I had tucked up the drunken dried fruits for the night, with the intention of mixing the Christmas cake on the morrow when I received that phone call alerting us to the knowledge that my Mother was in an ambulance. So life being life, those fruits got to imbibe the Napoleon brandy for an entire week until I could return to the kitchen.
The recipe evolves every year. This year in a salute to the sugar less family members I used rice syrup instead of brown sugar. The proof will indeed be in the mixing.
I am still trying to reconcile my brain with the knowledge that the organic rice syrup was a product of Belgium. In all my fantasies I have never imagined the Belgians: Flemish, Walloons or German, as rice growers; but who am I to argue with a food label? Should I ever travel to Belgium I shall waste time looking for them toiling in the rice paddies.
This year, as the family will be split between east and west Australian coasts I will endeavour, family dramas allowing, to bake a second dried fruit cake to transport to Perth. We shall partake as we hopefully also toast the safe arrival of Peppercorn Flamingo Dancer, due Boxing Day.
Terrible season for a birthday, but fear not, as long as Granny Flamingo Dancer is able, she will ensure a birthday worth celebrating. No one present for both occasions – no fair.
Christmas is going to be a drunken affair this year, as I gifting dessert fruits in various alcoholic syrups as my office gifts. Nothing that cannot be used short term, or requires long term storage is my mantra these days. It must also be something I would be happy to receive myself – the ultimate good taste test!
Maybe the world would be a jollier place if we steeped all our foods in alcohol. Grumpy Cat might not be required to communicate for us. I wonder if a red or a white would go best with porridge?