Friday, January 11, 2013

The Storm That Wasn't, Lemon Cake and a Find

I have been cooking since 3:30 pm.  It's now quarter after six, and I'm still cooking.  Of course, for me, cooking involves a lot of different things.

I be honest, I probably started cooking around 11;30 am, when I decided the water tank was full enough to run the dishwasher and wash the pans.  We live on a low yield well, and that makes things interesting sometimes.

Today, I finished the Lemon Cake.  The zest I'd already grated had been in the freezer, the zested lemons in the fridge; it still took six more lemons to get it all right.

In the middle of zesting lemons, I did other things.  I put the chickens outside for their daily run about, realized how cold it was, gathered eggs, put out fresh water and food for the chickens, cut up some cabbage and then brought the chickens back in, who happily came- even Baby, the one who likes to stay out the longest.  No fights, no protestations, just in the coop which was much nicer than outside.

Now that seems like a coherent list, until you realize I would zest a lemon, then go do something else. Then zest another lemon, go do something else. It's how I do a lot of cooking.  In fact, I'm doing it right now - the chicken breasts are defrosting in the microwave while the broccoli cooks for the chicken broccoli on rice we'll be having for dinner, upon special request.

And then I went on a search for the juicer.  Several years back, I was collecting antique, but useful, dishes The house still has many of my blue Fire King pans and dishes in it - a few I kept because of how rare they are, the rest I kept to use.  My husband had inherited a refrigerator water bottle in a design called "criss cross", so I  collected that too.  After being here a year, I decided it was time to clean the stuff out.  Part of the criss cross set was two juicers - a large and a small.  Over the years, I've sold off most of the stuff - the water bottle stayed, of course, and several pieces.  What I didn't sell was in a box.  Now, I started on the box I thought they were in, only to find other things I'd forgotten existed.  So I went to the box in the garage, and found not only the juicer but the bowl set, and a lot of refrigerator dishes.  I think that the refrigerator dishes will be coming back in the house.
Juicer found and in use!
Juicer found, several other treasures found, the sink refilled with dishes to wash, I juiced the lemons, and mixed the cake. Batter test by everyone in the house declared it GOOD.
Look at those fresh eggs! That's real egg color!

In the pans and ready to bake!
As the cakes baked, the find was discovered by my daughter.  In addition to the dishes I'd brought upstairs, there were two recipe boxes, picked up a few years ago, full of recipes. They'd been in the box of dishes too. She sat down at the counter and decided it was time to go through them.  She found treasures like "Deviled Ham Pops"  and many "one pan" meals.  So finished cooking for the moment, I sat with her and we went through them all, sticking them in categories.

Some were in a field all their own, like the recipe to make your own salami. Some were typed, some handwritten in pen and pencil, some culled from the newspapers, giving us a date range of mid 1940s to the early 1950s, though some were clearly marked as "mom's recipe" and even "grandma's recipe".  The hardest part is going to be deciphering the handwriting on some of the ones written in pencil- they are rather faded. The ones on pink paper will be the hardest.
The stacks of recipes
So back into the boxes they go for now, for us to look through again, decode and even try.  We might even create a recipe book out of them.

This drink mix packet was in among the recipes, because it has recipes on the back.
The lemon cakes are out of the oven, have cooled the requisite time, and the lemon syrup has been drizzled in.  The recipe states that they should be taken out of the pan and then drizzled, but I decided these are much like making Jello Cake, so in the pan they will stay until the syrup is all absorbed, and they are fully cool. Then they shall be glazed with a lemon glaze.  (I'll admit I licked the spoon after drizzling the syrup -  WOW! was that lemony!)

I have left one cake un-syruped, so that we can decide if this is something more for the everyday that we may like.
The finished product!

Cakes have now been taste tested by husband and myself, and WOW! is that lemony. And super rich- one small slice was almost too much for mys stomach to take - it started a small ache!  Half slices from now on.

As for the storm that didn't happen - it was an on and off snow morning.  I'll demonstrate in pictures and video.  Over all, less than half an inch accumulation, and by noon, all was sunny and bright and windy -and cold.

The view out front at 9:30 am.  

The view out back right about the same time - you may be able to tell that it's sunny near the house, but in the distance...

And five minutes later, literally - Out front:

Out Back

And then back to sunny skies! Welcome to the mountains!

Egg count today was three. 

No soap today - spent too much time cleaning up and messing up the kitchen. Tomorrow!

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