Christmas temptations

I’ve always made a special Christmas cake for my youngest son, Adam.
Allergic to nuts, when I made his cake, we substituted fruit whenever nuts were called for. Extra cherries, extra peel, and extra apricots and raisins make their way into his cake.
It doesn’t call for much sugar but then again, if you begin with almost four pounds of candied fruit, you really don’t have to add much sugar.
Even in the raw, the cake is delicious.
A sign at a recent craft show caught my eye. It was over some baking and proclaimed to people who were concerned about sugar that the cake had no sugars added.
I chuckled to myself knowing full well that most Christmas cakes all could do without sugar and still be overly sweet.
Holidays and family celebrations always are celebrated around food. Each has its own treats and we condition ourselves for them.
People from Sweden, Ukraine, England, Italy, Norway, Russia, France, and the Far East bring their favourite ethnic cuisine to the table. And each community has its own traditional Christmas dishes
In a multicultural country like Canada, we get to enjoy the best from around the world.
As a person who suffers from diabetes, checking my glucose levels and watching my carbohydrate and sugar intake, I’m constantly checking labels. As my dietician keeps telling me, you can have those treats but you have to balance those indulgences out.
A dessert might be balanced by dropping the potato or bread.
But at Christmas, everyone is out to tempt you with their best fare.
We are now into the season of treats and special baking. Every family has their favourites that only are made at Christmas time. In our household, it includes shortbread, a cranberry-orange square, fruit cake, almond balls, and several more.
The first or second ingredient in any of these recipes is flour, followed by sugar. And just thinking about these treats can have a person’s mouth watering in anticipation.
Almost every church and organization has a bake sale at this time of the year. I know for a fact that if it makes the bake table, it is going to be “go-o-o-o-o-o-o-d.”
No one is going to send their baking with even a hint of scorching. Every morsel will melt in your mouth. Every donation will be a family’s very best.
The Aquanaut swim team held a bake sale on Saturday and what didn’t sell came into the Times’ office Monday morning. The chocolate peanut butter caramels disappeared instantly while the carrot cake with the cream cheese icing vanished almost as quickly.
Homemade bread, rolls, and Christmas baking tempted everyone. I must admit that walking by all that fresh baking was a real challenge. Instead of walking directly past, my body seemed to drift sideways testing and tempting my willpower.
And the Christmas cookies . . . just smiling to be picked up.
To protect me, my wife bakes and freezes everything. We’ve cut down on baking knowing full well that neither of us needs the extra calories. So this table of Fort Frances swimmers families’ best cooking is a real temptation.
The Christmas season lets us indulge ourselves. Food fantasies become real. We will suffer from the overdoses of good food with glee.
Then come January, reality will return—and a whole year will pass before Christmas tempts us again.

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