Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Cast iron skillet almond coffee cake

Hello, friends. It has been some time since I posted a recipe, so I thought I would share one of our Christmas breakfast favorites. I obtained the recipe from my mother. I believe that my mother received the recipe from a member of Westmont Presbyterian Church (Johnstown, PA), where my family lived for a short while in the mid-1980s. My husband and I started making this almond coffee cake when our boys were very small and up at a ridiculously early hour on Christmas morning. Being weary parents, we would make this the night before so that breakfast preparations didn't require quite so much effort. It is perfect with a serving of fresh fruit and a strong cup of freshly brewed coffee or tea.

Note: You MUST have a cast iron skillet measuring between 9-11" in diameter.
Cast iron skillet almond coffee cake

3/4 c. butter
1 1/2 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 c. flour
pinch of salt
1 T. almond extract
a few whole almonds for decorating (optional)
a bit more sugar for dusting the top

Melt butter and add to sugar in a mixing bowl. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time. Add flour, salt, and almond extract & mix well (batter will be very thick). Pour batter into cast iron skillet which has been lined with foil. Cover top with almonds & sprinkle with granulated sugar. Bake 30-40 minutes in 350 degree oven.

Remove cake from the pan with the foil & when cool wrap tightly in the foil to store.

This cake is rich, sweet, and has a lovely almond flavor. (We really love almonds in our house).

I hope that you try this recipe! Also, what are your holiday meal traditions? Do you have a recipe that you make just about every year? Please share!

Hoping that you all have a peaceful holiday season - however you celebrate.
Be well,

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Vintage lace and burlap flower girl basket

Hello, friends. I have been receiving more and more queries regarding lace trims and my burlap wedding items these days. The combination of the rustic-looking burlap and delicate, airy lace has a definite appeal. So, I've decided to do some experimenting!

Here is a new burlap flower girl basket:

What do you think? I love this vintage lace, which I found from Heather via her Etsy shop, ForsytheCompanyStore. The lovely larkspur is, as you may have seen from some of my previous posts, Cindy's, from Etsy shop LarkspurHill.

And thanks to my grandmother, Mickey Tanner, for your wonderfully re-caned antique chair. (It is becoming my favorite go-to photo prop!)
Be well,

Friday, December 9, 2011

Handwoven lunchbox napkins

Hello, friends. I have been doing a lot of weaving lately (no surprise there) in addition to making some holiday gifts for family. I'd like to share some photos of some of my gift-giving projects, but since a few of my readers happen to be relatives, I think I will hold off until after December 25th!

My husband's "Secret Santa" gift exchange at work was an inspiration for a new item for Nutfield Weaver. My handwoven lunchbox napkins would be a nice gift for an officemate, don't you think? They're reasonably priced, too. Here are some photos of two that I made this week:

I've been reading up on cheesemaking. How fun does this sound? Since I've pretty much figured out how to make a good batch of yogurt, graduating to cheese seems like a natural next step. I'll let you know when (and if) I finally take the plunge and mix up some homemade chevre.

Stay warm & be well,

Monday, December 5, 2011

Moss green table runner & pillow cover

Hello, friends. It has been unseasonably warm around here. Today I ran through Mack's Apple Orchards and given the calendar date it seemed as though I should have been wearing skis instead of running shoes. The orchard still smelled very apple-y (actually, it smelled more like hard cider).

The moss green fabric is off of the loom and I have two new items for my shop that I've made from the cloth. Here is the moss green table runner:

and here is a moss green pillow cover:

The loom is being warped right now for some more ivory dishcloths. They are fun to weave and one of the most popular items for Nutfield Weaver. I may throw in a few picks of color here and there, too -- just to keep it fresh.

Be well,