Happy new year to everyone. I am so relieved to no longer have any fruitcake left in my house, except one. Finally, after a long year of searching, ups and downs, happiness and futility, one final fruitcake comes to my door with a whispered "you don't need any others, baby". . . Gethsemani Farms. I will contentedly munch on that for the remainder of January, then take a blissful sabbatical until my fruitcake season starts up again--May, June, somewhere around there.
I have no fruitcake left in my house because I brought the remainders of the many cakes I reviewed this year over to my family's Christmas celebration. As I've already mentioned, just about all of my siblings and my Mom are fruitcake lovers from way back. So all the family tried the cakes I had in my freezer: Grandma's, Jane Parker Dark, Holy Spirit, and Hermitage Big Sur. Alas, there was no more Mary of Puddin Hill, for I had eaten all of that one . . . definitely my favorite Southern-style fruitcake.
It's always so interesting to get feedback from the family. For one, Grandma's got pretty good marks, after all my bitching and moaning. The reason, primarily, was that in contrast to the heavier, alcohol-rich flavors of the two monastery cakes, and the dark flavor of the Jane Parker, it was lighter, with a more approachable cake flavor. As for the brother-in-law whose mother's fruitcake reminded me of the Jane Parker cake . . . I think he liked it, but of course he still likes his mother's better.
One other thing I want to pass along--the Hermitage Big Sur cake fell apart after freezing. That one seems very alcohol-drenched and that may have had something to do with it. I may have cut the slices really thin, too (I freeze the cake in slices, not whole). It still tasted good, it was just kind of a mess.
So, the fruitcake slate is swept clean, a new year is upon us, and I look forward to more sweetness and good baking in the future. Happy New Year to all.