I've never thought more about sleep in my entire life. I've got a running tab in my head of how many hours everyone in our house has slept in the past 24 hours, how much time between all of our naps. I even dream about sleeping when I'm finally sleeping. And then ohmygod I hear myself talking about it to other people and I bore myself to sleep. Even my loving husband, who is personally involved in our household's sleep plight, told me my conversation was getting a little tiresome. Somebody please stop me. (I hope you're still awake right now.)
We had one incredible morning last week where we woke up before Louis. We sang and danced our way downstairs, made celebratory coffee and Instagrammed the whole thing before he stirred. Then the next night SUCKED. Even in the middle of it DP and I said out loud to each other: we jinxed it. Damn, we were cocky. So while we've had our successes, sleep still eludes us. That mysterious, fickle lady. I hate that I love her so much.
Aside from all things sleep, I'm starting to finally cook again for real and it feels grounding and good. Even if it's something simple like a roast chicken or a tomato salad or an easy cake. It makes it feel more like a home around here and less like a baby way station. Turns out the kitchen is good for more than plating take-out or washing breast pump parts.
This olive oil cake is fantastic and a real crowd-pleaser. It tastes like a seven-hour stretch of sleep after you've only dabbled in three-hour stretches for the last five months. Or like your four-month-old going down for a nap in his big-boy crib and simply rolling over and going to sleep WITH ZERO CRYING. It tastes like a drive on LA's most traffic-y freeway where your kid peacefully passes out in his car seat for your entire trip. Basically? This cake tastes like sleep. Delicious, tasty sleep.
God willing, you can well-restedly eat a slice with your celebratory coffee.
makes one cake
serves however many you're willing to share it with
adapted from Giada De Laurentiis
You can make this with regular flour if you like. Just omit the xanthan gum.
1-1/2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour
3/4 t xanthan gum
2 t baking powder
1/2 t kosher salt
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
zest and juice of one medium lemon
1/4 cup half-and-half
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus a little extra for coating the pan
3/4 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted and coarsely crumbled
powdered sugar, for sifting on top
Preheat oven to 350F and grease the bottom and sides of a 8" round (or 9" square) cake pan with a slick of olive oil. Whisk the flour, xanthan gum, baking powder and salt together and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the eggs, sugar, lemon zest and juice until pale. Mix in the half-and-half, and then gradually mix in the olive oil. Add the flour mixture bit by bit until combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Stir in the almonds. Pour into the prepared pan and bake until a tester comes out with moist crumbs, about 35 minutes. Allow to cool 15 minutes on a rack and then dust with copious powdered sugar. Serve warm or at room temperature.
love and zzzzzs,