6 Ways to Re-Use the Fruitcake You Recieved as a Gift

December 26, 2011 View all articles in Re-Use-It

Never has there been a more reviled and hated holiday treat than the fruitcake. It is puzzling how a food filled with tasty ingredients like walnuts, raisins, cherries, and pecans can be shaped into a solid loaf of pure evil by simply turning on the oven. This holiday season, rather than throwing that uneaten fruitcake into the garbage when Aunt Edna isn't looking, why not recycle and put it to better use around the house?

USING FRUITCAKE WITHOUT HAVING TO EAT IT

  • Make a fruitcake doorstop: Fruitcake is a sold lump of protein and dough. Since many fruitcakes weigh several pounds, they make perfect doorstops. Superior in shape and design to those weak plastic doorstops, a “cured” fruitcake is solid (and big) enough to stop any door right in its tracks: from those lightweight screen-doors to the 3-ton steel gates, a fruitcake is built to last and to hold.
  • Fend off wild animals: If you have wild animals who are getting into your garden or generally making a mess of your back yard, try grinding up that uneaten holiday fruitcake and sprinkling it around the border of your property. No self-respecting deer, raccoon, or badger will bother your home again…plus it's a great invisible fence for your dog!
  • Target practice: Anyone who shoots skeet knows how expensive it can be to purchase clay pigeons in bulk. Instead of throwing your money away (and literally blowing it up) consider hiring a friend to throw unused fruitcake into the air for an afternoon of target practice. Slicing the fruitcake into 1-inch thick pieces and throwing them like Frisbees makes for great bird hunting practice. As a bonus, each direct hit will make for a wonderfully organic fertilizer for your lawn.
  • Get in shape: According to Julie Douglas' “Ultimate Guide to Fruitcakes” the average fruitcake loaf can weigh as much as two pounds. That's a lot of unused weight sitting around the house! Put that “food” to good use: try wrapping two dried fruitcakes in plastic bags and using them for free-weight exercises. The lateral raise, bicep curl, and shoulder shrug are wonderful upper-body workouts that help burn off excess post-holiday weight.
  • Build a wall: Most fruitcakes are approximately the same size and shape as the average small brick. If you have more fruitcakes than garbage can space, try fitting those holiday loaves together into a colorful brickwork wall. Not only will a fruitcake wall withstand the elements, but it will make your home more bright and festive throughout the coming year.
  • Quick wedding gift: Nothing says “we wish you a long life of happiness” like a re-gifted fruitcake. Most newly married couples get more waffle irons and blenders than they know what to do with. Surprise those lovebirds with something different at the wedding reception by gifting them a beautifully wrapped fruitcake box. Bonus points for pairing that fruitcake with a solid red wine. A quality ‘03 Pinot Noir makes for a great tannic compliment to all those nuts and Maraschino cherries.

(photo: EatingWell)

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