This weekend, I baked Pizza Rustica in Baking with Julia, and loved it. I mean loved, as in, I could eat this every day if the cheese and egg count alone wouldn’t kill me. It was amazing — sweet dough (what with the 1/3 cup sugar), and all that salty Pecorino Romano and prosciutto to balance the sweetness. The pie was so good that my neighbor, an Italian cook herself who makes homemade pasta on a daily basis, wanted the recipe for her family’s Easter celebration. It was so good that Ed on his low carb diet ate more than two slices. It was that good.
However, it still wasn’t good enough for Monkey Man and Gorilla Girl, who refused it on sight, and demanded an alternate dinner (broccoli and cheese, anyone?).
Since I started making homemade ice cream about a year ago, and homemade bread in January, Ed reminds Monkey Man and Gorilla Girl on a regular basis that my secret ingredient is “love.” Even all the love in my pizza rustica couldn’t get MM and GG to go for it. Too spicy, they said, green things, they said (fresh chopped parsley). Like a spurned lover, I turned to alternate “love” infused foods.
Enter buttermilk raspberry cake, because it just seemed like a perfect spring cake. Gorilla Girl, while eating her piece of said cake tonight, noted that this was a “loooove cake.” She happens to be quite a fan of looooove cakes. We talked a bit about all of the foods we eat, made with love, of course.
In my faculty meeting today, someone shared jelly beans, because at the end of the day, teachers always seem to need a jolt of sugar. A colleague noted that Americans eat so much sugar that, according to a recent NY Times article, it is now a toxic substance. As I munched my fifth (or twenty-fifth) jelly bean, I wondered if my children are eating too much sugar. We avoid processed foods like the plague, but there is certainly no shortage of love infused cakes, ice cream, cookies, and desserts in this house. After reading the article, “Is Sugar Toxic?” I began to doubt my love infused cake theory. What good is loved infused cake if the sugar is toxic? Perhaps I need to rethink food — again — in order to help my family sustain a healthy and long life.
Perhaps my love needs a new outlet, one less connected to refined sugar.