CAKE :: i always seem to have a tube or can of almond paste in the pantry. actually, for the past 4+ years i think it was the same tube and it got tossed or donated when we headed to north carolina last spring. but when we moved back to florida later that summer the cupboard just seemed naked without the stuff. so a can was bought and there it lived for six months. then i saw a recipe for thomas keller’s almond cake and a cranberry syrup on smitten kitchen. both the cake and the syrup are easy and i had an excuse to use the little spring form pans that usually just take up space in the cabinet. omar and i agree that the cake was even better the next day after being reheated in the toaster oven – it made the top and edges kind of candy-like/crunchy. *note* if you decide to give the recipe a try, heed all the instructions about length of time you mix ingredients, temperature of butter, and sifting the flour. there is no leavener so if you don’t sift and chill and whip you’ll get little almond bricks.
COVER :: i was sad when gourmet closed up shop. omar and i actually made their recipes and their photography was gorgeous and most of their articles well written. they switched our subscription over to bon appétit and i’m still on the fence about whether to renew or not. on the plus side are some of the recipes and writers (i always like molly wizenberg’s columns) but on the negative side – an often snarky food writer that answers readers’ questions and the photos. the most recent issues have such close-up, glossy, unappetizing food shots, especially on the covers, that you kind of wonder who gave the ok to them. we got the february issue in the mail yesterday and i took one look at it and the words “meat goo” popped into my head. perhaps i’ll just stick to the website and epicurious archives. i think saveur magazine is going to win the official replacement prize in our house.
CUPS :: it’s the passing comments that often make big impacts on me. brite made a comment on my post about the boys’ tea time that made me want to reach out and hug and kiss and thank her. she casually noted how she and her kids had daily tea time and worked on memory verses and catechism. revolutionary to me, friends. i have been really struggling on how/when in the day to work with the boys on these things. morning? they’d rather run around like maniacs and work off all that sleep. before lunch? hungry and verging on exhausted from the morning is not a pretty combo. right after naps when still a little quiet while sipping grown-up drinks like tea in little cups that they are beyond enamored with? right on. three cheers for brite.