Sunday, May 8, 2011

Honoring Motherhood and Womanhood

No song or poem will bear my mother's name.
Yet so many of the stories I write,
that we all write, are my mother's stories.
by Alice Walker

Listen carefully to what country people
call motherhood. In these homely sayings
are couched the collective wisdom of generations.
by Maya Angelou

Celebrations of motherhood can be traced back to ancient times. Both the Greeks and the Romans each had a day set aside to celebrate their mother goddess. Many countries celebrate International Woman's Day rather than Mother's Day. It falls in the springtime either in March, April or May. In America Julia Ward Howe (well known during Civil War time for writing the words to the song The Battle Hymn of the Republic) in 1870 began promoting the idea of Mother's Day for Peace honoring peace, motherhood, and womanhood. In 1873 18 cities held celebrations. But after a few years the celebrations became less when she could not underwrite the costs. Anna Reeves Jarvis in 1890 was the power behind the official establishment of Mother's Day. In 1914 the US Congress passed a joint resolution and Woodrow Wilson signed the proclamation that the second Sunday in May would be the official holiday celebrating mothers and motherhood in the United States.
Serving the following recipe would be a great way to honor that special woman in your life
adapted from Taste of Home April/May 2011 recipe by Lynne Bassler
Coconut Cake
  • 5 eggs separated
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter softened
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1 tsp. coconut extract
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. almond extract
  • 2-1/4 cup cake flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 cups flaked coconut-chopped
  • 1/4 tsp. creme of tartar
  • Separate eggs and place egg whites in a bowl use at room temperature
  • Beat sugar, butter, oil till fluffy
  • Add yolks one at a time
  • Beat in extracts
  • In another bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt
  • Add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk-beat well
  • Stir in coconut
  • Add creme of tartar to egg whites and beat till stiff with peaks
  • Fold into batter
  • Divide batter into two greased cake pans
  • Bake 25-30 minutes @ 350 but check at 25
  • If using a 13 x 9 pan bake 30 minutes
Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 1 (8 oz.) cream cheese
  • 5 TB. butter
  • 4- 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1-1/4 tsp. coconut extract
  • 2 cups flaked coconut toasted
  • milk 2% or higher
  • Beat cream cheese, extract and butter till fluffy
  • Add confectioner's sugar and milk by tablespoon till right consistency for spreading
  • Frost cake and sprinkle sides and top with toasted coconut
  • Option: if making cake layers could use lemon filling

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