Monday, 14 December 2009

Visions of Sugar Plums

Poetic sweeties. I love these these tiny, (almost fat free), traditional christmas bites filled with dried fruit, aromatic spices, orange juice and nuts. One of my favourite Christmas stories is Clement Clark Moore's "The Night Before Christmas" where "visions of sugarplums danced in their heads."

The exact nature of sugar plums seems to change depending on which historian you read but these seem to be one of the more recent incarnations of this particular tradition. This recipe is based on a Saveur recipe from a few years ago but I've found similar all over the web; some containing chocolate, others a different blend of fruit and nuts so play around with the contents as much as you like. They would be lovely with the sharpness of dried cranberries added.

Sugar Plums
50g toasted slivered almonds
100g honey
(preferably orange blossom)
Juice and zest of one orange
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1⁄2 tsp allspice
1⁄2 tsp nutmeg
100g finely chopped dried apricots
100g finely chopped dried dates
100g icing sugar
Combine honey, orange zest and juice cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg in a medium mixing bowl. Add almonds, apricots, and dates and mix well.
Roll the mixture into little balls. Roll balls in icing sugar, then refrigerate in single layers between sheets of greaseproof paper in airtight containers. They will keep for a week or two but they will absorb the icing sugar so it is worth rolling them once again just before serving.
Serve with coffee or port.

No comments:

Post a Comment