Sunday, March 22, 2009

Rejoice! Or, The Consolation of Cake

Today is Laetare Sunday, the Fourth Sunday in Lent. (Though laetare means "rejoice" in Latin, and ham is rose-colored, it's purely coincidental that 200-some years from now, March 22 will be Captain Kirk's birthday.)

In Britain this is Mothering Sunday, which comes with its own marzipan-covered spice cake. I'd never heard of it, but this "Simnel Cake" recipe looks fantastic. But then, you could wrap tofu in marzipan and I'd think it was terrific. I'm going to make it for Easter this year. The cake, that is.

Laetare is the first word of this Sunday's introit, the bit of psalm that opens the Mass; though in this case it's a bit of Isaiah 66, riffing, I guess, on Psalm 122 ("let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord"). Also called "rose" Sunday, because the vestments are rose-colored, instead of deep Lenten purple. Halfway through Lent, it speaks of consolation--one of my favorite words, wrapped as it is, like marzipan, around sorrow:

"Laetare Ierusalem: et conventum facite omnes qui diligitis eum:
gaudete cum laetitia, qui in tristitia fuistis:
ut exsultetis, et satiemini consolationis.... "

"Rejoice, O Jerusalem, and gather round, all you who love her;
rejoice in gladness, who have been in sadness;
exult, and be replenished with consolation...."


PaulD said...

Its also your day, 14. You're clearly more commited than am I. Anna sd she saw you there this morning, but I didn't (cuz I'm disposed to paying attention!!!!).

bink said...

I hope you do make that cake and that I get a slice!

Actually that recipe sounds a lot like the Alice B. Toklas fruitcake that Bop ate. (Bop the dog for those not in the know.)