Strawberry Rhubarb Rosewater Cake

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hello m’dears,

i’m back with a cake! this time it’s … actually a belated birthday cake. as per tradition, i make my own birthday cake¬†ūüôā because really i just need an excuse to make a cake.

birthdays are funny. the whole concept of it. to some it’s a significant day, a reason to celebrate with friends and family… and to others it’s just another day. which is also great, because it is an¬†arbitrary day. i feel like¬†it’s¬†always¬†important to be cognizant and reflective of where you’re at in life. and be consciously grateful to be living life.

i think at 21, i’m not where i want to be. or rather, i’m not who i think i should be. and this is not a novel idea… i think the twenties, for most people, is a time to just figure it all out. if life can be figured out in the first place.

and so that’s my question, how do you reconcile that, living with that divide between who you think you should be or imagine yourself to be, vs. who you actually are?

but if there’s one thing that is certain, it’s change. from dan gilbert–

“human beings are works in progress that mistakenly think they’re finished.
the person you are right now is as transient, as fleeting and as temporary as all the people you’ve ever been. the one constant in our life, is change.”

ANYWAYS. can i just say though, that this cake is also a reflection of all those feelings? a¬†i don’t know how this is going to turn out but i’m figuring it out sort of cake.

that’s a pretty great title for a cake, actually. if i ever open a bakery, all of the names will be super ramble-y and emotionally charged. the¬†stop tailgating me im already 20 over leave your house earlier¬†blueberry coconut glazed scone. the¬†i¬†wish i knew what you were thinking¬†chocolate chip banana bread. the¬†it’s 1am let’s do laundry and wash dishes oatmeal peanut butter cookie.

BUT I DIGRESS– let’s get into this cake.

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Cherry Kirsch Crisp

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A large part of the joy of cooking is witnessing the perfection of nature.

I believe in respecting the integrity of foods– as Brooks Headley so eloquently¬†put it, above. He also said, “the key to making great food is to get the best possible stuff and avoid fucking it up”. Okay Brooks, simple enough.

His cookbook Fancy Desserts¬†is¬†a real pleasure to read. It’s one of the¬†quirkiest, unique, personal, thought-provoking, and creative-juice-stimulating ones I’ve ever read. (“I genuinely love holding a piece of fruit in its perfect state, barely able to contain its own fragile insides, a few hours away from rot. It is magic.”)

Although I haven’t gotten around to making anything from it yet (chocolate eggplant sounds a bit far fetched, even for me…), it¬†just reminded me again¬†how lucky I am¬†to be spoiled by the bounty of local, fresh summer fruit.

For me, there’s a sort of default dessert they’ll be siphoned off to– a crisp. It always goes back to the crisp. It’s quick, easy,¬†simple, versatile, and¬†respectful.¬†You’re fully in charge of how much or how little sugar to add, the combination of fruits, how “whole” you want to leave the fruit, the types of oats and nuts in the topping. Whether or not you want an element of surprise. Black pepper and strawberry, perhaps.¬†A bit of herb in the topping, like thyme, perhaps. It’s easier to make than a pie, since there’s no waiting for the crust to chill, no need to dirty your counters rolling out the crust… it’s pretty much a mix-and-dump type deal.¬†Plus, there’s the added bonus of being able to sneak in¬†oats, your choice of nuts and seeds, and even almond flour into¬†your crisp topping, so you can convince yourself it’s breakfast food. Serve it¬†√† la mode, and you’ve got yourself the perfect summer dessert.¬† Continue reading →

Fig Blueberry Crisp

It’s funny how tastes can change. I remember when I was younger and my dad was making us sandwiches for lunch, my choice of spread was Cheez Wiz (I know. I’m cringing too), while my brother’s was peanut butter. And I remember how sometimes for breakfast, my dad would make savory things– noodle soups, cheese-topped tomato macaroni– and I would gladly eat it.

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