The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads…
I would love to have visions of dancing sugar-plums in my head, but I don’t know what they look like! And of course, there’s really no such thing, from a fruit standpoint. But I recently came across a recipe for Sugarplums on the Food Network website, and I was intrigued.
Turns out there have been candies/confections called Sugarplums around for a long time, and they’re all like this recipe (I’ll post the link to the original recipe I discovered at the bottom of this post.) They involve fruits and nuts, and they’re rolled into balls.
So there’s no real sugar plum, but nonetheless this recipe was something I knew I had to play with. I just had to make Sugarplums! And, of course, I just can’t leave a recipe alone, so here’s is my version, and it’s quite delicious!
6 ounces Brazilnuts
6 ounces dried plums
4 ounces dried apricots
4 ounces dried figs, stemmed
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon poppy seeds
1/4 teaspoon anise seed
1/4 teaspoon fennel seed
1/4 cup honey
Turbinado sugar or Swedish pearl sugar*
Weigh out the Brazilnuts and all of the dried fruit, then place it all in the jar of a food processor. Pulse until on the coarse side, but not too coarse. You need all of it to be able to stick together.
Place the mixture in a bowl and set aside.
In a small bowl, sieve the powdered sugar with the cinnamon and cardamom. Then add the poppy seeds, anise seeds, and fennel seeds. Give it all a stir and set aside.
When you are ready to finish the Sugarplums, have the nut-fruit mixture, the powdered sugar mixture, and two latex gloves handy. Place the turbinado or the Swedish pearl sugar in a small bowl. I used both because I wanted to experiment with both sugars. Also have a rack handy on which to place the Sugarplums.
Add the honey and the powdered sugar mixture to the fruits and nuts. Put on the gloves and begin mixing everything together. Mix extremely well.
Roll the sticky mixture into balls and dip in the sugar. Then place on the rack. Continue with the remaining fruits and nuts. This recipe made about 20 Sugarplums.
note: I really liked the look of the Swedish pearl sugar for the holidays.
another note: These are really sweet. I don’t think there’s any getting around it, because you need the dried fruits, the powdered sugar, and the stickiness of the honey. Definitely make these for your favorite sweets lover!