{bake} easy yummy date cake

Baking makes me think of other things…

Let me explain…

Living these days in Lebanon is worrisome. We are in the middle of an unknown era where each hour can change the lives of too many. Having experienced war since my 5th birthday (born and brought up in Beirut), waiting for the next car bomb to explode brings fearsome and very annoying memories to the surface. Mind you, i am lucky in so many ways but today my life is about raising two beautiful children and making the best decisions to ensure that they at least grow up with some sense of security and carefree moments.

So I turn to baking. Because baking is about smells, textures, the anticipation of flavours melting in your mouth, the mixing of ingredients who by magic turn into rewarding comfort food.

So here is what i baked this morning:

ready to be tasted
ready to be tasted
served with white tea! a treat...
served with white tea! a treat…

DATE CAKE

ingredients:

185 g dates (without stones) and cut into smaller pieces.

1 tsp baking soda

2,5 dl boiling water

90 g softened butter

115 g brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla essence (or powder, works fine)

2 eggs

185 g flour

1,5 tsp baking powder.

how to:

The making is quite easy and forward.

In a bowl add the dates, the boiling water and the baking soda. Let it rest for 15 minutes while you make the rest of the cake. This will soften the dates and makes it easier to mix with the dry ingredients.

In another bowl, mix  with a mixer (or by hand with a wooden spoon, that will make you burn extra calories!) the softened butter with sugar and vanilla. It should become a light brown homogenous dough. Add one egg at a time, and mix well. Then sift half of the flour and add it to the dough, by mixing with a wooden spoon (here i suggest avoiding the electrical mixer, as it will remove the fluffiness of the dough). Add half of the date mixture. mix again. then add the rest of the flour, the baking powder and the date mix.

Give it one last blend by hand(spoon) and pour into a greased cake pan, any form will do. I am using the round one with the whole in the middle. the result is beautiful.

Bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 35-40 minutes, in the middle of a pre-heated oven.

When baked let it rest for 10 minutes before you remove it from its form.

Sift white powered sugar sprinkle over the cake!

done!

Bon appetit!!!

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Rough and magical sunset in kikhavn

I know this is going to be repetitive for some of you, but not sharing this magical walk is too selfish! Please bear with me and I am sure you will enjoy to some extend what we experienced first hand. ..Some of these pictures are taken by my son georges who has a good eye  for beauty ( thanks God my love of beauty is being transmitted to my young ones!)

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It is truly beyond description…am fascinated and in awe of these moments…

600 m2 Flee market in the middle of nowhere!

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If you are to some fun and exploration then this 600 m2 flee market on a road between two villages, asserbo and frederiksvaerk in northern Denmark is the place…you are met by myriad of knick knacks,  porcelain,  dolls, 50 year old tabloid magazines,  phones from 80 years ago, silver cutlery,  zillion of wooden frames and faded paintings, vintage furniture and fur coats. ..all of that served with a warm cup of coffee in pretty little white porcelain cups and even a piece of chocolate marble cake!  Ole the owner of this ali baba cavern meets you with a smile and will pretty much accept your price for your findings. .
Definitely a place to visit and who knows,  you might find your next perfect vintage orange glass plate for your collection!

happiness in LOVE {a post-valentine thought}

“Le secret du bonheur en amour, ce n’est pas d’être aveugle mais de savoir fermer les yeux quand il le faut.” – Simone Signoret

translation:

“the secret of happiness in Love, is not being blind, but knowing when to close your eyes.” – Simone Signoret

I posted this today on my personal facebook page, a post-valentine love quote, and got contradictory comments. Some agree and others disagree, which made me think again about the quote…

Indeed in LOVE we become blind, at first. We don’t see imperfections, flaws, stupid comments, bad behavior! all we see and hear are the sweet words, the endless messages and phone calls, the constant attraction and need of contact and interaction…until LOVE becomes a relationship and not a flirt anymore, and the repertoire of feelings change, deepens and broadens. You start acknowledging that the other person is still mr or ms X, but the aura is changing, becomes more human, less angelic, immortal and ideal… if you discover a total stranger, then I am afraid that LOVE is up. Meaning, time of happy LOVE is up… which then give you either the possibility of going away, or you start seeing the REAL person, his or hers qualities, actions (not only words), you see how he or she makes you feel when you are together, how you want to share time with that person, be with that person, how you need to have a future with him or her… Being blind is good, to begin with… but it doesn’t last. It evaporates, like a fog on a rainy day… then sunshine? or more fog?

In any case, closing your eyes at some moments in LOVE, might help LOVE continue its course, and blossom, and be stronger and why not, happy..

So i would agree with Simone Signoret (famous french actress who had to deal with competition with Marilyn Monroe!) in that happiness in LOVE would depend on the ability of closing your eyes from time to time, selectively, as long as shutting your eyes doesn’t mean that you become stupid and living in denial, but because shutting our eyes are a way of acknowledge that we are all human (yes we are!) and that we too might have done, said or acted in a way where we wished that the other person would close his or her eyes and let go, and chose to focus on what you do have in you life, cherish it, nurture it and make the best out of it…

My perception of LOVE might seem less naive today than 20 years ago, but doesn’t that mean that i am growing up and maturing? you tell me…

Hearts tree