We held each other tightly for over an hour before he had to take leave to catch his flight back to Madrid. His arms were wrapped around my neck and shoulders like a thick scarf. Our silence expressed more to each other than we…
The doctors stood around her bed and informed her that the cancer had spread throughout all of her vital organs. They released the message in such a matter-of-fact manner, as if they were telling her that her dinner would be arriving. The message seemed…
In the sky, there is no distinction of east and west; people create distinctions out of their own minds and then believe them to be true. Buddha I took a day trip with a friend of mine many years ago to a tiny village to the…
It is Sunday or Saturday. Wait no, it’s Monday. I just checked, and it is actually Thursday today. The hours, and days and weeks all seem to melt together into one massive mass of time.
The only thing that differentiates my days are the recipes that I create. In terms of days of the week, my reference has now become “the day we made pancakes,” or “the morning we baked black bread” or “salmon day.”
I decided a few days ago to flip through the hundreds and hundreds of cookbooks on my shelf. They surround us, and stand proudly in my living room, dining room and in the kitchen. I’ve not opened them in ages and recently felt the impulse to do so. Flipping through the pages of those books was like flipping through a film reel through time.
The film took me all the way back to my childhood, as a 7 or 8 year old child, holding my Fannie Farmer cookbook dear to my chest at night-time and dreaming about the exciting recipes that I would make over the weekend. That specific cookbook played such a large role in my life, until I was old enough to start purchasing my own. And once I started, there was no holding back.
My favourite recipes were found of those pages notably ruffled with faint stains, or not-so-faint stains. I shared those stories (well, some of them) with my daughter, as each recipe brought me back a specific moment in time, as if I was still there, with the taste and smell still lingering strongly in my mind.
I sat there with my daughter in the mound of books for what seemed like hours that day, bathing in the beautiful memories of food shared and prepared for loved ones; some of whom are no longer in my life, others who are still there. I fantasised about those who were not yet in our lives, but would soon come to form more memories.
The sun made its way through the large windows in my living room and flooded the kitchen with a glorious light. The light hit the three lemons that were hanging out in the centre island of the kitchen and I decided then and there: I’ll make some lemon cake-letts! So said, so done, and they were awesome!
Lemon Cake Recipe
A very moist, delicate not-too-sweet,very-lemony cake
- Dry Ingredients
- 2 cups of oat or spent or all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp of baking powder
- 1 tsp of salt
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 3/4 cup of raw cane sugar, or coconut sugar
- Wet Ingredients
- 3/4 cup of milk (I used almond milk)
- 1/2 cup of yogurt (I used coconut)
- 1/4 cup of coconut or olive oil
- 1/4 cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice
- The zest of 2 large lemons
- Step 1 Preheat the oven to 350°F/ 175°C
- Step 2 Prepare the bread pan or cake-let pan.
- Step 3 Combine all of the dry ingredients into a large bowl .
- Step 4 Combine the liquid ingredients in a separate bowl
- Step 5 Put the liquid mixture, slowly into the dry mixture bowl and stir until you have a smooth dough.
- Step 6 Stir in the lemon zest
- Step 7 Pour this mixture into the pan
- Step 8 Place into the oven and bake for between 45 minutes to 55 minutes, or until the top surface has risen slightly and a knife or toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Step 9 Once done, you can eat it as is, or lightly dust with powered sugar.
I woke up much earlier than usual, and my stomach was queasy with a feeling that something was not too right. I had forgotten to close the windows the night before and a harsh, cool breeze was pushing its way into my warm bedroom. I…
I returned home from a workshop feeling completely exhausted and absolutely famished. As I searched for my keys, my mind was in the kitchen thinking about what I could make for dinner. Some garlic lemon salmon with asparagus? Or perhaps some asparagus soup? As my…
My daughter had seen someone eating rice crispies in a movie and asked if we could make some. While I didn’t have either Rice crispy cereal or marshmallows in the house, we found some puffed rice and experimented a bit.
Caramel Puff Squares
A delicious caramel-ly rice puff treat with a chew and a crunch
- 1/2 Cup Almond Butter
- 1/2 Cup Maple Syrup
- 3 1/2 Cups of puffed Rice
- Step 1 Prepare your square baking tin by lining it with baking paper.
- Step 2 Put the rice puffs into a large mixing bowl
- Step 3 Place the maple syrup and the almond butter into a saucepan and cook on medium heat for about 2 minutes, or until you have you have a homogeneous mixture.
- Step 4 Pour this mixture over the puffed rice and stir until they are all coated with the syrup mixture.
- Step 5 Pour the coated puffs into the prepared pan and press down until you have a smooth surface.
- Step 6 Place in the refrigerator for at least an hour to set
- Step 7 Slice into squares and enjoy!
He turned around and smiled a smile so wide, so beautiful, so loving, as he ran across the street towards me, and I ran to meet him. As my body clashed against his, we embraced, cried and screamed. After our elongated embrace, I looked over…
We went on for a couple hours and while he spoke, I envisioned us being married, having children, living in a wonderful home. This just all made so much sense! I had that vision again of him visiting me in Berlin running into my arms.…
A triumphant scream emerged from my body and I started running around in my living room, throwing my arms up in the air and swinging my hips around as if I had just had a litre of wine. I put myself together, took a deep breathe again and went over to the computer to read the message, carefully, slowly.
“ Oh, my goodness Paula is that really you? I was just talking to my mother about you the other day and we were wondering where you were. Where are you in the world…Do you have time for a chat? My number is…”
I read the message countless times over and started screaming deliriously!
My entire body was shaking.
Then I deleted it…I shouldn’t come across too desperately.
“Yeah, sure…when is a good time?”
Two seconds later, he wrote.
I wasn’t sure if I should stand up or sit down, so chose to walked around in circles as I dialled his number. Within seconds, on the other end of my telephone Carl answered.
His soft, 40 year-old voice felt like an old t-shirt over my body. We meandered into the conversation as if our last conversation with each other was just yesterday and not 34 years before.
Here is the recipe for the wholesome sesame crackers that I made.
Sesame Almond Crackers
A Deliciously Crisp Almond Sesame Cracker
- 1 cup almond flour
- 6 tablespoons sesame seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 ts. Salt
- 1 large egg, beaten
- A dash of salt and pepper to top the crackers
- A bit of oil to spread on the baking paper
- Step 1 Preheat the oven to 350°F/175°C
- Step 2 Line your baking tin with baking paper and spread with a little bit of oil.
- Step 3 Take out another piece of baking paper and spread it with a bit of oil
- Step 4 Put all of your ingredients, except for the egg into a mixing bowl.
- Step 5 Add in the egg and mix until you get a sticky dough
- Step 6 Divide the dough into two equal parts.
- Step 7 Place the dough onto the middle of prepared baking tin, which should be lined with oiled baking paper.
- Step 8 Place the other piece of oiled baking paper onto the dough and roll it out to spread across the entire tin.
- Step 9 Roll out the dough into a large rectangle about a 1/8 or 1/4 of an inch thick.
- Step 10 When the dough is rolled out, remove the top piece of parchment
- Step 11 Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into how ever many pieces you like
- Step 12 Sprinkle salt and pepper on top of the crackers.
- Step 13 Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until they brown slightly.
- Step 14 Let them cool complete and break them into pieces to enjoy!
- Step 15 Repeat for the other half of your dough!
The following morning, I woke up another dream about Carl and woke up smiling. I grabbed my computer and went onto Facebook. There were only two Carl Shar’s and while none of the photos initially looked anything like the 6 year old Carl I knew…one…