Several months ago, I found a food blog that combined two of my passions, reading and cooking. The blog is Cook the Books. Each month one of the hosts, Rachel, Debbie or Jo chooses a novel that is entwined with food. Those that choose to participate read the book, cook something inspired by the book and then blog about it.
This month's book was The School of Essential Ingredients by Erica Bauermeister.
This is a heart-warming story about a group of people that come together on Monday nights for a cooking class at Lillian's restaurant. Through cooking, food and each other, these individuals find passion, hope and friendship.
The characters and story made me feel many different emotions as I was reading. The most prevalent emotion was envy. I know, crazy right? Well, I would love to have an opportunity like these characters had. A cooking class by a professional chef and restaurant owner. Wow! I have taken one cooking class before (one night only) with my sister in law and it was such a great experience that I will remember forever. I still make the recipes I learned from that evening.
One of these days..........
Maybe some day I will win the lottery, quit my job and go to culinary school. Who knows? Big dreams....
So, my contribution to this month's Cook the Books is a White on White cake. I loved the way the author described the cake and all of its simplicity in the story. To tell you the truth, I had trouble with this simplicity when I was making the cake. When I bake, I like to go "all out". If I'm going to bake something this unhealthy then it's going to be full of vibrant flavors and ingredients. I wanted to put lemon curd between the layers. I wanted to add something because it was just going to be white and vanilla flavored. Sounded pretty boring to me. Needless to say, I restrained myself so it stayed true to the white cake with white icing as in the story. I did add some lime extract to the icing, though. I needed some more flavor. I know...I'm weak. That's okay. It turned out incredible. and beautiful!
The recipes come from Cake Love by Warren Brown. The cake is a white butter cake and the icing is an Italian Meringue Buttercream. I will be posting the recipes in a couple days. We decided to take a last minute road trip to St. Louis this weekend so I will be adding the recipes when I get back.