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I decided to make this wonderful cake for Sunday dinner – the first time since I blogged about it in 2011.  It’s always been a family favorite and I wonder why I don’t make it more often.  It is easy to bake, makes a large cake and stays moist and delicious for several days if it lasts that long.

NORTON’S RUM CAKE

To make the cake:

  • 18.25-18.5 oz. box of yellow cake mix (I use Betty Crocker Super Moist)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1/2 cup dark rum (Bacardi)
  • 1/2 cup oil (canola)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream

Preheat oven to 315 degrees F
Grease and flour a 10-cup tube or Bundt cake pan

Place all ingredients in the large bowl of an electric mixer and beat at medium speed for 3 minutes.  Pour into greased and floured 10-cup tube or Bundt pan and bake @ 315 degrees F for approximately one hour until a tester inserted near the center of the cake comes out clean.

With cake still in pan, allow to cool on a rack for 5 minutes.

Run a knife around the edges and tube portion to loosen.  Invert cake onto rack.

While cake is cooling, make the Rum Glaze:

RUM GLAZE

  • 8 Tblsp. (1/4 lb.) butter
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark rum (Bacardi)

In a small saucepan, melt the butter.  Then stir in the water and sugar.  Bring to a boil and let boil for 5 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in the rum.

While cake is warm, poke holes in the cake with a skewer and pour the sauce over the cake.  It will take several minutes for the cake to absorb the glaze – just wait a few seconds and ladle on some more sauce until it is all used.

Let cake cool completely before cutting and serving.

Lillian's Cupboard

After my father was gone in the 1970s, my sister (a die-hard round dancer) persuaded my mother to get out more and to take up round and square dancing.  Mother fought the idea for awhile, but finally got up the nerve to venture out on her own and met the most wonderful man who became her dance partner and a friend of the family for many years to come.  Norton was always the perfect gentleman, soft-spoken with a dry wit, a great dancer, and a good cook.

The dances were always the occasion for good food contributed by the club members and Norton’s favorite item to bring was his famous rum cake.  Although alcohol was strictly forbidden at dances, everyone looked the other way when Norton walked in with his cake.  Erma Bombeck wrote about the joy of being at a PTA meeting and having someone bring in anything with…

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My daughter passed on to me a link to a free pattern to make a “simple asymmetrical scarf … intended to display gradients in handspun yarn”.  I didn’t have any handspun yarn, but I did have a “Sweet Roll” cake of yarn from JoAnn’s and decided to give this a try since it was all in easy garter stitch.  It starts out with 5 stitches cast on and ends when you run out of yarn.  This is how my scarf turned out.

 

My daughter used a Caron cake with about twice as much yarn and made a gloriously long and swervy scarf.

It’s a nice pattern to really show off the colors in these cakes.  The sections of each color are large so you need a big project to display them to best advantage.

Here’s the free pattern:

http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/boom


MAGIC RAGLAN SWEATER

“A simple fill-in-the-blanks method for making a raglan sweater that is knit from the neck down, in one piece, to fit anybody.”

http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/the-magic-custom-fit-raglan-sweater

I like patterns that are really formulas with blanks to fill in measurements plus yarn and needle information to make an item of any size. This is an interesting pattern that can be adapted for any size from infant to a full sized man’s sweater. I chose to make two sweaters for a child 2-3 years old and one baby cardigan.

I like the concept very much but would like to develop a better neckline. It still makes sturdy sweaters for the little Lakota children of Pine Ridge, SD.

http://www.ravelry.com/groups/for-the-children-of-pine-ridge

 

 


I’ve been making a version of this kuchen for many years. Originally, it was a German recipe which used quark, something that is not available in most of our Cincinnati-area grocery stores. I’ve found that sour cream or yogurt are good substitutes. This is very easy to put together with a variety of fruit toppings, not too sweet and a consistency that I haven’t found in other cakes. This was a good version with some leftover blackberries and a big Bartlett pear.

Blackberry Pear Kuchen

  • Servings: One 9-Inch cake - 6 servings
  • Print

3 Tblsp. sour cream
3 Tblsp. milk
3 Tblsp. vegetable oil
1/4 cup granulated sugar
¼ tsp salt
1 cup + 2 Tblsp. all-purpose flour
¾ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. baking soda
1 cup blackberries
1 cup pear slices

Cinnamon-Ginger Topping: 2 Tblsp. granulated sugar
and 1/4 tsp. each of cinnamon and ginger, mixed together

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9-inch baking pan

In medium bowl, whisk together the sour cream, milk, oil and sugar.

Mix together the salt, flour, baking powder and baking soda, and gradually stir into sour cream mixture. Place batter in greased pan. The dough will be stiff and somewhat sticky. Dampen your hands with water and then press the dough into the pan.

Arrange the blackberries and pear slices over the top of the cake.

Bake @ 350 degrees F for 20 minutes. Sprinkle Cinnamon-Ginger Topping over top of cake and continue baking for 5 more minutes.

Place on wire rack to cool for 5 minutes before cutting into 6 servings.


Delicious as a breakfast coffee cake or as a dessert. Especially good warm from the oven.

 


Last week, I found some bargains which will help me out with my knitting.  First, a book from a library used book sale for only $4.00.  I figure if I can find one pattern or technique that I like in a book, it’s worth buying.  I’ve already found one very good pattern and there are 43 more to audition.  I particularly liked a pattern for a hooded scarf.

The other bargain was at a Goodwill thrift store where I bought a huge container of acrylic yarn for $10.00.  There was one skein each of a large assortment of colors.  This is good for me because I knit a lot of small items like hats, scarves and mittens for charity.  The hooded scarf pattern called for #4 worsted yarn and #8 needles for a child’s size scarf.  I used #10 needles with the yarn and added a few rows to make it suitable for an adult.  I had a nice variety of acrylic yarn to choose from.

Using the same pattern and needles with worsted yarn, I made a version with a short scarf that buttons in front.


I’m currently working on another long-scarf version, using some more of the bargain yarn.

I still have a lot of yarn and a lot of patterns to use.

The real bargain in the large container of yarn was hidden until I got it home and started sorting it out.  There were 8 two-oz. unopened skeins of this yarn in a beautiful dusky blue-violet color.

I checked on the company web site and this wool yarn sells for $16 a skein!  I gathered it up and gave it to my younger daughter, an experienced and excellent knitter who will make good use of such a great bargain.


My blogger friend, Kelli, alerted me to a drive by Oklahoma hospitals to increase awareness of deaths of shaken babies by providing newborns with a purple hat (any shade of purple).  Other states are also participating – information is here:  http://clickforbabies.org/partners/oklahoma.php

The deadline is September 30, 2017.

I made the 5 hats pictured above in purple and lavender and my daughter made the 7 hats below, in purple and yellow (hats have to be at least 50% some shade of purple).

These were quick and easy to make and I hope will serve as a reminder to all of the new parents.  We had a tragic incident of this type a couple of weeks ago in our area and it is always heartbreaking.


My youngest son is an engineer who paints as a hobby.  This is his most recent painting in acrylic of my father and his dog, ca. 1915, using an old photograph as reference.

I always loved the original photo and love the painting even more.  I always thought of the picture showing a boy and his dog, but the painting seems to show a dog and a boy.  I think the way the dog is painted is masterful.

My grandfather is holding the very substantial chain and my mother told me that once she was crying about losing a dog and Grandpa said, “Marthy, I was always told it was bad luck to cry after a dog, but I cried when Old Blue died.”  We know that Grandpa named all of his hunting dogs Blue, but I like to think that the one he loved so much is the one in this picture.