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National Fruit Cake Day

Quote for Today: “Memories can fade but a Fruit Cake lasts forever.”  Anonymous
National Fruit Cake Day, Roadtrips R Us, Travel & Food BlogToday is National Fruit Cake Day here in post-holiday land where most of us have had our fill of sweets.  For CJ & I, Christmas calorie intake has meant the largest Coconut and richest Chocolate Indulgence Cake from the Alpine Bakery located in North Atlanta’s Suburbs.  Another concoction that we tried was a crock-pot candy that reminded us of Goo Goo Clusters on steroids.  The recipe for this is very simple and can be found easily on the web.
Today however is about the often misunderstood Fruit Cake.  The vast majority of Americans have not tried one. Those who have give mixed reviews on their opinion of this holiday treat and a substantial percentage of folks believe it is only a name given to someone with a below normal sense of the world in general. 

Growing up in Atlanta, I used to see Fruit Cakes around the Holiday in a rectangular package bearing a horse drawn carriage from the Claxton Fruit Cake Company.  Claxton is a small town about 50 miles West of Savannah and known as the Fruit Cake capital of the world.
As a teenager playing tennis I was fortunate enough to spend some time with Al Parker, considered one of the best Junior Tennis Player’s of all time and his father Mid Parker whose family owned the Claxton Fruit Cake Company.  For over 100 years, they have offered a rich pound cake with sun-ripened California raisins, candied pineapples and cherries, tangy orange and lemon peel, crunchy Georgia pecans, Almonds and fresh shelled walnuts.  Order one next year and bring it with you to your Holiday gathering.  Portion it out and demand everyone give it a try, they are delicious.  Over the years Fruit Cake has gotten a bad rap mainly because they are pushed aside, frozen, thawed and then shoved back into the freezer again with the delusion that they will taste good 2-3 years later.
The best homemade Fruit Cake I have ever had was made by Carmen Gilbert. Her son Richy was my best friend growing up and also one of the best tennis players in the U.S. She only made one batch a year during the holiday’s and they didn’t last very long. These were so good that her youngest son Michael, another tennis phenom, requested them for his 16th birthday in lieu of a car. Mama Gilbert granted his wish.  Of course, this was years ago and I am embellishing the account a little bit, but a teenager requesting a Fruit Cake over a Mattel Electronic Football Game, Earth, Wind & Fire Tickets or a 1978 King Cobra Mustang is significant.  This was obviously a damn good Fruit Cake.  You may contact us for Carmen’s Secret Recipe, but don’t get your hopes up.
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