Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Loaded with shinny

A few months ago my keen literary tastes led me to pick up To Kill A Mockingbird for the eight billionth time, because as much as I love my Kindle it's really not the kind of thing you should  be bringing into the bathtub. As I lay there inflicting water damage on an American classic, I came across a passage that gave me pause. In short, it was describing a type of cake, a Lane cake, that is baked in enough hooch to get an entire kindergarten class tipsy. The verbiage used to explain this cake is particularly wonderful:

"Miss Maudie Atkinson baked a Lane cake so loaded with shinny it made me tight."

I don't know what 'tight' is referring to, though I have a few ideas, but that's not really the what struck my interest. You see, I bake all the time--cakes, cookies, meringues, pies...and I had never even heard of a Lane cake, let alone gotten tight from one. I did a quick Google hop and discovered that this is indeed a real thing, and it contains close to two cups of bourbon. I would consider it a grave disservice to myself and everyone around me NOT to bake such a magical confection, so I placed it in my "Cake Bait" file, which is where I keep recipes designed to make people love me.

The flip side of this is that I wrote my own book a few years ago, and have been jumping through all the requisite hoops toward publication, a goal that is now glittering on the horizon. Because I am both lazy and a fat kid at heart, I wrote about fifty different baking scenes into a book that ultimately has very little to do with food just to give my main character something to do that I wouldn't have to think too much about. I am also an avid taker of bad pictures, and now with the help of Instagram my bad pictures can look bad behind a wide array of artistic filters, so I thought, "Hey! Maybe instead of flooding my Facebook wall with all of my culinary creations I can condense them to a blog dedicated to literary desserts!"

So that's what I'm doing. My posts will likely consist of 99.9% dessert items, because I don't know how to cook real food, and as it just occurred to me that I should probably also document the inevitable weight gain that will accompany this project. I will heroically bake every single item that I wrote about in my own book, along with desserts ripped from the pages of other novels...trust me when I tell you that my taste in books is somewhat sporadic and not particularly sophisticated, so if you see me baking stuff that I found in a V.C. Andrews incest-fest or Shopaholic Raises the Dead don't be surprised. I'll also post recipes, so if something strikes your fancy you can attempt it in your own kitchen, or else send me money to make it for you.

<This officially ends the boring disclaimer post>

Sweet potato cupcakes with toasted marshmallow frosting. They have no literary value, I just made them for Thanksgiving and they came out super-pretty.

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