Saturday, November 30, 2013

Cranberry Upside-Down Cake

Thanksgiving came...and went this year; with less family members, and less friends. Each year it is different than from the year before. Isn't it true, that during the major holidays we lose family and friends to 'death' or they just move away...move on...never to be heard from, again...or for a long connection?... it does make one sad, but 'life does go on' and we have to make the best of it!
We have so much to be thankful for, and count our blessings even if its for our every day lives that we interact with other family members and friends that we see often, or once in-a-while! As far as some of our neighbors...well, in my situation where I live; that is very awkward. I hear the srong gusty winds these days, and the 'roaring ocean'. It is always
 10 or more degrees cooler here, so this week one day, I woke up to what seemed to be freezing temperature, when others further up north, or in other parts of Europe had way below freezing and snow doubt!

Families in neighborhood communities; they treat each other with respect, and care about one-another! Even with the elderly folks that live alone are invited to holiday gatherings, so they don't have to feel left out. For example; my direct next door elderly retired professor, does not speak to anyone...just keeps to himself. He eats every meal...out! I do worry about him, especially during holidays because he does not even have one friend...always alone! I offered several times to help in any way, but I get sad!

...let's get on with the rest of the Thanksgiving 'feast'...and recipe for the Cranberry Upside-Down Cake!

For the Cranberry Upside-Down Cake, I used the recipe from my sweet daughter Lora's blog @

note: if you don't have cake flour, it is important to substitute correctly for all-purpose flour but you have to make adjustment to it!
For the 1 1/4 cup of cake flour used in the recipe: use 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour: remove 2 Tbsp. of flour, before sifting, and then replace it with 2 Tbsp. corn starch and add it to the flour, then sift together.
The basic rule; to substitute all purpose flour for cake flour;
Remove 2 Tbsp. flour per each cup of flour used! (you can omit the cornstarch replacement, but it does make it lighter)
I use a square glass Pyrex pan, sprayed the pan with Pam baking spray, cut out parchment paper to fit the inside of the pan, and sprayed that, as well.
The baking time; 350 degrees F. for 45 min. was absolutely correct temperature.
I used a small baking pan to place the cake pan on it, so when it came out of the oven, I could just flip the cake over on it, or your can flip it over directly on a platter. It was a lot easier this way, and peeling of the parchment paper was very easy. After cooling it down for 10 minutes, I was able to slice it and place the slice on the serving platter.
So, there you have it! The best moist cake...ever! I must confess, I like to trim the edges of cake, and devour it, myself...selfish? you bet! ...not feeling guilty, at all...I do it every time, especially when I make brownies, all edges are trimmed off and if you happen to be close by, I will share the fun and yummy pieces with you, but other than that I will offer the entire cake, and not save any pieces for myself! (my rules for me.)
We share Thanksgiving feast with 20 people w/kids included...everyone pitched in. 2 huge turkeys, and lots, and lots of side dishes...and desserts! Just a few samples of the 'feast'...we all gained at least 5 lbs. each; at least!
Second huge turkey...not stuffed, stuffing on the side.
Can't have Thanksgiving or Christmas without the traditional French's Green Bean Casserole, which I make every year...(photo from last's the recipe) French's Green Bean Casserole

Traditional 'super easy' to make Cranberry Sauce...and old recipe that I've made for years which now my daughter makes each year.  Here's the recipe: Thanksgiving Cranberry Sauce

 Lora's Classic Pumpkin Pie...(she made 2 this year)...also with homemade crust...yumm!
Here's the recipe: Classic Pumpkin Pie
Hanukkah candles were lit by Dr. Eric's son, River...a 'true inter-faith' group of people, with different heritage, nationality; Italian, Sicilian, Jewish, Hungarian, Polish, Irish and English, Colombian, and Mexican...( a united nation of different backgrounds)...and various religions...Jewish, Catholic, Christian, and Southern Baptist.
Blessings were recited by Dr, Eric's father, nonno Gil...
Nonno Sal...with his prayer and blessings (he wanted to have this special prayer in case he will not be here with us next year)...sigh!
Here are some of group sitting at the dinner table...Dr. Eric on the front left, (looks like I was the only camera person taking some photos)...others took I-Phone photos for their 'Instagram' ...OK, so I'm old fashioned!

The big kids (tweens, and teens)...enjoyed their meal outside on the back patio!
...a little 'nippy' temperature, but the fire pit kept them cozy and warm!

 I am such a proud grandmother of 4...three, which are not shown. They are my greatest blessings and joy, along with their two children and their spouses! Without family to enjoy...even if you are single or a couple without children or have to embrace 'life' members, and even if you just have one cherish that friendship!
I saved the 'best for last' our vet, and dear friend... with abandoned beautiful Boxer, that he saved, after he was called to check this poor doggie living under a nearby highway bridge...surviving for over one year...full of scars, malnourished, and she almost had to be put down. He was able to befriend her...took her home, nourished her back to health after a couple serious surgeries...(having to deal with putting his own beloved old and sick Boxer; Charlie down)...that's what I call 'fate'...not only did the beautiful Boxer became a family member, but she was given the name 'Lady'...because she was so sweet, appreciative, with such nice 'ladylike' manners. She is with the family for one year now, and she is truly loved and cared for!
Dr. Eric does volunteer work once a week for people that cannot afford 'pet care'!
Isn't she absolutely adorable?...Lady sneaked up to me from under the dinner table, as I was sitting there, and gently rested her cute little head on my lap...looking at me with those sweet adorable and loving eyes! That's what I call a LOVE STORY! My heart simply melted, and it brought tears to my eyes!

So, I think I updated a lot this time...hope you all had a wonderful it's time to go on a diet; not really a cut down on extra helpings, and the desserts, until Christmas! xoxo


  1. You wrote a beautiful post, Elisabeth...and Dr. Eric is a saint!

  2. I'm sorry your neighbors are not so friendly, they are definitely the losers because they have no idea what they are missing by avoiding your friendship,
    what a great family gathering and that vet is exactly what I would hope for in a vet, a real animal lover, sounds like maybe you should move the the friendly neighbor hood, lifes to short to live around negativity!

  3. Yes it is a beautiful post Elizabeth. One really does need to cherish friends and family however large or small the circle may be. It is so sad that your neighbours do not seem to realize that and they will live a lonely life with no friends to keep them company. God bless you for trying to reach out to them. Your group of family and friends look like a very nice and loving bunch of people. Lady is a beauty too and what a wonderful outcome for her and Dr. Eric.

  4. Lovely post Elisabeth. Neighbours are funny, we've had super nice ones and ones who aren't friendly, I guess you don't know what's going on in their lives but it still annoys me! You are definitely one of the good ones.

    Your Thanksgiving looked wonderful and you are not old-fashioned taking photos with a camera, it takes skill to use a camera, iphones, not so much. Such a gorgeous doggy too!! Those eyes.

    Delicious looking cranberry bar cake and Lora's stuffing for the pumpkin with the quinoa and pine nuts looks amazing! I might steal that for our Christmas Day :D

    Have a lovely week!

  5. De finomakat ettetek:) Az a süti is olyan szép színes, megkívántam:) Puszi:)

  6. Elisabeth, your Thanksgiving dinner looks fantastic with so many friends and family members. The cranberry cake looks divine! And I am so touched with the sweet Boxer story and yes, she is a beauty!

  7. Looks like an amazing feast Elisabeth and how wonderful to celebrate with family and friends. Love your cake, it is gorgeous and sounds amazing. Such vibrant color!

  8. Néha úgy irígylem ezt a plusz ünneplést tőletek, főleg így karácsonyhoz közel:) Nagyon szép posztot írtál, jó volt olvasni:) Nekem is vannak olyan szomszédaim, akik még köszönésre sem méltatnak, furcsák az emberek. Csodás a süti, imádom a vörösáfonyát mindenhogyan, de az a pulyka, meg a többi is mesés. Látszik a fotókon is, hogy micsoda jó hangulat volt együtt a család és a barátok, ja és a boxer nagyon szerencsés, jó helyre került:) Legyen szép heted:)

  9. Oh the cranberry upside down cake looks delicious! I must try your recipe out with my leftover cranberries! Merry December!

  10. Elisabeth, I love your cranberry upside down cake, looks yummy. I just started baking with cranberries and I love them. I love celebrating the holidays with family and friends, looks like you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.

  11. Elisabeth looks like you had a wonderful thanks giving. This upside down cranberry cake looks perfect treat.

  12. Fantasztikus menüsor, és egy kellemes családi összejövetel, ennél jobb, és több, nem is kell.

  13. Hi Elisabeth! Glad you had a happy Thanksgiving with your family. Your Cranberry Upside Down Cake is so lovely with the bright red colour. It is certainly the color of love and celebration!

  14. Elisabeth your cake is mouthwatering! Everything in your menu looks delicious, I wish I was there too! I am happy you had a great Thanksgiving.


  15. Elisabeth, thank you for sharing your family and friends celebration party with us. It's so awful to see abandoned dogs! Here they have introduced an excellent law forcing new dog owners to follow a training (takes several afternoons at least). Even if they buy a tiny dog, they need to learn how to be a dog master. Otherwise they are not allowed to have the dog. This way people really must want to have a dog and not just a toy which can be thrown away.
    Your cake looks so intriguing and beautiful! I have never had a cranberry cake in my life, but I love cranberries with their tartness... Actually I have never had a roast turkey, but I suppose most Europeans haven't ;-)

  16. Hi Elisabeth, what a nice post!!! I don't mean just the delicious looking cake.. I'm happy that you enjoyed a lovely Thanksgiving celebration with family and good friends and hope that Christmas will be even better!!! XOXO

  17. Hi Elisabeth, such beautiful post. By the way your cranberry upside down cake looks so tempting and yummy. Have a great week ahead and regards :)

  18. Hi Elisabeth, such a lovely post! Loved seeing all your photos from your Thanksgiving feast. Sounds like a fabulous day! And that is one lovely Cranberry Upside-down cake! Enjoy your week!

  19. Elizabeth, I envy your big family, you must have had a great time on Thanks Giving.
    I was by my self, cooked a very very small turkey, cutted it in half, froze the other half.
    Kids went left and right, next year I will definitely invite some friends,
    hate to be alone on Holidays. All of your food looks so wonderful, and gusta..:-))

    1. Zolika, I feel so bad that you were alone on Thanksgiving! Most of my family members are up north, and its been so many years that I spent the holidays with them. I am blessed to have my 2 adult children close by me, and my little (well, not so little)...
      Like I mentioned in my post; even if you have one friend there's always a chance to spend holidays with that friend, and perhaps invite other people!
      Thanks for the kind compliments!

  20. From the pictures, you sure had a nice Thanksgiving...the cranberry upside down cake looks the color and the flavor of this cake.
    Hope you are having a fun week Elisabeth :D

  21. Hi my dear Elisabeth, your cranberry upside down cake look very delightful. Love it, 2 pieces would be fine with my favorite coffee. :))

    Thanks for sharing your Thanks Giving dinner and family photos, they are really wonderful and the spread look awesome. The turkey look very inviting.

    P/S Elisabeth, something wrong with your Thai style pasta posting, half the posting is blank, no pictures and your writing is only up to preparation part only. Maybe you check it out.

    Have a nice day. A big hugs to you.

    1. Hi, Amelia, thanks for bringing the Thai style pasta posting to my attention! Actually, the blank section you see is a 'glitch' does seem blank, I tried to fix it but it just pops back to the same way. I copied and pasted the recipe, and also the first part of the post from the article and something went wrong that I can't fix!

      Thank you for your sweet compliments! Hugs,

  22. Your thanksgiving meal looks stunning! What a wonderful spread! Even though all the food looks absolutely delicious, what I most love about this post is how you talked so much about thanks and family- the most important part of the meal on that very special day I am sure :) Good one!

    1. Thank you Shu Han! I'm always thankful for family, and dear friends that care. Also health is very important, and we can allow that one day to not watch our diets and enjoy the lovely spread!

  23. Thank you everyone for all your sweet and kind comments. Those of you that celebrated Thanksgiving, I hope you had a blessed and happy one, with your loved ones, and friends!
    During the holidays, we always remember our loved ones and friends that are no longer with us, and indeed it leaves a bit of sadness in one's heart! xo

  24. Hi Eli, Happy Holidays to you and your family!! May all you always be blessed with lots of good health, prosperity & laughter. I love how tart looking the upside down cranberry cake looked. And the turkey looks absolutely amazing. Nice, juicy and golden in colour too. I think I will be roasting turkey for Christmas instead this year ;). Hope all is well and take care. ♥ Jo

  25. hi elisabeth, yea..i think some people just prefer to be alone and be in their own world. Just that i feel sad and pity for them if they get sick. btw i dont think you are old least you on pinterest! take care yaa!

    1. Hi Lena, you are absolutely right, Lena; I used to be so concerned about these two neighbors of mine, and worry when I didn't see them for several days of their coming-and going about, but I just have to 'let it go' and realize this is how they want to be...left alone!

      As far as Pinterest, I'm simply hooked on it and find such interesting and amazing links!

  26. Irigyellek ezért a szép családért. Tudod nálunk idéntől már nagyon rossz lesz az ünnep. Már apukám sem jön hozzánk... :o( Nagyon finomakat készítettél, a kutyus pedig szerencsés. Az áfonyás süti a kedvencem lenne...

  27. outstanding idea love this Happy Thanksgiving hope you and yours are doing well! XO