Grandma Style / Estilo Abuela

As the below photo from the 1920s shows, my father’s mother had some style. She probably wouldn’t have fit in here in Fuengirola, although her Russian would have come in handy on the Costa del Sol. She was born in Slutzk!

My grandmother died when I was 3 years old. But I remember she had a covered cut-glass dish filled with hard candies with soft raspberry centers. The dish sat on a kidney shaped tea table in the living room and she used the candies to coax me out of my shyness. It always worked.

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Como muestra la foto de abajo de la década de 1920, la madre de mi padre tenía algo de estilo. Probablemente no lo habría encajado aquí en Fuengirola, aunque su ruso hubiera sido útil en la Costa del Sol.

Mi abuela murió cuando yo tenía 3 años. Pero recuerdo que ella tenía un plato cubierto de vidrio tallado lleno de caramelos duros con centros de frambuesas suaves. El plato se sentó en una mesa de té con forma de riñón en la sala de estar y ella usó los dulces para sacarme de mi timidez. Siempre funcionó.

I Call My Sugar Candy

San Geraldo had a doctor’s appointment Friday (one of his big feet has been sore), so we rented a car and ran errands together afterward. While I waited for San Geraldo at the medical center, the Three Kings arrived in the lobby. Monday is Three Kings Day. Sunday: Parades of the Three Kings (“Cavalcadas de Los Tres Reyes”) all over Spain.

The Three Kings (and friends), hospital scrubs peaking out from beneath their robes, had candy for everyone and gift-wrapped toys for the kids. As you know, I’ve been out of chocolate for a few days. So, I was very happy when Baltasar (Spanish spelling) filled my hand with candy. Yes, I took candy from a stranger. And nothing happened! 


I’M PRETTY SURE THIS WAS MELCHOR (SPANISH SPELLING).
STRANGE.  PAPA NOEL SENT AN ELF TO HELP OUT.
(AND NOT A VERY HAPPY ELF…)
A VERY CHARMING BALTASAR, AFTER GIVING ME MY CANDY.
I LIKE THE GUMMY ONES.

After I finished my candy, we headed to the garden center (to exchange the pots we purchased a few weeks ago — that I so carefully measured — for two of the correct size; click here for a refresher). We then headed to a store called Iceland, an international importer where San Geraldo can find all different kinds of frozen berries. I found sweet memories of my sister Dale, in a Cadbury Dairy Milk Fruit & Nut bar — her favorite (only when it came to Cadbury). I had the option to buy one big bar or four smaller, individually packaged bars. I bought the individually packaged bars because that would mean I wouldn’t consume the chocolate quite so quickly. I’d only eat one bar at a time, saving the still-wrapped bars for later. It made perfect sense. It didn’t work. Gone in a heartbeat! But my mental state has been improving. It must be the chocolate.

JUST HOME… ONE ALREADY DOWN, THREE TO GO.
(AND THEY WENT IN LESS THAN 5 MINUTES).

San Geraldo continues to bake his holiday breads. I think he’s got one more batch (three loaves) of cranberry-orange bread and he’ll be done. But maybe not. He did some substitutions on his latest batch of date spice bread and it was even better than the first three batches. He had Medjool dates this time. They didn’t chop in the food processor; they puréed. So he added raisins for a bit of texture. The rich flavor of the Medjools combined with the firmness of the raisins. Heaven. Like Big Maybelle (listen to the music below), “I got a sweet tooth for my sweetheart.”

BIG MAYBELLE HAD TO BE SINGING ABOUT SAN GERALDO.