I'm in a Southern frame of mind.
This time of year, as Spring comes so achingly slowly, I miss the Southland in the Springtime, to quote the Indigo Girls. Green and blossom and sunshine and warmth arrive earlier, unlike the Midwestern come hither, play hard to get dance.
I'm reading the Oxford American Food Issue and missing Southern foodways...(If you don't know this magazine, please check it out. Superb writing, engaging stories. It is my mother's goal that I will one day be published in its august pages.)
And, after an epic conversation with one of my dear, Southern grad school friends, I long to host a tea party on my screened in porch as I did many Springs in Auburn.
This week's selection, a simple coconut tea cake would be the perfect sweet treat to end a tea party of cucumber sandwiches and champagne punch.
The cake, which I made a half recipe in a loaf pan, is moist, dense, and redolent of sweet coconut, in both shredded (sweetened, untoasted) and milk (lite) forms. I made Dorie's lemon variation, and the slight citrus tang contrasts with the sweetness of the cake.
As I nosh the coveted end piece and sip a mug of Chunmee green tea, I think of S, K, S, and J. I think of our wide ranging discussions of literature, life, and love. Mostly, I think of the distinctive sound of each woman's laughter.
And through my missing, I smile.
There's something about the Southland in the Springtime, and all year long.
Thank you, Carmen, of Carmen Cooks, for selecting this delicious, simple, and satisfying recipe.