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grinding to a halt

waking up this sunday morning; a sunday morning, in some ways, like every one that has come before. outside a silver disc of sun presses through steely clouds; fine-grained snow pelts the trees standing tall in the 2-degree air.

and yet.

for those generations of humankind walking the earth today, this sunday morning has no precedent.

we go about our morning routine: breakfast, dishes; we get dressed and ready for the day. though, of course, we won’t be going anywhere. there are countless things that could be done, should be done:

endless chores, bills, taxes. knitting, reading, baking, weaving. arts & crafts projects. board games.

and yet it’s hard to focus on anything, the looming spectre of pandemic demanding attention. i check the news far too often with the hope of finding a glimmer of hope, yet knowing that is weeks away (at best). the feelings take root:

discomfort, agitation, anxiety. restlessness, uncertainty, isolation. dis-ease: the root of what is causing all this turmoil.

a feeling of powerlessness, of knowing we just have to wait this out. of fearing the worst yet hoping for the best. of taking things one day at a time, when life as we have always known it grinds to a halt.

lemon yogurt bundt cake makes one 10-C bundt cake and 6 cupcakes

I do, still, take comfort in the kitchen: cooking, baking, measuring, stirring. I made this bee cake on a spring-like day a couple of weeks back, when the world seemed more normal and the changing seasons apparent. the recipe is adapted from david frenkiel & luis vindahl’s shattered blueberry and yogurt cake recipe in “green kitchen at home” — a cookbook a highly recommend for its innovative vegetarian cuisine, from breakfast delights to creative lunches, great snacks and delicious desserts. the nordicware honeycomb bundt pan is such fun to use, and the little combs pull apart easily for a just-the-right-size bite of sweet.

thank you for reading, and sending thoughts of health and happiness to everyone.

Ingredients:

  1. 230 g oat flour

  2. 228 g almond flour

  3. 2 tsp baking powder (for high-elevation >5000′, use 1 tsp)

  4. 1 tsp sea salt

  5. zest of 1 lemon

  6. 200 g butter, at room temperature

  7. 1 1/3 C real maple syrup

  8. 2 C full-fat plain yogurt

  9. 6 eggs, separated

  10. 1 t vanilla extract

To prepare:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F (for high elevation > 5000′, preheat to 365F).

  2. Grease your bundt pan *generously* (very generously!) with melted butter using a pastry brush, and sprinkle with oat flour. Set aside.

  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the oat flour, almond flour, baking powder, sea salt, and lemon zest. Set aside.

  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the eggs whites until they hold a soft peak. Scoop the egg whites into a separate bowl.

  5. Swap out the whisk attachment in your mixer for the paddle attachment.

  6. Cream the butter on medium-high speed until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes.)

  7. Turn the mixer off, add the yogurt and eggs yolks and stir on low then medium speed until well-mixed.

  8. Turn the mixer off, add the maple syrup and vanilla extract, and stir on low then medium speed until well-combined. Note that if your eggs, yogurt, and syrup are cold, the mixture might look chunky as the butter chills back down. This is okay and won’t affect the final cake.

  9. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture in two batches, stirring on low speed until well-incorporated.

  10. Remove the mixing bowl from the stand mixer and fold in the egg whites in two batches with a rubber spatula, being sure not to overmix.

  11. Pour the batter into the prepared bundt pan. Make sure you don’t overfill as the batter will expand when it bakes and you don’t want it to overflow the pan! You can make cupcakes with the extra batter. I had enough for six cupcakes in addition to the bundt.

  12. Bake until golden brown and a knife inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes for cupcakes and 40-60 minutes for the bundt cake, depending on the pan depth.

  13. Let the bundt cool for 10 minutes, then invert it onto a wire cooling rack to finish cooling completely.

  14. Sprinkle the cake with powdered sugar if desired. Enjoy!

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