knitting · Pets · Sewing

Christmas 2019 – The year of the Ugly Fruitcake

img_20191222_155139266_portraitChristmas for crafters begins much earlier than Dec. 6th (St. Nicholas’ Day). I looked back in my project notebook to see when I actually started this year’s Christmas sweaters for the grandsons.  I had neglected to even mention the project on the index page.  On the actual project page, I see 11/20/2019 as the start date.  I may have guessed at that sometime after the fact.  I get too busy to remember to track things like start/finish dates.

Any time for baking needed to be squeezed out from among the Christmas crafting. First order of business was fruitcake. After soaking the dried fruit overnight in rum, it was time to mix up the batter.  I like to make this fruitcake.  We use Alton Brown’s recipe, although we just use the same amount of dried fruit of our choice. I normally don’t make the fruitcake.  Normally, DW makes the batter and bakes all the little loaves of deliciousness.  This year it was all me (he was downstairs working on the remodel). Since I soaked 5 batches worth of fruit, 5 batches I would make.  Super easy to mix up. Didn’t even use a mixer, just a trusty wooden spoon. The recipe calls for using the spray on the pan before putting in the batter.  Since I had no spray, I just used butter.  They were too hot to turn out of the pans when they first came out of the oven, so I sprayed them with brandy and we left to run the Jingle Dash.  They were plenty cool by the time we got home.  In fact, they were cold enough that they didn’t want to come out of their pans.  I very carefully used a knife along the edges of each cake.  That wasn’t enough.  I also had to use a large-ish spatula to lift them out of their little beds.  Being that the cakes are tender, they didn’t fair well under such treatment.


They may not be much to look at, but they are delicious.

Fattigman cookies are another favorite for Christmastime at our house.  The dough is made and then refrigerated overnight before being rolled out and fried. The dough is very similar to bread dough.  I thought it would be a good idea to use the bread hook on the KitchenAide mixer.  It would have been if the dough wasn’t pretty much done.  I managed to strip out one of the brass gears.  Good thing that dough was done.  Bad thing was that I had planned on mixing up some peppermint meringues. Also, the homemade marshmallows were going to be a pass for this year. 🙁 The other good news is that it is an easy fix… once the parts arrive.

Being that the mixer was right out, I melted chocolate and dipped hazelnuts.  These weren’t just any nuts.  They were the nuts that were EARNED when completing the Hazelnut run in Mt. Angel!  You’re welcome.

Umm… quality control.  Yah, that’s it.

Beside the sweaters that I made for the Grandsons,

there was also gifts for the knitting group (still a secret),

Shhhhhh… it’s a surprise

a few tied blankets (Pixie was EXHAUSTED from all the blanket making)

and a shadow box for DW’s running medals


Christmas isn’t quite over…

I am using these 12 days of Christmas to finish a few more gifts.


Do you think Pixie is interested in helping with the rest?

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