Saturday, June 16, 2012

Week 24: Father's Day and Five Flavor Pound Cake

Since tomorrow is Father's Day I gave David a choice for what cake I would make for week 24.  He enjoys homemade pound cakes so I wasn't surprised when he chose Five Flavor Pound Cake.  I found this recipe in a magazine of mine but recently saw Paula Deen make this cake on her afternoon Food Network show and knew I would make one this year.
The five flavors are vanilla, almond, coconut, orange and lemon.  As I was preparing the cake batter all of the flavor's scents were evident and made our kitchen smell so wonderful.  They all melded into one lovely smell as the cake baked. 
Samuel and I met David downtown for dinner at our favorite Greek restaurant and then on to the square to enjoy the weekly summer concert.  Before we left I cut him a piece of cake to surprise him.

Five Flavor Pound Cake

1 cup butter, softened
3 cups sugar
5 large eggs (at room temperature)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup whole buttermilk
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon orange zest
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 teaspoon coconut extract

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Grease and flour a 12 to 15-cup tube pan.

In a large bowl, beat the butter at medium speed with a mixer until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the sugar and beat until fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually add to the butter mixture alternately with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture, beating just until combined after each addition. Stir in the extracts and zest. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until a long wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove from the pan, and cool completely on a wire rack.

Father's Day:
I have the sweetest memories of my dad.  I was a daddy's girl and spent hours and hours of time with him.  He was a home builder and took me along with him as he would visit the beautiful houses he had under construction, he also took me to many, many football, baseball, basketball and hockey games.  He was killed in an airplane crash when I was almost 12 years old, so I am very thankful for the years I had with him. 

My precious husband has so many of the wonderful traits that my dad had and I could have looked the world over and not found a better man to spend my life with.  Not only is he a wonderful husband to me; but is a wonderful dad to our three children.  Here is a picture of David with Baby Samuel.

Our oldest son, Benjamin, wrote a tribute to David a few months ago:

A Father Worth Celebrating
For anyone who knows me well I am not a morning person and it can be difficult to wake me up, but as a young child I was an early riser. After hopping out of bed I would make the short trek from my bedroom to the kitchen to the smell of fresh coffee brewing. On the way I would see my Dad sitting quietly, reading his Bible and in prayer, but he would pause quickly once he saw me for a good morning hug and kiss. We would then go into the kitchen for a cup of coffee ... well it was more like coffee milk for me, which is a tiny bit of coffee mixed in with a lot of milk and some sugar (He did not want me bouncing off the walls, because my attention span was already short enough). I wanted to be just like my Dad (and I still do), so if I saw him drinking coffee I wanted some too.
Needless to say I thought he was a pretty big deal. In my pre-school years I would look out the window every morning to give him a thumbs up before he left for work. I can only remember forgetting to do so once. I thought the world was coming to an end. That was the reality of my little four-year old mind, so I called him sobbing to tell him I was sorry. He assured me that everything was okay and that he loved me no matter what.
From age five to age seven my birthday parties consisted of me and about 20 of my buddies dressing up as Robin Hood, cowboys and Indians, and army men and chasing him around our house.
Time with dad was just a big deal. Even if he had a long day at work or was tired he always found time for my sister, brother and me, whether it was asking us about our days, reading to us or playing outside with us. And play outside we did. That is where he passed his love for sports down to me. When he would get home from work he would often play kickball, basketball or football with me and the other neighborhood kids. I loved shooting hoops with my dad. His jump-shot from 15-feet is still automatic. On Friday nights he would often take us to high school football games in the fall and high school basketball games in the winter. When the Tar Heels were on TV you could find us in our living room cheering. We even made it to some Carolina games, which was always a treat.
As a kid my dad coached me in basketball. He taught me how to be a team player and have good sportsmanship. He would always tell my teammates and me to play hard, play smart and play together. My dad was my biggest cheerleader. At one of my football games a league official asked him to calm down, because he was running up and down the sidelines shaking the downs marker when he was supposed to be standing there objectively and without bias, but that is my dad. He is all in and goes hard.
Most importantly my dad loves. He has been faithful to my mom and our family since they exchanged wedding vows over 26 years ago. I have seen him eagerly take care of my mom and serve her when she was sick. He would and continues to unashamedly declare his love for her by kissing her and talking about how beautiful she is and what she means to him and is not afraid to do so publicly.
My dad is humble. He is not above any job, and for a man with a master's degree that is impressive. When I was about nine years old he was in between jobs, so he unloaded banana trucks and worked other odd jobs to provide for our family.
Ever since I can remember my dad has been a pastor, and he practices what he preaches. He is the shepherd, the spiritual leader, the pastor of his home, whatever you want to call it, and he takes his responsibilities with that role very seriously. He is eager and faithful to initiate Gospel-centered discussions, and lead family devotions. My dad is always pointing us to the Cross of Christ, and encouraging us to love and good deeds.
I love you, Dad. Happy Birthday!
Thanks for being there,
Happy Baking and Happy Father's Day!

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