A sweet beginning to the holiday season

features@beaufortgazette.comNovember 13, 2012 

Here we are in the midst of the holiday season, preparing for Thanksgiving and thinking about Christmas.

This is the merry holiday season.

Celebrations are being planned, and menus are folding. It is the time of cleaning, shopping and making lists upon lists. Regardless of what your style, the day-to-day activities still go on and one has to make many decisions -- the first being to keep sane as the hustle and bustle begins.

I've been using my planning time looking for family recipes to use this holiday season -- some simple, some more complex.

Everyone loves desserts, so this is where I will begin.

AMBROSIA

4 medium navel oranges

3 tablespoons powdered sugar

3/4 cup coconut

Peel oranges over small bowl and separate each segment. Save any juice caught in the bowl. Place orange segments into serving bowl. Toss gently with the powdered sugar and coconut. Drizzle with orange juice from the bowl.

Refrigerate 30 minutes to 2 hours. Serve in clear glass bowls.

Source: "Treasured Recipes," Avery Institute of Afro-American History and Culture, Charleston, S.C.

ORANGE RUM CAKE

1 cup butter or margarine

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1/4 cup grated orange rind

2 tablespoons grated lemon rind

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon soda

1 cup buttermilk

1 cup chopped pecans

Orange Glaze (see below)

Combine butter and sugar, creaming until light and fluffy; add eggs and citrus rind, beating well. Combine dry ingredients; add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Beat well after each addition. Stir in pecans.

Spoon batter into a well-greased 10-inch tube pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until cake tests don. Allow cake to stay in pan for 5-10 minutes. Remove cake and pour glaze while cake is hot.

ORANGE GLAZE

Juice of 2 large oranges

Juice of 1 lemon

1 cup sugar

2 tablespoons rum extract

Combine alll ingredients in a saucepan; bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Pour over hot cake. Yield: about 3/4 cup.

Source: Susan Bell, Ashburn, Va., in "Southern Living: 1979 Annual Recipes"

APPLE CRUMB CAKE

1/2 cup butter

2 cups flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

20 ounce can of Comstock Apple Pie filling

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter; set aside. Mix flour, sugar, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Add egg and butter. Grease an 8 inch square pan. Divide the mixture in two. Place half of the mixture on the bottom of pan. Add Comstock apple pie filling; sprinkle the second half of mixture on top. Bake for 45 minutes. Cool. Sprinkle with confectioner's sugar when cooled.

Note: This was my Nana Barthold's recipe from the 1800s. It was always a favorite in our house.

Source: Tom Moyer, Trenton, N.J., in "Recipes and Remembrances, Warrenton Woman's Club" (2011)

Columnist Ervena Faulkner is a Port Royal resident and a retired educator who has always had an interest in food and nutrition. Email her at features@beaufortgazette.com.

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