A few things in the bakery case didn't thrill me. Bite-sized cheesecakes (65 cents) were gummy and lacked the flavor of the larger ones; and the brownies (50 cents) were dry, and didn't hold a candle to the yummy oatmeal-chocolate-chip-M&M cookies (35 cents). Flipping through April's cake books you peek in again and again on happy couples cutting into their exquisite monuments, faces lit with joy. It seems only appropriate that on the most important days of our lives we would commission miracles in sugar. It's comforting too to know that April says no matter how long or hard she's labored on one of her marvels she's never the least bit sad to see it devoured.

TABLEHOPPING

TO HONOR AND CHERISH: If you had been present at Tammy Wynette's wedding, what would you have toasted her with? Why wedding punch of course! Or so she says in 1990's The Tammy Wynette Southern Cookbook, which I just found at the library. Quoth the "Stand By Your Man" queen: "It's good!"

Location Info

Map

Country Cake Cupboard

491 N. Willow Drive
Long Lake, MN 55356

Category: Restaurant > Bakery

Region: Outstate

Wedding Punch

* 1 large can of Hawaiian Punch

* 1 large can of pineapple juice

* 1 large can of apple juice

* 1 bottle of pink champagne

Mix together, pour into punch bowl over ice. Chill and serve.

WATERMELON DAZE: Mark Twain felt passionately about watermelons, saying, "When one has tasted watermelons, he knows what angels eat. It was not a Southern watermelon that Eve took; we know it because she repented." And the people of Cordele, Georgia, the self-proclaimed Watermelon Capital of the World, couldn't agree more. Every year they export 200 million pounds of the stuff, and celebrate with a spree known as Watermelon Days, in which they gobble watermelon balls, spit watermelon seeds, and even use the rind for such treats as watermelon-rind pies and chutneys, all helpfully archived at www.foodfestivals.com. Serve this on grilled chicken, pork, or fish, or on top of cream cheese with crackers.

Watermelon Apple Chutney

* 2 cups finely chopped peeled

watermelon rind, red flesh removed

* 2 cups chopped Golden Delicious apples

* 1 cup chopped red bell pepper

* 1 cup brown sugar

* 1/2 cup raisins

* 2 tbls. chopped onion

* 1 clove garlic, minced

* 3/4 cup cider vinegar

* 1/2 cup apple juice

* 11/4 tsp. ground ginger

* 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper

In large saucepan, combine all ingredients; mix well. Bring to boil over high heat; reduce heat and simmer for 35 to 40 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until watermelon rind is tender and liquid is partially reduced. Store covered in the refrigerator. Allow flavors to blend several hours before serving. Makes about 31/2 cups.

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