It’s well into 2018 and I’ve been meaning to write for a whole year. We continue to live in Berlin, which was a big question throughout 2017. I’ve become quite attached to the city as it turns out and so have the kids. Our neighborhood is peaceful and noisy at the same time and the light falls at an angle that makes every season a spectacle to behold. Coming out of the darkest one, into our second Springtime, has us all in a good mood. We know what to expect now, we know where the first plum trees are going to blossom, we think 4º C feels really warm. Yesterday was one of those warm days, with abundant sunshine spilling across my workspace, and a crisply cracked Classic German Baking to guide my birthday cake meditation.
Oscar was also born on one of those days, 15 years ago in the city of Chicago. There is something magical about childbirth that allows us to forget most of what it feels like. But occasionally the emotions will come thundering in at a moments notice. And for me those emotions arrived while I used a small whisk to beat the egg whites until tripled in volume during Step 2 and then to whip 3 cups of cream in Step 8. It took some time and Justin was working from home, so he kept me company and took some turns, and it reminded me of our beginning. When I look at him, I can still see the young man I was about to have a baby with, even though it’s nearly impossible to see that baby in the young man for whom I make the cake.
This Schwartzwälder Kirschtorte from Classic German Baking made everyone really happy, even the daughter who claims that she doesn’t like chocolate. We haven’t adopted the German tradition of afternoon cake, but today is a new day. Perhaps the secret of a teatime slice will finally sink in today.