Help from other fussy cooks

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chrissya

Help from other fussy cooks

A little while ago I posted my feelings regarding stoney or gritty Raisins, Sultanas and Currants in Christmas cakes or mince pies. I purchased all my ingredients for Delia's Classic Christmas Cake from Waitrose and all were Waitrose own brands. I sent examples of my findings to Waitrose.
These were analysed and here is an extract of their findings. I quote "The details of your complaint were forwarded to our merchandise laboratory. We believe the problem was due to poor preparation, which should have been detected by inspection procedures....we will monitor the situation particularly closely...".
Please everyone, if you are fed up with "crunchy"
Christmas mince pies or Christmas Cake made with Waitrose ingrediants or purchased from Waitrose, like me, let them know. We might be able to get rid of the problem once and for all!

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Gerry

stones in dried fruit

Never had any stones in raisins, sultanas or currants.

Help from other fussy cooks

Nor have I Chrissy, but I am very impressed that you took it up with them AND got a reply!

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violet eyes

gritty fruit

I've sometimes taken a bite of something crunchy in my fruit cakes and wondered what it was, never stopped me eating them though. I have noticed little storks on some fruit mainly currants which I then remove but that's about all.When I shop in Waitrose I do sometimes buy their bags of fruit which look nice and plump. I will complain if I find any stones or grit, it's the only way to go if you're not happy.

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Gerry

stones in odd places

"Gerry Ive got a pair in my kidneys does that count."
Very painful, I've heard. Unless I mean gallstones. Not sure. With one of the conditions you're supposed to drink a lot - water or something - one sufferer told me.

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Gerry

ouch

Bolas, the people I know with (I think they said) gallstones, had operations. Is it done differently now?

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Annie57

gritty currants

My christmas cakes last year and this year have both been spoilt by gritty currants with tiny pips spoiling the enjoyment of the cake. I always use Delias recipe but think I will omit the currants and try other dried fruit next year. Incidentally my husband hasn't noticed the grit but I find it quite unpleasant.

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Gerry

Bolas

Thanks for explaining. Hope your suffering doesn't go on, sounds awful.

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Welshcookie

Currants

I rarely use currants. They are mean little things and sultanas and raisins are much nicer.

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SonyaK

Currants

"I rarely use currants. They are mean little things and sultanas and raisins are much nicer."

I agree. I never buy currants, and as I always have sultanas in stock I always use them instead.

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violet eyes

currants in baking

I like making eccles cakes and the recipe uses currants, apart from that I don't use them for anything else. I prefer to use other dried fruit.

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JaneMR

Currants vs Sultanas vs Raisins

Does it really matter what proportion these are used in? I often add the three weights together and make it up with whatever fruits I have.

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flo44

Gritty Raisins

By gritty do you mean sugary? If so, that's a sign of old raisins or currants and they should be returned to the store if that's what you find when you open the package. I've complained to our local BJ's (bulk wholesaler in the U.S.) about this, as well as little stem bits that have been left on the bagged fruit, unpleasantly sharp when they end up in your baking. Now I carefully inspect the see-through bag of raisins before purchasing and freeze any unused dried fruit for future cooking.

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chrissya

help from other fussy cooks

Hi Flo44,
When I posted my comments about writing to Waitrose in February about stoney/gritty fruit, I certainly wasn't talking about sugar deposits.
As I ate my Christmas cake, every time I "crunched" on something in the cake, I carefully stopped chewing and removed the offending article from my mouth. Sounds awful doesn't it - but it was the only way I could prove my problem and get Waitrose to analyse the results.
Amazingly they did (if you carefully put it on a piece of sellotape it's no problem). You'll see their comments in a letter to me in my post - but I still wait the time when Waitrose brings out a "NO CRUNCH Guaranteed"
fruit collection for my Christmas cakes.

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Welshcookie

Gritty cake

I'm very sorry, but I really do think it is your problem. Do you find other textures difficult, like nuts? If you wash the fruit well, avoid cheap dried fruit and especially, currants, and lay the washed fruit out to dry, so that you can remove any stray stems and bits, I think you will have to live with it or avoid fruit cakes. Lexia raisins are at the luxury end of the scale and they often contain tiny pips, but people deliberately buy them, so I don't think it is a universal problem.

 
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