There is one particular cake in our family recipe box that can be baked only once a year, at the end of October, around this time.
It's a walnut and chocolate cake - but not just any walnuts will do. It's the walnuts from the tree down the lane, we all agree, that make this cake especially good.
They are the biggest walnuts I've ever seen, and each shell is so particular in texture that it looks like as if it were hand-carved. The tree they come from is a huge tree, with impossibly long branches that make harvesting very difficult. All we can do is wait for the walnuts to drop, and pick them from the ground before wood critters get to them. So, from the big and prolific walnut tree, we only gather a basketfull of nuts a year - enough to make just one special cake.
And in case you have a similar cake tree, Rebecca kindly agreed to help me share the recipe:
(click on image to view it in a larger size on Flickr)