Blasted cake

Popping in quick to tell you it’s kind of sunny outside and we’re going camping as a family (and with the rest of the church as witnesses) for the first time EVER. (I think.) Yours truly is going to sleep (ha!) on the ground in a tent in the forecasted crash-boom storms for two nights in a row and then attempt to not bite anyone’s head off for the rest of the weekend. I’m packing Tylenol for the aching muscles I’ll be sure to get from my bed of sticks and stones, and for the killer caffeine withdrawal headaches I’m hoping I won’t have. Wish me luck.

In other news, I made the cake that’s in the most recent issue of Bon Appétit.

I followed the instructions perfectly—except for the part where I subbed in a blow torch in place of a kitchen torch and set the icing on fire a handful of times, what a blast!

The kids really aren’t traumatized. They’re just PAYING ATTENTION.

But, problem is, no one really likes the cake. There’s black pepper in the frosting and, while creative and kind of yummy in a surprising sort of this-really-IS-devil’s food! way, it is a bit much. Plus, none of us like the crunch of cacao nibs in the cake. Wow, such a tender cake and—CRUNCH, CRACK—oh my, what was THAT?

There were good things about the cake. Like the tablespoon of ground espresso stirred directly into the batter. And the ultra-smooth texture of the chocolate cream. And the fact that the cake was decadent without being overly sweet and rich. And the torched icingnow that was awesome. Fun, artsy, and dramatic, yay!

All things considered, though, the devil can have his cake.

This same time, years previous: fruit-on-the-bottom baked oatmeal, grilled salmon with lemon butter, oven-roasted shallots, drying pears


  • Margo

    Camping is for kids, I'm convinced. Yours will have a ball. Take all the comforts for yourself you can! (We went camping the night that Lee hit this past week – just to satisfy the kids. I wimpily went inside. Everyone else got wet. When I picked up Ben's pillow, water literally ran out. He didn't seem to notice.)

  • Anonymous

    I would like to nominate the picture of "the-torching-of-the-cake-with-the-kids-in-the-background" for some kind of award. That picture is worth way more than a thousand words.

  • teekaroo

    Oh, we've been camping recently, and I'm afraid I have joined the "air mattress camper" club. The ground is amazingly harder than it was a few decades ago. Best of luck!

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