Lily’s Blog, Dragon Absconded!
Baking Until I Drop

Quotation of the moment:

Friday 15th, August 2008

Sister needs a name

She is envious that Chennette has a name and I have a name.
But whenever we were online, Chennette and I always had pseudonyms.
She always used her real name.
What we were supposed to refer to her as?
Mother of our niece and nephew?
Her first name?
She is both Chennette’s and my sister.
We have no other sister left after we count off each other.
She has no blogging/website identity so she’s defined by her relationship to us.

But Chennette thinks we should sign her up for a wordpress account so….

I know, you know her even less than we do so you have no idea.
If you’re even reading this.
If anybody is even reading this.

A Birthday Cake Story

White Velvet Butter Cake

White Velvet Butter Cake , originally uploaded by Lilandra.

I bought Rose Levy Beranbaum‘s The Cake Bible along with a host of books I got recently. I did wonder why I was buying a Cake Book. I was a bit bolstered by the lack of much of them in our shelves but me? cakes? Anywayz, that story is for another day.

I’m here to tell you about the epitome of my cake desires…the jam layer cake.

And before I go any further:

Disclaimer: Today is not my birthday. My birthday does not fall around this day. In fact, August is certainly not my birthday month.

My family doesn’t really celebrate birthdays. (For the record, strict practising muslims, don’t celebrate birthdays at all). Even before we knew this, or tried to keep this, we never had birthday parties. For the most part birthdays were celebrated en famille with cake and ice-cream and no chores for the day. Since I wasn’t into cake (I didn’t think it was anything special), my “cake” was always Lemon Meringue Pie.

In fact, I think quite a lot of my (older) birthdays were spent sleeping. And you may not believe it, but those weren’t even the worst or most depressing of my birthdays.

Despite this, my first birthday memory was of a party. I think I was four. I think it was a birthday party. And I think it was mine. I remember thinking ooo! I’m celebrating my birthday and my cousin is being born. I think that was the most enthralling of my thoughts. Was it a real memory? I don’t know. When I ask mom she says it sounds about right. Where were my parents? At the hospital? But I think I really do remember this. It’s weird, huh?

Anywayz, once when I was older (twelve?), we went by my aunt and there was a birthday party. Details about why only Sister the Elder and I were there are sketchy. I’m not even sure if it was at my aunt’s house or if we went somewhere else from there. But I sort of remember two birthdays…or two birthday cakes all for the birthday girl (my cousin! and if she ever reads this, there’s no hard feelings). I don’t think my aunt was in control of this party…I mean I doubt it because I doubt I would’ve felt like … left out? side-lined? unimportant? I remember there was a cake all covered with a white buttercream (I think? or was it eggwhite frosting?) and m&m’s (or smarties?) stuck all over it as decoration. And I was a bit envious or … if not quite envious, depressed but very polite. There was nothing about it being my birthday. This is why I really think we were at a friend of my cousin’s house…or some of my cousin’s family…and somehow my sister and I were there. And you have to understand, I’m really sensitive. I cry easily. And alienation…well…that’s my good friend. Basically my memories of this are just me being sad, depressed, polite and not saying anything. (Why do people do this? Thankfully the next time this happened I was 21, and the third birthday girl was…10! and although all parties involved were family, I was smart and older and worried about other things).

Of course, my sister knew what was going on with me.
Maybe I said something to her or she saw my face or knew how a (was I about 12??)-year old would feel on her birthday when her little cousin has a birthday cake and birthday gifts and she doesn’t. I mean she would’ve been 17 (if I was 12…hmmm maybe I was younger…she could’ve been 14-16). Of course, maybe she just knew me!

And she promised me to make me a birthday cake.

A layered cake! Which is what I wanted and with jam spread between the layers.

And I was so happy.

She was the greatest sister ever.

I don’t remember the cake precisely. I’m not even sure when the cake was made (our family is all about 11 months after the fact gifts).

But I remember taking out mom’s three layer pans and my sister making a cake. Or that’s all I remember about the cake.

And so, nice jam layered cakes have always been something I want. Something I like. Of course, it helps when the cake is soooooo moist and delicious and paired with guava jam…Yum!

White Velvet Butter Cake

Have a slice of White Velvet Butter Cake , originally uploaded by Lilandra.

Because this is the first cake I made in a long time (not counting Chocolate Heart of Darkness), I posted a whole set on Flickr. Heh.