- butter in the refrigerator
- fresh Meyer lemons
- a recipe that has crossed one's path
- a new Kitchenmaid stand mixer, preferably apple green in color.
- one's writing group is coming over for lunch.
P.S. having a poem ready for one's writing group is evidently not a felicity condition, or even a necessary condition. Having a poem ready for one's writing group is extra. I.e., not required.
Let us pause to reflect on the glory of the stand mixer in comparison to the hand held mixer:
- The hand held mixer is powered by little mice running around in existential despair.
- The hand held mixer is nigh unto powerless before the unwrapped egg white or unwrapped heavy cream. Too viscous! say the existential mice. Too heavy!
- The stand mixer, however, is stalwart.
- The stand mixer is jaunty, also, because of the apple green aspect.
- The stand mixer takes your eggs and sugar and whips them until they are light.
- Whereas the hand mixer, and by extension, literally, one's arm, says, complainingly, is it light yet? NOW is it light? when it is not light, not at all.
- But the weary mice and existential arm, despite all the whipping and timing and carrying on, just don't have the stuff. In the end, they give up. They are not prepared to go the distance.
- Whereas the stand mixer is. The stand mixer will go the distance, and how.
Whilst the stand mixer kept beating air into the eggs and sugar until they truly were light and pale yellow and a phenomenon that I had never truly witnessed except in dreams, I was able to walk around in the kitchen, gathering whatnot and what have you, spooning in flour from a little bowl, adding splashes of cream, grating the meyer lemon zest, and so on, until I had a batter the likes of which had never been beheld in my kitchen. Praise the Lord!
Then I poured it into my fancy bundt pan and baked it. In my new oven. It was basically baking ecstasy around here.
I served the cake with whipped cream and raspberries and it was grand. Everyone had some, we all loved it, and now--and now! there is leftover cake at my house. I can have a little sliver. I can have a fat piece. I have wrapped it lovingly so that it won't dry out. I figure we have a few more days of the peace of mind that comes from having cake in the house.