Floods in Bosnia! The largest in last 120 years! (constantly updated!!!).
Please friends consider helping my country in this time of distress. Every little bit helps, a dollar, 5 or 10. Please keep Bosnia in your prayers. This is where you can make donations:
I don’t know about you, but I always feel that I am too busy to stop and take a break and “smell the roses”. Recently, a friend advised me (instead of rushing through my work week and desperately waiting for the weekend) to take at least a few minutes out of each day to look for and enjoy the beauty that surrounds us and to which we are often blind. Enjoy the small moments and make every day count!
Today, I was thinking how I have to finish this and that and how the weekend is not nearly long enough to complete everything I planed, when I remembered my friend’s words: “Go out there and find beauty!” So I did:
The recipe for this torte (cake) comes from my old recipe book that I started when I was about thirteen years old. There are so many good memories of love and friendship preserved on its yellowed pages. Today is just a perfect day to share with you my recipe for this rich and fragrant Valentine’s cake.
Its sweet and satisfying taste will definitely charm your taste buds. Talking about love at the first bite! 🙂
- 250 g (8.8 oz) honey
- 50 g (1/4 cup) sugar
- 1 pack vanilla sugar (or 1 TSP vanilla extract)
- 50 g (1/2 stick) butter
- 1 lemon (zest and juice)
- 1 TSP cinnamon
- 1/2 TSP ground cloves
- 2 eggs
- 250 g (8.8 oz) flour
- 3 TSP baking powder
- 130 g (1 pack) vanilla pudding powder (not instant)
- 200 g (2 sticks less 1 TBSP) butter (at room temperature)
- 100 g (3.5 oz) cherry jam (red currant jam can be used too)
- 8 inch (20 cm) round cake pan
- Same size piece of parchment paper
*** The recipe for the chocolate swirls I found here and it worked perfectly!
- In a larger sauce pan combine honey, sugar, vanilla and butter. Heat at medium temperature until well blended. Set aside and let it cool completely.
- After honey mixture has cooled down, add zest and juice of one lemon, cinnamon and cloves.
- Lightly beat two eggs and also add it to the mixture.
- Combine flour and baking powder and fold into honey mixture.
- Pour the batter into the cake pan lined with parchment paper. Bake at 365 F (185 C) about 30-35 minutes.
- For the frosting prepare vanilla pudding as directed on the box. Instead of 3 cups of milk use only 2 cups since a thicker pudding is needed. When pudding is cooked and cooled down, mix it with 200 g whipped butter until well combined.
- To assemble the cake, first cut it once across to get two equal pieces. Spread the bottom piece with cherry jam and then with the half of the frosting. Put the second piece on the top. Frost the cake all around with the remaining frosting. Decorate as desired.
Merry Christmas dear friends! May this season bring you love, joy, hope and peace!
Almond-Hazelnut-Chocolate Brittle adapted from here.
Hi friends, I just thought I’d share with you a photo I took this morning on my way to work.
In a world saturated with negativity, bad news and wrong values, a person really has to stop, look around and remember what really counts. Wishing you all a great week filled with Love and Peace!
For Valentines to all of You:
My all time favorite love poem and some heart shaped mini chocolate cakes!
i carry your heart with me by E. E. Cummings
i carry your heart with me (i carry it in
my heart) i am never without it (anywhere
i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done
by only me is your doing, my darling)
no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet) i want
no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)
Valentine’s Heart Mini Cakes
~ Orange flavored cakes dipped in chocolate ~
For the cake:
- 8.8 oz (250 g) softened butter
- 1 cup (200 g) sugar
- 1 pack Vanilla sugar (or 1 tsp vanilla extract)
- 6 eggs
- 4 tbsp sour cream
- 1 organic orange (zest and juice)
- 3 ¼ cup (400 g) flour
- 3 tsp baking powder
For the chocolate dip:
- 7 oz (200 g) semi-sweet chocolate
- 5.5 tbsp (80 g) butter
- ¼ cup (50 ml) milk
For the white chocolate dip:
- 7 oz (200 g) white chocolate
- 5.5 tbsp (80 g) butter
- ¼ cup (50 ml) milk
- Various kinds of Valentines sprinkles
- 12 x 17 in (32 x 44 cm) baking sheet
- Cooling wire rack
- For the cake, mix softened butter and sugar until foamy, add eggs one by one, mixing about 1 minute after each addition.
- Add sour cream, orange zest and juice, mix for another minute or two.
- Combine flour and baking powder. Fold into butter mixture by hand.
- Line baking sheet with parchment paper, pour the batter and evenly spread in the pan.
- Bake at 375 F (190 C ) until light gold color. Cool completely.
- Use a large heart shaped cookie cutter (about 2.5 – 3 in ) and cut out individual cakes. I had about 28 of them.
- For the dip, break the chocolate into small pieces, put it into a stainless steel bowl, add butter. Place the bowl over a dish with boiling water, let it all melt, mix until smooth, at the end add milk.
- Dip each heart cake into the melted chocolate, put sprinkles on and place on the wire rack to cool down. Keep in the fridge and remove at least 30 minutes before serving.
HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!