"I will love you as a thief loves a gallery and as a crow loves a murder, as a cloud loves bats and as a range loves braes. I will love you as misfortune loves orphans, as fire loves innocence, and as justice loves to sit and watch while everything goes wrong."
LITTLE APRICOT CAKES
Nonstick vegetable oil spray
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup whole milk
- 2 apricots, halved, pitted, cut into 1/4-inch wedges
- 2 tablespoons raw sugar
- A standard 12-cup muffin pan
Preheat oven to 350°. Coat muffin cups with nonstick spray. Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.
Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar in another medium bowl, occasionally scraping down sides of bowl, until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add egg, lemon zest, and vanilla and beat until combined.
With mixer on low speed, add dry ingredients in 3 additions alternately with milk in 2 additions, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Divide batter among muffin cups (cups will be only 1/3 full) and smooth tops. Top with apricot slices and sprinkle with raw sugar.
Bake until cakes are golden and a tester inserted into the centers comes out clean, 20–25 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack; let pan cool 5 minutes. Transfer cakes to rack and let cool completely.
DO AHEAD: Cakes can be made 1 day ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.
"The matter of defining what is real … is a serious topic, even a vital topic. And in there somewhere is the other topic, the definition of the authentic human. Because the bombardment of pseudo-realities begins to produce inauthentic humans very quickly, spurious humans — as fake as the data pressing at them from all sides. … Fake realities will create fake humans. Or, fake humans will generate fake realities and then sell them to other humans, turning them, eventually, into forgeries of themselves. So we wind up with fake humans inventing fake realities and then peddling them to other fake humans. It is just a very large version of Disneyland."
Autumn view at Tofukuji, Kyoto
Woodblock print by 加藤晃秀 (Teruhide Kato)