How's Your Summer 2017 & Apricot Brandy Pound Cake

       So are you having fun this summer so far, have you been to the beach? Have you been on a nature walk, or maybe a ride on one of the rail trails? I hope so, as so far we have had some very good weather for all this. Although this week has been a little cooler that is not so bad for some of those walks or other historical sites visits that seem to be out in the open. My summer? Ha,, remember last year, I will say I am moving better than I was at that point, but I am still mending and of course not quick enough for me. The high end inflatable kayak I received as a 30 year appreciation gift has failed me miserably so far with a missing ore to start with then when I finally could get the boat out of the box discovered a sliced hole in the bottom. So what I was already hoping to be enjoying out on the water and in some of the marsh waters enjoying nature won't happen until I get my replacement. At the end of the last communications I ended by saying I was hoping to enjoy some time out in nature before all the water turned to ice. Oh well, all good intentions sometimes just go out the window, at least my company tried, and for that I am at least grateful. The other good thing about this year over last for me is that I am back to walking between 1 and 2 miles a day around my neighborhood with my dog. I love it as they all know his name better than mine but it is a good way to stay in touch with all the neighbors and keep an eye on the season places and the few rentals we have. This summer, especially if you are a local, take the time that some of us only wish we could do, enjoy this place so many come and flock to, spend their money here to enjoy and dream of being here more than a couple days or a week. Take the time to go someplace you have never been and see what all the fuss is about or remember all the fun your folks or grand-folks used to take you to. Enjoy it before you are too old to get around or worse, your body to early gives out and you can't do what you should normally be able to do. 

      To you who just arrived or who are still coming. Make a list of all the places you have not been too, and all the places you want or think you need to go back and see, then through it out the window and just enjoy yourself. Sometimes we get so caught up in having to do all the stuff we think we need to that we end up going home more tired then when we came and that is not right. Just put down the stuff, lay aside the worries, and stop overdoing and just enjoy your significant other, kids and family. I can not say this enough, as over the years as I look back now, how much better times I could have had or made if I had just learned to slow down. The Cape is a wonderful place to do that, so come, relax and enjoy and leave refreshed like you have never been before. Have a great and wonderful especially i you can do it right here on old Cape Cod.  
      Small business report comes out of the craft show this past weekend in Hyannis. First up is one of our own Cape Codders from Bourne, an artisan who has found a niche in the bath n body beauty and relaxation department. When not doing the craft and artisan shows you can find her on Etsy at https://www.etsy.com/shop/belleguzelnaturals. She is big into the Fresh the Natural and the Vegan. She enjoys working with small batch soaps, scrubs, rubs, salts and even bath bombs. She is proud of being vegan in her products that will be pleasing to all, even if you are not into the vegan scene. So keep an eye on her Etsy page and watch for her at the craft and artisan shows and when you find her I am sure you will find something to help you relax, feel better and pamper your skin. 
      Next up is a quirky little shop right in the heart of Chatham called Ducks in the Window. You can find them at 507 Main Street, Chatham or online at www.ducksinthewindow.com on Facebook and Instagram. Folks you you are into rubber duckies, big ones, little ones, in between ones, you need to get on out to this shop and check it out. This is not just a kids shop, but kids of any age, young or old will find something in this shop. Wedding ducks, baby announcement ducks, birthday gifts, holidays gifts, and any other occasion you can think of. And the even better part of it is they are open year round, both physically and online and they will work with you to ship whatever you need to where ever you need it sent to. This is just one of those fun, fun, fun stores that once you go, you can can't stop going back. This might be a place that is filled with fowl things and will certainly may you quack up at time, but it will not lead you astray and they do fly straight with their products. So please join the gaggle already who have discovered Ducks in the Window and don't be the ugly duckling looking from the outside to scared to join the fun.   
      Tracking down the Lighthouse keeper this week was more of a chore then normal. I usually head to the down the road towards the keepers quarters and before I can get up to the house he has come out to meet me. But this week, I actually had to hunt him down, and you would not believe, ok maybe you would believe were I found him. He was out behind the light tower sittin' in his rocking chair surrounded by a a whole pod of youngins. And he was telling so fish tails that would even put some of them old sea captains out to shame. But them youngins were glued to him like white on rice. After a bit he finally finished up his fish stories and telling of the early days of whalin' and the schooners, and how many a boat or two would get caught up on the shoals off the coast round the Cape. He finally did come over to me, said he was sorry 'bout not meeting me properly but as I could see, he was a bit harpooned into telling a story or two about what life was there back a towards the begging of it all. He said, if I really needed some extra material I should stick around and listen in, I laughed and thought to myself I had probably already heard most of them if not two or three or more times before. I told the keeper I understood and agreed he had a much more important audience then talking to me this week but I would be sure to let you readers know he hadn't forgotten about us. If you are lucky enough to come round the lighthouse when he is out and in a talkative mood you will be in for some wicked good stories and or some history lessons that only a few out there could match at. Well, the weather has been a little cooler here this week so the number have been a little slower so far, but from what I hear the weekend is suppose to warm up and be very sunny so the number are going to be up, so if you come be sure to allow plenty of time. I am sure the Keeper would remind us all, to have a great and wonderful in all you do and especially if you can do it right here on old Cape Cod.   
      Now this is the tale of start with one recipe in mind and changing the pitcher at game time. I was going to do a basic blueberry pound cake for this month. But I was finding everything but what I want, Blueberry-Lemon, Blueberry-Peach, Blueberry-Yogurt, Blueberry-Sour Cream, Blueberry this, and Blueberry that and nothing that I wanted. But in my search I came across an old (as in 1965) southern social society cake collection cookbook recipe. You know the ones that everyone pulls out there family favorites from Grandma to Aunt Mary on Dad side 3 times removed. Ya the good ones that no one really claims to give up cause whoever it came from made you pinky swear never to revile it to anyone, but she passed away 7 years ago and all bets are off now. So what did I come up with, OK so you already know from the title of this weeks blog, but Apricot Brandy Pound Cake. Right off the bat you know this is not a Baptist church cookbook, cause we are using alcohol in it and everyone back then in a good Baptist church knew you was hell bound in a hand basket if liqueur ever passed over them lips of yours. Well I'm Baptist, and my Father's the pastor, now he never acquired a taste for any kind of liqueur really, (ok Grasshopper pie he really likes, and the good ones) but other than that, but Dad does not condone nor condemns, he just reminds us, everything in moderation, even cakes. But when I saw this recipe I had to make the change and frankly I have to say you are gonna love this one. Now let's stop yacking away and get this show on the road: 
 
      This week's recipe: Apricot Brandy Pound Cake 
 
      1      cup      margarine or butter
2 1/3      cups    sugar
      5      eggs    separated
      1      tsp       orange flavoring (or orange liqueur) 
   1/2      tsp       dark rum or rum flavoring
   1/2      tsp       lemon flavoring (or lemon liqueur)
      3      cup      flour
   3/4      tsp       baking soda
   1/2      tsp       salt
      1      cup      sour cream
   3/4      cup      apricot brandy or nectar
 
      Cream margarine (or butter) and sugar. Add egg yolks one at a time, beating well. Mix in flavorings/liqueurs (minus the apricot brandy). Add dry ingredients alternating with sour cream and brandy. Fold in stiffly beaten egg whites. Bake in greased tube pan (those you would make angle food cake in NOT a bundt pan or you can do 2 each 9 X 5 loaf pans put half in each loaf pan) and bake at 300-325 degrees for 1 hour or until done. Use the tooth pic rule here, if it comes out clean your done. 

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