Come on, how many of you ever give more than a passing thought to the humble currant? Very few I imagine. The eager beavers at the Currant Marketing Board obviously have their work cut out to raise the profile of this most inconspicuous of dried fruits.
But what's this? A book in praise of the currant, that's what. Apparently it was something of a latter day super food and recommended by eminent physicians and analysts. The late Sir WM Gull, the great Physician always advised his patients when on a long journey to carry with them a Plum Pudding, and no less an authority than Sir Francis Laking the (late) King's Physician noted that 'many are the ways in which currants can enter into daily use in the household, with great advantage to health and pocket.'
The virtues of this little dried grape are extolled and a tour through Greek Currant country recommended. It is a trip not to be despised by travellers - not least because of the light-hearted, picturesquely-garbed Grecian peasantry, to whom the currant harvest is is the crowning of the year, and whose cheerfulness and courtesy is legendary. Don't even think for one moment that those cheery smiles might be sniggers of derision at a whey-faced, Plum Pudding toting Englishman abroad....
This little treasure fetched up in a pile of papers at Harry Tuffin's Car Boot Sale at Churchstoke this morning. As Car Boots go it must be one of the best - amongst the obilgatory plastic tat, old board games and gimcrackery nestle some real finds.
I'm off now to knock together a Nelson Pudding (requires currants) which I shall serve with currant sauce and a side order of currant fritters. It's 'hello' cleansed, enriched blood and clear, bright complexion and 'goodbye' waistline methinks.