Blimey. What a crazy 3 weeks it’s been. First of all I was gonna move house, then I wasn’t, then I was, now I’m… not sure exactly. My estate agents are all lovely, competent people who are so helpful and efficient, and if you detected sarcasm in that sentence then that’s nothing to do with me :)
The other pretty exciting thing is that a very talented and lovely photographer has asked to do a project on me. I feel like a celebrity! Being the only Muslim in a little rural village is pretty unusual I guess.
But I mention this as it is actually where the first baking subject of this post comes in.
The photographer was fascinated with the story of me and my husband, who’s currently in Egypt. As she was going to Cairo to visit her father, she asked if she could also visit my husband and take a few snaps as part of the project. We said yes, and I couldn’t miss this opportunity to pass something into the hands of my dear husband.
What gift could I possibly give that would convey all the love, emotion, passion and desperation of living 2211 miles away from him? What heartfelt token would tell him that his wife is missing, loving, and thinking of him across this unbearable distance?
Why, biscuits, of course!
The inscriptions are a combination of Arabic, Arabic written in English letters, and some little secret codes that my husband and I use when we talk. The others are just pretty (or attempting to be so).
They’re nowhere near perfect but it’s actually the first time I’ve ever done any piping or decoration work. Seeing as I basically have a degree in drawing (Illustration to be precise), it really bugs me that I can’t use my drawing skills to actually make money. So, my plan: pipe like crazy until I can get as good at it as I am with drawing, then try and sell a few cakes locally.
FYI, this is my drawing:
My theory is, if I can do that with a pencil, I can do it with a piping nozzle! I just need a ton more practise.
That’s my husband by the way. He’s so bootiful.
My final baking catch-up of this post is my disastrous birthday cake.
For my darling mother’s 64th birthday, I decided to do the most extravagant cake I could handle: a 3-layer Victoria sponge, filled with strawberries, whipped cream, and strawberry jam, and covered with a tasty buttercream icing that included real cream and a hint of vanilla (synthetic of course). I’m going to ignore self-complimenting etiquette and tell you that it is one of the most delicious cakes I’ve ever eaten. It’s amazing.
Unfortunately you can’t tell that by looking at it.
First of all, the decoration. My intentions were good. I created a make-shift turn table from our family’s rotating Scrabble stand. It worked pretty well and I was able to make the cake reasonably smooth, but then time ran out. We were meeting the rest of the family at the beach for a birthday picnic (which explains the sprinkling of dirty sand in the picture), and I ended up with about 3 minutes to write the icing. Hence the squiggly, lopsided mess on top.
I am actually really happy that the cake slid around and attached itself to the lid, as I feel the gaping holes detract from my lack of skilz. It also made me glad that I didn’t make the cake any better than it was, or I would have been pretty gutted that it got partly destroyed.
Well, that’s caught up with the major baking episodes during my 3 week hiatus. I shall hopefully be updating more regularly again now, as I have the intention of piping as much as possible, have a fantastic new camera, and (fingers crossed) no sudden plans of moving house. Belhana welshafa!