Wednesday, December 23, 2015


Okay…. So it took three tries, but I got it.

Last night was cause for celebration because yesterday was my second-favourite day of the year — my favourite is the day Daylight Savings begins. My passion for both days comes from my love of light; I am phototropic. And although today is the first day of winter, for me it is the first day towards summer as each day from now until June 22  will have roughly three minutes more of light.

Last night was a true reason to party and so very good friends Bruce, Leslie and Mary-Lou came for dinner. The day involved a progression from anxiety to the ecstasy of champagne and eating the fruits of all my labour.

I had planned to make the cake on Monday but in the first one I made, I forgot the sugar. In the second one, which I had re-written to produce more dough so as to fill my new bundt pan and converted into grams, I added way too much molasses so I had to try cake #3 early Tuesday morning and then the rest of the meal.

The worst part of baking the cake was deciding how long to bake it; insecurity is co-joined with innovation. The bundt pan is new for me; it allows heat into the batter from both the outside and inside the cade. But I prevailed and the OCD child inside me enjoyed making the teeny weenie sugared ginger bits that I scattered over the ginger-infused whipping cream that went with it when served.

Sparklers on the cake were apt for a solstice party, don’t you think?

Baking Ruby Tandoh’s recipe for Spiced Eggplant and Swiss Chard Pie was fun. My anxieties concerning with this dish were concentrated on the pastry. I am not very good with pastry, hence my decision to hone my pastry skills by taking a baking course at the Pacific Culinary Institute starting in February. My bottom was soggy as I thought it might be, but it was delicious.

For protein, I made Arrachera — side steak in a really delicious marinade that friends and I discovered whilst in Mexico one winter. It went over particularly well, particularly with Mary-Lou who wanted the recipe. I love that! What better compliment is there?

love cooking and baking. It is an ideal activity for a creative person. There are essential and demanding techniques and there is artistry in presentation. Plus, you get swift satisfaction in the intimacy of the home I love as we eat.

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