When I was a younger woman, I dreamed of adventure. Maybe riches. Sometimes romance. I have a very vague recollection of what it was like to let my mind wander and get lost in my own thoughts. As a much older woman now, let’s just say my dreams have shifted slightly. I have adjusted to my current season. Some might delicately put it that way. But the blunt truth of the matter is that I dream of very simple things these days. Like finishing a sentence without being interrupted. Just to pop out the first one that comes to mind. Yes, yes, yes . . . I am trying to train my children in this arena, so let’s not even go there. I mean really – there are four of them, and one of me. I’m grossly outnumbered.
Some weeks, having fun with this blog is one of the only times I can reassure myself that I’m still capable of maintaining a train of thought. I’ve also realized that I have a new way of rating my friends in regards to this new dream. A REALLY good friend is one who, after I have had to stop mid-sentence and run after my two year old, will say upon my return, “OK, so finish what you were telling me about xyz”. That friend was actually listening and cares about what I have to say. Then there are the friends who will say nada, zilch, zero upon my return. I always wonder whether they weren’t even listening in the first place or are actually just happy the toddler split when she did because they were over what I was saying 10 minutes ago. Then there are the friends who have their own 2 year olds (or a various aged gaggle of other children) with intermittent fleeing, climbing, and falling bouts. Pretty safe to admit, that we’re basically just smiling and nodding at each other and pretending to catch even 1/10th of what the other one is saying.
I know there will come a day in the future where I will wish I had a kid interrupting me. I also know that day will come sooner than I can probably imagine. I know I should make a mental recording of their angelic little voices that won’t always be calling my name (of course I would need some major sound engineering to lower out the whining, screaming, and/or sniveling). So I’ll try to keep that all in mind as I maneuver through each day. But I’ll also continue to dream my here-and-now-dream and let my reveries take me to the land of coherent, uninterrupted conversations while being surrounded by my offspring (other current dreams include reading a book on an airplane and peeing without an audience, in case you were wondering).
And with that, I think I was mentioning when we last spoke (before I was interrupted) that I had this great little grape and cake combo to tell you about, didn’t I? Well let’s get back to that .
Our CSA box has been bursting with grapes these last three weeks. Really delicious grapes. Autumn Royal Grapes, they are called and they come from A H Organics. After the second delivery, curiosity got the best of me and I started wondering what exactly I could do with grapes besides just rinse them and feed them to the troops as a snack or have a stomp fest in the back yard and teach a home school lesson on wine making. Well lo and behold, I found a recipe for a Moscato Cake with Grapes. I got really excited about this since I had never made a cake with moscato, nor had I ever confectioned with grapes. So off I went.
I started by brushing a spring form pan with olive oil, lining it with parchment, and then brushing the parchment with olive oil.
After that, I mixed some flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda and set the dry mixture aside. Then I whisked together some sugar, butter, and olive oil.
To that, I added a couple of eggs, some grated lemon peel, some grated orange peel, and vanilla.
Here’s where it got fun . . . and started to smell divine. To this mixture I alternately added the dry ingredients and 1 cup of moscato, making sure to blend well after each addition.
I poured the batter into my spring form pan, and then scattered my grapes over the top.
I baked it at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes until the top was set. Then I dotted the top with butter and sprinkled with sugar and baked another 20 minutes. When it was golden I pulled it out of the oven and let it cool for about 20 more minutes before releasing it from the pan.
The result was surprisingly good. Kiddos claimed it tasted like baked apples (hmmmmmm?) Every last crumb was gone in one sitting. Even the Hubs, who generally isn’t a fan of any baked fruit, liked it.
So chalk that one up to a new adventure . . . grapes in a cake, and some moscato to boot. Oh, and I feel so much better now that we had a chance to actually finish this conversation.
Here’s the complete recipe for Moscato Cake with Grapes, adapted from Epicurious.