When the longest month of the year disappearsin front of your eyes at full speed - a lemon cake that brings sun into Winter
I always tend to find January to be the longest month of the year - not the dreariest, saddest, most tiring, that will be March! - the month that coming straight up in the heels of Christmas hols, tends to drag on and on with no ending in sight. I don't dislike January, as I actually have this deep love for its bleak, pale white light, and the biting cold outside, the briskness it brings to my step as I go to and fro on the school runs, the wind assaulting my hair and freezing my nose and ears; I do like January - much more than I like March, I don't like arch at all!! - but it always feels so long, it always feels like I am going to have all the time in the world to accomplish so many things, see to so many projects that have been left behind, start many new things.
This year, for no reason whatsoever, it did not feel that way. All of a sudden, January was gone and it was February already, and I was staring at my blank screen wondering where the hell did the month go that I had done nothing with it!! I usually take a breather out of writing during December, as my kiddo gets two weeks off from school, and hubby one week vacation around that time - do try to write a mistery novel or a fantasy book with a child always striving for attention, it won't work, I tell you! Christmas break is to spend time with him, playing and horsing around. Same as for Easter vacations, there's no writing done. - and I end up putting away all my writing work. So I always promise to pick up the pace come January, and I had a couple of chapters all lined up to be written for my fantasy book, I was full of good intentions and had the longest month ahead of me in which to fulfil them.
And yet, it didn't go according to plan! (When does it ever??) I found myself at the end of January and completely unwares of being at the end of January, with a few scribbles behind me and a whole world of mistakes to correct on the book. Revising is my downfall, I hate doing it, but must, or else I'll be calling a spade a spade on Book I and by Book III I'll be saying a spade is a bucket. So writing, when it came to my novels and books, was quite frankly out of the picture during most of the past month, as I struggled with my mistery novel, but mostly realized I had forgotten about so many important pieces of imformation on my fantasy book I would have to reread it all again. Blogging, on the other hand, seemed to go very smoothly. Like I said before, I have found myself spending a lot more time inside the kitchen cooking up stuff, trying out things, and I have spent a lot of time photographing, styling and editing those dishes I have been cooking. So there's a lot to share during February!
The only clue I've had as to January reaching its end was the lemons. When I saw myself down to only three of my mother in law's organic lemons, after having used the rest on lemon curds and what not, I knew we were reaching the end of the month. And I immediately started craving a redolent, citrus infused lemon cake! Lemon cakes in Winter, along with lemon curds and lemon pies and all that is lemon and citrusy during January; is something I find so much comfort in. THe scent, the colour, put Spring in my mind, as a bit of a reminder that warmer days are coming, sunshine and all its glory are just around the corner. So I like my lemon cake to look very yellow - call me crazy! - and because of that I tend to add just a tad of cornflour to my lemon cakes, it does help improve the colour. I think lemon cake is such an easy, go to recipe, it always tastes good, because of the tartness in lemons it doesn't get overly sweet (we like our cakes easy on the sugar), and it's quite easy to bake, you know? A simple, easy recipe, that can also be adapted into an orange cake, or even a pineapple cake if you happen to have canned pineapple around the house...
And here is what you'll be needing for this cake:
- 150 gr flour
- 50 gr cornflour
- 200 gr butter, slightly melted
- 150 gr sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 heaped tsp baking powder
- the juice and the zest of one large lemon