Not so long ago I read a book called The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake. Rose can taste the emotions of those cooking and baking. Curse or Charm? Hmmm...I often bake when I have something to work out. Lately, I have been on a cake baking binge which is hilarious given that I am also attending Weight Watchers!
Tonight we have book club. One of our former members moved to Alabama and as it was not feasible for us to travel...we are reviewing the book she selected, Before Women Had Wings by Connie Mae Fowler AND I baked her recipe for a Mississippi Mud Cake. It is OH SO DECADENT! My rationale, apart from honoring a friend, is that this book is so raw and tragic yet compelling that we DESERVE chocolate.
In between episodes of Top Chef, Just Desserts...I prepared Chaos in the Kitchen's Chicken Salad and Trish's Mississippi Mud Cake and Kerry's Orange Balls. My darling husband tried one of the orange balls, sighed and as he sat in the living room said to me, "I hear those orange balls calling me " He is my biggest fan!
I have realized that I am a FOODIE. I love cookbooks, cooking shows, fine dining and experimenting in my own kitchen. Offering up something fabulous to friends and family says, YOU matter...I care...I love you.
Sometimes we prepare a meal or bake a cake because that is what we do as a kindness in times of trouble or grief or stress or even a new birth.
Baking is a little like magic and I like a little bit of magic in my days. When asked why she always baked with the window open, Julia said "I am calling to someone" (paraphrased from The Girl Who Chased the Moon) Serendipitously, (cue Twilight Zone music) the Hummingbird Cake was baked and pink hair extensions attached prior to reading that magical book and Eric made a version of Mississippi Mud Cake on Just Desserts while I was frosting mine. How is that for Woo Woo? What special treat beckons your friends and family?
MISSISSIPPI MUD CAKE
1 1/2 c. flour
3 tbsp. cocoa
1 c. butter
2 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 c. chopped pecans
1 (3 1/2 oz.) can flaked coconut
1 (7 oz.) jar marshmallow creme
Grease and flour 9x13 pan and set aside. Mix flour and cocoa together; set aside. Beat butter for 30 seconds to soften. Add sugar and vanilla, beating until fluffy. Add eggs. Beat in flour mixture. Stir in pecans and coconut. Turn mixture into prepared pan. Bake at 350 for 35 minutes. While cake is still hot, spread with marshmallow creme. Cool completely and add icing.
MISSISSIPPI MUD ICING:
1/2 c. butter
4 c. sifted powdered sugar
1/2 c. cocoa
1/2 c. evaporated milk
1 tsp. vanilla