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almonds

Winter Break

Winter Break

I am going to unplug for the rest of 2016. To reflect on the many amazing, insightful, mind-opening, trying, strengthening experiences I have had this year. A year in which, I lived in so many places, so many different lives, reinventing myself literally every 2 months. A year when I pushed myself beyond my comfort zone, but, yet to understand where that has taken me because I have not had the time to process. So, I am going away from the internet world for the last week of 2016... To bury myself in books and thoughts and come out refreshed in 2017!

But, I will leave you something to munch on of course... :)

Amazing gluten free seeded almond flour waffles!

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Cherry Marzipan Tart With Cognac Cream

Cherry Marzipan Tart With Cognac Cream

Cherry tart is but a simple one yet an elegant one filled with the nuttiness of both the oat and almond crust as well as the marzipan creamed for the frangipane filling. To top it with fresh cream whipped with a pour of cognac was rather natural. Cherries and cognac have a relationship not exactly incestuous but yet very wicked and very very alluring. Then, I must needs macerate the fruit in cognac, after all. That was the final layer and it was decadent!

I don't think I need to elaborate how amazing this tart was. Light, fruity and indulgent all in a bite. It does happen to be gluten free, but I must insist that as incidental as it is, it is also essential; The crust made with simple ground oats and almonds enhances the flavor. It may not be quite as good if you replaced it with a rice and bean based gluten free blend as it would have no added flavor. You can certainly use a regular wheat crust if you are able to and it will be good. This crust, however, is perfect for this tart...

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Pristine..

Pristine..

Pristine. Nothing is. Yet, why do we try to box life into it? Homes are never spotless if they have been lived in. Yet, we see so many stunning photos of perfectly styled and photographed homes that set our hearts racing. Kitchens, are rarely clean if someone who loves to eat resides there. Yet, most photos that you see, styled rustic or contemporary, are so flawless. I ponder about it and wonder why. Is it a quest for something that is not really achievable in reality that makes us obsessed with it in smaller frames where we have more control? Like through the lens of a camera for a short period of exemplified purity? Like a mummified moment....

I have at times yearned for that carefree impeccability that has taken the styling world by a rage under the name of Scandinavian aesthetic that paints a sunny, pleasing picture of everything. I have tried to get it that look, live that life, be that person.

The truth is my kitchen always looks like a war zone, my fridge always has something that has been there too long, my pantry has jams and preserves that I forgot I had made, or packets of lentils and spices stashed in the recesses and completely forgotten until I go looking for something and find something else. The truth is this is my reality. I am not perfect. I am not pristine.

And, I am happy I am not. Phew!

I suppose this cake is kind of my way of acknowledging that. It is a strawberry cake of sorts with a cake using a borrowed recipe. My rhubarb strawberry compote was a tad overcooked because I left it on the stove and got immersed in a book I was reading. But, it tastes awesome and makes for an lovely sweet-tang note on this frosting. 

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Almond Rhubarb Cake for Two

Almond Rhubarb Cake for Two

Rhubarb and Friday! It has been a long week and going to be not much of a weekend with work that needs to be wrapped up piling up my to-do list. Still, I am going to rejoice in the tying together of loose ends, snatched times to self over the next few days and simply, the checking of items from the list that will thankfully happen. I am going to run back to that list but I had to leave you with this gem of a cake made with the season's blushing favorite, Rhubarb!

Also, if you are interested in improving your phone photography, I wrote a post with tips on composition and processing on the phone.

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Pancakes and Eggs

Pancakes and Eggs

It is a simple world I live in. 

Markets on Sunday. Fresh eggs and milk from the farm. Sundays for lazy brunches. Sundays for kickstarting workout routine. Saturdays when I wake up without an alarm, and yet, early. Saturdays with leisurely dinners with friends. Saturdays of drinks with the cherished. Fridays to celebrate the end of the week. Fridays when coffee flows into wine. Fridays when eyes shine bright for possibilities. And, I forget about the rest of the days in the week.

Wish that were all true! It isn't or but that doesn't stop me from attempting for that ideal every time. Ha! Eternal optimist. :)

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