I've been an enormous slacker on TWD and for that, I apologize to all memebers, especially our fearless leader, Laurie! But now I am back in the game and have some SERIOUS catching up to do.
Wendy, of Pink Stripes, chose the Rum-Drenched Vanilla Cake and for that, I want to hug her. I can't say it enough - Alcohol in desserts is a-ok by me. I just love the unexpected flavor that pops from spirits. And now, I'll stop talking about how much I love the combination, for fear that all of my readers will think I actually do have a problem and will hold a virtual intervention.
I made these vanilla cakes one night when Jack and I were hosting several friends for a dinner party. Every so often, we and a few of Jack's college friends and their girlfriends/wives, whom I now consider my own friends and who I love so much, get together and have dinner or do some other fun event together (like our most recent trip to LBI). I had decided to make several canapes - Shrimp toast, Filet Mignon with a tomato creme fraiche on water crackers, lemon-taragon meatballs with a sweet tomato glaze, and something else that is escaping me - and two desserts - a lemon tart and these rum drenched vanilla cakes.
Everything went off without a hitch, and of course, I did not take any pictures of anything because I was pressed for time and the sun was setting and I refuse - REFUSE - to take photos of my food with flash, no matter how much Jack tells me I am being ridiculous (food bloggers, you understand). The only thing that I didn't work for me were these cakes. I don't know what went wrong, but I blame the perils of New York City kitchens. My stove is the size of half a stove, and it burns at whatever temperature it feels like. Right now, it is burning at about 25 degrees higher than it should be. Items on the lower rack cook well, but items on the top rack really brown quickly, and these were no exception. I tried to rotate the pans from the top to the bottom, and I was rewarded for my efforts of moving the loaf pans with sunken, dense middles.
I decided to quickly make some rum whipped cream and a mixed berry compote, hoping that would easy the disaster that these cakes turned into. Luckily, it did. But I was still not proud of the dish and did not want to serve it to guests. As they started to arrive, I quickly hid the cakes atop my dresser in my bedroom (I live in Manhattan - I don't have much space) and forgot about it.
Hours later, after our bellys were full and we were happily drinking some summery sangria, a friend of walked out of our bedroom after using the bathroom (we have one bathroom in our apartment and it is in our bedroom - Manhattan living at its finest) and exclaimed - do you have a cake on your dresser?!
Good times, indeed.
Needless to say, I think this cake would have been phenomenal if it were not for my missteps. Thanks to Wendy for an awesome pick!
Click here for the recipe!