+ Directions : In a large bowl combine well the raisins, the prunes, the currants, the cherries, and peels, the wine, and the rum and let the fruit macerate, covered, at room temperature for at least two weeks. In a heavy skillet combine 1 pound of the brown sugar and 1 cup water; bring the mixture to a boil over moderate heat, stirring and washing down any sugar crystals clinging to the side with a brush dipped in cold water until the sugar is dissolved, and boil the syrup, swirling the skillet occasionally, for 3 to 4 minutes, or until it is reduced to 1-3/4 cups. Let the burnt sugar syrup cool and reserve it. Into a bowl sift together the flour, the baking powder, the nutmeg, and the cinnamon. In the large bowl of an electric mixer cream together the remaining 1 pound brown sugar and the butter until the mixture is light and fluffy and beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla, the flour mixture, and 1-1/3 cups of the reserved burnt sugar syrup, reserving the remaining sugar syrup for another use. In another large bowl combine well the flour mixture and the fruit mixture and divide the batter between two buttered and floured 10" springform pans. Bake the cakes in the middle of a preheated 350 F oven for 1 hour and 50 minutes to 2 hours, or until the cakes are set and a tester inserted in the centers comes out with some crumbs adhering to it. (The centers of the cakes will be quite moist. ) Let the cakes cool in the pans on a rack, remove the sides and the bottoms of the pans, and wrap the cakes in foil or wax paper. Let the cakes stand at room temperature for 1 week. ~ Roll out half the almond paste between sheets of plastic wrap to form a 10" round and remove the top sheet of plastic wrap. Fit the almond paste layer over one cake, trimming the edge if necessary, and remove the other sheet of plastic wrap. Roll out and fit the remaining almond paste onto the remaining cake in the same manner. ~ ~ Make the icing: In a bowl with an electric mixer beat 4 cups of the confectioners' sugar, the egg whites, and the lemon juice for 4 to 6 minutes, or until the mixture holds soft peaks. Beat in the remaining three cups confectioners' sugar and beat the icing until it holds stiff peaks. ~ Transfer 2 cups of the icing to a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip, spread the remaining icing on the tops and sides of the cakes with a long metal spatula, and pipe the icing in the pastry bag decoratively onto the cakes. Arrange the drag#es on the cakes. Makes two black cakes.