Friday, February 23, 2018

Angel Food Oooops

There comes a time in many a woman's life when she has to admit that she isn't the cook she used to be. My time is obviously now. I've been baking since I was knee high to my mother. I can't count the number of angel cakes I've made in my 72 years, but the one pictured here took the cake, literally. Rather than taking it to new heights, however, the accidental addition of an extra cup of water brought it to the brink of disaster. 
Today's efforts to produce a chiffon cake (pictured below) ended in a marvelously high dessert that scented the whole cottage in eau de chocolat. That is, until I propped the cake in its pan upside down on a bottle of balsamic vinegar to cool, whereupon it tumbled off the counter, pulling the bottle of vinegar with it, whereupon the cork popped out of the bottle and doused floor and cake alike with a river of the aromatic liquid.

I mopped up as best I could - cake top, floor, cupboard doors, table legs. Then I called J, my friend and partner in aging catastrophes, to come for a cup of tea and some "vinegar chocolate cake."

"Oh!" she enthused. "I've made chocolate cake with vinegar before. It's quite good."

"No doubt you did it on purpose though, right?" I queried.

There was a pause.  "But..." she began and I could hear a quiver of laughter in her voice.

"But," I reiterated and told her about the bottle and the crash and the river of aromatic liquid.

By this time she was laughing helplessly. "This reminds me of the angel cake you made, the one with too much water. The crust was quite good, though." She hiccuped.

Like its predecessor, the chiffon cake had some quite edible parts, those slices where the vinegar hadn't penetrated. And with enough whipped cream, even those bits that smelled like salad tasted almost like chocolate.

Oh dear.

7 comments:

Molly Bon said...


My mother was too stressed to teach me how to cook or bake and I was quite happy to have my meals served up without any effort on my part other than chewing. Fast forward to marriage when my m-i-l was sure her darling would starve to death. In the interests of keeping us both alive I did learn how to cook. Nobody died. My children even liked my cooking and baking, but I have recently been thinking how much more I enjoy cooking now that it's just the two of us. No more feeding an army, no more enormous pots, just interesting recipes and getting creative. I have had my disasters though, most recently with popovers. I'd made them before but this was a new recipe and something went terribly wrong. They tasted like rubber balls!
But, if you have a friend and whipped cream you can recover from anything.

Pauline said...

You made me laugh. I've had numerous dinner disasters in a lifetime of cooking, but as you so succinctly put it, nobody died ! :)

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