So I was recently in Switzerland and stumbled upon a couple of fruity baked things. One is called Läckerli Früchtebrot, and it's an older brother to these cookies that I had mentioned previously. It really was a loaf-shaped incarnation of the cookies, a bit moister but tasting the same. The loaf was very thinly sliced, and contained the same things as the cookies, including the Kirsch. It was quite delicious--I love Läckerli, so to have it in a bit moister fruitcake format was a wonderful thing.
While in Switzerland, I went with a friend to a small town called Sent in the Graubünden area. It's a beautiful area, with high mountains, steep valleys, cows and goats, and in the town of Sent, a local specialty called Bündner Birnbrot. This really wasn't a cake so much as a bread, as its name suggests (the brot part). It was a yeast bread, but it was chock full of dried fruit and fruitcake spices, as well as whole hazelnuts, which was really cool. The closest thing I could liken it to was either the batter in a stollen (minus any fillings and powdered sugar), or a closer resemblance was the Ami de Fromage bread at Red Hen here in Chicago. Man, Red Hen has to have the worst web site for such a successful operation. I guess their reputation precedes them and they don't really need a good website.
So, it's 84 degrees here, and that gets me thinking about only one thing: fruitcake. Time for the next one. Since I've just done a monastery one, let's move on to a mass-produced one. The next one will be Grandma's fruitcake, chosen because Grandma (aka the Krema group, the baking conglomerate that creates them) hails from Dublin, OH, close to Delaware, home of the Little Brown Jug. Check it out--the most interesting county fair ever. According to the Krema site, there are three different types of liquor in the fruitcake--so they've got that going for them. Here's hoping (against hope) that this cake doesn't disappoint.
(Also, check out these chicks from the Krema site--I mean, look at them. I'm speechless).