Pink Lemonade Cake

by Better Homes & Gardens™

Pink Lemonade Cake

Photo by BHG.com

18 Servings

 

Ingredients: 

  • 1 cup butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 3-1/3 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 c. sugar
  • 1-1/3 c. milk
  • 1/4 c. frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
  • 1 tsp. pure lemon extract
  • Lemonade Butter Frosting*

 

Directions: 

  1. Allow butter and eggs to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, grease two 9×2-inch round cake pans. Line bottoms with parchment; grease paper. Flour pans, tapping to remove excess; set aside. In medium bowl stir together 3-1/3 cups flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In an extra-large mixing bowl beat butter with mixer on medium to high for 30 seconds. Gradually add sugar, about 1/4 cup at a time, beating on medium until well combined. Scrape sides of bowl; beat 2 minutes more. Add 1/8 tsp. red food coloring; beat to combine. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  3. In bowl stir together milk, lemonade concentrate, and extract (mixture will look curdled). Alternately add flour mixture and milk mixture to butter mixture, beating on low after each addition just until combined. Remove half (4 cups) the batter; spread in one pan. In remaining batter, stir 1/4 tsp. red food coloring. Spread in second pan.
  4. Bake about 35 minutes, until tops spring back when lightly touched. Meanwhile, prepare Lemonade Butter Frosting.
  5. Cool in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes. Remove layers from pans; peel off paper. Cool completely on wire racks. Trim off domed tops of layers so cake will stand flat. Cut each layer horizontally in half, making four layers. Brush crumbs from layers.
  6. Place one dark pink layer, cut-side down, on a plate. Spread 1 cup frosting just to edges. Top with a light pink layer, followed by second dark pink layer, spreading frosting on each just to edges. Stack final light pink layer, cut-side down. Spread frosting on top and sides as desired.

 

From the BHG Test Kitchen 

To incorporate food coloring evenly in batter, add the first portion of food coloring to butter and sugar mixture before adding eggs.

HOW TO SPLIT LAYERS

To split layers, stack small wooden blocks the width of the layer desired next to the layer. With a gentle sawing motion, slice around the cake to the center. Brush off crumbs.

*

Balsa wood blocks are sold at crafts stores.

LEMON GARNISH

Thinly slice lemons and remove seeds. Coat with sugar then arrange on cake just before serving.

 

*Lemonade Buttercream Frosting

Yield: 6 cups

Ingredients: 

  • 3 cups (6 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • Two-16 ounces jars marshmallow creme**
  • 1/4 cup frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure lemon extract

Directions:

  1. In very large mixing bowl beat softened butter with mixer on medium for 30 seconds, until light and fluffy. Add marshmallow creme and lemonade concentrate. Beat until smooth, scraping sides of bowl. Add powdered sugar and extract; beat until light and fluffy. (If frosting is stiff, soften in microwave no more than 10 seconds, then beat until smooth.)
  2. Frost Pink Lemonade Cake. To store frosting, cover and refrigerate up to 3 days or freeze up to 1 month. Bring to room temperature before frosting cake. Makes 6 cups.

From the Test Kitchen

Room-temperature butter ensures that the frosting will be creamy and spreadable.

 

* * If only 13-oz. jars are available, add 6 oz. (1-1/2 cup) marshmallow creme.

 

Video Tips on How to Make a Layer Cake

 

Nutrition Facts (Pink Lemonade Cake)
Per serving: 583 kcal , 32 g fat (20 g sat. fat , 1 g polyunsaturated fat , 8 g monounsaturated fat ), 124 mg chol. , 442 mg sodium , 72 g carb. , 1 g fiber , 47 g sugar , 5 g pro.

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Pet Care – 4th of July Safety Tips

Leo_America's Cat; Photo by A. Jones

Photo by A. Jones

For many people, nothing beats lounging in the backyard on the Fourth of July with good friends and family—including the four-legged members of the household. While it may seem like a great idea to reward Rover with scraps from the grill and bring him along to watch fireworks, in reality some festive foods and products can be potentially hazardous to your pets.

The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center offers the following tips:

  • Never leave alcoholic drinks unattended where pets can reach them. Alcoholic beverages have the potential to poison pets. If ingested, the animal could become very intoxicated and weak, severely depressed or could go into a coma. Death from respiratory failure is also a possibility in severe cases.
  • Do not apply any sunscreen or insect repellent product to your pet that is not labeled specifically for use on animals. Ingestion of sunscreen products can result in drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, excessive thirst and lethargy. The misuse of insect repellent that contains DEET can lead to neurological problems.
  • Always keep matches and lighter fluid out of your pets’ reach. Certain types of matches contain chlorates, which could potentially damage blood cells and result in difficulty breathing—or even kidney disease in severe cases. Lighter fluid can be irritating to skin, and if ingested can produce gastrointestinal irritation and central nervous system depression. If lighter fluid is inhaled, aspiration pneumonia and breathing problems could develop.
  • Keep your pets on their normal diet. Any change, even for one meal, can give your pets severe indigestion and diarrhea. This is particularly true for older animals who have more delicate digestive systems and nutritional requirements. And keep in mind that foods such as onions, chocolate, coffee, avocado, grapes & raisins, salt and yeast dough can all be potentially toxic to companion animals.
  • Do not put glow jewelry on your pets, or allow them to play with it. While the luminescent substance contained in these products is not highly toxic, excessive drooling and gastrointestinal irritation could still result from ingestions, and intestinal blockage could occur from swallowing large pieces of the plastic containers.
  • Keep citronella candles, insect coils and oil products out of reach. Ingestions can produce stomach irritation and possibly even central nervous system depression. If inhaled, the oils could cause aspiration pneumonia in pets.Puppy warns of Firework Safety
  • Never use fireworks around pets! While exposure to lit fireworks can potentially result in severe burns and/or trauma to the face and paws of curious pets, even unused fireworks can pose a danger. Many types contain potentially toxic substances, including potassium nitrate, arsenic and other heavy metals.
  • Loud, crowded fireworks displays are no fun for pets, so please resist the urge to take them to Independence Day festivities. Instead, keep your little guys safe from the noise in a quiet, sheltered and escape-proof area at home.

Houston’s Famous Barbecue Sauce

Sam Houston

Sam Houston

Samuel “Sam” Houston was not only the man known for putting Texas on the map but evidentially a connoisseur of barbecue sauce.

This recipe is from The Early American Cookbook by Dr. Kristie Lynn & Robert W. Pelton, published by McCauley Publications.

Ingredients
3 tblspoons cooking oil
¼ cup onion, grated
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 cup catsup
¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
¼ cup lemon juice
2 tblspoons white vinegar
1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
¾ teaspoon salt
2 tblspoons sugar
2 teaspoons paprika
1 ½ teaspoons chili powder
1 tblspoon dry mustard
2 teaspoons water
Preparation
Heat the cooking oil in a large heavy cast iron skillet. Add the onion and the garlic. Sauté this lightly. Stir in the catsup, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, white vinegar, hot pepper sauce, sugar, paprika, chili powder and salt. Blend together thoroughly the dry mustard and the water until smooth. Then stir this into the sauce. Slowly bring this mixture to a boil. Cover and let simmer for 20 minutes. Makes 2 cups. Sam used this spicy concoction both as a marinade and a basting sauce for his barbecued steaks, chops and chicken.(This recipe is from The Early American Cookbook by Dr. Kristie Lynn & Robert W. Pelton, published by McCauley Publications. This book is available in the Sam Houston Memorial Museum gift shop.)
Sam Houston's BBQ sauce

Get more details on the Homesick Texan’s website.            Photo by Lisa Fain.

 

 

 

 

 

Marjoram-Scented Corn-Tomato Salad

From the Test Kitchen at Better Homes & Gardens™

Yield: 6 Servings (2/3 c. serving size) or 4 cups

Ingredients:

  • 4 fresh ears of sweet corn
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh marjoram*
  • 4 slices crisp-cooked bacon, drained and crumbled

*Use parsley or basil if marjoram is not available.

 

Directions:

  1. Remove husks and silks from corn. Brush corn with 1 Tbsp. olive oil.  Grill corn, covered, over medium-high heat 10 to 15 minutes or until browned, turning frequently to prevent over browning.  When cool enough to handle, cut kernels off the cobs.
  2. In a large bowl combine corn and the next 6 ingredients (through pepper).  Add marjoram and stir to combine.
  3. Top with crumbled bacon.

 

Paul Bunyan Day – June 28

Paul Bunyan Day is a giant  of a day. Paul Bunyan was a gigantic lumberjack of American Folklore. According to folklore, Paul Bunyan and his blue ox “Babe” lived and travelled around country. He is best known for his logging feats.

Paul Bunyan and Babe

Visit the Paul Bunyan Trail in Minnesota.

The Origin of Paul Bunyan Day:

French Canadians were believed to have originated Paul Bunyan during the Papineau rebellion of 1837.  While he may have been created in Canada, Paul Bunyan quickly became a huge American legend. Many of the tales of Paul Bunyan originated in lumberjack industry and logging communities. Like all good folklore, it was passed from generation to generation by word of mouth. Over campfires, his legend grew, and tales were created. Written tales emerged in the early 1900’s.

Some historians believe Paul Bunyan was based on a real person — a French-Canadian logger named Fabian “Joe” Fournier. Fournier, born in Quebec around 1845, moved to Michigan after the Civil War to take advantage of the high-paying logging industry.

 

Paul Bunyan is “credited” with many deeds. Among his more legendary feats:

  • He created logging in the U.S.
  • He scooped out the great lakes to water Babe, his ox.
  • He cleared the entire states of North and South Dakota for farming.
  • He trained ants to do logging work. They were, of course, Carpenter Ants.
  • Babe’s large footprints created Minnesota’s 10,000 lakes.

 

Check out this Walt Disney version of the folklore legend:

According to the website Brownielocks and The 3 Bears, the actual date of Paul Bunyan Day is on February 12.
Why? It is believed by the people of Bangor, Maine that Paul Bunyan was born there on Feb. 12, 1834.

According to the site “Another version is that because “Bunyan” sounds like the French-Canadian slang word “Bonyenne” which translated into English means “Good Grief!” This exclamation would often be said if you heard something extraordinary. And, it is rumored that way back during the Papineau Rebellion of 1837 the French Canadians created Paul Bunyan (pronounced the same way as bonyenne) tales as a way to keep their spirits up and be entertained as they fought against the British colonial government. As you know, stories get spread between people, but in doing so, they don’t get retold accurately. So, as time went on, stories got more exaggerated to keep the entertainment up; or, as a way to compete amongst each other for who could be the most creative in telling a Paul Bunyan tale.

When did they get written down? The first known publications of Paul Bunyan tales were in 1910 by James MacGillivray. Years later, a man by the name of W.B. Laughhead, published these lumberjack tales in 1916 for promotional logging reasons and they grew in popularity far beyond just the lumbering trade.

Michigan claims Paul Bunyan began there because they (1) Have the first known publications about Paul Bunyan by James MacGillivray; and (2) because they are the first to actually have a Paul Bunyan observance activity in honor of him. The first known celebrations of Paul Bunyan Day date back to 1938, with the first Paul Bunyan Dance at the Saline Valley Farms, with a small group of foresters. As the popularity grew, the dance changed from square dance to waltzes, jitterbugs and so on. Although most of these dances were held in February, on November 20, 1943 at the University of Michigan they held a formal dance in the Michigan Union Ballroom, with a cider bar (no alcohol!). But, they also had a sawing contest with male and female partners as well. This event was very popular and attracted up to 100 couples. The winner received a grand prize of two U.S. War Bonds! Other Paul Bunyan dances featured square dancing and jug bands. The dances died off for a while. But, have been revised by the School of Natural Resources, University of Michigan off and on.”

 

To take a trivia quiz on Paul Bunyan, visit Brownie Locks.com.

 

Kansas City-Style Barbecue Sauce Recipe

by Joshua Bousel

Yield: 2-1/2 cups

Ingredients: 

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

 

Directions: 

  1. Melt butter in medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

  2. Add ketchup, molasses, brown sugar, vinegar, mustard, chili powder, black pepper, and cayenne pepper and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer until slightly thickened, about 30 minutes, stirring frequently.
  3. Transfer sauce to the jar of a blender and blend until smooth. Let cool to room temperature, transfer to a jar and store in refrigerator for up to a month.

Chorizo and Cheese Quesadillas

Recipe by Better Homes & Gardens™

Chorizo and Cheese Quesadillas

Photo by BHG.com

Yield: 8 Servings

Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces bulk chorizo or mild Italian sausage
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 fresh jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
  • Six 6-inches vegetable-flavored or plain flour tortillas
  • 1tablespoon cooking oil
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack and/or queso fresco (Mexican farmer cheese) (4 oz.)
  • 2 tablespoons snipped fresh cilantro or parsley

 

Directions:

  1. For the filling, in a medium skillet cook chorizo or sausage, onion, and garlic until meat is brown and onion is tender. Drain off fat. Pat chorizo mixture with paper towels to remove as much additional fat as possible. Stir in jalapeno pepper; set aside.
  2. Brush one side of 3 tortillas with half of the cooking oil.  Place tortillas, oiled sides down, on a large baking sheet.  Spread the chorizo filling over tortillas on baking sheet. Combine cheese and cilantro or parsley; sprinkle over filling. Top with the remaining tortillas. Brush with the remaining oil.
  3. Place quesadillas on the rack of an uncovered grill directly over medium heat. Grill for 3 to 4 minutes or until filling is heated through and tortillas are starting to brown, turning once halfway through grilling.
  4. To serve, cut quesadillas into wedges.

 

Nutrition Facts:

Per serving: 232 kcal,14 g fat(6 g sat. fat ,32 mg chol., 346 mg sodium,15 g carb.,1 g fiber,10 g pro.