Orange Spice Angel Food Cake with Orange Glaze

Orange Spice Angel Food Cake with Orange Glaze RecipeI have been thinking much lately about ‘things’.  I’m talking about our possessions.  Those things we save, collect, and treasure that fill our homes – and our lives.  I am a collector of many things, be it vintage jelly jars, old cookbooks, wooden spoons (actually spoons of all types), antique and rare kitchen gadgets – just to name a few.  Among my most treasured possessions are my daughter’s baby book, my Grandma’s recipe jar, my Mom’s cast iron skillet, and photos that reach all the way back to my youth.  The list is as long as my arm.  Sitting within feet of where I am typing this post, I spy a glass slipper given to me by a best friend, my Mom’s turquoise encased lipliner, and a hand-thrown pottery jar accented with a bird on the lid made by my daughter.  Yes, my house is filled with items that warm my heart, snuggle me in memories of those that are no longer with me, and of times shared with loved ones.  They bring me joy and comfort.
Orange Spice Angel Food Cake with Orange Glaze RecipeJust a few weeks back, my brother-in-law and his family lost their home in the Northern California fires.  Like so many others, in a flash, everything they owned and treasured was ripped from their lives.  Thankfully, they were not home at the time, coincidentally they were visiting us in Los Angeles.  From a distance, a monumental loss was thrust upon them, a loss that I imagine can never fully be processed.

Over the weeks that have followed that life altering event in my family’s lives, I have been pondering much about the value we place on things.  As expected, in the days following my family’s loss, over and over again I heard people’s attempt at comforting them with phrases like ‘the only thing that matters is that you are all okay’, or ‘things can be replaced, at least you are all fine’.  Even as I wrapped my arms around my niece in a hug to convey my sadness for the loss she was suffering, she parroted back to me the words we have all been trained to say during times like these – ‘it’s okay Aunt Mary, all that matters is that we are all okay’.  My words back to her were likely unexpected, but were intended to offer her permission to be sad for all she had lost.  I assured her that it was okay to grieve the loss of ‘things’.  The fact that they were all safe and sound was obviously the most important thing, but I also wanted her to know that loosing the things we love and treasure, the things that tie us to the past and connect us to our loved ones, the items that fill our home with love and comfort, those things matter, and a need to grieve those losses was not only understandable but necessary.
Orange Spice Angel Food Cake with Orange Glaze RecipeOrange Spice Angel Food Cake with Orange Glaze RecipeThanksgiving is just days away and I can’t help thinking about all those who over the past few months have lost so much.  Sadly, the list is long, from those who suffered the wrath of Harvey, and Irma, and those deeply suffering in Puerto Rico, to the thousands who are homeless due to the Northern California fires.  My Santa Rosa family will be at my Thanksgiving table this year, not originally planned but a blessing nevertheless.  I have chosen one of my treasures to pass onto them, a bridge of sorts as they begin to re-build their lives.  And even as we sit down to give thanks at a table adorned with some of my most treasured ‘things’ like silverware from my childhood, a spoon that belonged to my husband’s grandmother, and a crystal bowl that goes back farther than my memory serves me, I will look into the eyes of my loved ones and know that they are what matters most to me.  They mean everything to me.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!
Orange Spice Angel Food Cake with Orange Glaze RecipeI made this cake in honor of my sister-in-law Sherry, who favors angel food cake above all others.  I began with the angel food cake recipe from Bravetart by Stella Parks.  She is a baking mastermind!  She is the queen of American desserts, which have always been my favorite and what you are most likely to encounter here at Sifting Focus.
Orange Spice Angel Food Cake with Orange Glaze Recipe



Adapted from Stella Parks’s Bravetart

5 thoughts on “Orange Spice Angel Food Cake with Orange Glaze

  1. What a fabulous Thanksgiving post! The menu couldn’t be more perfect, a “meaty” main dish, not too heavy, but giving the meal it’s centerpiece. Lots of tasty sides and of course a stunning dessert!

    Losing everything is a tragic jolt to our confidence in the world. I too am a collector (and hope to never cross the border into hoarding like my mother did)
    and find solace and peace in the memories that my collecting brings. Sending peace, hope and hugs to you and your family this Thanksgiving.

  2. Mary, this post, like many others, touched my heart. You are a beautiful writer, among your many other talents. Your caring and sweet spirit is always present. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *