Poster holidays

Sunday, June 14, 2015

"Spring brightly traveling, summer half awake,
Here the afternoon city plays at being
A dream of summer's: gaiety in repose,
Lazily festive as poster holidays,
A dream."

- from "Urban Pastoral" by Babette Deutsch

If every end is also a beginning, then my lovely youngest daughter is at that junction between twelfth grade and the rest of her life. The end of high school is the beginning of university. The end of adolescence is the beginning of adulthood. And I couldn't be more proud of the wonderful young woman who I see before me.

Life at this moment feels like a breath being held. The space between the inhale and the exhale, when the world lies suspended, and anything might happen. The last of the exams have been written, the prom has been attended, a summer working at camp awaits. And now, when the world lies between inhale and exhale, when the summer is half awake, when school is done and the summer job not quite begun, I am happy for every moment.


Saucy Strawberry Cake

I loved this recipe! The only thing I might change is adding another cup or two of berries, and increasing the sugar and cornstarch in proportion, so the dessert is even more loaded with fruit.

For berries:

4 cups hulled strawberries, quartered (or more; see note above)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp cornstarch

For cake:

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1 Tbsp grated orange zest
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup milk
2 eggs
1/3 cup butter, melted and cooled
1 tsp cider vinegar
1 tsp orange extract or vanilla extract (I happened to have orange extract on hand and loved it. The original recipe called for vanilla and that would be great too.)

In saucepan, bring strawberries, granulated sugar and 1 Tbsp water to boil over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until berries begin to break down, about 5 minutes. Whisk cornstarch with 2 tsp water; stir into berry mixture. Cook, stirring, until thickened, about 20 seconds. Scrape into greased 8-inch square (2 quart) baking dish. Set aside.

While strawberries are cooking, in large bowl, whisk together flour, brown sugar, orange zest, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In separate bowl, whisk together milk, eggs, butter, vinegar, and orange or vanilla extract. Stir into flour mixture just until combined.

Pour batter over strawberry mixture, spreading evenly. Bake in 375 degree oven until centre of cake appears dry and no longer jiggles, about 35 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.



30 comments:

Kayte said...

The dessert looks wonderful, lots of strawberries here right now and this would be a good place to use some of them. Such a wonderful photo of you and your youngest...can't believe those young girls are all grown up...I've been following you a lot of years and I have tears in my eyes thinking of all the time that has disappeared already. Enough of that...on to happy times and a happy future for you all. Beautiful girl, beautiful dress. xo

Gloria Baker said...

Look delicious Beth!

Julie said...

Beth - What a beautiful girl and such a lovely post! You write so eloquently about this time your lives!! I was a little misty eyed reading it.

Oh and the dessert looks amazing, too. Have a great week.

Natalie Aguirre said...

I'm going through the same things as you with my daughter. It's so great to see what they've achieved and where they're going, but hard to see them separating as they need to do. Your daughter looked lovely at prom.

Beth said...

Thanks to all of you for your thoughtful words.
Kayte, I feel as if I know you even though we've only met virtually. We've both seen our kids grow into adults during that time.
And Natalie, I've thought of your lovely daughter many times this spring as she gets ready to move on to the next stage.
(I must admit to feeling a little misty too, Julie!)

Angie Schneider said...

Berry cakes are the nicest treat! Your youngest daughter is REALLY tall!

Abbe Odenwalder said...

What a beautiful couple and what a lovely daughter. I remember those moments and whenever I see photos like this it always leaves a lump in my throat!

Abbe Odenwalder said...

What a beautiful couple and what a lovely daughter. I remember those moments and whenever I see photos like this it always leaves a lump in my throat!

Cakelaw said...

Congratulations to your daughter! What beautifil photos. The strawberry cake looks delish.

Rosemary Wolbert said...

A beautiful young woman, Beth, and how well you've expressed this fragile bit of in between time. Perfect.

We Are Not Martha said...

Aw you both look beautiful! And this strawberry cake delicious!

Sues

dedy oktavianus said...

awesome cake!!
lovin this for brunch break in the Hospital.....
Dedy@Dentist Chef

Andrea_TheKitchenLioness said...

Dear Beth, what a beautifully written post - I enjoyed reading each and every word of it! And congratulations to your daughter - she looks like a true treasure!
All the very best to all of you!
Andrea

Claudia said...

Such an appropriately named dessert for a budding young adult. It is something, isn't it? This "all growed up" stuff. Everything about the post made smile - and remember. All those milestones.

lisa is cooking said...

Congratulations to your lovely daughter! This cake looks like a terrific way to celebrate this time between schedules. Love the idea of adding more berries too!

Wendy Jacob said...

Lovely photo Beth, she is one tall drink of water (pretty much the only recipe I can make successfully).

thepaintedapron.com said...

mmmmm, never had strawberry cake!
Jenna

Jemi Fraser said...

She's lovely!!
This cake sounds great - I'll definitely be trying it :)

Valerie Gamine said...

Congratulations to your daughter! You're holding up much better than my mom did when I was about to start college. Being the youngest, I think she took the fact that I was growing up a bit harder than when my sister graduated. No worries though, the baby of the family will always need her mom. :-)

The cake looks exquisite!!

Liz Berg said...

Congratulations to you both! Your daughter is a beautiful young woman---and I wish her every success in the next chapter. And your cake is a delicious way to celebrate :)

Catherine said...

Dear Beth, What a beautiful day. Congratulations! to you and your daughter. I wish her all the very best. She looks beautiful and you look so very happy and proud.
The cake is perfect to sit and relax and moment and reflect with a nice cup of tea or coffee. xo Catherine

Linda said...

Your photos are beautiful and I wish you and your family nothing but happiness! The cake looks divine! :)

Linda said...

Your photos are beautiful and I wish you and your family nothing but happiness! The cake looks divine! :)

Barbara said...

Congratulations to your daughter, Beth. She's lovely and you both have much to be proud of. Time flies, doesn't it? I wish her great success in anything she chooses to do.

Katerina said...

Congratulations to your daughter Beth! I wish to you nothing but happy moments like this one! Delicious cake!

grace said...

she's lovely! and so tall! :)
this cake sounds great, though i'm almost to the point where i refuse to eat fruit desserts without vanilla ice cream...

Tricia Buice said...

Your daughter is gorgeous and the photo of you two together is wonderful! Beautiful ladies. Congratulations on the graduation - such a wonderful time!

Marcela said...

I love the photo of you two together! Congratulations on the graduation!

I Wilkerson said...

Ah yes, I understand. Graduation for us last Sunday... and so many final celebrations. Congratulations on raising a beautiful (inside too I'm sure) daughter.

Monica said...

What an exciting time for your beautiful daughter! Congrats on all the milestones. There are lots of adventures to come for her.

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