Let Us Eat Cake

Had a fight with the ex about cake a couple of days ago.

Birthday cake.

Every year we fight about cake. It is utterly ridiculous.

I’m checking bakeries and then with the ex about the cake, and feeling frustrated. The margin of error is high and the risk of having the cake flung at my head in a temper tantrum equally so. The window within which the cake will be graciously tolerated is small.

The ‘ideal’ cake is difficult. It’s not even just about the flavour. No no, that’s far too simple. No icing, No chocolate, No marzipan, No cream, No cupcakes. It’s basically a long list of ‘don’ts’ and I’m supposed to navigate my way through.

“Look, if you’re going to make this cake thing a big deal, then just forget about it.”,

says the ex to me when I momentarily forget myself (stupid creature!) and hint at my frustration. (Last year I ‘forgot’ about the cake, and let me just say that turned into a big deal.)

That would be a perfectly fair and reasonable statement to make, if it hadn’t immediately followed this rather more tyrannical threat:

“I’m warning you now – If you don’t get me the right kind of cake, I’m going to be really upset…”

Gosh, no pressure then.

But not to worry.

I have ordered the minions to shower the roads generously with rose and hibiscus petals. The ex will then be carried, lounging delicately on a palanquin, about London. The minions will serve the ex haunches of roasted & basted chicken, followed by sweet white grapes that have been gently washed in mountain dew and have had their skin removed. The feasting is capped with a refreshing champagne and baby’s breath sorbet.

A procession of painted and decorated elephants and horses all with bells and cymbals jingling gaily on their feet follow the palanquin. A 100 strong marching band, will accompany them and will be playing a variety of Madonna and Kylie songs loudly and with gusto. After all the day the ex emerged from the womb demands celebration!

After the magnificence of this procession all the way down Angel and through Farringdon, the palanquin will finally reach St. Paul’s where there will be the usual ritual of the burning of incense and the blood-letting of a sacrificial snow-white lamb by a virgin maid. This will promptly be culminated in an orgy of bacchanalian excess of epic proportions.

Also I baked a cake.

My first cake ever. So domesticated of me no? (It was from a packet. Baby steps.)

It rose rather proudly. I’m quite pleased.

I have a singing candle to place on it’s bulging center.

Here, some photos.

Cake Baking

I made a right old mess all over. Also I accidentally read 210 ml of water as 120 ml. I wondered why the batter was so difficult to beat. Luckily I caught the error in time.

Look at it rising! All that beating did the trick. And I beat it by hand!!

Not bad for a first attempt, if I do say so myself. The ex was pleased.


18 thoughts on “Let Us Eat Cake

  1. Listen, I’m massively impressed. If I was even remotely capable of doing something like baking a cake, I’d hold this up as an example for YEARS.

  2. Erm, you wrote a quite amusing essay. It’s fluffy and buttery, and nicely puffs.

    But your cake: isn’t it a bit, uhm, burnyish on top?

    Did you scrape it off? And no frosting permitted? And yet, after all those shibboleths and pronunciamentos, the Ex deigned to enjoy it?

    She must be all bark and no bite.

    I’ll have to do some lemon cupcakes for her someday, whenever I return to baking. Let the orgy commence.

    • Yes it was marbling, except I didn’t do it right, because I made too much chocolate mix and then i don’t think i swirled it correctly so it was all across the top and the middle in a band instead of beautiful swirls throughout. But no burn! I kept a keen eye out on it.

      No frosting whatsoever allowed! That was the cake issue in the first place The ex detests frosting – Which is bad for buying a ready made cake but excellent for making a cake. I’m really glad i didn’t also have to make frosting.

      The ex did indeed enjoy it, and it was pretty nice actually. Betty Crocker!

      Poor ex, not such a tyrant. We just squabble. Partly because I’m consistently incompetent

      • Do they have Duncan Hines in Britain? I always liked Duncan Hines.

        Though I started out with Pillsbury. Mmm, Pillsbury.

        Poop. I might have to clean out the oven. But then I’d have to buy bakewear. Do I want to start mentally marching down this road?

        I can see where immoderate frosting is a real turn-off for people; for instance, most bakery cupcakes are perniciously overfrosted.

        I was always fairly minimalist myself in that regard. Maybe she can be slowly turned around to enjoying it. –But what does she have against the cupcake?

        • No we don’t, or at least, I’ve never noticed. This was my first foray into the baking aisle that involved any purpose. All i saw was Betty Crocker.

          Well the ex hates the icing, its exactly as you said. They over frost them, and I must admit get the ex’s point. They tend to be very heavy, over iced and far too sweet and I say that having a sweet tooth.

          So all in all it kind of makes you feel a bit sick by the end. It seems to be the trend here anyway to have heavy icing and exorbitant prices.

          look at these! – http://www.coxcookiesandcake.com/our-menu-cakes.htm £4.00!! madness

  3. It does look good, the cake. I’m eating a fruit one, which came all the way from Paris, made by a friend, because I complained about not finding the right Christmas cake here. And over-eating it too, so I’m glad to read this post about cakes. 🙂 Hope the procession went through with all the pomp and splendour you had planned for it.

    • it did indeed. Not sure why this comment missing my usually prompt replies. No doubt some admin error.
      The procession was a resounding success. I came home early bearing the ex’s many gifts and bags while the ex continued the orgy. I get bored of an orgy pretty darn quickly

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