Well, well, well. Is that Fruitcake we see? It must be December, National Fruitcake Month! This is when he always seems to make the rounds, and whether you jump for joy or run, screaming in sheer, sweating terror when you see him coming, he is such an interesting and storied food, we couldn’t let the year end without learning a little more about him.
Here are 5 fun facts about Fruitcake:
1. He may not have become the notorious gift he is now until relatively recently, but he’s been around for a very long time. According to historians, some early versions of this weighty guy were thought to be left in Egyptian tombs, taken into battles by Roman soldiers and carried by the Crusaders.
2. The saying “nutty as a fruitcake” was first coined in 1935 and, really, what would the world be without it?
3. The traditional Fruitcake is loaded with dried fruit, nuts and usually some type of alcohol. Sure dried fruit, when unsweetened and eaten in moderation, can be a good way to get antioxidants and fiber, and nuts are a tasty way to get some healthy fats and protein, but BEWARE: Fruitcake can be high in calories and fat, outweighing any benefits of the individual ingredients.
4. Fruitcake is known for his, shall we say longevity. Stories abound of long lost Fruitcakes rediscovered and passed on.
5. Johnny Carson made Fruitcake infamous (and outraged Fruitcake lovers the world over) with his famous joke: “The worst gift is fruitcake. There is only one fruitcake in the entire world, and people keep sending it to each other.”
Are you a Fruitcake lover or hater? Either way, it may be time to rediscover this holiday tradition in healthier new ways.