Saturday, April 19, 2014

What's Cooking at Our House: Ciambella

As cakes go, this is a relatively easy recipe.

Though it is described on some websites as a doughnut, the classic ciambella is a ring-cake, often referred to as an Italian breakfast cake. We made one last week to celebrate the launch of my latest book (cue the shameless pitch) Get a Job, Build a Real Career and Defy a Bewildering Economy.

As cakes go, it's a relatively easy recipe; its disguishing features are four eggs and lemon zest. Here is one recipe.

Since we own a lemon tree, the zest was no problem; but we did that one better by adding a bit of home-made lemoncello, an easy-to-make liqueur of lemons and vodka.

I took these photos right after pulling the cake from the oven; pardon my poor presentation.

We used a heavy bundt pan, which gave the cake a nice texture.

Sugar is once again in the public awareness as a health hazard. In the counterculture days of the late 1960s and early 1970s, it was widely known as "white death," so the negative consequences of consuming large quantities of refined sugar is not exactly a new bit of knowledge.

Like any other refined food, it is best consumed in moderation; this is common-sense. The negative consequences arise from daily over-doses (for example, the infamous 44 gallons of sugary soda the average American consumes annually), as opposed to small servings consumed after a meal of real unprocessed food.

As a culture, we got into trouble by turning foods that were once rare treats into daily treats and by forgetting that the mind and body are one. Recently, per capita soda consumption in the U.S. slipped to 701 8-ounce servings, the lowest since 1987, so the awareness of the benefits from reducing consumption of sugar and zero-value soft drinks is rising.

There is a place for treats. Baking a cake when you complete a multi-month project is a nice thing. Consuming cakes, sodas, fast food, ice cream, etc. a few times a year restores their role as celebratory treats.

"A healthy homecooked family meal and a home garden are revolutionary acts."

Want to give an enduringly practical graduation gift? Then give my new book Get a Job, Build a Real Career and Defy a Bewildering Economy, a mere $9.95 for the Kindle ebook edition and $17.76 for the print edition.

Join me on May 2 for the Sonoma Wine Country Conference: Investment Ideas Hidden In Plain Sight: great speakers, good cause (benefits Autism Society of America):

Get a Job, Build a Real Career and Defy a Bewildering Economy(Kindle, $9.95)(print, $20)
go to Kindle edition
Are you like me? Ever since my first summer job decades ago, I've been chasing financial security. Not win-the-lottery, Bill Gates riches (although it would be nice!), but simply a feeling of financial control. I want my financial worries to if not disappear at least be manageable and comprehensible.

And like most of you, the way I've moved toward my goal has always hinged not just on having a job but a career.

You don't have to be a financial blogger to know that "having a job" and "having a career" do not mean the same thing today as they did when I first started swinging a hammer for a paycheck.

Even the basic concept "getting a job" has changed so radically that jobs--getting and keeping them, and the perceived lack of them--is the number one financial topic among friends, family and for that matter, complete strangers.

So I sat down and wrote this book: Get a Job, Build a Real Career and Defy a Bewildering Economy.

It details everything I've verified about employment and the economy, and lays out an action plan to get you employed.

I am proud of this book. It is the culmination of both my practical work experiences and my financial analysis, and it is a useful, practical, and clarifying read.

Test drive the first section and see for yourself.     Kindle, $9.95     print, $20 

Thank you, Michael S. ($200), for your astoundingly generous contribution to this site -- I am greatly honored by your steadfast support and readership. Thank you, Marsha F. ($55), for your marvelously generous contribution to this site -- I am greatly honored by your steadfast support and readership.

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