Since becoming both a baker and a blogger, I have noticed an intrinsic change in the way I approach, prepare, and appreciate food. In many ways, I anticipated that a small evolution would take place when I carefully typed out my first post, but I could not have imagined how much it would affect (and continue to affect) my life.
When I started blogging, it was out of desperate desire to find a passion for myself, a need to express the confused emotions and excitement of growing up and coming into my own. I latched onto the idea that baking was where I should be, clutching onto the hope as if it was the only life saver in my ocean of feelings. There was no evidence to support these feelings—I did not bake often and knew very little about it—but I was so frantic to find something to call my own that this indomitable mountain did not seem to matter. When I began blogging, I started from scratch. I taught myself how to create desserts through trial and error. I experimented with yeast, rolled out pie crusts, and stumbled around the kitchen, sharing these moments of discovery with you.
I have met people who have changed the way I think about food. While I lived in Montreal, my roommate unknowingly shared her philosophy of cooking and eating over the dinner table each evening, as she consistently prepared fresh and healthy foods (a feat I had yet to master). She took me to the local farmer's market and shared her thoughts about fruits and vegetables, as we wandered through the colorful, vibrant aisles with our market bags growing increasingly heavier. Though her wisdom was disguised as everyday conversation, she unconsciously taught me to treat my body with respect. Looking back, it was a lesson I needed to learn more than I understood.
By chance, I once listened to a segment on the radio in which Nigella Lawson talked about her perspective on summer fruits. Her passion was so evident and her descriptions so vivid that I was swept up in her approach to food. Her words affected me so deeply that I can recall them several years later.
In those early months of discovery, when I could not have anticipated what my approach to food would become, I imagined myself making colorful cakes and using sprinkles on everything from cookies to ice cream cakes. My real evolution has taken me by surprise—a mixture of rusticity, homespun flavors, and what I hope to be honesty. I am driven by the seasons and fall prey to my whims and cravings. What started as a desperate compulsion to find a passion has matured into a journey of butter, sugar, and self-discovery.
Any path that leads to something so simple and elegant as coconut whipped cream is a path I deem worth following.
Coconut Whipped Cream is a dairy-free/vegan alternative to traditional whipped cream. The natural fat content of coconut milk makes it possible to whip it up with a mixer, creating soft peaks. While coconut whipped cream is not as stiff as whipped cream, the flavor is immaculate and can be spooned over any dessert of your choosing. The natural subtlety of coconut, along with a few vanilla bean seeds, makes this whipped cream memorable.