I think a lot of people have this perception of me as this great little Susie Homemaker or even an Asian Martha Stewart. I would like to think that I am an amazing baker, but more often than not, I have a lot of baking failures.
I had a massive cake wreck last Friday. I'm not sure why, but I always want to attempt new recipes at the most important moments. A few women and I got together to celebrate someone's birthday and pig out.
I signed up to make the birthday cake and decided to use Martha's recipe for Easy Chocolate Cake. It looked promising when I took it out of the oven, but as I was letting it cool, it shrunk almost half in size. So instead of just putting a chocolate glaze over it like I had planned, I decided that I needed to make some kind of frosting so that I could fill it and give the cake some height.
I found a recipe on Food Network's site for Quick Vanilla Buttercream that had terrific reviews. For whatever reason, the frosting would not thicken properly no matter how much extra powdered sugar I added to the mix. I triple checked the recipe and instructions and could not find and discrepancies so I have no clue what happened.
I decided to go with it anyway, and this is the goopy and disgusting mess I was left with:
This was completely unacceptable. So at three o'clock, I stabbed the cake with a fork, took a bite, gagged, and then tossed the entire thing in the trash can. I ushered Bella quickly into the backseat of our car, drove down the road to the Family Dollar, and purchased trusty Betty Crocker cake mix and frosting.
With just two hours left to finish the cake before my ride came to get me, I quickly got to work. Bella did not appreciate being neglected.
And it looked like a tornado hit the kitchen. By the way, there are constantly tornado warnings here in Texas. And "golf ball" or "teacup" sized hail in neighboring counties. Where am I?!
I let the cake cool by an open window and Bella could not resist the aroma of a freshly baked chocolate cake (from a box). She knew it was yummy.
In just thirty minutes, I was able to whip up this design for the cake. Amazing, no?
Kidding! That's the cake I made in my third Wilton decorating class at Michael's last year. The cake I ended up with was not much prettier than the first, but it definitely tasted a whole heck of a lot better! I needed a second tub of frosting to make the piping designs I had imagined in my head.
When I was carrying the cake out of the car, I was also holding a 20 lb. bag of ice in my other arm. At one point, the bag of ice started to slip out of my twig arm and the cake completely slid around in the cake holder I was using when I tried to save the ice. I don't think I will be baking any cakes any time soon!
My friends had prepared a gigantic feast of marinated and grilled meats, Mexican rice, guacamole, potato salad, beans, and warm tortillas. I had prepped for this great meal all week and stuck with my carrot and hummus routine until Friday.
What are the chances of me successfully making the following cakes? I'm definitely stocking up on emergency box cake mixes in my pantry either way.
Oh, and there were wine coolers. I had already told them that I was not of alcoholic beverages because I don't like the taste of smell of alcohol so they tried to find something that I would enjoy. These 3% alcohol wine coolers seemed like the perfect solution. But then when I got to the last fourth of the bottle, I realized that I wasn't feeling so great.
I felt hot and suddenly extremely tired. Someone was having a conversation with me and it took me a very long time to process what she was saying. I finally told her, "I'm..like...I feel like I'm not taking in your words..."
And then they all had a great laugh and wanted to take pictures of tipsy Min, which is why I'm in the center of this photo. I'm just glad that in this picture you can't tell I have the beginnings of the Asian Glow.
I am never going to have alcohol ever again. Although I slept well that evening, I had a headache the next morning. Have you ever heard of anybody else who got messed up by three-fourths a bottle of a wine cooler?
Kicking back with a beer is such a bit part of the Army lifestyle, too. I always seem to have to clarify with people that my not drinking is not for moral reasons, but simply that I cannot handle the taste of it. I ain't no prude. FYI, I totally faked our wedding champagne toast so if we don't make it to our 50 year anniversary, that must be the reason.