My in laws left yesterday after spending a weekend with us. Note the absolute joy in my words as I inform you of this. Actually, I am not alone with my less than ecstatic attitude; Sunkist, after having to stay confined to cages for the entire time, actually bit me on the cheek when I freed him from his imprisonment. And he drew blood. You know he wasn't happy.
Husband and I have spoke of the toll having parents around can take on grown children.
When the in laws came to visit during the summer, and the yard was open and the pool inviting, there was space to get away from each other. But with the weather cold and the yard basically closed for the impending winter, the only place to go for some solitude was the bathroom. Grab a book, pull up a bench, turn on the ventilator fan so it sounds like serious business is taking place in there, and enjoy 20 minutes of peace.
In preparation for the visit, husband was talked into baking a pumpkin poundcake by myself. This suggestion was not without personal agenda as I love pumpkin and was anticipating my first pumpkin confection of the season. Saturday morning, before the arrival of the visiting parents, husband was in the kitchen baking a cake. The house smelled fabulous! Pumpkin-y and spice and warm ... very nice on a cold day.
When it came to be time to take the anxiously awaited poundcake from the oven, it seemed to look a bit flat to me. As minutes passed, the poundcake began to settle and oddly, the butter seemed to be separating from the cake. I commented how the cake reminded me of a fallen souffle, or that perhaps it needed more flour. Husband thought that the pumpkin might not have been good. Bravely, we all stood around the center kitchen island and tasted the crunchier bits of the cake and it was sweet, but tasty. However, it soon became apparent that it was much too heavy to eat.
That evening while exploring our local Wild Oats market, husband was convinced to try another poundcake. We bought the cream cheese, more eggs, flour, pecans, and vanilla. Sunday morning husband started to bake cake number two.
Praline Pecan poundcake is amazingly sweet - normally. And everyone was looking forward to an awesome dessert after dinner. While the cake was in the oven, I began to prepare the evening meal which included egg dumplings. Now this is my recipe and I've not shared it with husband before. Since he was kind of hanging around watching the progress of cake #2, I asked him if he wanted to learn to make dumplings. He eagerly said yes.
Going to the pantry cabinet with a large bowl and a measuring cup, I began to measure out the flour for the dumplings. It was at this point that husband said, "Is that the flour? Then what is in the cabinet?" I turned to look at him and said "which cabinet?" He pointed to the spice and sugar cabinet. It was then that I understood his cake failure ....
In his eager ness to escape the immediate presence of his parents, husband invaded the kitchen with one thought in mind; to make a good cake. He didn't think about the ingredients, if he had he might have remembered that the flour is where the flour has always been and the sugar is with all of the other sugar products.
Two poundcakes and not one good enough to really eat. In fact, after tasting the crumbly bits again, I began to have a stomach ache from all of the sugar.
Of course, the poundcakes were flourless. Sans flour. Instead of flour, husband measured out two cups of powdered sugar. No wonder those fallen cakes were so sweet.
And no wonder that he thought we had run out of 'flour'.
It would have been hysterically funny except that poundcakes cost about $15 a piece to make. Well, it was funny - after I found something else to eat.