16 March 2008

expressions of love

I was going to do a weekend recipe this weekend, really I was, but then I got too busy cooking. You see, last Wednesday was Greg's birthday, and for the people I love (read: the people I live with who have no option to refuse), I bake birthday cakes. And for my lovely boyfriend, I will spend most of the afternoon making a cake full of questionable flavor combinations, dirtying just about every dish in the kitchen, because I love him, and baking is one of my favorite ways to express my love.

Sometime last week, Greg was making popcorn and hunting in the spice cabinet for something to put on it when he spied a jar of molasses. I hadn't realized until that moment how much Greg loves molasses, until he suggested putting it on our popcorn. Then he started rhapsodizing about his ideal popcorn toppings, which included flavors like molasses and mocha and caramel. Needless to say, I shot this train of thought down pretty much immediately, because unless popcorn is covered in butter or chocolate, I won't eat it. But he did give me something to think about.

Later on, I put "molasses mocha caramel cake" into Google and came up with a recipe for Chocolate Voodoo Cake. After looking it over and seriously underestimating the time and effort involved, I decided to make it for Greg's birthday cake.

I started the cake process at 3:30 this afternoon. Now it's around 8:30pm and we've got another 45 minutes of refrigeration until the glaze is set and the cake is ready to be poked with our voodoo needles. In the interest of saving time, I didn't bother to shape the cake, thinking I could mask any lopsidedness with the mousse and/or the glaze. This, of course, didn't work at all, so we've got a very misshapen little cake. And we tried, we really tried with those stupid chocolate caramel voodoo needles, but ours are all blobby, and either too fat or too thin.

Still, I tasted every bit of batter over every step of the way, and I'm convinced that though it is a really strange combination of things, it will taste good even if it's not pretty. And trust me, it's not pretty.

So happy belated birthday, honey. There aren't many people who I'd deem worthy of almost six hours (non-continuous, but still!) of my labor, just for a birthday cake, but you're one of 'em. I just hope this cake is worth it.


Jessica said...

I admire your commitment to baking -- I have all but given it up since having the twins. I figure I'll take it up again once they are a little more self-sufficient and can play longer on their own without getting into trouble.

Whoda thunk that such a feminist would be slaving away in the kitchen for her man? ;-)

Anonymous said...

awww, what a sweet birthday present! i bet greg loved it. i sure love it when i get a special cake made just for me :)