Santa Cruz Good Times

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Apr 19th
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Not Just for Rabbits

dining butteryFor my mother’s birthday party last month, my dad specially ordered a carrot cake from a famous Las Vegas pâtissier. It was gorgeously decorated, but inedible. Two cake layers had been halved to create four, and between each one was a thick layer of cream cheese frosting. The guests couldn’t eat it, much less agree to take any leftovers home. My dad felt so let down after his special effort.


Carrot cake was one of our family’s celebratory favorites, and was always homemade. I enjoyed the creamy tartness of cream cheese in the sweet frosting, and the attractive, moist cake dotted with beta-carotene-rich grated vegetable. After introducing it to my own children, it became one of my son’s requested birthday desserts as well.

However, between football, baseball, basketball soccer and a long commute, my enthusiasm for baking waned. After helping my kids bake treats for their classroom celebrations (which I gladly turned into a math project by doubling or tripling recipes) firing up the oven a second time for the family get-together was out of the question.

This leads me to one of the many things I love about Santa Cruz, the myriad of wonderful bakeries. Established almost three decades ago, The Buttery is renowned for its bread and pastries, and employs a talented cake consultant for designing wedding and special event cakes.

Their carrot cake is decorated with bright orange frosting carrots. Two sizes are available, serving either six to eight ($22) or 10 to 12 ($30). I was delighted to find that there is a cupcake version ($3.25) as well, which is perfect for portion control or small families.The finely textured cake contains sweet strips of coconut, and the swirl of creamy frosting on top bears a layer of chopped walnuts.


 

The Buttery, 702 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz, 458-3020. Open daily from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. Visit butterybakery.com.

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Cardinal Grand Cross in the Sky

Following Holy Week (passion, death and burial of the Pisces World Teacher) and Easter Sunday (Resurrection Festival), from April 19 to the 23, the long-awaited and discussed Cardinal Cross of Change appears in the sky, composed of Cardinal signs Aries, Libra, Cancer, and Capricorn, with planets (13-14 degrees) Uranus (in Aries), Jupiter (in Cancer), Mars (in Libra) and Pluto (in Capricorn), an actual geometrical square or cross configuration. Cardinal signs mark the seasons of change, initiating new realities.

 

Sugar: The New Tobacco?

Proposed bill would require warning labels on sugary drinks Will soda and other saccharine libations soon come with a health warning? They will if it’s up to our state senator, Bill Monning (D-Carmel). On Feb. 27, Monning proposed first-of-its-kind legislation that would require a consumer warning label be placed on sugar-sweetened beverages sold in California. SB 1000, also known as the Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Safety Warning Act, was proposed to provide vital information to consumers about the harmful effects of consuming sugary drinks, such as sodas, sports drinks, energy drinks, and sweetened teas.

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of April 17

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >

 

Growing Hope

Campos Seguros combats sexual assault in the Watsonville farmworker community Farm work was a way of life for Rocio Camargo, who grew up in Watsonville as the daughter of Mexican immigrants. Her parents met while working the fields 30 years ago, and her father went on to run Fuentes Berry Farms.
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