She quickly reaches in and picks me up. Her soft, warm fingers and thumb skillfully touch me in a way that is familiar. We’re together again. Finally.
It has been a while since she’s held me so close. You see, at any given time there could be 12 of us waiting for the chance to serve her. For the others it is their duty, and they patiently wait their turn. But for me it is all about pleasure: the pleasure I give to her and that which she unknowingly gives to me.
She is anxious, yet the warmth of her steady hand reassures me. Moving with graceful speed, she gently presses me down until I feel a slight crackle before being plunged into sweet, pillowy softness. I carefully balance what I am about to deliver while her experienced, reassuring hand guides me to her eager lips. The sweetness of her breath glides over me, momentarily caressing me like a gentle breeze on a hot summer afternoon. We do this again and again. Our rhythm is certain; there is no hesitation.
As she envelops me for one last time, she lingers. Slowly tickling each of my tines, one-by-glorious-one, with a force so deliberate, so exquisite, it makes me happy that I am a fork rather than a spoon.
I can hear her softly muttered moans of pleasure. Can she hear mine?
We savor the moment.
She and I.
Alone in our bliss.
There is something homey and familiar about coffeecake, and this one is no exception. I like to serve it warm from the oven in which case plate and fork are required. The cake will literally melt in your mouth and generate some "oohs" and "aahs" along the way. And the crunchy topping will have the perfect snap if the almonds are just lightly toasted beforehand.
- 2 1/4 cups flour
- 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger
- 3/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup buttermilk
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Spread almonds into a single layer on a baking sheet and place in the oven for about 5 minutes. Remove from the pan and allow to cool.
- Meanwhile mix flour, sugars, 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon, salt, and ginger in a large mixing bowl.
- Add oil and blend until well combined.
- Remove 3/4 cup of mixture to a small bowl and add the almonds and remaining cinnamon. Set aside.
- To the remaining mixture in the large bowl, add the baking powder, baking soda, egg and buttermilk.
- Mix until just blended.
- Pour batter into a buttered 9-inch x 13-inch baking pan. Top with almond mixture.
- Bake 30-35 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
- Cut in squares and serve warm.
Recipe adapted from California Heritage Continues, a cookbook from The Junior League of Pasadena.