Sunday, February 27, 2011


*Apropos of NOTHING, because that's the way my mind is working today, here is a photo of my pretty great-grandmother, Amelia "Amy" Bessette (please disregard the glare--this was taken through glass). I can see my mother in her, and also a little bit of my sister:

*This being a lazy Sunday afternoon, I finally finished up this quilted pillow I've been working on--think it came out pretty cute!:

I like the way it looks nestled in with my other throw pillows on our bed. Big Daddy is a HUGE fan of multitudes of pillows (note: heavy handed sarcasm, used freely):

Next week I'm getting started on a new table runner, made out of these fat quarter squares I picked up in a quilting store recently. I just LOVE these colors!:

* Big Daddy had a very important Board of Director's meeting to run yesterday, and he asked me to kindly make a cake, to go along with the coffee. Pressure, pressure! If you read my newspaper column last week, you saw a recipe for an Orange Struesel Coffee Cake. Which I totally borrowed from fellow blogger Doreen Frost at Vermont Harvest Folk Art. This is such a delicious cake, and it comes together quite easily.

First, mix together the streusel--You will use lots of grated orange zest in this recipe!:

Then, in your mixer, combine the batter ingredients. You will need about 2/3 cup orange juice in this recipe. When you are mixing your dry ingredients into the batter, you will alternate pouring in orange juice:

The batter will come out looking like this (SO hard not to lick the spatula!):

Spoon half of the batter into a greased bundt pan, then sprinkle on half of streusel:

Repeat layers, then bake. Fresh out of the oven (your whole house is going to smell orangey-almondey delicious!), let the cake cool in the pan:

When completely cool, invert onto serving plate and drizzle with glaze. OMG this is SO my favorite part (thus, the glaze close up)!:

You may notice that there's a chunk missing--well for goodness sakes I had to TEST it for the gentlemen who would be eating it, to make sure it wasn't POISONED! In the end, the guys loved this cake--I think the President himself licked the plate clean. Here's the recipe:



1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 cup sliced almonds
1/4 cup flour
3 tblsp. butter, melted
1 tsp. grated orange zest


1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 tsp. grated orange peel
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
2/3 cup orange juice


1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
2 1/2 tsp. orange juice
(I doubled this, because we like lots 'o glaze!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 or 10 inch tube pan. To prepare streusel, in a medium bowl mix together brown sugar, nuts and flour. Stir in butter and zest. To prepare cake, in a large bowl, using an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat together butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Best in zest and vanilla. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder and baking soda. Alternately beat flour and orange juice into egg mixture at a low speed, beginning and ending with flour. Spoon half of the batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle with half of the struesel. Top with remaining batter and streusel. Bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 30-35 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack to cool completely. To prepare the glaze, in a cup stir together confectioners sugar with orange juice until smooth. Turn the cake onto serving plate, placing it right-side up and drizzle with the glaze.


1. I'm grateful that the Academy Awards are on tonite--such excitement!
2. I'm grateful that we've seen all of the movies nominated, for a change.
2. I'm grateful for my dermatologist, who is unraveling a great mystery for me. More to come on this subject, soon!


  1. Make for me. Please. Thank you.

  2. Make one for us also since you have to make one for that spoiled brat Abbie! Why does SHE get all the good stuff! I love the picture of my grandmother in this blog. I forgot you had this picture! She was a great influence on us kids.Just what grandmothers should be! I love the music you play in the background! Very peaceful. We love you, Leslie, M.O.M. & D.A.D.

  3. I have had four daughters and was strangely attracted several times to the use of the name Amelia. Wow. She is a beautiful woman...looks so sure of herself. Thanks for sharing the picture and a totally yummo recipe, Sis!

  4. What a beautiful looking pillow and such a yummy looking cake too. I love anything with streusel on it. I hope you'll come by and link your cake up to Sweets for a Saturday #6 (it'll stay open till tomorrow night).

  5. Thank you for the sweet comments! Lisa, I am pretty stupid, computer-wise--how do I link up this post to your blog? I need HEEELLLPPP! Thank you!