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July 01, 2012


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The cake sound delicious. I always use the syrup from my fruit preserves to wet my cakes.

Merisi in Vienna

Mrs. Fenton sure knows how to pamper her guest! The question, of course, being why in the world she went all out and showered the sort of feast described here on him! ;-)

Iced spongecake sounds very tempting and your version looks as if the Queen's expected at your table! I wished I had a frozen sponge squirreled away in the freezer, the only way I would be willing to prepare such a delight these days. Temperatures are hovering around a 100° F, and I am starting to think twice before I turn on the heat under my machinetta da caffè, lest it heat up the kitchen too much.

I remember several interviews P. D. James on NPR and especially one with Diane Rehm:
-> NPR's Morning Edition
-> an hour-long interview with P. D. James by Diane Rehm

Wishing you a great week and a happy 4th of July,

Simona Carini

Ciao Ivy. I noticed that you also use fruit syrup in your cakes :)

Ciao Merisi. Before they have tea, Mrs. Fenton shows Dalgliesh the garden. The walk in the garden and then the tea build expectation for the conversation that finally happens, which will confirm Dalgliesh's idea about something connected to the murder.
Oh my, even Vienna is not immune from the heat wave, is it? It makes us Northern Californians even more thankful for the cool weather we have. I wish I could send you some refreshing ocean breeze. I can imagine how anything contributing to increase the temperature in the house should be avoided. Time for gelato and granita. Thank you so much for the links: I will certainly listen to the interviews. It has taken me long to finally approach P.D. James, but now I am determined to make up. Same to you, dear Merisi: I hope you'll get some cooling showers soon.


Wonderful excerpt and lovely recipe. I love that it has mangoes in it!

Simona Carini

Thank you, Paz. We also like mangoes a lot. I recently tasted some from Haiti that were really good.

Simona Carini

I realize I didn't quite answer your question in my previous comment. My interpretation of Mrs. Fenton's behavior is that she is uncomfortable with the story she needs to tell Dalgliesh and the walk in the garden and the sumptuous tea are a way of postponing the moment they will need to discuss the reason for Dalgliesh's visit and also to show him that she and her husband are nice, quiet, respectable people.

Heather @girlichef

This is beautiful...and I love your inspiration!

A Canadian Foodie

It is summer - and I have to read more - you have motivated me! And ANYTHING with raspberries has me wagging my tail!


I still love this lasting series.

Simona Carini

Thank you, Heather.

I am with you, Valerie: anything with raspberries is good for me.

Thank you, Val.


Nice cake. I really like fruit cakes as they have a tendency to be light and not too sweet. I recently finished "Death comes to Pemberly by PD James," and wrote a little something about it on my blog: http://sweetalmondtree.blogspot.com/2012/01/mashed-potatoes-infused-with-rosemary.html One can't go wrong with PD James. Love her!


This looks like a light and refreshing summer dessert. I was glancing at the photo curiously before reading the post to see if you topped the cake with crema pasticcera but was pleasantly surprised to learn that you moistened it with fruit syrup instead.

Simona Carini

Hi Ana. I know about the new P.D. James' book: it sounds very interesting. I'll visit your post to read what you wrote.

Ciao DueSpaghetti. I admit that adding crema crossed my mind, but I am glad I went with the syrup: I had never moistened a cake with syrup before and also it kept me closer to the recipe.

Daily food recipes

Wow cake looks super delicious. Will try this soon.

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