The Pattern Still Remains

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A thick and luscious syrup made in some Arabic countries, most notably Syria, it consists of wine that has been reduced plus the juice of dates and figs.

The World Encyclopedia of Food by L. Patrick Coyle, 1982.

“Glittering squares of colored ice,
Sweetened with syrop, tinctured with spice,
Creams, and cordials, and sugared dates,
Syrian apples, Othmanee quinces,
Limes and citrons and apricots,
And wines that are known to the Eastern princes.”

T.B. Aldrich, When the Sultan Goes to Ispahan. Quotations for Occasions by Katharine B. Wood, 1896.


The original sugarplums were made in Portugal of fresh black figs or green plums, cooked and recooked for days on end in ever-thickening sugar syrups, to produce a sort of glaceed fruit.  Prunes, figs, dates and other dried fruits are now prepared as sugarplums.  All can be wrapped in plain or colored foil, to be hung on the tree, or given as small gifts.

Visions of Sugarplums by Mimi Sheraton, 1968.