Eff. I just wrote a solid paragraph and then somehow typed something that erased the whole thing…I’m such a rookie. Anyhoo, it was 63 and sunny in Cleveland today, which is basically unheard of this time of year. The morning started me out inspired as I watched the live-feed from the NYC Marathon on my computer. The main feed wasn’t working so I focused on the women’s feed, and I was just in awe of the fluidity and beauty of the African runners’ strides. Next to them, Kim Smith from New Zealand looked like an awkward giraffe bumbling along, and I say that with the utmost respect because a) she placed 5th overall women and b) she can run 26.2 miles at a faster pace than I can run 400 meters. So I’d take her stride ANY DAY. It’s just hard to compete with the Africans who seem to float along so effortlessly. I’m so happy for both Dado and Deba, winner and runner-up, I’m sure that they worked pretty dang hard for that effortless stride and to have it pay such large dividends is awesome.
I was so motivated by watching them run that I went for a run of my own, and even though it was a solid 2:45 per mile slower than their marathon pace it was one of the best runs I’ve had lately. YAY! I did feel a few twinges from my poor achilles, which seems to have become pregnant since I did some hill repeats last week. I tore the poor little guy in December of 2003 (and then AGAIN in February of 2004) so on a good day it’s a little chubby and lately it’s just been a bit out of control.
Last night I made my Great Grandmother’s recipe for apple cake. I was blessed to be able to grow up on the same farm as my great-grandmother, and she died at the beautiful age of 97, when I was 22. She was a huge part of my life and she taught me how to sew, how to knit, and she did her best to teach me how to cook. I can still hear her voice sometimes when I’m in the kitchen…
Grandma Hancock: “Now don’t stir it too much”
me: “But Grandma I like to stir!”
GH: “Well if you stir it too much it messes it up”
me:”I don’t care! I want to do it my way!”
…I was kind of a brat when I was little, but let’s call it “stubborn” to make me feel better. Now that she’s gone there is something so much more special about making her recipes, and I get mad at myself if I mess them up. Or in the case of her special chocolate cake that I made one year I get angry at those eating it (aka my then-boyfriend/now-hubby) if they say anything other than “wow this is the most delicious thing I’ve EVER eaten!”
As I was saying, last night I made her Apple Cake recipe, made with local Ohio apples, and it turned out DELICIOUS. I mixed everything with our new KitchenAid mixer, but you can definitely make it with a regular hand mixer, just fold in the apples by hand rather than dumping them in the mixer.
Grandma’s Apple Cake
- 1 stick butter (at room temp)
- 1 c. sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 and 1/2 c. flour (I used Trader Joe’s Light Whole Wheat Flour), fluffed and spooned into measuring cup
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 tsp. nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 2 and 1/2 c. shredded apples (I took the skin off but you could probably try leaving skin on too)
If using a KitchenAid mixer use paddle attachment. Put stick of butter in bowl and turn mixer on low (speed 2). Pour in sugar and mix until fluffy. Crack in the egg, mix until smooth. In a separate bowl whisk together all the dry ingredients. Turn the mixer to “stir” (lowest setting) and slowly pour in dry ingredients. Add shredded apples. If using a hand mixer you should fold in apples by hand, I found it easier to use the paddle on “stir” setting as the dough is kind of dry (I thought my mom must have left out an ingredient on the recipe it was so different from what I expected). Pour into a 9″ square pan – no grease needed!
Bake at 350 deg. for approximately 35 minutes or until test-stick comes out clean.
Enjoy!!! Most delicious while still warm and served with a glass of milk…YUM.