I was in a turkey coma last night, a little on the uncomfortable side after I finished my small slice of whipped cream topped pumpkin pie, and I was sure it would be several days before a plate of turkey and all the trimmings sounded good to me. But here I am on Friday morning, sipping my first cup of coffee , and entertaining thoughts of slices of white meat, dressing and cranberry sauce between two slices of homemade sandwich bread, and I know I will never make it past noon. Sandwiches from the leftovers of that gargantuan meal are my favorite part of the whole Thanksgiving experience. In my house, no matter how much I do ahead and how many dishes and pots and pans I wash and put away as I use them, I ALWAYS manage to get every dish and utensil in my kitchen dirty before we sit down to eat. Yesterday was no exception….sigh.
But today is a new day and I feel that the Christmas season has officially begun. I was thinking a little bit ahead last month when I made GOLDEN FRUITCAKE, delicious little cakes filled with dried fruits and nuts in a buttery batter. The little loaf cakes have been wrapped in plastic wrap and refrigerated for the last month, coming out every five or six days for a good bath of Spiced Rum (bourbon, brandy, cointreau could be used instead…whatever you like). After 4 weeks of mellowing in the fridge these fruitcakes have become a heavenly mixture of cake, fruits, nuts and booze. There is no harsh alcohol taste, only a smooth blend of all the luscious ingredients in the recipe. Have you ever seen a prettier fruitcake? The bits of dried cranberries, kiwi, cantaloupe, apricots, lemon and orange peel and golden raisins looks like little jewels in each slice.
If you love fruitcake but haven’t baked one in years because store bought cakes can be awful and your head is full of memories of being served scary slices of some mysterious dark stuff that everybody made jokes about you are going to be overjoyed when you try this recipe. My cakes have been refrigerated for 4 weeks and, if you make your own GOLDEN FRUITCAKE right now they will be ready to become beautiful additions to your cookie trays and gift baskets. My mother used to make fruit cake every holiday season and I know this little lovelies would get her nod of approval. I like fruitcake that is full of fruits and nuts with just enough cake batter to hold everything together so next time I will increase by about 25% the amount I add to the cake. They can age, tightly wrapped, up to 4 months in the fridge but that additional time isn’t necessary. I thought a month was perfect.