The Unexpected Gift
If you’re looking for a secret santa gift or something for the joker in the family, why not consider a caganer figurine? Playing an integral part to the traditional Belen (nativity scene), these are perhaps the most popular, certainly the most searched for, figure of the lot. Caganer literally means... ahem, crapper. The Amics del Caganer say that these little statues humanize the nativity and harmonize the “transcendent and supernatural” message behind the Christmas story. In other words it brings it down to earth. Whatever your take on it, it is certainly unique to the region (this is a Catalunian tradition from the late 18th century) and it can be a ‘lovely’ present for the right person. If you don’t buy or receive one of your own, join in the ‘Where’s the crapper?’ race when you and your family stop to look at a Belen this Christmas. (Note s/he will be hidden and certainly not visible from the more holy section of the party.)
Buy your caganers at www.caganer.com. For more information visit the AmicsdelCaganer.net page where you can join collectors from all over the world.
The Handmade Gift
A TOTN favourite (and advertiser) V’Estim is holding some winter workshops starting with crochet. Next week the group will be crocheting a small basket, perfect for gifting some mince pies in. Each week will be a new item so get your crafting gear out and start making.
The shop is along the main street in the Old Town of Pollensa. Groups will meet on Wednesday mornings but other options will be available if need be.
The Christmas Cake
250g Light brown sugar
650g dried fruit (prunes, figs, candied peel, glacé cherries)
350g raisins, sultanas, currants, cranberries
3 tbsp brandy
zest and juice of 1 orange
zest of 1 lemon
½ teaspoon baking powder
250g plain flour
Preheat the oven to 160°C. Butter and line, if you have the patience, a 20cm cake tin, it needs to be a deep one.
Pound the butter and the sugar until it’s a cappuccino coloured cream then add the eggs one by one. They will curdle but it’s ok. Once combined add the dried fruit, the raisins and their friends. Give it a stir and throw in the brandy, orange and zest. Give it a good stir. Then slowly add the flour and baking powder.
Now pour your cake mixture into the prepared cake tin and smooth over with a spatula. Place in the oven for 1 hour. When that hour has passed, turn the temperature down to 150°C, resist opening the door. Leave it for 1 and a half hours. Remove from the oven and make sure it’s cooked with skewers. Put it in an airtight container, ready to be brandied up over the coming weeks. Ice it on Christmas Eve. Happy Christmas everyone!