24 May, 2007

I.O.U. Cake

It's my daughter's birthday right about now.

I'm not there to make her a birthday cake. I wish I was.

I wonder if she remembers the Chocolate Mousse Cake decorated with chocolate truffles that I invented one year, not for her birthday but for a school money-raiser? And then, because they messed up the ticket draw, made another exactly the same a few hours later? Or the Fresh Strawberry Shortcakes with billows of cream I often made for family birthdays? Or the Carrot Cakes, Orange Cakes, Sacher Tortes, Fruit cakes, Spice Cakes and Brownies that I whipped up frequently when the "kids" were home? I'm sure she does, because she has a sweet tooth, and nowadays quite a fondness for chocolate.

If I were there I would probably do as I always did, ask her what kind of cake she would like. I usually gave her and every birthday girl or boy the choice of cake and dinner, just about anything they wanted. I was at home in those days so I had enough time to make it, and enough time to teach myself to cook. I would try anything I had a recipe for, and after awhile, I got so that I could change things and invent recipes without too many surprises. I really enjoyed making them something that would turn their eyes wide on their birthdays.

But this year we are half a world apart. I can't make her a cake and send it in the mail. So I'll content myself with inventing something I think she might like, and promise to make it as soon as we are together again. An I. O. U. Cake, it will have to be.

I think I'll start with a good moist chocolate cake, just two layers, and after it's cooked and cooled, I'll drizzle it with fresh orange juice that I've stirred a bit of Grand Marnier into. I'll make a glossy chocolate ganache with fresh cream and put it generously in the middle of the two layers, probably a good inch or two thick. Then I'll give it a good chill to set up the chocolate. After, I'll cover the outside with big swirls of a fresh orange butter cream icing, decorating the perimeter of the top with generous large curled shavings from a dark chocolate bar and drift a bit of finely grated orange peel over the centre. Of course I will sink a few delicate white candles in the middle and light them so she can make a wish.

Whatever she's wishing, I'm wishing for her. Have many more happy moments, sweet birthdays, and good cakes, S...l , this year and always.

And much love.


Anonymous said...

Thanks Mom, Love Shell Looking forward to the cake

Darla said...

very very sweet post

vegetablej said...

Thank you, darla, and for visiting. I'm adding "messy cucina" to my blogroll. Hope that is okay.

JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said...

That is such a cool post! I am sure your daugher would just enjoy reading about those cakes! I know I did.

vegetablej said...

Thank you, Jenn. And thanks for visiting! As it happens I live alone and always have lots of leftovers, so I'll be checking in with your blog frequently. :)