I’m waiting for someone to share this with…
Today is Saturday the 6th, and it is a perfect day for a beautiful June wedding. It’s just a shame that I can’t enjoy one. Today, I am confused. I am frustrated. I am sad. I don’t know what’s gotten into me, what’s gotten into us, but I’m filled with self-doubt, self-loathe, and self-deprecating emotions. I realize life isn’t always filled with sunshine and daffodils, no matter how hard I fight to keep my demons at bay. And I do try. Know that I do try, despite the lack of acknowledgment or sign of approval. But sometimes, trying just isn’t enough, and I just want to give up and stop trying. Torrents of terrible thoughts drown me until I am scared and helpless. And so I withdraw deep into myself, and find comfort in the familiar.
Methodological. Precise. Mechanical. It’s quite inline with the scientist in me. I am most comfortable among the scales and measuring cups, the flour and sugar, the butter and eggs. So I bake to abate the sadness. It’s called Kitchen Therapy for a reason.
For the Cupcakes:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 stick (8 oz) butter, room temp
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 oz bittersweet chocolate, melted
Whisk together flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
Cream the butter in a large bowl (hand or stand mixer) until soft and light in color. Add sugar and beat until well blended into the butter. Add egg, then yolk, scraping down the sides of the bowl with each addition as needed. Add vanilla, reduce speed and slowly add half the dry ingredients. Mix just until it disappears. Scrape down the bowl and add all the buttermilk, and mix. Add the rest of the dry ingredients. Scrape the bowl, add the melted chocolate and mix with a rubber spatula. Divide batter evenly among muffin molds (about a dozen). Bake 20-23 mins or until the center comes out clean. Let cool to room temperature before glazing.
For the Glaze:
3 oz bittersweet chocolate
1 tbs powdered sugar, sifted
2 tbs cold butter, cut into cubes
Melt the chocolate in a double broiler or heatproof bowl over simmering water. Remove from heat once melted, and let cool for 5 minutes. Whisk in the powdered sugar and add cubes of butter, one at a time, whisking with each addition. Dip each cupcake top into the glaze and swirl. Alternately, you can spread the glaze with an icing spatula. Let the glaze set at room temperature before eating. Enjoy.
These cupcakes are very dark and tight crumbed, and probably NOT appreciated by the typically jaded palate [not to be pretentious at all, HA]. They’re delicious. I even sprinkled a bit of shredded coconut on top just to contrast the dark cake and glaze, and to give it some crunch. But did they cure my melancholy? Not at all. I long ago figured out that though I get wrapped up in the baking process, the photography, and the eating, at some point, reality slowly creeps back and obscures my baking bliss, and once again I am reminded that happiness is ephemeral, and that these sadder moments in life make up reality.
On that note, readers, I leave you to go mope, while I pack up for my upcoming trip to Japan. It’s just another way to escape the present and delay the inevitable hurt and sadness. Or maybe if I’m lucky, I’ll come back renewed and free of this emotional burden. A new woman, if I may be so bold? Afterall, they say that time heals all wounds or time is the medicine of the gods. I hope it’s true. I don’t want to be yet another unfortunate and forgotten female protagonist in the struggle to define herself at the wake of a broken relationship. So God, or some one!, help me.