23 September, 2010

Blue Cake.

What belongs at the birthday party of a freshly five year old boy? Pirates and (apparently) abducted princesses, naturally. Candy and golden treasure, of course.

And don't forget the cake.

If you type "blue cake" into your search engine, you'll get responses like this, or this. I'm so far out of the fondant league, it's a bit embarassing. I can't hold my head up among the baking bloggers of this world. No matter, my heart is in the right place, which will get you a long way. The way to this particular boy pirate's heart is paved with chocolate, so I added a swashbuckler on an island, in the middle of a choppy sea. Behold, admire:
When I presented this to the waiting co-conspirators (with a buccaneer's flourish), the reaction wasn't quite what I expected; blame it on the fresh air of the French countryside. The remarks were mainly along the lines of:

- That's a blue cake!

- I've never seen a blue cake before.

- Hunh. Neither have I.

- Neither have I!

- Me neither!

- But what's it made of?

- You put sand on there? [I didn't.]

Then, finally:

- I get the first piece because it's my birthday! [At least my son was willing to go first.]

And then some more:

- But how did you get it so blue? Is the ocean even that blue? [...]

Until a bit of vindication. Sort of:

- Can I have the recipe so my mother can make it too? She never makes blue cake. If you don't have children of your own (yes that is handmade "gold" bullion in the background), you may be under the impression that a children's birthday party is merry, and relaxed. This is not the case.

And this is why you've suddenly reached the end of this particular tale: I'm still recovering.


  1. That flour bag is so pretty. I love that shade of blue, and the birds.

    Your cake is perfect for a five year old boy. I don't know what all the fuss was about. I'm sure it was tasty.

  2. Hello Rose,

    The kids were just weirded out by the unnaturalness of the frosting. You don't get that many frosted cakes here to begin with, and not a single mother I know uses food coloring with the frosting, or plunks decorative stuff on the cake, aside from maybe sprinkles. I've seen cakes with no frosting at all--and sprinkles on the top. Frosting's an imported idea that hasn't really caught on. Not the worst thing, considering how much butter and sugar went into that frosting!

  3. Huh! That makes me wonder what kind of cakes do get served at birthdays then? And I thought you did a great job.

  4. Thanks WC! I hadn't really considered it, but in general, especially in the countryside, mothers keep birthday cakes simple--what might be considered pretty barebones by Americans. Often no topping, or only a thin chocolate ganache or maybe a glaze. Food coloring isn't always easy to track down, either. If a mother wanted to go fancy, she'd probably head to the corner pastry shop...but still, no blue cake there either. Perhaps this is part of why chic, frosted cupcakes are suddenly all the rage in Paris (and Amsterdam)...They never had them growing up!


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