan. Garnish with 2 dry bay leaves and a cherry. Remove fruitcake from pan and finish wrapping. Place in freezer. Repeat process with remaining mixture.
The fruitcake can be eaten right away but for best results, slice and enjoy after frozen for 45 minutes. Although this tasty treat can last all year in the freezer, most don’t make it longer than 45 minutes.
For more recipes using dried fruits and nuts from Bella Viva Orchards, visit bellaviva.com
Makes 4 to 5 loaves