Birthday Cakes to Remember

by Leslie

..or  How To Turn Failure Into Success

Our family enjoyed making birthday cakes. It became a family “experience” and they could be very much personalized. One year our son and daughter decided to make my father’s birthday cake in the shape of a guitar, Todd’s (our son’s) favorite instrument at the time. Unfortunately the neck of the guitar gave way while being iced. But not to worry – Kathy quickly filled in the missing cake with mounds of icing (a very dark chocolate) and it looked beautiful. When my dad cut the first piece for himself, the children tried – in vain – to steer him away from the neck of the instrument. They held their collective breaths as Grandpa took his first bite of what was really pure icing. Sheer joy could be read on his face. He proclaimed that he had never eaten a richer cake. Of course not, it was virtually pure dark chocolate fudge icing, unsullied by any trace of cake!

Our cake making also extended to friends and colleagues. One evening I decided to make a birthday cake for our department secretary, a very devoted and resourceful worker. I arrived home late and thus the cake got a late start. While layer was fitted atop layer, the bottom one gave way. No time to repair, so I thought. My husband came to the rescue and helped ma make a very rich and large single-layered cake with abundant icing. As I was about to toll the crumbs from the failed layer, he collected them into a pan for his coworkers to share over coffee the next day. Labeled as “crumb cake” he informed me that it was an incredible hit, with requests for a repeat performance.

So, when life hands you crumbs, savor them. They may be more delicious than you think.

August, 2012

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