Stories, events and life in general from Miss Kitty's point of view

Saturday

Celebrating a royal wedding with a cake



In honor of the occasion of the event in England, I set out to bake a Bunt cake, shaped in a crown for my British neighbor Valerie, who was hosting a brunch for some of the ladies in the area.



Decorated with Borage flowers
bow and ribbon to emulate Kate’s veil and train


Unfortunately I was unable to photograph Valerie’s beautiful table setting as I had a cardiologist appointment and when I was there not all the food was set up. Nevertheless I can tell you that there was a portrait of William and Kate just below the flower arrangement. A beautiful light and airy fabric cascaded down from the elevated flower arrangement, creating wonderful hills and valleys. In between the rolling material was set a typical British silver tea service and dishes.



Photo by Valerie


Valerie honored me by having reserved the center of the table for my cake, that too was elevated by a glass pedestal. I had also dropped of a plate of mini blueberry muffins, decorated by two different Dutch irises, a number of Borge and yellow Daisy flowers.


I hope that you all had a great time sharing the event with friends as we have so little to celebrate these days.



The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, William and Catherine
Hugo Burnand/Clarence House/PA/Landov



The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge with attendants and then with families
Hugo Burnand / Clarence House / PA / Landov




The recipe 




8 tbsp./40 oz. unsalted butter
1 cup of sugar
4 large organic brown eggs
3 1/2 cups of flour
1 1/2 cups of firm Greek yogurt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. orange extract
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 cup dried apricots - diced
3/4 cup yellow raisins
3/4 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup pecans, cut into small pieces




So you though I would not show face?
Somebody has to tell you how to make the cake!

Directions

  1. On a large dish or medium bowl mix the apricots, raisins, cranberries and pecans, then dust with flower to prevent them from sining to the bottom during baking
  2. Mix the soft butter with sugar until well blended
  3. Add one egg at a time and blend
  4. Add orange and vanilla extract and briefly blend
  5. Slowly add the flour with the mixer at low to medium speed. After half of the flower has been added, add the yogurt and mix, then resume adding the remaining flour. If the dough feels to thick and not elastic enough, add a dash of milk.
  6. Using a spatula, fold in the dried fruit and nut mixture until well distributed. Do not use the hand blender or mixer for this step.
  7. Now add the mixture to a Bunt pan that was buttered and dusted with flour.
  8. In a preheated oven set to 350° degrees, set the cake mold in the center of the oven. Check after 45 minutes by inserting a toothpick or cake needle. Cake usually takes 50-60 minutes to bake.

Enjoy
(^..^)




Wednesday

The winners to our calendar bookmarks




Can you tell I am upset with dad?


I know, dad lost all track of time, he has just too many irons in the fire and I had to show dad my sharp and long nails today since I cannot crack a whip like humans. I guess he got the message as here he finally gets around to presenting the second quarter winners to the calendar bookmark contest.


So this evening dad made his selection and then imported each digital file into PhotoShop for the usual cropping, but also making any refinements to the image like adjusting the level, curves and any colour corrections. So without any further delay, here is the spring calendar winners.




For the month of April we have Michelle’s cat Quincy starting off the Spring Quarter. Quincy who had just a birthday two weeks ago, which he had celebrated in a grand style with everyone in attendance. You should be forewarned that visiting Michelle’s blog Chocolate and Marmalade Tea, because it has something even for humans, they are called delicious recipes and wonderful stories, including lots of illustrations from the 1950’s on the sidebar. So drop by and see Quincy’s birthday bash.


Oh before I forget, Michelle had also sent some pictures of Quincy that were Black & White and since dad loves Black & White photographs, we will be making it an options from now on. Thank you my dear for suggesting it.




One picture above all stood out this time, it came from Ms K in Canada, who had everything going for her when she took a picture of Neytiri. There were a few others of Neytiri, but what I particularly liked about this one, was the pose and especially the over all tonal qualities of light, the surroundings and of course Neytiri herself, who was made up to be the princess she is. Some of you may recognize the name Neytiri from the movie Avatar and I think it is very fitting indeed.


Neytiri shares her spot with Canadian Num-Num Fund director Clooney, who is a real ham and loves to pose for the camera in all sorts of costumes and situations. Neytiri has been keeping a close eye on Clooney as she herself begins to carve out her own acting road to stardom. So drop on by and see what the two of them are up at Clooney’s Num-Num Fund and I guarantee you will stay awhile as Ms. K does some very imaginative writing to go along with the interesting pictures.




Making a second appearance is Katnip Lounge, but only after giving everyone else who was not a previous winner a shot at the spring quarter. However Trish made a strong showing with Maui, or is it that Maui made a strong showing?


Since Trish had entered five images, the other ones were of Sylvester and Felix, but Maui beat them both, especially with a very shy look, while appearing to be deep in contemplation about something very important. Dad loved  seeing Maui being photographed with the camera lens wide open, since it made the background very much out of focus and gave the fur a special touch. Of course we should also mention that the exceptional mustache helped get the extra vote that pushed Maui into the June slot.


So here are the three pictures assembled into the final print version and remember to get the full size version, you have to click on the link beneath the picture, which well then take you to our Picasa ‘Freebie’ album.



To download the PRINTER version, click here


In closing we just wanted to add that for those of you who did not make it to please try again. Ms K tried real hard and succeeded with Neytiri and so can you. Now I know it is somewhat difficult for many of you to photograph your feline in a vertical format, since a number of you sent in pictures framed horizontally. Michelle’s picture of Quinn I was able to crop and achieve a vertical format, but only because it was large enough.


However with 2012, I am going to make it easier on everyone by redesigning the calendar bookmarks with a horizontal format, in the hope that this will attract more participants to the contest. Still I wish for those individuals who did not enter but have thought of it will do so, as now is your chance because better weather is on it’s way, providing more opportunities for you to capture that shoot that just may secure a spot on the next six openings.


Thank you to all those who have entered, Miss Kitty and I have appreciated your participation.



(^..^)