Welcome! (And a Humbling Cake Story)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The terribly beautiful citrus merange cake. 
Welcome to Saucy Broad!  This is supposed to be the blog that will get you all excited about my book, "Saucy Broad: A Culinary Manifesto of Hope," and impress you mightily with my mad cooking skills. Which means I really shouldn't start out with the tale of my most recent kitchen disaster... but I will.

When I started cooking (which was probably when I was 7 or 8) I wanted so badly to made pretty cakes.  Of course, my idea of a pretty cake at that time was a cake with a picture drawn on it with lots of different colors of frosting.  I got discouraged about ever being able to make a cake that was truly beautiful, and figured I would just work on making stuff taste good (since that was the whole point.)  When I lived in Lithuania, I remember seeing trays of beautiful desserts that were tasteless and dry.  So for years, my motto was to worry about the taste, and that looks were secondary.  Maybe I was transferring my mom's advise about how being the nice person with character is so much better than being the shallow hottie (maybe she told me this because she knew I had no chance of being a hottie.)  In the last few years, however, I have learned a few tricks that have enabled me to get a little closer to the goal of making something both tasty and beautiful.  And the other day, I thought I had done it.

I had been experimenting with angelfood cakes, trying to come up with new variations.  I made a wonderful coffee angelfood cake that I topped with chocolate whipped cream that was quite good.  But I got greedy -- I wanted some more.  And I had seen a recipe for Seven Minute Frosting, an old classic frosting that uses egg whites and sugar to make a glossy white merangue-like frosting.  So I had my brilliant idea:  a citrusy angelfood cake topped with peaks of this pretty frosting.  I baked the cake with lots of lemon zest and fresh squeezed juice, frosted it with the Seven Minute Frosting (which took more like 20 minutes to make) and topped it with more lemon zest. And it was a sight to behold, by far the best looking cake I had ever created.  But it was terrible!  The cake had this weird bitter aftertaste and the frosting was sickeningly sweet and everything was just too airy and fluffy and weird.  Horrible!  In fact, the thought of the taste of that cake, several days later, still makes my stomache turn.  As my grandma would say: pretty is as pretty does (I actually have no idea what this means, but had to nod very respectfully/somberly as she said this).

So now you know, dear readers and fans, that anyone can make a mistake in the kitchen.  You just gotta get yourself up, dust the flour off your hands, and try, try again!  Stick with me, and maybe I'll have some good stuff to tell you about too.  And Kevin and Rachael, so sorry for "treating" you to that horrible cake.  I'll make it up to you, I promise!

And while you're waiting for the next post (which I'm sure you'll be doing...and nothing else), visit (shameless promotion alert) http://www.gutcheckpress.com/ (my publisher) and buy stuff.  Also visit http://www.tedkluck.com/ (my husband) and buy some stuff there too. 

Yours, in Cooking and Reading,
The Saucy Broad


ZSB said...

I know this is a crappy first comment to get, but I'm just seeing if comments work, because someone reported a problem with word verification.

JB said...

Great cooks are those who are man (or broad) enough to own up to their recipes gone bad. I'm looking forward to your book!

Erin said...

Glad we weren't subjected to the cake failure. :) I actually have never had anything you've made that was not delicious. You even make coconut cream pie good—and I do not like coconut.

Horn herd mom said...

So looking forward to your book and future blog posts!

The Saucy Broad said...

Karen Snow!! I talked to your parents last Sunday, and was wanting to get in touch with you! We gotta talk ... email me at Kristin@tedkluck.com!

Becky said...

That cake looks yummy, hottie!! :)
I recently had an angel food cake bake through the upper rack on my oven. That was one UGLY cake, but it tasted good--I turned it into a trifle.

Erin said...

I demand more posts.