Neighbors and cakes just go together, don’t they? Need a cup of sugar? Borrow one from your neighbor. Short one egg? Knock next door. Beware the big bad wolf, et cetera, but a little friendliness and generosity on the neighbor front is generally rewarded in spades, if not also in ingredients you can fold into batter.
I’m a sucker for a bit of synchronicity. No matter if something in the cosmos actually aligned to make it work out this way, but the past week has been filled with good cake and good neighbors and it all feels worthy of a show of gratitude, or at least a celebratory slice.
Above our table, a new lamp. On the table, a dozen eggs. In the three different kinds of cakes we’ve made over the past week, those eggs. All of them by way of neighborhood friends.
It’s not every day that I commission a tiny lamp from a neighborhood shop and get sent home with two different shades to try and a dozen of their just-gathered eggs for good measure. And it’s not every day that I can immediately fold those extra golden yolks into cake recipes so delicious we’ve been compelled to make three of them in one week.
All week, we’ve had cake on the table and a lamp overhead.
I can’t supply the eggs, but if you’re looking for foolproof cake, our neighbor and fellow lover of all things simple, Odette Williams, has her first book, Simple Cake, out this week from Ten Speed Press. It’s delightful and beautiful and photographed by another Brooklyn friend, Nicole Franzen. The recipes are simple enough to let you succeed at making them, but special enough to make you feel extra proud of yourself for doing it. Odette will make you double-sift your flour and hand-whip your cream, but you won’t even be mad at her for it. And in spite of what sounds like extra effort, just twenty minutes later you’ll have a cake in the oven and your dishes already sudsy in the sink.
In celebration of Odette’s genius, I’m giving away two copies of Simple Cake today on Instagram—one perhaps for you and one for a friend. All of the instructions on how to enter are on this post (US only; winners to be selected Friday, March 15, 2019, 12pm EST)!
For the curious:
+ We bought our new lamp from one of our favorite local shops, Holler & Squall. The shade is vintage milk glass, paired with a new cloth-covered cord and brass fittings. It’s perfect and it transformed our apartment overnight.
+ Speaking of neighborhood shops, when I remembered that I’d given away our non-stick cake pans in a fit of purging, I stopped into Whisk and bought two 8-inch round uncoated aluminum cake pans. They’re the ones Odette recommends in her book. They’re solid and sturdy and six individual cakes later, we’re very pleased.
+ Speaking of beautiful eggshells, after a little hiatus, the team at East Fork is back to making their very wonderful mugs (shown above in their eggshell glaze!). Mugs are relaunching today at noon and you can find them alongside my other East Fork favorites (like those side plates!). Use the code TEALEAVESFAVE for free shipping on your order. (Expires 4/15/2019; US shipping only.)
This post includes affiliate links. Reading My Tea Leaves might earn a small commission on the goods purchased through those links. East Fork Pottery is an RMTL banner advertiser and affiliate partner, but this post is not sponsored.