A little while ago I wrote about some fruitcake I made (What do you mean you don't like fruitcake?) and a recipe I found to replicate Boston Market's cranberry relish (A Thanksgiving Side Dish).
My mother was so taken by these two recipes that she's been making them herself. To date I think she's made four batches of fruitcake and one batch of the cranberry relish.
The first batch of fruitcake was made with dried fruits from Trader Joe's just as I wrote about. Subesquent batches saw her using dried fruits she purchased at her local grocery store. She's been very happy with how all the fruitcake has turned out, and so have the recepients of said fruitcake. I think that's why she's made so many, because she's gotten so many requests for it!
One thing my mom mentioned to me while a batch was in the oven was that she thought she'd put in too much fruit. Remember, I mixed fruit in "until it looked right" so it was difficult for me to tell her how much to use. As it turns out, fruitcake with too much fruit is just fine. I think that to a point, the batter is simply there to hold all the fruit together in one pile. So if you make fruitcake and think you may have put in too much fruit, bake it up anyway. You'll probably love it.
Mom's comments on the cranberry relish were that you do need to cut up the cranberries.
Perhaps I should explain: the recipe says to cut all the cranberries in half. With two cups of the little rascals that's a lot of tedious cutting. A good friend told me that when she makes cranberry relish she never cuts the berries, they pop during the cooking anyway.
Based on my mother's experience I think I'll continue to cut them. She said the relish tasted fine but that it didn't look nearly as nice. Since we eat with our eyes as well as with our mouths, I'll cut the berries when the recipe calls for it.
Keep on cooking!