What’s Your Definition of Happiness?

For me, it’s a cake dome with plenty of leftover birthday cake under it. For you see while I was out target shooting early Saturday morning (hey, I live in Kentucky now) the Pastry women were hard at work baking a cake for my belated weekend birthday party. Well I have to say it was stellar (isn’t every cake when it’s made by people who love you?), a perfect exemplar of Dorie Greenspan’s “Perfect Party Cake” from Baking: from My Home to Yours. Light, sweet and gently tangy-lemony. They did a fabulous job. Even tiny Joan (well, actually she’s not tiny at all, she’s as plump as a pupa) got her share.

Now of course comes the best part…deciding what to do with the leftovers. I remember as a boy my twin sister and I used to squirrel away the remains of our twin cakes and consume them greedily over the ensuing days. My preferred tactic was to freeze mine so I could slice off razor-thin pieces, thus stretching the birthday cake experience out for at least a week. Oh, the silky ice-cold sweetness of frozen buttercream…

I think I’ll do just that this year. Being a family man now I suppose it would be rather small of me not to share at least some of the leftovers with the wife and daughters (one of the compromises of adulthood). Yet at least one decent hunk will go down into the basement freezer in an anonymous tupperware container, tucked away among the chickens and fish sticks. Mine…all mine.

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