It still remains to be determined if Keith Richards is actually fruitcake and/or cockroach.
Whatever he is, we already know he's not human.
Because of the soaking of the fruit and the use of brown sugar and a bittersweet caramel called browning, black cake is to American fruitcake as dark chocolate is to milk chocolate: darker, deeper and altogether more absorbing.
Just before baking, the softened soaked fruit is ground to a wine-sweet paste that gives the cake its profound flavor; the grinding also eliminates the hard fruit chunks that traumatize many eaters of fruitcake. Black cake is often encased in hard white icing but is never decorated with bright, gummy glacé cherries: its dark, loamy crumb is considered beautiful in its own right.
“I’m not really feeling the American fruitcake,” Melva Nelson, who grew up in Clarendon, Jamaica, said politely. “The fruit is a little too dense, and there isn’t as much of it.” Ms. Nelson, now a nanny in Brooklyn, marinates her fruit for a year, then steams and chops it so it dissolves completely into the cake.
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