My First and Worst Cake

I think I’ve told this story before but for those who may have missed it, here’s the background to this photo that I hope you will find inspiring, i.e. I hope you will see how much one can improve with practice and determination!

Elliott and I were not yet married so this was a little over 31 years ago. Elliott’s son Michael was celebrating his 13th birthday and had the good taste to request see ingthe Broadway play Dracula with Frank Langela. I offered to make the birthday cake. This was BG (before ganache) and I wanted a rich dark chocolate frosting if not for the cake itself at least for the decoration. So I kept adding brown food coloring, not realizing that it would darken on its own after several hours.

The performance was magnificent. Elliott had parked in nearby “Hell’s Kitchen” and when we went to find the car it was no where in sight or site! It gradually dawned upon us that it had been stolen.

Michael, his sister Beth, and I returned home to eat cake while waiting for Elliott to return from the police precinct. I must say that the cake frosted with classic chocolate buttercream, was quite delicious. However, on Elliott’s return, when was greeted by his son with a wide smile on his face and a big “Hi Dad.” Elliott looked at us in horror. I looked back at Michael and saw why: His tongue had turned black (from the food color).

I eventually redeemed myself by discovering the charms of ganache and coming up with the most perfect, foolproof, and easy method for making it.