Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Why my article revisions aren't finished yet...

Back safe in Ottawa, and trying to get myself back to actually doing work every day... funny thing was that this time, the jet lag didn't really seem to be a problem- no waking up at the crack of dawn or falling asleep really early. Instead, its the heat that's hit me - its so hot and muggy here (compared to Newcastle, at least) that I find it really hard to be motivated to do more than just veg all day... but who knows, maybe its the jet lag after all.

Anyway, today there was something fun to be done! Mike's (and soon to be my!) nephew Owen turned three at the end of July. For one reason or another (actually several all put together), the Delage side of the family had yet to have a birthday celebration for Owen. So tonight was picked as the night!

I talked to Tara yesterday, and offered to take over the task of making Owen a birthday cake. Since (as you may remember) this kid is still OBSESSED with Bob the Builder, what could I do but make a Bob themed cake for him? But far be it from me to fiddle with those fancy shaped cake tins that only need icing decorations (a local store rents them out - genius idea, I might add!) - I much prefer the old-fashioned, bake a rectangle cake and then cut it to pieces method!

So, to do this, you bake one 9x11 inch chocolate cake (thanks Martha for the recipe!). Freeze it, cut it in half width-wise, and then cut one of those halves in such a way that one quarter is a little bigger than the other. Got it? K, Now go ahead and build your cake, trimming edges and digging out pieces as necessary, until it looks something like this:


Now make your icing (I chose Buttercream). Dye it the most hideous yellow you can, without feeling like you could actually harm someone with that amount of food colouring. Slop, I mean smooth on the icing, using some of it to stick the layers together. Keep two little un-iced bits to serve as the bars connecting the scoop to the rest of the truck. Take some of the yellow icing and add red and blue dye so you get a kind of grey-ish colour, and use this to make the windows on the cab. Chocolate biscuits make easy wheels, and mini-oreos make great "dirt" for the scoop.

VoilĂ ! you have a digger cake! Don't forget to add Bob, your driver. Many thanks to Twenty Cent Mixture (found via Google) for the inspiration for this cake! It was, if I do say so myself, a bit of a hit - so much so that Owen didn't want us to cut it up, because he and Bob had to "go build a cottage" first. We finally had to remind him that this was actually cake and not a toy! (but that didn't stop Bob from playing on it!)






After the cake came the presents...


A book from Granny Cindy, and read by Great-Granny Peggy (gotta love The Cat in the Hat!)


Then a brief stop while a family of six raccoons came to visit the backyard...

And finally, of course, more Bob, courtesy of my "special UK connections" (also known as Asda).

And then, just to round the evening out, a little bit of Felix!


So which is the better excuse, "My dog ate my homework" or "My nephew ate the cake I baked for him"? :)

3 comments:

DaviMack said...

Awesome job on the cake!

PURLPOWER said...

you're the best auntie! I think he'll remember that cake for a long, long time. worth missing some work for I reckon...

The binge knitter said...

The cake looks fantastic! You don't mind if I'd pinch your idea for our birthday cake?