Saturday, February 28, 2015

Visit from Amy

Amy was my first guest for a quick spot of tea in front of the garden castle shed. Jan and I met Amy when we signed up for a recent eBay class at adult school. She manages the senior center at Manchester Center and adult school registrations.

We noticed photos of various chickens on the bulletin board so I asked and Amy said they were hers. We had such fun chatting about the chickens she raises. I never knew they could be pets.

In our chat I also found out Amy loves having tea and has a teapot collection.

I invited Amy to stop by one afternoon on her way home for a cuppa and a sweet treat. When Amy took a bite of the cake I made she recognized it and asked if it was a sherry cake. She grew up having it and told me how her mother decorated the cake. Then we discovered how much we both love Van Gogh! She spent two days in Amsterdam during her college years and spent both days at the Van Gogh museum.

Amy brought me gifts! After she left Jan took a photo of me holding the teapot and 6 fresh eggs from her adorable chickens. The teapot is made in Portugal, very nice! Just before she arrived I quickly wrote a note in chalk.

My sons grew up having the sherry cake and now my grandsons love it so here is my recipe that a friend gave me about 1978.

Many cake mixes now have pudding in the mix and it works both ways, just the cake mix with pudding or adding a 3 oz. box of instant vanilla pudding. The recipe says use an angel cake pan, I've always used a bundt pan and spaying with Pam Baking now bakes with an even color.

The cake is good plain or goes well many ways, with ice cream, a drizzle of chocolate syrup or topped with cherries. A can of cherry pie filling, slightly warmed, is easy but Trader Joe's dark morello cherries makes a good topping. They are not sweet or thickened so you have to do both.

Drain the liquid from a jar of Trader Joe's dark morello cherries into a sauce pan. Add half a cup of powdered sugar and a tablespoon of cornstarch. Whisk till dissolved, then heat and keep stirring till thick. Add in the cherries, remove from heat, mix in just a couple of drops of almond extract, not much.

Serve cherries over wine cake, have a cup of tea and enjoy.

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