Monday, December 5

Nutty as a fruitcake

In case you haven't noticed, I love traditions - especially Christmas traditions.

Unlike this, our fruitcake has no nuts.
And one of our favorite traditions is fruitcake.

Momma says our family fruitcake recipe has been in the family since the Civil War. That's not a very long time if you're an 1864 girl like me, but apparently it's a big deal to her 150 years later.

There seems to be a strange loathing of fruitcake which I was reminded of this weekend when we watched A Christmas Story for the gazillionth time and Ralphie was lamenting the persecution of Red Ryder and his BB gun.

I thought the same could be said of fruitcake, "Was there no end to this conspiracy of irrational prejudice against fruitcake?"

In case I need any further proof of the high esteem in which fruitcake should be held:
Anna was involved with Christmas cookies, plum pudding, mince meat, and two kinds of fruit cake. Mrs. Ray had thought one kind enough, but Anna had said firmly that the McCloskeys always had two. And when Anna quoted the McCloskeys, the Rays were silent.
Heaven to Betsy
Maud Hart Lovelace

Not only do the very smart Rays hush and eat their fruitcake, but their mincemeat, too. (Another family tradition.) Yum!

So anyone who has unwanted fruitcake can send it to me. We shall eat it and gladly.

However, I have to admit I'm not interested in old fruitcakes. And I do mean old. According to Wikipedia, a family in Tecumseh, Mich., has kept a fruitcake baked in 1878 as an heirloom and Jay Leno ate some on The Tonight Show in 2003.

I've heard of heirloom tomatoes, but heirloom fruitcakes?

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