I’ll admit, I often succumb to the seductive literary lure of hyperbole. But not today, folks. Today, I write with absolute truth and no exaggeration whatsoever. Are you ready? Holiday fruitcake is the best sodding dessert on the planet. Fight me.
And stop rolling your eyes. You’ve probably just not had the right sort of fruitcake. My dad was from North Yorkshire, and his mother had a recipe that was who knows how old. Now, my mom continues this grand British tradition of boozy deliciousness. She prepares the cakes each Thanksgiving, combining candied cherries, pineapples and orange and lemon peels with black and golden currants and something called treacle (which I think is like a blond molasses that tastes way better). After baking, she’ll soak the dense loaves in Kentucky bourbon for one month, cover them in marzipan and royal icing, and then deliver unto me a gateau that has been born out of love and liquor.
And when I say “me,” I mean “me.” Since my father passed away, there remain only two of us in the entire family of 28 who eat it. Not surprisingly, I suppose, my partner in culinary appreciation is my English brother-in-law, so basically, he and I each get a 10-pound, 80-proof confectionary goliath, sure to cause hyperglycemia and the occasional hangover.
I love it. Like an Advent calendar treat, I celebrate the Christmas season with a little chunk of this heavenly creation each night before bed, and sometimes in the morning for breakfast and twice now for my entire dinner. No hyperbole here. Fruitcake is the greatest dessert ever.