Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Paging Chris Martin

Maybe it's because the weather has finally turned cloudy, bringing much-needed rain, but for the last two days I've been cooking bright-colored, cheery food. Specifically yellow.

Yesterday I tried a Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall recipe for a salad made of equal parts shredded apple, pear, and raw beet. It is dressed with olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper, and it's a fantastic, fresh-tasting salad. I'll definitely make it again.

You won't hear me say this often, but I think I did ol' Hugh one better: I used a golden beet instead of a red beet in my version. It looked so vibrant and happy! (Or, depending on your outlook, a little like an oddly crunchy egg salad.)

Fast-forward to today...

The cake in the picture is a half-recipe of what The Fannie Farmer Cookbook calls Daffodil Cake. It's a true spongecake with no butter or shortening; all the leavening comes from the eggs. Most of the cake is white, like an angel food cake, but it is interspersed with splashes of orange-scented egg-yolky yellow cake.

It is normally made in a tube pan, but I made my half-sized cake in an eight-inch round. I glazed it with a simple sugar glaze made with orange juice and orange zest. And yes, those are a couple of my candied tangerine peels on top.

The yellow parts of my cake were a little paler than I liked, and I wondered why. But then I remembered the free-range vs. commercial egg demonstration and figured that when the recipe was originally written, more people were using darker-colored eggs. I can't wait to try this recipe again when I have my own chickens!

Does anyone else ever go through a period of making food of a certain color? It's odd, but right now it's working for me.