Another book I borrowed from BB Library to get into the Christmas mood.
This is an annual Christmas romantic comedy from the author, although this is the first I’ve read.
Emma is a reporter in Seattle sent to interview the three finalists from Washington State who took part in the country’s best fruit cake competition. To get to her interviewees who live in very remote areas, her boss got his friend, Oliver, to fly her there in exchange for free advertisements in his papers.
Emma does not believe in Christmas, let alone enjoys fruit cakes. But the three women she interviewed change her mind with their delicious fruit cakes. Through them, she learns not just about fruit cakes, but life lessons as well. Through Oliver, she changed her notion of how a romantic hero should be. Romantic heros need not be like Cary Grant or Humphrey Bogart, but is about ordinary men and real romance as opposed to romantic gesture. A real hero brought you and your dog a meal, he didn’t worry about providing the perfect setting. He made you laugh instead of presenting you with poetic words.
This reminded about Mike and I. Me, the romantic kind, yearns for romantic surprises like those in my Korean dramas or Mills and Boons. He, the pragmatic kind, who has his life planned in stages – degree, job, then marriage. There is no spontaneity or surprises in his romantic pursuits, just amicable compromises – as long as I am happy about it, he is agreeable. And so I ended up with all the choices and planning, for vacation, restaurants, movies…
Still, it was kind of romantic the way he took care of me at the hospital, or dress my finger wound every night from the Christmas lasagna burnt. And that’s what i got from reading this book.
BTW, the book provided receipes for the three winners’ fruitcakes. I’m producing one here :
N0-Bake Fruit Cake
1 cup raisins (dark or golden)
2 cups dates
2 cups mixed candied fruit
4 cups chopped nuts (reduced to 3 if desired)
3/4 cup evaporated milk
2 cups marshmallows
2 cups very finely crushed graham crackers (Ground until fine powder) (The square wheat biscuits, Jacobs)
1. Mix raisins, dates, candied fruits and chopped nuts in a large bowl.
2. in a saucepan, bring evaporated milk to a boil, add marshmallows and stir thoroughly until melted.
3. Stir the cracker powder into the fruit and nut mixture.
4. Add the marshmallow mixture.
5. with wet hands, mix all the ingredients.
6. Rinse hands, wet them again and press into 9" x 5" load pan lined with waxed paper.
7. press it down well and refrigerate for 2 days until set.
NB: If mixture seems too dry, add a little orange juice or strawberry jam. Don’t worry if it seems too wet, because as it sets, the cracker crums will absorb the liquid.