Little meaning can be put to some things, yet much meaning can be put to many things; take numbers, for example. We use numbers to measure things, much of the time. We measure ingredients, various aspects of our pups/kids lives, our personal “status”, and of course… our age. Much of the time though, those numbers can mean rather little (in the grand scheme of things), unless you want them (or let them), mean everything.
I turn (bleep) this month (tomorrow, actually). I don’t usually know what age I am turning on the month of my birth (mostly because I think I have already been that age the year before) and doubt that, give one year, or even two, it really means much more than the last. It is just a number, not a real age; certainly not the age that I feel (well, most days)! Not the age that I actually am! In two years time (again) though, I would like to accomplish a task. This is a task I thought I would accomplish by thirty, and then forty, and, well…it is still a task (and a dream). I want to write a book. But I have been writing a book! For ten… no, fifteen years!!! Not really writing a book so much as just, writing (and reading, and living, and cooking, and dreaming)!
I have words to say, words to be read, and sentiments to be taken to heart. I have food to be prepared, shared, and techniques to teach and happiness to be spread. I have something to give, something to receive, and hopes to fulfill. Life is busy, and complicated, and full, even when my belly isn’t. Life is delicious and generous, yet greedy at the same time. I can be spontaneous today and shut-down the next. I am joyful and expectant, yet scared to jump into the unknown. Yet, I’d bet many of you feel the same way?
If there is one thing I have learned in my time here so far, it is this: live, love, and keep being a better person; to yourself, your family/friends, and those that you don’t even know. Don’t take things that aren’t serious, so seriously. Trust me, there are plenty of serious things that will be speed bumps along your way.
The three (best) pieces of advise I would give to a “young” person are these:
- Always wear sunscreen. Even if there doesn’t seem to be sun.
- Be kind to your feet. Please.
- And eat your vegetables. Whether you have two legs or four.
Now I’m dating myself, but trust me on these!
and now…let us make cake!
soRry tO inTerrupt The regularly scheduled rEcipe; this just iN…
Psssst, buDdY and gInGer here an we wantted to make momMy a cake for her birthDay soo of course the obvious Choice is for us two make Carrot cake. MoMmy doesnt Really know how too bake so the cake she made iz probably a Tiny healthier then most of uS would preffer. sO we are Here 2 make sum thing bOth nutritious aNd Delicious. we hopes sHe will share sum with us even thO we uzed butter and special flower.
we went heer for inspiration since we don’t know how to bake eether but since we can’t follow directions to good, it is a little difrunt.
we urge You to make this, not that Fig thing below, But our great cake:
CARROT, CAKE by the numbers
loosely adapted from Alton Brown’s carrot cake
INGREDIENTS + steps 1 to 5
Step 1: grate the Carrots and put in large bowl with the coConut
2 cups grated carrots
1/4 cup shredded coconut
Step 2: mix the dry ingredients in
2 cups “001” flour (soundz fancy, daDdy sez u can uze 007 to, we dont get it)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 TB cinnamon
1/2 tsp allspice
Step 3: Beat the wet ingredients minus the olive oil. when creamy, drizzle the olive oil in with the beater going slow
3 TB butter
1/2 cup whole cane sugar (looks like a cross between turbino and brown sugar)
2 TB honey, sweety
2 large eggs
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup sour cream
Step 4: mixx the Dry ingredients into the carrots and coconut
Step 5: Mix the wet ingredients into the carrots and dry ingredients. Ooo, thats tricky
Step 6: Transfer the mix to a buttered And floured cake pan (9” round or square, but no rectangles cuz thats not as Cute an We like cute).
Step 7: Pree heat the oven to 375 degrees hot and bake for 30 minutes. reduce the temperature to 300 degrees cooler and continue to cook until the inside of the cake equals 200 degrees (we stuk our paws in and it seemed gud to us after 30 minutes).
Step 8: LeT cool in the cute Pan and then turn out onto a rack
Step 9: top with whippet cream cheeessse mixed with hunny. Add Cute decorations – boNuS iF they can Be eated!
Step 10: leT US eat Cake!!!
Daddy, don’t blow out mom’s candle (ginGer thinks its fuNNy tho).
Now back to the originally scheduled recipe…
Fig and Ricotta Cake (by the numbers)
When I told Tom what I was making, he said (often when I bake stuff), “You haven’t made that before; make what you know” (as I usually say for when we have company).
To that I replied, “Yes, but only for company. Most of the time, you should just make it up and have fun”.
Step NUMBER 1:
1 cup sprouted spelt flour
1 cup amaranth flour (feel free to use all purpose flour for a tastier, less healthy cake)
1/2 cup cornmeal
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 TB cinnamon
1 TB whole grain sugar
1 tsp baking powder
Approximately 1 pint (12-15 whole) fresh figs, cleaned, quartered with stems removed and discarded
2 TB raw honey
1 vanilla bean, inside scraped and outer part saved for another use
1 1/2 TB lemon juice (juice from 1-1/2 baby lemons)
14 oz whole milk ricotta (from a 16 oz tub, 2 oz reserved for topping the cooked cake)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup buttermilk
Step NUMBER 2:
Mix the dry ingredients into a bowl.
Step NUMBER 3:
Beat the eggs, figs and honey together until the figs break down but are still showing skin. It should be holding together but still a little bit liquified.
Step NUMBER 4:
With the mixer on, add the vanilla bean, lemon juice, ricotta, olive oil and beat until nicely blended and slightly creamy.
Step NUMBER 5:
Slowly stir the dry mix into the wet until blended.
Step NUMBER 6:
Pour the whole lot into an oiled cake pan and pop into an oven, preheated to 375 degrees F.
Step NUMBER 7:
Drizzle olive oil over in a circular motion. Do the same with the honey. With the back of a spoon, swirl them around the batter. Pop the pan into the oven and set a timer for 45 minutes.
Step NUMBER 8:
Pour yourself a glass of rosé and wait for 30 minutes before checking in on the cake. During this time, you should be spending quality time with your family…your friends. Smell the air and rejoice.
Step NUMBER 8:
Check on the cake and you might need about 10-15 minutes more for a toothpick to come up clean. If it is getting too dark on top, simply cover with foil and continue. Remove to let cool slightly then turn it out onto a rack.
Step NUMBER 9:
Cut a slice for you and your friends. Top with a dollop of ricotta and a drizzle of honey. Perhaps slices of figs and/or strawberries and blueberries. Go free-form on this!
Step NUMBER 10:
Eat cake (again?) later that evening… and don’t sweat the small stuff!