Reacquaintance

Have you ever been stuck for words when writing? Not because there was nothing to write about but because there was so much in your mind that nothing you try to write makes any sense?

It has been close to two weeks since I have been back from India. IΒ haven’t yet written a single post this year. And I have been trying. I have written and unwritten fruitlessly. And the repetition is distressing. This has to pass, I keep thinking, this is just temporary. It happens. Doesn’t it?
Bown Butter pear cake

While this ‘thing’, whatever it is, passes, I will leave you with a cake. This cake of delicious brown butter, ripe bosc pears and bittersweet chocolate was made back in the Fall but did not make it to the blog because I didn’t think the pictures did this most delicious cake any justice. I remember thinking as I looked at the photos,”Something is missing; something just doesn’t sing”.

“Think twice before you throw away something” my mother had always said. I’m glad that inner voice guided me to keep those photos – perhaps for a rainy day – just like this one. And while I write this, I ruefully wonder how many beautiful sentences I had already thrown away (deleted) instead of walking away … and coming back later to ponder upon.

But I do believe that once I get past publishing my first post in 6 weeks, getting past falling off routine and getting past the fact that all my valuable readers haven’t forgotten me I shall find that balance again.

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I hope you have been well and had a peaceful Holiday Season. I wish you the very best for this year. I have missed all your lovely blog posts for the last seven weeks. I wish it was possible to properly catch up. Thank you for stopping by and encouraging me with your valuable comments and heart warming wishes. I have been lucky because of you all!

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BROWN BUTTER PEAR CAKE WITH BITTERSWEET CHOCOLATE
Recipe adapted from the blog Smitten KitchenΒ 
YOU NEED:
  • All purpose flour: 1 cup
  • Unsalted butter: 4 ounces
  • Eggs: 3
  • Baking powder: 1 Tbsp
  • Salt: 1/4 tsp
  • Sugar: 1 cup
  • Bosc pears: 3 peeled and diced into small pieces
  • Bitter sweet chocolate chips: 1/2 up

HERE’S HOW:

  • Preheat oven at 350 degrees F.
  • Use parchment paper to line a 9 inch spring form pan.
  • Sift flour, salt and baking powder and divide into three equal parts and set aside.
  • Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat by stirring frequently. Keep cooking the butter until it turns light brown in colour and has a beautiful nutty smell. Take off heat and keep warm.
  • Whip the eggs at room temperature until they are very pale in colour and thick in consistency. Add the sugar to this and whip for a few more minutes. Be careful not to over whip and deflate the mixture.
  • The next step needs to be done very quickly and precisely. Add the flour and the brown butter alternatively: flour, butter, flour, butter, flour. Mix this try carefully with a silicon spatula taking as less time as possible until everything is combined.
  • Pour the batter into the parchment lined tin.
  • add the chopped pears and the chocolate chips on top and bake for 50 minutes or more if required.
  • Check cake with a tester or a wooden skewer. Make sure it comes out clean as the pears release a lot of liquid and makes the cake batter slightly runny. If it doesn’t come out clean keep adding 5-8 more minutes till you get a clean skewer. The cake will be golden brown in colour and spring back when touched at the center.
  • Dust with icing sugar when cooled and serve. It can also be served warm.
  • Enjoy!
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54 thoughts on “Reacquaintance

  1. I’m not sure if this is true for you but what I find is that when I was posting my photos on Facebook, I was storytelling to my friends. But now that I blog about it, so much needs to be edited that it’s overwhelming. They can’t just be photos of this cool place in Bangkok, they have to be the perfect photos of this cool place in Bangkok with beautifully written words that accompany the photos. (Hence, I have not blogged about the best 2 weeks of my trip yet).
    I’ve never been to India so please, tell me about it. I really look forward to it.

    • Yes, so so true. I think sometimes we get all wound up in our own emotions about a topic. Like your trip to Bangkok and my trip home to India, it’s hard to write, to express all the things that make us feel the way we do. Sometimes it is harder when we don’t allow ourselves much time and patience or even acknowledge some of the mixed feelings we may have. My trip back home always leave me partially sad because I miss my family sorely and maybe that is why the wordsI write are unable to satisfy.
      But yes, it will come. I hope you take our time and pen down those memorable moments from your trip.
      Thank you for visiting and leaving me your encouraging words.

      • I posted about my trip to Bangkok. Not the best but I thought my 100th post was somewhat ceremonial. I think I will post more bits later as I’m not terribly satisied with it.
        Hope you are well.

      • Sorry for taking so long to reply. I have been swamped with things unfinished lately. I love your posts. They have so much information but in a way that makes it not only interesting but keeps me thinking what will it be next.
        And I think it is best to post things when we are ready, no matter how long it takes because any time is the right time! πŸ˜€

  2. great start, welcome back. Funnily enough, I just posted my first blog today, after almost 2 months….too much going on in december.. and too add to that the sad events around the world were too disturbing…. just could not get myself to write… anyways happy to see your post. look forward to a great year ahead. Hope you get over the ‘thing’ soon, good luck!!

  3. That cake looks beautiful! I’m so glad you decided to post it. Sometimes all you need is a fresh perspective. And I totally agree with Colleen’s comment above. Writing (and editing) blog posts, especially after you’ve traveled somewhere, takes time. Often I just want to post something quick, but until I’m 100% satisfied with it, I just can’t hit publish.

    • Thank you! I appreciate the encouragement very much.
      It takes time. It also takes patience with self I think and some confidence. I also think people like you and all the other bloggers out there who takes the time to send a few words of reassurance is very vital. So, thank you once again.

  4. Keep calm and write on. It is the nature of the creative process that one struggles with the words. If this were not the case, anybody could do it. If that we’re the case, nobody would be interested. We are interested. Like the hue snow falls I hear about in St. Johns, it will pass. Keep calm, you will write on.
    Best and a belated happy new year,
    Conor

    • The snow that petrified us on Friday that resulted in an island wide power shortage is almost half gone. Melted. I am not quite there yet but this ‘thing’ I have will melt away too, I know. In the mean time I will take your advice and ‘Keep Calm’. Thank you Connor. Much appreciated!

  5. Fabulous cake. Nice post, too. Blogging takes time and I agree with Conor. If it were easy everyone could do it and no one would be interested. As it is, you wound up with a nice post with beautiful photos and a great recipe. You can’t ask for anything more than that.

  6. I think the photos are gorgeous and the cake looks amazing. AND I know exactly how you feel. Having nothing to write about isn’t the problem, often it is not knowing where to start. True for me. Blogging about family, life, food and hospitality often means a post about a wonderful recipe one day and a post about tonsils or painting a table the next. I am learning not to worry about all of the pieces fitting together perfectly and just writing life as it comes. Your blog is wonderful!

    • Thank you for the reassurance and the encouragement. It is truly needed. I often struggle with the right sentence that truly encapsulates my feelings, but i do get it right at the end, except this time. It becomes frustrating and tiresome and in turn it brings a new fear, ‘what if I’ve lost my touch!’. I am learning it isn’t just me.
      Thank you for your compliments on the cake. It is truly more delicious than it looks.

  7. welcome back dear….this sudden bloggers block happens to most of us. dont worry. just write about anything. at the end of the day all what matters is what makes us happy.
    thats a wonderful cake. loe the clicks.

  8. I think this cake looks (and sounds) great, although I can definitely relate to not being super satisfied with food photos. It can be so annoying especially if the recipe was really tasty!

  9. The cake look beautiful, I love the photo of it partially wrapped. I always find it hard after a holiday to sit back down and blog, particularly in summer when I want to be outdoors.

  10. So nice to see you back! Sometimes writing is such hard work and getting to the end of a post is a chore. And other times, I sit at my keyboard and the words flow like cool water on a hot, hot day. It’s hard to know why, but I do know that when the writing feels like drudgery it always passes. Your post is a delight, as always: beautiful photos, well-chosen words and a recipe that I want to try. Now.

    Happy New Year and all the best for 2013!

    • Thank you! You are very kind. It has started to feel better with everyone’s input here. I am truly grateful for people like you and everyone else who takes time to send a note of encouragement. It does wonders. I hope I can return these favours.
      I think the best way to enjoy blogging is not to feel the pressure and remember ‘life is as much about being stuck as is about the gratifications’.
      If you do make the cake, let me know. I do owe you all a better picture of this cake though.

  11. Wishing you and your loved ones a very happy new year! I agree that the best thing you can do for yourself is to take a little break from things from time to time and enjoy life, live it with your loved ones and come back in due time to your other loves! The cake looks incredibly delicious and yes, your mother was right about these pics!

  12. Fabulous Cake. Happy New Year to you! As you rightly said, there are so many emotions and thoughts going on in one’s mind that we hardly have the right food to write. I hope 2013 will make everything so good and better for us and for everyone in the world πŸ™‚

  13. We all get stuck sometimes. It does pass and then all of a sudden you burst of magic again! Like you did with this gorgeous and delicious pear cake.., yummy!!!

  14. The cake looks gorgeous! It speaks for itself really, if you ask me. You didn’t even need any words πŸ™‚
    I get the same feeling many a times when i sit down to right a post. Mostly, I am pretty organized where, when i start to cook or bake, I already have the post forming in my head. But there are times when however hard I try, there is nothing that doesn’t look like I haven’t said before. It is distressing, like you mentioned.
    Well Happy new year and wishing you and your blog lots of interesting writing, cooking, baking and photographing.

    • Thank you so much for dropping by and your kind words. I like being organized, makes it easier in the end but sometimes for whatever reason it seems it isn’t going no where.
      That cake wasn’t supposed to be blogged, I used it because I could site anything that satisfied me. I am glad though it is being appreciated.

  15. Oh wow! That is mouthwatering! And glad you held on to those images πŸ™‚
    This is rather belated, but I wish ou a year that is splendid in every way Deb!

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