Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories: 14th December 2011: Fruitcake – Welcome Friend.

Advent Calendar: 14th December – Fruitcake –Welcome Friend.

Did you like fruitcake? Did your family receive fruitcakes? Have you ever re-gifted fruitcake? Have you ever devised creative uses for fruitcake (what other than eating?)

Green Peppercorn Xmas cake recipe from the Australian Women's Weekly (I think) circa 1990

My hand is already declared – fruitcake is my friend not my foe. Our family has a long tradition of homemade Christmas fruit cake. This is one task my mother often left close to Christmas but it never seemed to make any difference to how good it tasted! Mostly I do mine a few weeks out from Christmas. For decades I used my mother’s Christmas Cake recipe which she tells me came originally from Isla Kerr at the Gas Company in Brisbane, but known far & wide as her cake. Then, oh traitor, one day I saw a recipe in the Australian Women’s Weekly that I thought would be worth a try…a Green Peppercorn fruitcake made with spices and Cointreau. Sounds odd to you? Trust me, it isn’t, unless you don’t like anything slightly spicy. For years I was like a dual citizen in Christmas Cake land…I’d make one of each. Eventually I aligned my loyalty with just one and settled on the Green Peppercorn cake and that’s now my faithful choice. Most people like it, and those who don’t, well they’re out of luck at our house over the Christmas holidays and just have to settle for shortbread!

One year at work my husband won the Christmas raffle to our collective astonishment …we never win anything. It had the usual huge variety of Christmas delights including a fruit cake. That may be the only time we’ve re-gifted fruit cake….just not in the league with our homemade specialty.

Thomas MacEntee at Geneabloggers is encouraging us to celebrate the 2011 Christmas season with a series of posts called the Advent Calendar of Memories. This is today’s entry.