"Liver," he answered. "Let's have liver and mashed potato, like Mrs. Brigstock used to make."I know how it feels to like it there, snuggled under the cover of one's memories, still warm from the last time you dropped by. Yet I see Veronica's point — you can't have liver and mashed potatoes every day. And, if you're anything like me, you can't eat the same cake every day, nor can you follow a recipe two times in a row without wanting to make an edit or two (after all, delicious as that cake turned out last time, what if experimentation leads to an even better version?).
Veronica crossed to him and bent down and put a kiss on his springy hair.
"You have to let go of the past, darling," she said.
"Why?" he said. "I like it there."
--Trespass, Rose Tremain
But I'm a changed girl; I've become monogamous...to a certain cake recipe that has me swooning for its incredible fluffiness. I'm not the slightest bit tempted to replace the granulated sugar with brown sugar, nor do I harbor fantasies of sneaking in a sprinkle of cinnamon or orange zest...that's how perfect this cake is.
The Perfect Buttermilk Cake
2 tbsp melted unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 1/3 c. flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk
Granulated sugar, for sprinkling
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease an 8x8 square baking pan.
Mix wet ingredients (excluding buttermilk) in a large bowl and add half of the dry mixture until fully incorporated. Then add all of the buttermilk and mix thoroughly. Add the rest of the dry mixture, and stir the batter until smooth. Pour into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the top evenly with lots of sugar; the resulting crinkly crust is key to this cake's simple allure. Bake for 20-25 minutes.