Monday, March 10, 2014

Gymnastics cake

I have this grand plan to make an awesome gymnastics cake for Sarah's birthday, including little clay gymnasts and edible gym equipment.  Tonight I asked Mike to take the kids to their Kuk Sool Won class so I could work on it.  The project of the night was to mold four tiny gymnasts out of clay and get them baked so they can cool and I can paint them another time.  I only had an hour and a half alone, so I worked  fast.  I was pleased with my first gymnast, who was doing the splits, but I got too ambitious with the vaulting girl.  I couldn't get her to stay upside down, no matter how many toothpicks I stuck in her.  I propped her up against a glass and hoped that she would bake and stay upside down.  The third one turned out to be a little oddly-proportioned (huge, long ape arms and stubby, skinny legs), but an hour had passed already and I needed to get them in the oven.

I cleaned up and hid the evidence while the gymnasts were baking.  I  checked on them after 15 minutes, and saw a grisly sight.  The vaulter had fallen off the vault, and her hands were missing.  I found them still stuck to the vault.

I pulled the tray out of the oven and removed the glass that had failed to support the vaulter and set it on the counter.  I used hot pads, of course, because I'm no dummy, and I realize that a glass that's been in the oven for 15 minutes is going to be very hot.  I also removed the handless vaulter, as well as the vault with two creepy hands sticking on it.  Then I put the other two gymnasts back in to bake for a few more minutes, because I have no idea how to tell when gymnasts are fully baked.

In an effort to tidy up, I grabbed the glass off the counter to put it in the dishwasher.  In the 30 seconds since I'd put it there, I'd forgotten that it was hot.  I was rudely reminded, and my seared hand opened involuntarily, and the glass shattered all over the floor. In the time it took me to go get a plastic bag to gather the big pieces, I forgot that the glass was still hot.  I burned my other hand picking up the first chunk.  I used the hot pads to pick up the rest and started vacuuming up the little shards.  With both hands burning and glass still everywhere, I forgot that I had a husband and kids.  They reminded me by arriving at that moment, so I had to scramble to cover up the handless girl and handy vault. Then I remembered the other poor gymnasts who were still baking.  I took them out of the oven and went back to vacuuming.  Sarah asked for a snack. Bad timing.

At that point, the vacuum died.  Just turned itself off right in the middle of the job.  It also inexplicably dumped its contents (dirt, hair, hot glass shards) in a pile on the floor under itself.  This birthday cake is not going very well so far.  I think instead of four gymnasts, I might just go with the one that turned out ok. 


Anonymous said...

Have you considered using Marzipan for your gymnasts? (or you can use almond paste - easily purchased at grocery store)It's like working with play dough.
Also, I'm not so sure about throwback thursdays (for some reason that just sounds like added pressure to do something on a regular schedule. Who needs added pressure?), but any stories, past or present are fun to read.
Your mom is not the only one interested in your stories.

~ j

Janes Family said...

I've never worked with marzipan but that's a good idea. I've baked with almond paste before. Isn't it pretty sticky? Throwback Thursday wouldn't be any pressure because if I miss one, who cares? Thanks for being interested. Can you send me a link to patches and pearls? I can't seem to find it.

Mike said...

Ah...the broken glass mystery revealed!