I woke up this morning to a world covered in crisp, white frost. Snow was falling, so was the temperature, and our heating is still broken. In bed with my woollen socks, three blankets and a hot water bottle, I felt rather like the Dashwood sisters in their cottage. Give me an old building where I can fix things that are broken, not this new fangled construction that hides everything away under the floorboards.
We had lunch at the new Tivoli Food Hall with one of my oldest friends, and then all spent the afternoon at the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek. We wandered through rooms filled with Egyptian mummies, Degas’ sculptures and Roman statues. Thinking about it, why does no one commission marble statues of themselves anymore? If not, I’m sure Instagram or Snapchat can create a marble statue filter. They would probably look a lot more real than some of the overly-Botoxed, Disney eye ones that so many people are using these days. Sorry, this is a pet peeve of mine.
This weekend I finally got the Alexander Hamilton biography I’ve been longing for. As some of you may know, we’re a little Hamilton obsessed here at the moment. But I have to say it’s the best history book I’ve read in years. Had it not been for the musical, I probably would never have bought the biography that inspired Lin-Manuel Miranda, but I am so glad I did. I can’t remember the last time I lost myself so deeply in a book so quickly. Reading about Hamilton’s childhood in the Caribbean made me crave a good old Danish krydderkage – spice cake – made with muscovado sugar for that molasses-like colour. For me, this is a high school cake. Something we would make after school and drink with pots of tea while gossiping about boys or our plans for the future. Maybe that was why I wanted it; reading Alexander Hamilton brought me right back to those days in high school when the French Revolution opened up a whole new world for me.
You will need:
175g of butter
175g muscovado sugar
1 tsp ground all spice
1 tsp ground cardemom
1 tsp ground cloves
2 tsp cinnamon
2dl whole milk (just over 3/4 cups)
Cream the butter and sugar and beat in the egg. Mix the dry ingredients together and add them to the butter mixture a little at a time, alternating with the milk. Beat until smooth then add to a greased baking tin and bake at 175C for around 45 minutes. As always, the temperature depends on your oven. Even Wonder Oven couldn’t do this one quickly. While it was baking, the whole apartment smelled of spices.
It is at its most delicious on the day you bake it, but will keep well for a few days. If you can resist it!
P.S. Still behind on the writing, although that short story is really knocking at my brain.