The D/C ratio

This voluntarily cryptic title hides a simple observation:
The D/C ratio stands for Difficulty/Contentment … which does not provide much more explanations, does it?

It is well known that the difficulty of preparation of a dish is not proportional to the pleasure of eating it.
Of course, a refined presentation, a marriage of colors, tastes and textures make an overall sensory experience.
But this is not always achieved by chef-level techniques or high end utensils.
Sometimes, crude preparation of simple products can reach the same level of … goodness.

That being said, I’m not going to brag about today’s preparation, or present it as an unrivaled delicacy.
If cooking taught me anything, that would be humility. You can be confident in your favorite technique, which you have mastered to the point that you can play it by heart, and with your heart (not unlike music, isn’t it?), but there is always a variation you never thought of, a spice you don’t know, an … interpretation you can fall in love with.
And so, simple things are not necessarily plain-tasting, and complex constructions need not be an unforgettable moment.
I wanted dead simple today, so I chose to bake cupcakes.
Flour, chemical yeast, ground almonds and the ubiquitous pinch of salt

Dry elements

On the moist front, we have butter and sugar

Butter and sugar

And two eggs beaten in, with almond extract (oh, the smell of that!)

Beating in eggs

Mixing everything with some milk leaves us with a simple batter

And milk even

Some nuts fall into the mortar: walnuts, pine nuts, pistachios.

The nutty mortar

They are no match for the hard stone pestle … “rock and hard place”, anyone?

The crushing truth

The smiling cupcakes are swiftly baked, we’re nearly there.

Ready to roll

I did a light syrup with honey and lemon, and used it to moisten the cupcakes, so that the crushed nuts would hold in place.

Finished

Of course, the lemon and honey’s flavors definitely added an extra information to process when eating these little things.
I’m satisfied with the results: friends I was baking this for were happy.

Isn’t that the primary goal of any cooking?

Close-up

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