I got this recipe from a former employee of mine when I managed a group home in Australia. He was very secretive about it and he only released it when he resigned. We swore no oath to never share it... so here ya go.
Let me say that I have NEVER, EVER been a fan of Fruit Cake before, but this one was amazing. Just trust me, okay? I have copied it word for word from a tattered, typed sheet that I just rediscovered when it fell from one of my cookbooks I was moving in preparation for my garage sale last weekend.
Some of the ingredients may not be familiar to everyone, and I'm not certain what "mixed spice" actually is (although I suspect that it's a blend of baking spices like nutmeg/clove - anybody KNOW?) and many of us will need to convert the metric measurements. Sorry.
2 bananas, mashed
250 g dried apricots, finely chopped
250 g sultanas
250 g figs or dates, finely chopped
200 g chocolate chips
125 g almonds or walnuts
¾ cup brandy
½ cup marsala (optional)
1 cup sugar
250 g butter
1 cup self raising flour
3 cups plain flour
1 tsp mixed spice
½ tsp vanilla
Soak all the fruit except the banana in the brandy/marsala for at least 4 hours, preferably o’night. Cream together butter and sugar. Beat in eggs one at a time. Beat in vanilla and mixed spice. Fold in the plain and self raising flour. Mix in the mashed banana and then the fruit, nuts and chocolate. Line a deep 8 inch tin with foil and spoon in the mixture. Place in a pre-heated oven at 150C for 1.5 to 2 hours (test with a skewer. Allow cake to cool thoroughly before removing it from the tin.