Thursday 17 December 2009

Soaring like an Eagle . . .

Have you ever heard the story of the golden eagle? One day, a man who was a chicken farmer, found an egg which had rolled out of an eagle's nest. He took it home and popped it under a sitting hen, and eventually the eggs hatched out.

The young eagle found itself pecking and scratching around in the dirt along with the family of chickens. One day he looked up to the sky and saw a beautiful eagle soaring above.

"That's a golden eagle, Monarch of the birds." he told the other chickens, and then continued to scratch in the dirt along with them, for that is what he thought he was . . . a chicken. He had no idea that he too was an eagle and that he could have soared straight up into the sky.

Isn't that true of many of us? We remain here bound to the earth, instead of using our full powers and flying high like an eagle. Heavenly Father has given each of us many talents and we should try to use them whenever and in whichever way we can.

The Kiwi, native of New Zealand, is well known as the bird that cannot fly.

The reason for this is that the kiwi forages for it's food on the ground, and, having had no need to fly, it has gradually, through the ages, lost the use of it's wings.

It's the same with any gift we've been born with and don't use. All of us have a talent for something . . . although it may not be recognized as such. It could be something like being able to make a comfortable home, being able to share kind and comforting words with others, lending a helping hand when needed, babysitting to let a young couple out for an evening . . . .

Don't neglect your talent whatever it may be, or you, too, just like the kiwi, will find your talent has disappeared. Don't stay tethered to the earth scratching in the dirt like a chicken . . . find your wings and soar like an eagle!

(I just love this video with President Uchtdorf. Make sure you mute the music down below before watching!)

I do love me some pineapple upside down cake once in a while. I got this special pineapple upside down cake tin several years back and only end up using it about once a year or so. It's a shame though coz the cakes come out so pretty! Oh well, too much of a good thing, then becomes an ordinary thing doesn't it? I guess by only using it once in a while, these cakes become a real treat!!

*Pineapple Upside Down Gingerbread Cake*
Serves 8 to 10 (See note)
Printable Recipe

I love gingerbread, and I love pineapple upside down cake. It seems only natural to combine the two and have both things that I love together! This is really, really good!

For the topping:
3 TBS butter
1/4 cup runny honey
2 TBS packed soft light brown sugar
7 canned pineapple slices, drained and blotted dry with some paper towels
7 marachino cherries, drained and blotted dry with some paper towels

For the cake batter:
2 large eggs
1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled
2/3 cup molasses (if you can't get molasses, you may use 1/3 cup golden syrup mixed with 1/3 cup dark treacle)
1/3 cup runny honey
1 TBS ground ginger
1 cup plain flour
1 scant cup of whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup milk

Pre-heat the oven to 180*C/350*F. Melt the butter in a saucepan along with the honey and brown sugar, stirring it together to combine as it melts. Bring to the boil. Boil, stirring, for 30 seconds and then remove from the heat. Pour the mixture into whichever pan you have decided to use. (A qo inch oven proof skillet or a round cake pan large enough to hold 7 pineapple slices) Lay the pineapple slices in the pan, one in the centre and the other six around it. Put a cherry into the centre of each and then set aside.

Beat the eggs iin a mixing bowl using an electric mixer. Beat in the melted butter, molasses and honey. Set aside.

Whisk together the flours, ginger, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, cardamom, and salt. Stir half of the dry ingredients into the egg mixture, then blend in the milk. Stir in the rest of the dry mixture, just until smooth with no dry bits showing. Pour the batter over the pineapple slices and bake in a heated oven for about 30 minutes. It's done when the top springs back when lightly touched and a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.

Cool on a wire rack for a few minutes, before carefully inverting onto a large plate. Protect your hands and arms from any possible dripping hot liquid. Serve warm with some lightly sweetned whipped cream or a scoop of cold vanilla ice cream.

**Note - If you use special mini pineapple upside down pans like I have you will have enough batter to make six individual cakes plus a small loaf pan of batter to enjoy sliced with butter and a hot cuppa another time!

Be sure to check out the Spiced Apple Tart cooking today over on The English Kitchen!



  2. I love pineapple upside down cake and haven't had it in ages. Your version sounds delicious! How cute to have mini cakes like those you've shown. You always surprise me with the different ways things can be made. Hope your Thursday is a great one.

  3. What a wonderful story about that eagle; I truly believe in always reaching up higher. Love the picture of those birds

  4. what a great tale...certainly some very good advice!!!

  5. Such a wonderful thing to remember--thanks, Marie! That's one of my favorite talks of all time--really spoke to my soul!

    Okay, about these little cakes--heavenly! Can't wait to try these! How did you become so fabulous? Just wondering....! Lots of love being sent to you today from WAAAAY over here!

  6. Wonderful story - very true and it reaffirms my decision to embark on a year out next year to explore and develop my own interests and talents further...yours is a great blog...when I am low (and I am low now due to a break-up with my boyf of 5 yrs) I find your stories and words such comfort...but I believe I have told you that already xxx

  7. What a beautiful message.

    Did you get your package yet!??!?

  8. What a wonderful recipe Marie. My mom used to make both pineapple upside cake and gingerbread separately and I love them both. I can't image how yummy they are TOGETHER!



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