April 2, 2011

The Girls' First Winter

With much trepidation we opened the hive on Friday.  It was a pleasantly warm day and as good as any to see if The Girls had made it through their first winter.  And, they did!  Not having anything to compare it to, we aren't sure if they did well or not but we do think they are going to make it.  The top deep still had plenty of honey and they are really starting to pack the pollen in.  We also saw fresh larvae so while we didn't see a queen, she must have been there working hard.  The bottom deep, well, it did not look so great.  There was a bunch of mold on some of the comb and it looked pretty beat up.  We cleaned up some of the frames and put that deep on top so they now think they have some place to grow.  Or, at least that's the idea.  That's it for now from the beehive at Jones cottage...more to come, we hope!

Cranberry Upside Down Cake

Let's just say I have an in with a very sweet cranberry grower so having them in my freezer isn't usually a problem.  However, I find myself just using them in smoothies or making cranberry sauce.  This cake has greatly broadened my horizons.  Maybe it will broaden yours.

Cranberry Upside Down Cake (adapted from this recipe)

Topping Ingredients:

1/2 c sugar
2 c cranberries- or enough to cover cake pan bottom
1/4 tsp cloves and nutmeg
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 T butter- to grease pan thoroughly


Cake Ingredients:

2 1/3 c gluten-free flour blend
1 T baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 2/3 c sugar
1/2 c butter
1 c milk (cows or otherwise)
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 T vinegar, white

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together sugar and spices.  Using butter, generously grease the bottom and sides of an cheesecake pan (the type with the sides that pop off).   Spread the sugar and spice mixture evenly on the bottom of the pan and then arrange cranberries to cover the bottom.

Mix flour, baking powder, salt and sugar in large mixing bowl.  Cut in butter and mix until fine crumbs are formed.  Make sure there are no lumps of butter remaining. Stir in milk and vanilla.  Mix thoroughly and then stir in vinegar.  Pour batter on top of cranberries and spread evenly to coat. 

Bake at 350 degrees for 45-55 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.  Let cool 20 minutes on wire rack.  Run knife around edge to loosen cake sides from pan.   Invert onto plate and serve  You may have to do some reconstructive surgery to the top...don't worry know one will know and it still tastes great.

NOTE: This can be made vegan with equally yummy results by using melted coconut oil.It's a bit easier too, I just melted the coconut oil and mixed it in the Kitchen-aid instead of cutting it in.  I also used coconut oil to oil the pan and I think it didn't stick as bad so try both ways and see which you like better even if you don't care about making it vegan.

Find more at Slightly Indulgent Tuesday.

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