Any recipe that starts, ‘cream the butter and sugar’ gets me. There’s something about the process of mixing two very basic ingredients that triggers a whole load of delicious possibility. I love baking, always have. I come from a long line of talented bakers – women who knew how to fill the tins and fill the hearts of the people they loved.
I count my grandmother’s handwritten recipe book as one of my most treasured possessions and I can honestly say that some of my favourite moments as a mother have been spent at the kitchen bench, a child balanced on chairs on either side of me, as we created havoc first, something to eat second. While it inevitably creates a messy kitchen, baking also creates a home that smells inviting and children who beam with pride at what they’ve achieved.
So when it comes to Mother’s Day, I can guarantee home baking will be involved. For the first time this year, I have my suspicions I won’t even have to be involved in baking the cake to celebrate my day. My daughter has caught the baking bug and is carrying on the tradition beautifully (although she’s very bold with colour and not afraid to use it in icing!). I may just guide her towards a gorgeous new book I’ve discovered. Sweet Treats to Share (Penguin $45.00). It’s full of recipes by some of New Zealand’s best-know bakers such as Allyson Gofton, Kim Evans and Annabelle White.