During my visit with my mother, I faced many challenges, the biggest of which came on July 18. On that day we traveled to a new bakery. While I stared at the artisan bread, muffins, giant striped croissants, multi-colored pastries, assorted cookies, and nougat, she asked what I wanted. “The raspberry croissant, please,” I said.
“What else?” she said.
“Nougat.” It was a small, white square with pistachios, sunflower seeds, and what looked like dried orange peel. It reminded me of something I ate in Istanbul.
“And what else?”
I contemplated the cheesecake, carrot cake, the macarons with passionfruit cream and berries, and the opera cake that promised flavors of chocolate and hazelnut. Of course, I had to have that.
Driving home, she asked when I would eat them. Once home, she asked in what order.
I thought and thought. Because I could not make up my mind, I decided to call on higher math. I posed my dilemma to the permutation gods. Should I eat nougat, croissant, opera cake or nougat, opera cake, croissant? Should I eat croissant, nougat, opera cake or croissant, opera cake, nougat? Should I eat opera cake, nougat, croissant or opera cake, croissant, nougat?
I put a lot of thought into when I ate nougat. I decided to have it in the middle, a bridge between flaky raspberry chocolate croissant and melt in my mouth hazelnut chocolate cake.
As you can see from the photos, I forgot to photograph nougat. You will also understand why I felt so challenged. I had my hands full–as well as my mouth.