sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

February 19, 2019

nearly there (ii)
posted by soe 2:05 am


Gramma used to think, not incorrectly, that sometimes my head got in my way. You just can’t do things the easy way, can you, she’d ask. Often this isn’t true, except when it utterly is.

I’ve been hankering after her Blitz torte, which is a two-layer, meringue-topped cake with pineapple and cream filling, something she used to make quite frequently and which I haven’t had since, I think, before she went to live with my folks. It’s been a long time. I have the recipe for it, though, so I decided that this year I was going to make a birthday cake and that that was going to be it.

There are a few minor causes for concern to that plan. I have never successfully made meringue. I don’t especially like to follow directions exactly. I don’t have two cake pans of the same size.

While I knew I could wash and reuse my one round cake pan, I decided instead that I had these heart-shaped mini cake pans Karen gave to me years ago and that they were probably together roughly the same size as what was called for in the recipe. Never mind that this was going to make it far more challenging to remove each piece from the pan intact. I’d decided this was the best way to go, and we were going this way.

I ended up not making the cake last week for a couple reasons, but ultimately this was a good thing, I think. Instead, I embarked upon it this afternoon and finished it up tonight.

I separated nearly twice as many eggs as the recipe called for, first because one egg was bad and I hadn’t been pouring the egg whites into a fresh container from the one I was separating them over, so I lost two egg whites when the third was bad. Another I broke the yolk when I cracked the egg. (The two spare yolks and the broken egg went into the fridge for use another day.) I’d originally intended to whip the egg whites first using my Kitchen Aid beater attachment, but then I made the cake batter first and didn’t have the bowl available. So I had to whip the egg whites by hand. After half an hour of whisking, I didn’t have any peaks, let alone stiff ones, but it was definitely thicker, so I decided it was good enough.

Four-plus hours after embarking upon this baking journey, I have at least two loads of dishes to handwash, ten wonky cakelets (in which nine of them had the meringue topping separate from the cake when I attempted to get them out of the pans — why does meringue want to stick to everything except the cake itself?!), and still no cake. Tomorrow afternoon I’ll make the filling using the cream I had to buy after we discovered my older cream had clotted (I’ll make scones).

There were tears earlier, so it’s good I didn’t try to make this on my birthday. God, I hope it tastes okay. I’ll have put six hours into this damn thing before we ever get a bite…

I could have done things the easy way, but then it wouldn’t have been my way, would it?

Now pardon me while I go put a dent in those dishes…

Category: life -- uncategorized. There is/are Comments Off on nearly there (ii).