TWD: Surprise! It sunk!


I am going to take my camera in this week!  Still subjecting you to laptop pics.

Things that do not go together:

  1. Peanut butter and sardines
  2. High heels and football
  3. Little boys and DVD players**
  4. Little boys and Genoise

As was made painfully clear by Dorie’s instructions and the P&Q this week, the genoise for our Berry Surprise Cake was fragile.  It needed focus and calm.  So, I made it right before lunch.  Because I am a genius.  If you don’t immediately see the problem with this scenario, you a) have no children; b) have children who have long since grown; or 3) have much more patient and angelic children than me.

My children become raving little me-bots before lunch.  “When is lunch?  I’m hungry.  Can I have some juice?  I don’t want sandwich/hot dog/cheese.  When is lunch?  Are you finished yet?”  This is not the preferred environment for tackling egg “divas.”  I actually thought I was doing OK at first.  Sugar dissolved.  Eggs tripled.  Ribbons were visible.  At the direction of Baking Illustrated, I took out some of the eggs and folded them into the butter.  Still going well.  Then I added the flour.  (Insert about seven “when is lunch” interruptions into this description).  I was nervous about over mixing so I used a very gentle hand.  Like a whisper on a cloud.  So gentle that when I was pushing the batter into the pan, there appeared a GIANT clump of flour.  GIANT.  A more experienced baker may have been able to recover.  But, we aren’t talking about an experienced baker, are we?


Crater city.  Oh well.  I don’t think I was the only one.  I decided just to fill the ready made well on the top of the cake and call it a day.  Before starting the cake, I had imagined doing a chocolate and apricot filling.   After making the cake, I immediately switched gears for something simple.  This can of bing cherries has been starting at me for many moons.  I have no clue how I acquired it but it suddenly became perfect for my filling.  I used some of the juice from the can for the syrup and folded the cherries right into the cream cheese/cream filling.

photo-689You can see some cherries peaking out.

Honestly, despite the clear problems with my cake, I really liked the end result.  It was so much better than I was anticipating.  Maybe someday when my children are at sleep away camp or married, I will try this again.

**I would like to have included a picture of the cut cake but we were using the computer to watch The Empire Strikes Back.  We had a really nice mult-disk DVD player once and then a thick haired toddler shoved some toys in it.  Then we had a decent one disk DVD player.  A blond toddler shoved some toys in it.  Now, we use our laptop and plug it into the TV.

The full recipe is on Mary Ann’s blog.  To see the other Berry Surprise Cakes click here.

Next week:

16 responses to “TWD: Surprise! It sunk!

  1. That meal hour sounds sooooo familiar. But I made mine late in the evening when all of my little angels were sleeping, and still failed miserably. Those flour clumps were the death of me (there were even some in the baked cake). It looks like you rebounded nicely and ended up with a tasty dessert! Bing cherries sound really great this time of year.

  2. Glad the cake turned out well! The kiddos sure keep us on our toes in the kitchen! 🙂

  3. I always get the “I’m so hungry I’m going to die!” Or the accompanying throw-themselves- to-the-floor and make it impossible for you to move anywhere. Or my personal favorite “Can’t you cook that any faster?”

  4. Way to make use of the crater.

  5. I can totally relate to your story. My boys were literally hanging on my legs as I was trying to get the eggs and sugar into the warm water. I had zero concentration. LOL about trying it again when they are married. Glad you got the chance to try it and that you enjoyed it!

  6. Hilarious. I feel your pain believe me! 🙂 Even though it sunk it still looks delicious! 🙂

  7. i had the same issues and did the same thing you did. i really liked this cake anyway, i thought it was delicious!

  8. I’m glad you liked the taste. How funny, i applaud you for baking with kids around.

  9. My cake fell before it even went into the pan — and no kids were around for an excuse! Good save with using the cherries and the “crater.”

  10. Well, at the very least, the filling had a great place to rest!:) Glad you liked it.:)

  11. My first one was flat, but second try came out well. It was a challenge to say the least this week, huh? At least you have the kids to help you through the tough times! 🙂

  12. I salute you for attempting it while they were present! I wait until my little “helpers” hit the hay. I’ll bet it tasted delicious anyway!

  13. Funny (?) story about the DVD player! 🙂 Your cake at the end looked great and yummy!

  14. Glad you made the best of the cake. Love the cherries idea.

  15. This recipe has a certain tenacity, doesn’t it? I mean first it whups us and then we end up with a decent dessert anyway! So glad it turned out to be a hit despite certain, ahem, distractions in the baking process. btw, sleepaway camp was heaven! But by the time they got old enough to go away to college I missed having them here – but they weren’t throwing tantrums – at least not on a regular basis!

  16. I didn’t make it around to the blogs last week, so I’m doing a bit of catching up here….and I love the idea of the cherries with this cake! I also love how you made the center the well! Very resourceful…and those of us with children knocking about should be all about the resourceful aspects of our talents, don’tchathink? Great job.

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