It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas….

Well, not exactly yet, but hopefully by tomorrow’s end the house will be well on its way to its holiday transformation. Christmas brings a new set of food festivities in our household. Fruitcakes start off the season in early December. They need to be made 3-4 weeks prior to handing out so they have time to ‘cure’. My fruitcakes have a white cake base, which varies from the traditional dark cake base you might normally envision. I also do not use any glaceed fruit. Instead, I opt for a mix of high-quality dried fruits which I reconstitute in a sugar syrup (with lemon and orange juices added). Along with the fruit mixture, pecans, walnuts and almonds are folded into the batter just before baking. They are baked in mini loaf pans, then wrapped in cheesecloth to dry out for 2-3 days. Finally, I soak them in the sugar syrup mixture I used for the fruit, with a bit of Maker’s Mark bourbon and Grand Marnier added to prolong the shelf life. 😉 These babies are not passed around from year-to-year nor are they used as doorstops…and they pair extremely well with a ruby port. MmmMmmm!

Christmas caroling is another tradition in our neighborhood. A group of us gather sometime about a week before Christmas and wander the neighborhood gracing all with our lovely voices (I tried unsuccessfully to type that with a straight face!)…I bring a big batch of homemade eggnog for the adults – I even have a special pewter bowl and ladle for this occassion…and trust me, after a little eggnog we sound terrific! ***Please note: it is imperitive that all parties partake in the eggnog in order to appreciate how ‘terrific’ we all sound….

I am traveling to London in December with my husband and am especially looking forward to seeing the city during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. On our last visit there we dined at Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese where we ate the best meal we had while in London. I hope we find a free night to relive the experience. Other than that I have not planned out any food adventures yet, but I am sure I will make the best of our travels.