Tuesday, August 31, 2010

More Bakin' Gonin' On Here

Jam Cake

If you are from the south, especially Kentucky or Tennessee you just have to remember Jam Cake! My mother used to make it, of course, we were in Indiana, but she grew up in Kentucky, near Somerset, something like fourth miles west of London. And although I didn't realize how close the two places were until recently, my father's mother was from Kentucky also, about 40 miles east of London.

Back to the cake.  My sister-in-law, who now lives near us in Tennessee, brought a jam cake to the family Christmas dinner last year. It was very good. After thinking about that cake for a good long while I asked for her recipe. All she'd tell me (I have to insert here she WAS quite busy, with a hubby who had just had surgery!) it called for a box spice cake.

I waited a few days for her to call before I decided to do another search online. And, I found it! Just reading thru the recipe made my mouth water! This past week end I made the cake. We had a fellowship meal at our church so I took that cake. Oh my, it was a hit! The platter was picked clean! My poor husband was very disappointed! He'd eaten some of several other deserts because he was sure he'd get some of mine later at home! Well, "that'll learn 'em, dern 'em!"

Here is the great recipe, from 'the recipe link' (http://www.recipelink.com/).

Jam Cake
with Caramel Icing
Church social tested!

1 spice cake mix - 2 layer
1 cup chopped pecans (didn't have enough pecans, finished cup with chopped walnuts)
1 cup raisins
1/4 cup flour
1 cup blackberry jam

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Grease & flour three round pans (makes a 3 layer cake with fruit, nuts & jam)
Mix cake according to the box directions.
Roll pecans & raisins in the 1/4 cup flour.
Add them to the cake batter.
Fold in the cup of blackberry jam.
Pour into greased and floured pans.
Bake until done. (Test with tooth pick in middle; done when tooth pick comes out clean.)
(I set my timer using box recommendations & my best guess; cakes were ready my first check.)

Because of the time I had to devote to this I used a 'store bought' Caramel Icing, and it was wonderful!
If you have time to try the home made icing I've included three recipes also from 'the recipe link'. I didn't test any of them.

Caramel Icing 1

1 cup brown sugar
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup evaporated milk

Heat sugars, butter & mile until dissolved. Bring to rolling boil.
Cook 1 minute.
Take off heat and
add vanilla
Beat to right consistency to spread
If too thick add a little milk at a time.

Caramel Icing 2

1 one pound box light brown sugar
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter
1 cup cream (half & half)

Put all ingredients into a medium sized pan, stir until the mixture begins to boil.
After it's boiling don't stir.
Cook to soft ball stage.
Beat until thickens.
Frost your cooled cake.
It the mixture is too hard add hot water a little at a time until consistency seems right to you.

Caramel Icing 3

6 Tablespoons butter
 3/4 cup brown sugar
6 Tablespoons sweetened condensed milk
1 2/3 cups sifted powdered sugar

Melt butter.
Add brown sugar & stir.
Add milk & bring to a boil.
Boil hard for 1 minute.
Remove it from the heat.
Add powdered sugar gradually.
Beat constantly until mixture looses its gloss.

Praise God! & Happy eating!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


Our neighbors have been so generous with the bounty from their garden.

I had about half a dozen nice zucchini in the crisper drawer of the frig. I thought for sure I wasn't going to get to them before they rotted, but...my refrigerator is very good! they were still good a couple days ago when I finally checked them. So I got them ready for making them into bread, found this great recipe online, and bought the walnuts, raisins and more eggs and began to bake! I had enough zucchini for six nice loaves of bread! Yummy!

Here is the recipe and the information about where I found it.

'findmyrecipes.com' Zucchini Bread 
from Cooking Light submitted by
Lorraine Warren July, 2005

Preheat over to 350 degrees F.
Prepare 2 - 8x4 loaf pans by spraying with cooking spray.

Mix dry ingredients together in a large bowl:
Spoon in 3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda

Combine and stir until well mixed, in a larger bowl
(you will be adding dry to wet):
1/2 cup egg substitute (=2 eggs)
1/3 cup canola or corn oil
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon lemon rind-grated (I omitted this)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg beaten
Add: 3 cups shredded zucchini (12 ounces)
Stir all until well combined.

Add dry mixture, stir just until combined,
stir in 1 cup chopped walnuts, and I added 1 cup raisins.

I used a large soup ladle and dipped equal amounts of
'dough' into the prepared loaf pans.

Bake one hour, test with tooth pick inserted in the center
of the loaf. If the pick comes out clean the bread is done!

Set on wire rack. Run spatula or knife around edge to loosen
bread from the pan. After about five minutes of cooling turn
loaf out onto a plate or onto foil if you plan to freeze or store
the bread for later. Allow the bread to cool before wrapping
it up or cutting it to eat!

Minus the raisins, the bread is said to be 150 calories a slice.
This is a delicious recipe! Enjoy!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Organizing Things

Maintaining order in my home goes a long way to reduce my stress.  It's somehow therapeutic and gives me a feeling of control, which I like. 

Another advantage is in time saved.  Household chores go more quickly, because I put things back after I use them and I clean up after myself.  Time isn't wasted looking for things when I need them, because I know exactly where they are stored.  I enjoy the free time this allows me.

Being organized, to me, is well worth the effort.

If you'd like to become more organized first and perhaps most important, is the wisdom in an anonymous quote, 'The way to eat an elephant is, one bite at a time.'

In other words, if it's your goal to organize your entire home, or life, you certainly cannot expect to do it all at once. 

1. Begin small.  Sort one cabinet, or closet, or drawer at a time. 

2. Where to begin is only important to you.  Maybe you have a space that's particularly irritating or that's causing you trouble of some kind.  If so begin with that space or better yet, begin with a part of it.    

3. Allow a reasonable amount of time for each organizational job.  

4. Make a list of all the areas you want to organize. 

5. Mark off each task as it's finished.  This will give you visual confirmation of your good work and you will undoubtedly experience a satisfying sense of accomplishment.

6. Keep your marked off lists to remind you of the progress made.

Following these steps will help you develop the habit of being organized.