Most moms take time out from their busy schedules to bake on Sunday’s. That usually means you get to gorge on some serious cake. You’re sprawled out on the living room floor watching your favorite TV show, passing the time. That’s when it hits you – wave upon wave of the most tantalizing aroma. This is a treasure you don’t need a map to find. Like invisible hands, the scent of chocolate wraps you in its embrace and leads you to the kitchen. The cake has just come out of the oven; ribbons of smoke still rising from its decadent cocoa facade. What’s the matter, Cat got your tongue?
The cake is baked to perfection; fluffy, moist, and rich inside. The icing is carefully slathered on top and acts like a cloak to shield this beauty from prying eyes. But it’s no use. The finished product looks even better glistening with rich dark chocolate frosting. As you partake in the highest of culinary honors – licking the icing spoon, you realize the process isn’t over – curls of chocolate shavings fall from your mother’s fingertips and land softly on the surface of the cake. In that moment, you became a believer: love at first sight definitely exists.
A history of Sir Cake-a-lot
The history of cake is as rich as its taste. It’s all about creativity and innovation. The ‘rising’ star of this prolific tale is one key ingredient – flour.The word cake is of Viking origin – the Norse word kaka. Food historians trace the origins of this dessert back to ancient Egypt where they were skilled in baking. It started out with a dessert more bread like in texture and sweetened with honey, fruits, and nuts. As time passed and ovens became more common and reliable, cakes started resembling the ones we eat today. It’s not that hard to imagine that our ancestors needed a little sweetness in their lives too, and so invented this glorious dessert.
Cake is part of everyone’s diet and is eaten at a host of different celebrations:
- In England, it’s common to have little cakes with tea.
- You always have elaborate cakes at weddings topped with mini versions of the bride and groom
- There are special holiday cakes, such as Christmas cakes.
- No birthday is complete without cake.
- Many people bring in the new year with this dessert
Around the World with Cake
It isn’t surprising that cake is ranked at the top of most ‘best desserts’ lists around the world. Many countries around the world have their own ways of making this dessert:
- Australia and New Zealand –Pavalova: This delicious cake is made with meringue and topped with fresh berries.
- France – Tartetatin: This famous French cake is essentially a sweet upside down apple tart best served warm.
- Latin America – Tresleches cake: Also called three milk cake, this cake is soaked in three types of milk after its baked; evaporated, condensed, and whole milk. This results in a sweet, rich sponge cake soaked in milk syrup.
- Russia – Medovnik (honey cake) - Layers of cinnamon infused dough are stacked and filled with sweet cream. The result is a sinful blend of sweet and spicy notes.
- Turkey/Greece – Revani – Made with semolina and hints of lemon, this cake is then sweetened with orange syrup.
Life’s a Piece of Cake
“Cake for later, cake as a way of life” says author Laini Taylor. What is it about this dessert that makes people go a little loco? Cake is one of the most common desserts and it comes in many shapes, sizes, and flavors. How does one even begin to describe cake? To simplify this dilemma we can equate cake with some of our major emotions. In that way we can see cake as happiness, love, and a healer.
The pursuit of happiness – there are two cake ways to go about it. You can either wait for someone to hand you a slice of cake, or bake one yourself. You can wait for happiness to be handed to you on a plate, or seek out the ingredients and create your own happiness. We all knowit tastes much better homemade.
- JoyBell. C, an author known for her love of cakes, says“love is like a good cake; you never know when it’s coming, but you’d better eat it when it does!” Expect to meet love around the corner. Expect good things. Expect more cake.
When you’re feeling a little blue, cake will be there for you. More dependable than just about anything, cake always comes through. How could you not feel like a million bucks after eating that little slice of heaven!
All this and cake too
It’s easy to get a little carried away when talking about cake. We could go on and on about how great it is. It’s a feel good dessert that packs a punch when it comes to flavor. Just know this: at the end of the day, if all else fails, you’ll always have cake.