It’s time to support your favorite local and small brands and shop local for the holidays. We are so fortunate to boast of an amazing array of independently owned shops and services up and down Piedmont Avenue that offer genuinely unique holiday gift ideas. Read more…
Premium French Cocoa Powder
For the love of chocolate! Valrhona Pourdre de Cacao makes the richest dark chocolate baked goods and confections we have experienced. The warm red mahogany color is captivating, and the rich flavor brings out all the subtle notes Read more…
Slice of Home
I love to travel. But, I haven’t done much of it recently because, well, life. Sure, we’ve done the requisite Hawaii and Mexico trips as well as some fantastic national parks. But, we haven’t done what I consider real traveling. To me, real traveling is when you find yourself in a new country where you can soak up all of the culture and get to know the people. And the food.
I mean, it’s always about the food, right?
Fifteen years ago, I went to Scotland. It was magical. If you have done any traveling and have had the happy experience of feeling like you have come home that is what being in Scotland was like for me. While I have some Scottish blood in my veins, it is a very small part of my heritage. Although I do have quite a bit of Viking blood which kind of works historically.
I spent a little less than two weeks exploring Edinburgh, Loch Lomond, the highlands, and the islands—eating and drinking my way through some of the most beautiful scenery on earth. The best salmon I have ever tasted was served in a tiny place on the river Spey. The salmon melted in your mouth. Literally melted. I haven’t been able to recreate it, but I do dream about it…often.
Another tasty bite that I have been trying to recreate is a pastry that I purchased from a bakery on the square in the town of Portree on the island of Skye. The Scottish Fruit Slice is essentially two layers of shortbread with a spiced fruit filling in the middle. I have spent the past 15 years trying to find a recipe for it.
Part of the challenge in finding the right recipe was that not only is this treat known by a multitude of names, there are also widely varying versions based on where it is made. What I know as a fruit slice is also known as Fly Cemetery or Fly Cake names which, frankly, diminish the cravability. Also, what I enjoyed on my trip is, no surprise, the Scottish version. Other versions, i.e., the English version, use puff pastry instead of shortbread for the layers.
I like the sturdiness of the shortbread which makes it much easier to eat cookie-style alongside a whisky-spiked cup of tea. The shortbread also holds up better in my Christmas cookie box which this year, I am excited to say, will have some fruit slices in them because I finally found the right recipe!
Scottish Fruit Slice Recipe
Yields 12 servings
This easy Scottish Fruit Slice recipe of shortcrust pastry filled with juicy currants is one to add to your repertoire. It’s quick and simple to make and works well for holiday cookie trays, bake sales, and afternoon tea. Feel free to add a splash of Scottish whisky for an extra flavor. Read more…
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