Cake No. 04: Lemon Berry Crumble

Well, this one simply didn’t turn out is what I’ll say first.

It could have been a number of things: the slapdash sub of frozen berries upon realization that the toddler had eaten the remaining farmer’s market haul for breakfast. Distracted dumping of ingredients, later questioning: Did I mistake baking powder for baking soda? Did I measure the zest? Did I forget the vanilla?

My head was elsewhere, my heart lagging close behind.

You’ve heard, no doubt, countless baking metaphors in your life – the proverbial patience. The importance of precision, perhaps. The surprising beauty of a creative solution rising from mishap.

But today, after a particularly dry clump of failed, flavor-less lemon berry crumble, I can offer only this:

Things sometimes don’t turn out. In crumbles, in lives. A child’s dream, a flopped project, a botched canvas, a broken vow. The kicker, of course, is that even in retrospect, we’re not always privy to the why. Could’ve been the baking soda, but really – who knows?

Tomorrow, we try again.

  • Good morning Erin. When things don’t come together as planned, it helps us appreciate the moments so much more when they do. Your next lemon berry crumble is going to be amazing and memorable. Thank you so much for this needed, gentle reminder about our best laid plans. Have a wonderful day.

    • So sorry. This is Tina Staniscia from NY. I forget to add that info to my post. That’s what happens when I comment before coffee!

  • I opened the post, looked at the picture, read the title – first thought – this looks delicious! I would love to eat it! (and I happen to be a master baker). Then I read your story.
    How did the crumble taste? Appearance may attract us initially, but if there is no taste, flavour, texture – no one wants to eat it, then maybe its a disaster….then again I suspect the real leavening agent was learning about life.
    (betcha it still tasted good though : )

  • I attempted a similar recipe yesterday, blueberry crumble pie, and it turned out terrible. How funny! It was pretty on the outside, but the taste was just bad. That’s usually how life is though, right?!

  • This beautiful line of yours “The surprising beauty of a creative solution rising from mishap” speaks to the lives we each lead. Our lessons are in the learning whether it is inside our kitchen or in the public stage. Thank you for sharing.

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