19 August 2010

Holding out

My cooking tends to perform like an old car - for several days I chug along, cooking and baking and washing the dishes every night. Suddenly one morning, the engine just won't turn over, and I spend a few days listlessly staring into the refrigerator, settling on ramen noodles or a peanut butter sandwich or salad.

Today I brought the following items to work: two tomatoes from my garden, one nectarine, cottage cheese, and vanilla yoghurt.

While I may regret it by the end of the day, I have a reason for the ennui: I'm holding out for the weekend. I am bringing a cake to a party next week, and I want to try the new recipe at home first.

I'm typically a baker who straddles the line between fearless and foolhardy - I adjust ingredients like a teenager changes clothes, and I usually don't hesitate to make a new dish for a gathering of family and friends. However, this party is celebrating two new weddings and an impending arrival of a baby - and I'm making the only dessert - so I want to make sure it's good.

I have high hopes for this cake - a four-layer lemon cake with raspberry filling and lemon buttercream - and I've already scribbled down for or five different cakes that could be easily developed from the base recipe.

As if that weren't enough, I stopped by my grocer yesterday and found the first Italian prune plums of the season! After a foggy, (relatively) cold summer in L.A., we have warm weather and delicious stone fruit. I am trying to decide what to make: cake, crumble, or tart.

How long can a person survive eating nothing but dessert?


  1. Is this my birthday cake? I literally was just talking to some friends last night and I decided to make myself a lemon cake for my birthday that is this weekend! I figure if Deb at SK is not shy about making her own cake, why should I be?

  2. Hi Jen,

    I always make my own birthday cake - I just make my husband wash the dishes for it!

    Happy Birthday to you - I will think of you when I try the cake (and I will definitely post my results this weekend).