" Lift up your faces, you have a piercing need
For this bright morning dawning for you..."
MAYA ANGELOU, 'On the Pulse of Morning'
Spring is still in its early stages around here, and although things are coming to life in the garden and trees are unfolding tender green leaves, there's still not much to show you yet. There are barely buds on the lilacs, and we're still not sure if our somewhat hardy roses survived the winter. With fingers crossed, we keep checking for signs of life.
The greenhouses are humming with excited gardeners. I did a curbside pickup the other day for some plants I ordered: several pots of hollyhocks 'Radiant Rose' and 'Las Vegas' and three climbing perennials—a container of fast growing hops to screen an area, a 'Doctor Ruppel' pink and white clematis, and two 'Dropmore Scarlet' honeysuckle for climbing up the drain spots, along with any itsy, bitsy spiders.
Later this afternoon we're anticipating an outdoor visit with dear friends who are dropping by after some errand running. Since I knew they were coming, I baked a cake. Cinnamon Coffee Cake is a simple and easy recipe that pairs nicely with ice cream and fruit like strawberries, or pears. Or, if you are familiar with Susan Branch's vanilla pod cream sauce, you'll know that it would be a delicious combo. We'll have ours with ice cream and strawberries. And tea. Yorkshire Blend.
Cinnamon Coffee Cake
1 3/4 cups flour
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup white sugar
1/3 cup shortening
1 large egg
1 cup milk, soured with 1 teaspoon vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla
In a large bowl, mix flour, baking powder, salt and sugar.
Cut in shortening until mixture looks like bread crumbs.
In another bowl, beat egg, milk and vanilla.
Make a well in the flour mixture and add liquids.
Stir until moistened.
Pour into greased 8" round or square pan.
2 Tablespoons butter
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Melt the butter. Mix in brown sugar and cinnamon.
Sprinkle mixture over top of batter.
Bake in preheated oven at 350°F for 20 - 25 minutes,
until golden brown or sides pull away from pan.
Serve alone or with ice cream and fruit.
Or, serve with Susan Branch's Vanilla Cream Sauce, recipe below.
Susan's Vanilla Cream Sauce*
1" piece vanilla bean
2 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup sugar
Slit vanilla bean in half lengthwise and
scrape seeds into a small saucepan.
Stir in cream, bring to a boil.
Add sugar, stir, and remove from heat. Chill well.
Place cake slices in a puddle of sauce on a plate,
or pour sauce over slices, whichever you prefer.
*recipe from A Fine Romance
* * *
On that sweet note, I'm wishing you a beautiful weekend.
Photo (top): Image by Anja from Pixabay