There are times in life that are rich in emotions, emotions that a heart alone cannot contain. Or it is necessary that this last one is well hung. These last days I was less present because I was on the road. My first trip took me to an unknown land. The archipelago of Malta, nestled at the crossroads of the Mediterranean sea routes, stands out, when the sun warms its stone, by its ochre and saffron colors. Flowers have never been as beautiful as on this limestone island. Hollyhocks, blue thistles, orange blossoms let their scents rush through narrow streets leading to small terraces, high points from which the turquoise horizon dazzles. Time has stopped here, everything is quiet and delightful. The bell towers of the 359 churches ring out in unison and the echoes vibrate with the Mediterranean waters.
This island, like my best friend Valentine who got married here, is cheerful, comforting and surprising.
How beautiful I found this atoll, how beautiful I found my Valentine, all dressed in white with an insecure smile on her lips as she knew that the happiness she was about to experience was gigantic for her frail arms. It did not matter because her heart could welcome the whole world on this day!
Beautiful emotional postcard that I keep, there in the corner of my soul.
I then went to Normandy, to say a last goodbye to my Grandpa who has gone. To remember all the nice things we had done together. Looking for that little tin soldier, hidden as a child, in the stone wall along that village road we took many times during our walks with him. I remember the Wednesday afternoons when I tried to solve geometry problems with his kutsch, not knowing which side to use, and he smiled at me with all the sweetness of a grandfather who is amused by his granddaughter. I could almost smell his coffee as he poured a drop of rum and broke a lump of brown sugar. Or to hear him tell me that “poissonnier” in patois is said “pessonnier” and I was shaken by an equivocal laugh.
There again my heart beat a little harder than usual perhaps so that it could hear its echo from up there.
So the “Cherry” cake was quite appropriate: to continue to love each other, to color those darker moments, to continue to enjoy the pretty moments that life offers too!
FOR A 10-PIECE CAKE:
For the sponge cake:
- 150 g powdered sugar
- 6 eggs (whites and yolks separated)
- 150 g flour
- 2 teaspoons of red coloring powder (optional)
- 1 teaspoon liquid vanilla extract
For the filling:
- 180 g morello cherry jam
- About 20 cherries, stemmed, pitted and halved
For the glaze:
- 350 g cream cheese
- 250 g powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon of liquid vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 250°C. Line the bottoms of two 20 cm diameter springform pans with parchment paper. Butter and flour the sides.
- In a bowl, beat the egg yolks, sugar, liquid vanilla extract and food coloring until the mixture has doubled in volume and forms a ribbon.
- Beat egg whites until stiff. Fold egg whites into sugar-yolk mixture, alternating with flour.
- Divide the mixture equally between the two springform pans and bake for 10 minutes. Check with a wooden skewer if necessary. Turn out of the oven and let the sponge cake cool on a rack.
- On a first layer of sponge cake spread jam and garnish with morello cherries. Cover with the second layer of sponge cake.
- Make the icing:
Whisk together the cream cheese and powdered sugar, setting aside 50 g.
Spread the glaze over the entire cake with a spatula.
Mix the remaining 50 g of icing with the food coloring. Fill a piping bag with this mixture and make small piles on top of the cake. Decorate with a few cherries. Set aside in a cool place before eating.