I frequently volunteer to take meals to new moms. I know how nice those are to receive and I like to pay the same kindness to these new young moms as I received. Tonight I made some lime chicken as well as steak kabobs that were marinated in homemade balsamic vinaigrette — heavy on the balsamic vinegar, light on the olive oil, a few squirts of Worcestershire sauce. Mmmm. It’s my favorite way to make steak kabobs. They smelled so good. I smelled them in the car all the way over there and the aroma still lingered all the way home. I couldn’t wait to have my own.
Except when I got home, they were all gone. The family scarfed them all down and all that was left was the chicken. And they only left one spoonful of fruit salad (not counting the mess Things 3 & 4 made on and around their plates). Sigh. I guess I’m going to have to reserve my own plate when off to deliver meals! 😉
When I take the whole clan grocery shopping, we always have to cruise by the bakery. The girls talk about what their next birthday cake should be, even if it’s 362 days ’til the next birthday. And the ladies at the bakery hand out free cookies to little twinkies. Thing 1 has been enamored with the Lemon Supreme Cakes lately — I’m not sure if the cake itself is lemon but it has a thick layer of lemon gel on top and yellow frosting all over. It looks like it should glow in the dark. That’s what she wants next birthday. No candles.
So tonight I made something like that for the new parents, without the artificial color and neon glow. I made a yellow cake and put a layer of lemon gel in between layers and frosted with lemon cream cheese frosting and put another layer of lemon gel on top and decorated it with fresh raspberries. The bits of cake I took off to level tasted lovely with the lemon gel. In fact, if I had an ice cream maker, I would put some lemon gel in a batch because I think that would taste fantabulous.
Clear Lemon Filling (from Betty Crocker)
3/4 c. sugar
3 T. cornstarch
1/4 t. salt
3/4 c. water
1 t. grated lemon peel
1 T. butter or margarine
1/4 – 1/3 c. lemon juice (about 2 large lemons)
Mix sugar, cornstarch, and salt in saucepan. Gradually stir in water. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and boils. Boil and stir 1 minute.
Remove from heat; add lemon peel and butter. Gradually stir in lemon juice. Cool thoroughly.
Yellow Layer Cake (adapted from Betty Crocker)
2 1/4 c. cake flour
1 1/2 c. sugar
3 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
1/2 c. shortening
1 c. plain yogurt
1 1/2 t. vanilla
2 large eggs (1/3-1/2 c.)
Heat oven to 350 F. Grease and flour baking pan (2 x 8-inch or one 13 x 9 inch).
Measure all ingredients into large mixing bowl. Blend 1/2 minute on low speed, scraping bowl constantly. Beat 3 minutes on high speed, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour into pan(s).
Bake 30 minutes for rounds or 40 minutes for oblong. Cool.