My husband’s family has A Family Birthday Cake recipe. It’s a basic white cake (homemade, of course, not out of a box) with lemon custard filling and coloured icing. Each sibling has his/her own colour — my husband’s is green.
As my husband’s birthday approached (the first we had celebrated together after our marriage), he “informed” me that I would have to get the recipe from his mother and make The Family Birthday Cake. None other would do. In due course, she gave me the recipe and I made the cake.
She, along with all the other siblings, attended the birthday celebration. I was a tad anxious as I served up the cake — you know the stereotype about mothers-in-law and daughters-in-law, how we never quite measure up. Fortunately for me, this particular mother-in-law is an extremely gracious lady. She gave me the Mother-in-law Seal of Approval! I relaxed, having passed the crucial test with flying colours.
Today, another family birthday approaches so this morning I made the Family Birthday Cake. Separate the eggs — Check! Beat the eggs whites — Check! Cream the butter, sugar and vanilla – Check! Add the milk alternately with the flour and baking powder — Check! Pour into greased and floured cake pans and put in the 350 oven — Check!
Because there are always bits of cake batter left in the bowl, I settled into my post-cake-making reward — licking the spoon and beaters. I mused as I took my first taste how I was flouting the now common perception that you shouldn’t eat raw cake or cookie batter because it contains raw eggs.
I’d forgotten to fold in the beaten egg whites!
Quick! Get the pans out of the oven! Scrape the batter back into the bowl! Carefully fold in the egg whites! Wash and regrease and reflour the pans. Pour batter back into pans and put in oven. Bake for 30 minutes.
The cake turned out just fine. It’s now iced with red (well, more like hot pink) icing, ready for the celebration. Bon appetit!
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