I think I know the answer to Freud’s question.
What do women want? They want dessert.
I’m the first to admit that I’m not much of a baker. The most dessertish thing I can successfully make is baked pears — and, according to the Infinite Monkey Theorem, a monkey randomly tinkering with kitchen appliances, butter, and a few pieces of tree fruit could figure that one out eventually. And as long as we’re talking about psychoanalysis, I should say that my hesitation when it comes to baking is related to two highly public incidents in which the selection of incorrect flour led to total disaster, with the first being a well-attended birthday party (I will forever be haunted by the words of my friend, Matt, who thought I was out of earshot: “This cake sucks!”).
So no, I don’t really do dessert. Baking desserts requires an attention span and a willingness to follow instructions that I just don’t have (see cattergoreys: “breaking the law,” “accidentally awesome,” “cheating,” and “screwball”). But I do know two people — Lara and Sarah — who not only possess this razor-sharp focus and ability to remain faithful to recipes, but also have native talent for making seriously breathtaking desserts. And they both came over for dinner last night.
Corny as it is, I like to do themes when I made dinner for multiple friends. And trumping any past trauma is my love for drawing inspiration from my brilliant, multitalented friends. So my theme for last night was “dessert for dinner.” It was a loose definition of dessert, and incorporated the Golden Rule of Bad Kitchen Habits (cheese fixes everything), but I did my best: whole wheat crepes with brown butter pears and ricotta, cucumber melon fruit salad, and sparkling wine with raspberries to drink. Sarah brought a chess pie, and Lara made shortbread cookies and tapioca pudding. And when Katie came over later in the evening, the boxball game was complete: four lovely ladies, and four dessert courses in a row.
I took a day off from photography, but there was leftover crepe batter for when I made breakfast this morning:
I am totally going to do this again. I think I could put just about anything in crepes. And a little bird named JM told me that there is a crepe pan in my future, so it’s all I can do not to squeal like a girl — except I am a girl, and all I want is dessert.