Monday, April 21, 2014

The "Estate" of Things: Diggy's Fruit Salad


      This post is not only about a simple fruit salad but more importantly where the recipe for this salad came from.  My amazing, loving, quirky, eccentric, imaginative, talented, overall artistic aunt created this for many family reunions.  She recently passed away this year and it has been very hard and confusing at the same time.  I had been appointed as executor of her estate.  To make a long story short, she had been sick for quite some time and finally decided to go to the hospital after many days of convincing.  She had not been seen by a doctor in over 40 years.  She was a dreamer, a loner, an island in and of herself. As in typical Aunt Candy style we spoke at least once a week over the phone or she would stop by my apartment for a chat.  A chat about the state of the world, religion, life, travel, food, sex, relationships, you name it we discussed it. Prior to her going into the hospital it had been a while that we had spoken.  The last time we did we discussed me becoming her MPOA, POA, and Executor of her estate if and when something would happen to her.  I was glad and proud to take on such responsibility for her.  See, I am the youngest of her nieces and nephews.  The youngest of 22 and she did not have any children of her own.  I had always been special to her.  She helped raise me while my parents were at work while I was young. 

      Her life was a story all in its own. From growing up in a small town in WV to traveling the world and working in the theater scene in NYC. She taught me to play, to act, to have fun. This woman was amazing. She continued to write, direct plays, act in, and perform even in her local town.  She did things right.  Her mind was full of ideas. In fact she came up with this simple but amazingly delicious fruit salad.  I share below not only the recipe but some photos of my wonderful and beloved Aunt Candy, or as I like to call her, Diggy.  (I was unable to say Aunt Candy when wee little).  I have been spending most of my weekends cleaning out her place and getting the "Estate" settled.  Lots of work and learning new things that goes into finalizing one’s life.  It's a lot harder than just passing into the afterlife.  I still have my days where I feel lost without her.  Confused to what happened and trying to determine what to do next. 

     So on to the recipe.  This fruit salad is not like any other fruit salad you have had before.  Most people just cut up their fruit, add a little yogurt or sugar water and that is it.  Not Diggy, she made hers much different.  It is amazing.  The burst of crispness from the wine, the odd combination of fruits with floral accents from the herbs is very surprising. Actually having this salad was my first experience in tasting lavender with any type of food.  Quite interesting flavor additives that you find in the American version of Herb de Provence. So here goes: Diggy's Fruit Salad

  • 2 bananas sliced
  • A small bunch of grapes sliced
  • 1 packet blueberries
  • 4 kiwis sliced
  • 2 pears sliced
  • 2 peaches sliced
  • 6-8 Clementines peeled
  • 1 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp Herb de Provence
  • Lemon juice

     Cut up your fruit as desired into equal sized bites and place in a large serving bowl.  In a small sauce pan add your wine and sugar and bring to a slow boil until the sugar has dissolved and your alcohol has burned off.  Stir in your Herb de Provence and continue to simmer for about a couple minutes.  Pour over the fruit and add in some lemon juice.  Toss to incorporate, cover, and refrigerate to chill.  Viola! That is it.  As I said this salad is unlike any other you have tried before.  It's crisp and fresh just like spring.  Enjoy.

Aunt Candy and I (she's actually eating this salad in this picture)

Aunt Candy in one of her plays



  1. Such a beautiful story. Diggy sounds like she was quite an incredible lady. How fortunate you were to have her in your life. How fortunate I am that you are sharing her delicious and unusual fruit salad!

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    1. Thanks anonymous. Been blogging for two years. Some things I need to work on a bit but overall I try to keep it simple and easy to navigate.