Trying to find the will to voice words when all you want to do is laze around and eat cake. And jam. And then more cake.
I haven't written a line - except for this blog, obviously! - in I don't even know how long. It's like all the words have flown out of me, on a vacation of sorts, and are taking their time in returning to my head, to the tips of my fingers. It's not that I am short of ideas. It is not that I am stuck in a chapter that just isn't working. It's just that I haven't been feeling the stories calling out to me, the words piling up inside my brain and begging to be let out, sending me off to the laptop, mind numb to the rest of the world, fingers tapping away on the keypad, hours on end, with only a water bottle to cut through the surge. It hasn't been happening.
Like this post. You cannot even guess how long it has taken me to write it. No, not to write it. To start writing it. I have looked at the images countless times, and nothing came off. Most times, I know ahead what I am going to talk about on each post, because I usually have a couple of shoots prepared, photos edited, recipes written, and all it's left is writing the post, which is frankly the easiest, as whenever I'm shooting I already have in mind the words to go with the images.
Not with these images. I mean, I might as well have had an idea of what I would write for this lovely cake, but these have been lying around on my folder for such a long time I didn't even remember them anymore. This was such a lovely cake, so tasty, so yummy, so delicious, and it was the first cake I baked with this new bundt tin we got - which I have been using non stop, and that is why all you ever see are cakes that look slightly like this, it's THAT good, the tin! - but somehow, these photos got lost amidst all the rest of the stuff we have cooked and served and I have posted here.
Still, here they are, a cake that has a hint of mixed berries to it, and that goes along with mixed berries compote, homemade, of course, that can be drizzled on top of a slice, or on a piece of freshly baked bread, on a toast, on a biscuit, or mixed into a plain yogurt. Good jam, good cake, good food, and maybe I will feel the words and the sentences and the paragraphs returning to my head, and making the tips of my fingers itch once more, driving me mad if I don't sit down and jot it all out immediately. Maybe the sight of this gorgeous cake will bring me back into my own self, and get me writing once more, for I can clearly hear the dragons calling onto me, and the witches gathering in the clearing and brewing their potions in the dead of night, and the stories slowly unfolding in my mind...
But first, this cake. Simple sponge, with a bit of a twist. It goes like this:
- 150 gr flour
- 150 gr unsalted butter or magarine
- 100 gr sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 tablespoon baking powder (yes, tablespoon, yes, really. You want it light and fluffy)
- 1 cup of mixed red berries, either frozen or fresh
- a drizzle of syrop de grenadine, but make it a very small drizzle!
Turn on your oven at 180º and prepare a cake tin, spreading the insides with some butter, and lightly covering with flour. Or you can just get some baking paper in it. In a bowl cream the sugar and the butter together untill you have a light, creamy mixture. Drizzle the syrop de grenadine into this mix, be sure it is just a couple of drops. It will add a rich pink colour to the batter and it will sweeten it. Add the sifted flour and baking powder, alternating with the eggs, one at a time. Mix gently, and finally add the red berries, making sure it is well blended to the batter. Pour it into the cake tin, and bake in the oven for 20m to 30m, or until you see the cake is thoroughly cooked inside and light golden on the outside. Let it cool on a rack, take it off the tin, and let it cool some more.
As for the compote, the jam, whatever you want to call it, I have a recipe right here, and it is a mighty good one, trust me. Again I cannot stress this enough: the balsamic does make all the difference! You can strain the pits of the fruits, but I like to have a certain crunch to my jam, it adds texture and interest to my tastebuds. I do hope you try this cake, and the jam as well, nothing beats homemade compotes to eat with your toast on a lazy Sunday morning, when the day is just starting and you can hear the happy chirping of the birds right outside your kitchen window, and the sun is bathing your home with a lovely, milky light, and the heat can already be felt around each and every pore, and all you dream of is taking the day to either lie down on the beach, the yellow gritty sand your mattress, the waves lapping at your feet, or else stay home on your couch, indulging in all the rest and lazying around you can take. Because Sundays are for that, and since it's only Tuesday, there's a lot of time ahead of you to make this jam. And the cake, don't forget the cake!!