Let me tell you my feelings about cake.
Cake is basically a medium for frosting. I am so all about the frosting. Any sort – buttercream, cream cheese, chocolate, vanilla… anything that isn’t full of Crisco. The cake is a mechanism for easily delivering the frosting to my mouth, because, let’s face it, not many people or establishments will serve up a dish of frosting by itself. The cake is a necessary by-product.
I’m not alone in my feelings here! I met one of my best friends when I was volunteering, and later working, at Wolf Haven International. Wendy is both the most like me and most unlike me person I will perhaps ever meet, but we share very common feelings on food: We love it. In particular, we love The Chocolate and we love The Frosting.
Wendy will obliterate me for sharing the following two things, even though they happened years ago and 2500 miles away – please don’t tell her.
First, this photographic evidence of Wendy’s love of truffles – this is her reaction upon seeing a jar of chocolate truffles on the table at our favorite breakfast restaurant. I call this one, “Wendy Sees Truffles:”
Note the lips pursed with amazed glee and anticipation.
Wendy knows that photo lives on the internets, but she doesn’t, so she’s ok with it. However, if she ever, ever suspected I ever told anyone what I am about to tell you.. well. She would book a flight immediately and worry about what to do with the body later.
You know that sickly-sweet frosting you get on cakes at grocery stores? The kind that’s actually gritty from having so much sugar? The kind that clogs your arteries before you eat it? We have a special place in our hearts for that. Cakes at Wolf Haven were rapidly devoured – even more rapidly if the rest of the staff were allowed near it. Cakes happened a lot – birthdays, anniversaries, Wednesdays.
One time (and I suspect it was more than one time, but this is the only time to which I have hearsay evidence,) there was a cake. At the time, dogs were allowed in the WH offices, and Wendy’s two dogs were known to Get Into Things. Get into things to the extent of climbing (literally) atop my refrigerator to get to the treats, and tearing into unopened bags of dog food. They’re naughty, but sweet.
So, naturally, they get into this cake, and someone else on the staff (who was not Wendy or me) throws the cake away like a normal human. Because it had, y’know, dog cooties on it. Wendy comes in from being out in the wolf sanctuary, sees the cake in the trash and gets it out because no one is around to witness her depravity. And proceeds to eat all the frosting off of it.
Some of you probably just shuddered with revulsion, but I’m all like, “Yeah, I can totally see that. There was only paper in the trash, and we always have dog cooties on us” (and wolf scat and blood and viscera and bees, but you don’t want to hear about that stuff.) (You probably didn’t want to hear about the cake, either, sorry.)
My belabored point is this: FROSTING.
Not cake. However, twice in the last three days, I have been given the following recipe:
I might rename it to, “Holy Shit Cake,” due to the sheer volume of STUFF in it. Admittedly, I am biased against this cake because the first listed ingredient is, “18 oz devil’s food cake mix.” That’s so totally cheating! Why go to the effort of making a cake if you’re just going to use a mix? Bah! But the cake mix gets, shall we say, “enhanced.”
Eight ounces of caramel topping, plus FOURTEEN OUNCES of sweetened, condensed milk.
Three entire eggs.
A candy bar.
I mean, holy shit, right? I haven’t even mentioned the cream cheese and whipped topping. Oh. Em. Eff. Gee.
This may warrant further consideration, and perhaps empirical evidence-gathering. This may blow the doors wholly off my “cake is inferior to frosting” theory.
(Nom, nom, nom, nom)