I’ve been doing really well. I’ve not revisited the Wild Loaf Bakery for a doughnut. I’ve resisted the temptation. I’ve had enough will power to not get off the bus a stop early (or even go into town with just the intention of getting a doughnut). Just yesterday I cycled pass it twice on my way to and from a 35 miles bike ride.
Just to clarify, I haven’t been going without cake. When it comes to cake and puddings and icecream, there has to be rules.
- It has to be worth it. It has to be worth the calories, the price, the effort and time. If I’m going to bake a cake, then I have to factor in the cost and hassle of buying the ingredients. Plus the time it takes to make. If I’m going to go to a café or bakery especially for cake, it has to be worth the journey. It has to be worth the anxiety. I am not prepared to risk my life for a disappointing piece of fruit cake in an uninspired afternoon tea. I’m not prepared to spend hours and days doing risk assessments for a piece of overcooked carrot cake from a well known department store (even if it was free). If the internet, or words of mouth is telling me that something is spectacular, then I am more than willing to go out of my way to try a cronut at Harvey Nicks while I’m in London (I will get round to blogging about it).
- I need the calories. If I’ve cycled 50 miles, then a chocolate freak shake from barley and bean is perfectly acceptable (again, I promise to tell you all about it before it becomes a too distant memory). After all, you would not want me to witter away to nothing.
- A reward/motivation. You try cycling 50 miles without the motivation of a freak shake. I don’t know what other cyclist think about when their legs are struggling to keep going, but as my legs started to lose momentum, my inner voice was chanting “freak-shake…freak-shake…”, and my legs would keep going in time to the chant.
- A celebration. I made 2 triple chocolate salted caramel popcorn cakes a few days ago for my dad’s birthday. I ended up going home with half a cake, so I have been munching my way thought it (with the help of friends). There are two exceptions to this rule. Firstly, as advised in a previous blog, [quote] you don’t need an excuse to make a Baked Alaska. The Baked Alaska is the celebration [end quote]. Secondly, when you have spend a number of years with PTSD, anxiety or depression, you learn that good days should be celebrated. Having said that good days are becoming the norm, so this should probably become an exception to the exception.
- You are having a really bad day. And you need motivation. End of. See rule number 3.
- Its a Sunday, and I’ve gone round to the family home for a meal. Rumour has it, my dad isn’t allowed pudding unless I’m visiting. I suspect the invites would stop if I didn’t have cake. Better safe than sorry.
- You are ill. Everyone knows Icecream makes things better again.
- You are vegetarian and then only vegetarian option is the cake/pudding/icecream.
- Holidays. You don’t know when you will have the opportunity to go back and sample the local goods. I devoured the deserts in Vilnius. It turns out they have exceptionally high standards. The Apple and Cinnamon muffin I had in a lovely little coffee shop called Dora in Sofia earlier this month could only be described as “perfect”. Fact is food taste nicer on holiday; and calories and budgets do not count.
- A once in a life time opportunity. This includes menu Specials, such as the Watermelon Cake at Tiger Rock. Or baking workshops, such as a recent Shipton Mill to learn how to bake croissants and enriched bread . Although these are technically not cake, as far as I can figure out, the only reason these are considered acceptable breakfast food is because they contain yeast. This also includes holidays (see rule 9). A once in a life time opportunity includes farmers markets, festivals and the Baltic Market. Today, is the first time I’ve been to the Baltic Market. Like farmers Markets and festivals, the food vendors are always changing. These places cannot be taken for granted or you will miss out.
As per usual, I have gotten side tracked. Based on my own rules, I could have gone to the bakery yesterday and picked up a doughnut. I cycled 35 miles. However, I had already stopped at another one of my favourite bakeries. I promise to inform you off all the taste sensations of Artisane bakery.
This morning I went to the Baltic Market. It has been all over facebook, and in the local news. The Echo reported queued round the block when it first opened in July! In addition to changing the vendors on a monthly basis, once a month there is a farmers market. This place has surely got to be worth a visit. Today was farmers market day. 3 of us went for brunch. But when I saw the Wild Loaf doughnuts stand (you couldn’t miss them, they were right by the entrant), it was too much to resist. When I had visited the bakery they only had 2 choices. You will know from Gaintree Rainforest blog that I don’t handle choice very well. Today I was faced with 3 options. I bought two. I couldn’t resist them. The mixed berry jam doughnuts were calling to me. They had been on my mind since that first visit to the bakery. These are the best doughnuts I have EVER had. They were overfilled with Jam. There was so much sugar everywhere. I was covered in it. My hair, my clothes, my hands, my face. I much have looked like I had a really bad case of dandruff. These doughnuts are so good, they had sold out early this afternoon. I bought the Hazelnuts Chocolate for tomorrow. After all, I deserve a treat for resisting doughnuts over the last three weeks (see rule number 3).