I first met Lilly in the Spring of 1986, almost six months after moving to Germany. She spoke excellent English and was extraverted and funny. I spoke horrible German and was grateful for an outgoing and entertaining friend. Most of all, I was thankful for a connection to the German community and culture.
Over the next three and a half years, we became best friends. I would help in the family vineyards in the fall and we would play cards on the weekends. I would watch her play handball and go to her husband’s local soccer games.
There’s something special about a longterm friendship. It doesn’t matter how many years might slip by without our seeing each other, once we’re together again it’s like no time has passed at all.
An amazing cook, restauranteur, and wine maker, Lilly has been wonderful about accommodating my gluten, soy, and dairy-free diet. But last week when I offered to make a lemon cake using coconut oil as a substitute for butter, she poo-pooed the idea and said it would never work. (Imagine me grinning slyly here). So I challenged her to a baking bet.
Here’s a little clip to set the stage.
And the results?
After I won the cake challenge, Lilly baked me a cake with only four ingredients: eggs, hazelnuts, sugar, and baking powder. It was, as you can already guess, absolutely amazing!
Friendships are special. But longtime friends, like a fine wine, are the best!