The older homes in Coronado do present some challenges along with their charm. Our new house was built in 1924. It has exquisite architectural details, including hardwood floors, cove ceilings, built-in cabinets, french doors, flagstone courtyard, large front yard, and mature landscaping. The small, farmhouse-style kitchen has not been upgraded, and I must reacquaint myself with an electric stove. Some of the paint colors are a bit bold. The little breakfast nook, however, will make an ideal blogging/photo studio, with lots of natural light.
Most importantly, Dooley recovered from his recent illness and is very content in his new home and yard.
During the chaos of packing, John whisked me off to Searsucker for a special birthday dinner. After cocktails at the bar, we were seated at the open kitchen counter for dinner - we like to watch all the action and chat with the chefs. Our waiter insisted we try the egg + bacon “pork belly” as a 'small' and it was simply amazing!
Our 'mains' were equally delectable. John ordered duck x’s 2 with confit hash, orange + fennel...
And I enjoyed swordfish “costa rica” with drunken cherries + smoky almonds...
For our sweet, we devoured milk chocolate mousse fudge brownie, coffee ice cream and candied almonds
Since we've moved in, I've yet to cook in my new kitchen. Mom invited us over for grilled burgers on her terrace the first evening, we ordered move-in pizza the second, and Jim and Carmen brought dinner over last night!
Carmen prepared a wonderful spread of southern Chicken and Dumplings, Lima Beans, Tomato Salad, and Mixed Berry Cobbler, and Mom baked Strawberry Summer Cake, with local, sweet, Carlsbad strawberries.
We're looking forward to leftovers tonight, and then it's time for me to get my butt back in the kitchen. Moving has certainly taken a toll on my blogging, having caused me to miss the last Daring Bakers' and Daring Cooks' challenges, several French Fridays with Dorie recipes, and our first few Concerts in the Park gourmet picnics. John just bought a fancy new grill, so maybe that electric stove will have to wait...
While strawberries are in season, I encourage you to try this cake. It's perfectly scrumptuous on its own, especially with coffee in the morning, but a dollop of whipped cream or dusting of powdered sugar sweetens it up nicely for dessert.
Strawberry Summer Cake
From Martha Stewart
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened, plus more for pie plate
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 pound strawberries, hulled and halved
Powdered sugar or whipped cream for garnish, optional
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Butter a 9-inch pie dish.
- Sift flour, baking powder, and salt together into a medium bowl.
- Put butter and 1 cup sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to medium-low, and mix in egg, milk, and vanilla.
- Reduce speed to low, and gradually mix in flour mixture.
- Transfer batter to buttered pie plate.
- Arrange strawberries on top of batter, cut sides down and as close together as possible. Sprinkle remaining 2 tablespoons sugar over berries.
- Bake cake 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Bake until cake is golden brown and firm to the touch, about 1 hour.
- Let cool in pie plate on a wire rack.
- Cake can be stored at room temperature, loosely covered, up to 2 days.