BBM3 - Package Arrived!
You know, I underestimated the feeling of excitement I would get when seeing my Blogging by Mail package mystery package arrive. It turned up yesterday, after a fairly upsetting day I had, so it was a such a nice feeling knowing that somebody I'd never met, over the other side of the world, had prepared a care package for me full of exciting new things to try.
My partner, Jocelyn, is from San Francisco, which happens to be my favourite US city (of those I've visited) and included a lovely, handwritten letter describing the contents of her "taste of the US holidays" package for me which included:
-Home-baked cranberry muffins - with the dried cranberries soaked in rum. Mmmm. Jocelyn commented that cranberries are found everywhere around the US at this time of year, and soaking in them in rum highlights another great tradition of the season: alcohol!
-Mexican Wedding Cookies. I'd never heard of these before, but have totally fallen in love. What gorgeous little nut studded buttery delights these are. I think the nuts are pecans, which I really love, but which are quite expensive down here. I've asked Jocelyn for the recipe, as I have plans to make these for Christmas. SO delicious!
-Boutique gourmet chocolates from SF confectioner Joseph Schmidt, in the shape of turkeys and pumpkins, in honour of the season. Jocelyn commented that when people think of chocolate and San Francisco, they usually think of Ghiradelli, and I admit that I ate more than my fair share when I was over there in 2003, however she chose to include some boutique chocolates instead. Wow, the quality of these chocolates is amazing; I'm quite a fan of chocolate, in case you hadn't noticed (ahem...I even have a separate archive category for it!), and these are top notch, gourmet products. The box of 6 turkey shapes, in dark, white and milk chocolate are filled with rich, ganache-type fillings and are truly decadent. Unfortunately most of the turkeys didn't quite survive the intense Australian sun, and suffered a bit in transport. But they were still gorgeous tasting chocolate blobs! I haven't yet tried the pumpkin shapes - as they are almost too beautiful to eat. What perfect shape and colour.
Jocelyn also included a copy of the San Francisco Chronicle food section, full of special recipes for Thanksgiving - some of which left me feeling a bit faint (brining your own turkey in garbage bags overnight??). I also was intrigued by the size of the newspaper. Goodness, the Chronicle is a very TALL paper, isn't it? How does one read it on the train in the morning?? She also included a photo of her kitchen - and made me very envious of the KitchenAid mixer on her bench.
Finally, Jocelyn wrote that she is from Native American (Indian) stock - at which point my eyes opened wider. Goodness! How exotic for me, here on the other side of the world! Part of their great culinary heritage is corn, and she included the recipe for her mum's corn pudding which appears on the Thanksgiving table every year as a side dish. With fresh corn in season down here now, it's something I certainly will try soon.
I was so excited to receive this package, and every time I reached into my drawer at work to nibble on a Mexican wedding cookie, I smiled to think of the care and effort put in by somebody on the other side of the world. What a way to reaffirm one's faith in humanity. :-)
PS-Just today my package arrived for my recipient in Malaysia! Here's a peek.