Sunday, April 06, 2008
This dreamy quality figured prominently in a baby shower I attended recently, at the home of a friend of the mom-to-be on Lombard Street. The mother lives in the front apartment - on the ground floor (which is still up a steep flight of stairs from the street) and the shower was held in her front parlor room, featuring a huge bay window and wood burning fireplace - all decorated with Moroccan pillows, flowers and textiles. The girls were doing the cooking in the daughter's apartment, across the alley in the back - and brought the food over. It felt so much like a movie that the light even had that sort of gauzy, filtered quality.
We were welcomed with a spread of figs, almonds, apricots, pistachios and pecans, bowls of homemade hummus, warm pita bread, and couscous salad, served in host Sharone's beautiful collection of Moroccan dishes. To drink, there was lemonade with mint, served on a brass carrying tray with a twisted handle.
Then the presents were opened and the cake came out. It was not only delicious, but a little piece of San Francisco history - a "world famous" Sacripantina from Stella Pastry in North Beach. "Served to the likes of Pavarotti, the Sacripantina is a multilayered cake made with a vanilla sponge cake, zabaglione (a delicate custard made with egg yolks, sweet butter, marsala and sherry wines) cream, and rum." They have more luscious looking choices on their website here. These old-fashioned Italian pastries look like little girl's dresses - all lace and bows and ruffles with whipped cream and cherries - and they haven't changed at all with the times. They're just classic.
I felt lucky to be a part of this gathering - it was one of those occasions where everything just came together perfectly. You just can't plan or manufacture these occasions, as much as you'd might like. When they happen, you just have to enjoy and remember them. Wishing Moira the best on her journey into motherhood!
446 Columbus Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94133