Mimi Sheraton (1926– ) is a highly esteemed food writer, a documentor of the food world, and the author of many much-admired books. She was the New York Times restaurant critic between 1975 and 1983—and the first woman to hold the position. Sheraton’s keen attention to detail and academic curiosity is a natural driver toward the cultural, historical, and deeper meanings attached to food.
In 1968’s Visions of Sugarplums, Sheraton documents the traditional cakes, cookies, candies, confections, and drinks affiliated with Christmas traditions around the world, foregoing the largely kitchy or commercial items we might see on a broader scope. Brief headnotes mention origins and historical anecdotes, but its strength lies in the many delightful recipes.
At random we might mention the Sicilian Marsala fig cake—a ring of ground nuts, dried fruit, and spices baked in a short crust; Lebanese crullers glazed with honey syrup; or the Portuguese and Brazilian golden egg threads—thin strands of egg boiled in syrup. And perhaps an Alabama hot Scotch or a Jamaican Christmas punch to end the night on a spirited note.
We offer here the 1981 revised and expanded paperback edition, unused and Fine. It’s the perfect festive gift for the food obsessive in your life.