Friday, December 01, 2006

Kwanzaa Celebration Cakestravaganza

A few days ago, Brianna IM'd me a link, which I unfortunately clicked.

Go ahead, click it. I dare you.

I watch the Food Network a lot. It's like my porn. Nine times out of ten, when DLang comes home later than me, I'm sitting on the couch, eating something of questionable nutritional value (hi bag of chocolate chips!), and watching FoodTV. I can watch just about anything on that channel, but should Sandra Lee's show "Semi-Homemade" come on air, I'm out. I'm all for convenience, but come on Sandra! A few weeks ago (while searching frantically for the remote control to END THE HORROR) I glimpsed her scooping out the insides of a pumpkin pie and a cheesecake, and mixing them together to make a pumpkin cheesecake filling. It was just wrong.

Now, in all my years of using the World Wide Web, I've seen some crazy shit - however, I don't think I've seen anything quite like Sandra Lee's Kwanzaa Celebration Cake. It's offensive and wrong on so many levels. For one, the recipe includes a store-bought angel food cake, corn nuts, and canned apple pie filling. Those things DO NOT GO TOGETHER. (Frankly, canned apple pie filling doesn't go with anything, although when we were grocery shopping for Project: Kwanzaa Celebration Cake, Brianna charitably suggested that a non-baker might use it to bake an apple pie. She's nicer than me.) Next, the recipe is on, Now, I know Thomas Keller isn't exactly vying for a slot on the Food Network, but there are some respected, reputable chefs who contribute, and what exactly do Mario Batali and Wolfgang Puck think of the "food" that Sandra "cooks"? Thirdly, look at her, and think hard about what this woman knows about Kwanzaa.

Let's look at that picture again:


Anyway, we decided to get together and create this culinary delight. A quick stop at Key Food and $20 (we also bought ice cream) yielded the necessary ingredients. (Brianna had the more reasonable ingredients at home, like vanilla, cinnamon and cocoa. Somewhat surprisingly she also had corn nuts, which is good because we actually couldn't find those at the grocery store.)

I sliced the angel food cake in half and placed the bottom on Brianna's grandma's silver platter. (We really are just that classy.) Brianna mixed up the frosting, and despite my protests and the recipe CLEARLY stating that we should use a large bowl, she insisted upon adding the mix-ins directly to the frosting cannister, claiming, "That's how Sandra would do it." Spillage was minimal. We then frosted the cake (Sandra doesn't use a crumb coat) and got to the fun stuff: Canned apple pie filling. 21 ounces of it.

"There's no way this is all going in that hole."

"Make it fit. Come on, just jam it in there."

Hehe. That's what she said.

Next came the fun stuff: pumpkin seeds, popcorns, and corn nuts.

Why, Sandra? Why? What compelled you to put corn nuts on a cake?

Three Jim & Gingers later, we had assembled our masterpiece. Either Sandra's cake (and thus her hole, hehe) was much bigger than ours, or she was daintier than her recipe called for with those toppings, because, dudes, look at this thing:

(We forgot the candles.)

We actually did taste it and then rinsed our mouths with turpentine, because turpentine was less offensive to our taste buds than store-bought vanilla frosting mixed with cinnamon and cocoa. Then we drank some more bourbon.

Photographic evidence is available on Flickr.

Brianna's recap of our cakestravaganza is on Random Access Babble.


Anonymous said...

you are hilarious! thanks for the laughs

Truthspew said...

They trot out the Kwanzaa cake every year around this time and every time I see even the stylized version they've shown I find it vaguely repulsive.

It's not the concept of Kwanzaa, just the fact they'd grace it with such a disgusting concoction.

Kudos to you for attempting to do the project.

Anonymous said...

Wow.... that cake looks absolutely it's covered in bugs and my cat's lunch from yesterday. BUT I must say that you did an excellent job in putting it together! Far prettier than Sandra's version. I cannot imagine why she would even think to put these things together!!! It's like putting garlic in your rice pudding or bell peppers in your beer... they DO NOT go together!! This doesn't make sense for any season, let alone a special holiday treat. I'd think that she would have gone for a rum-soaked fruit/nut cake or something... but what do I know!? Thanks for trying this out ladies - are you building up your stamina for "fear factor"? Curious minds want to know :)

adozeneggs said...

I thought Kwanzaa was all about home made things?
Store bought, pre-made cake, frosting in a can?? Corn nuts on cake?
I'm surprised she didn't whip out one of her envelopes of dressing mix.
PS found you from Cake Wrecks!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the laughs! I watched the video on the food network website - the advert at the beginning was for heartburn medicine.... you'd need it after eating this cake!

Anonymous said...

LOL. turpentine sounds just about right. OMG, i can't imagine the horror. The pictures on Flickr literally (I kid you not) made my back go cold and little shivers run up and down my spine.

She should be cooking jail will be a greater incentive not to commit a crime than life-long incarceration.

Shannon said...

I love that you made this! It sounds just as horrible as I would have imagined. I don't know how this woman has her own show. Thanks for the laugh!

divawidfevah said...

You ladies were brave to even attempt that. POPCORN! I have no words!

And the pictures speak volumes. I'm just thankful you lived to even tell this story after tasting that nastiness.

I have an aunt who celebrates Kwanzaa and she said she usually eats fried fish, macaroni & cheese and has sweet potato pie. She has never heard of or seen a Kwanzaa cake like this and said she would assault anyone who brought such an atrocity to her home.

Marg said...

OMG I came from Cake Wrecks

you actually tried it?
what a brave soul!

Anonymous said...

Heavens to betsy- I'm so relieved someone else sees Sandra Lee's insanity. She is so whack! Her shortcuts are usually so expensive and are totally enabling our kid obesity problem. In all honesty, I've only seen bits and pieces because she pisses me off and I eventually have to turn off the tube and go make something from scratch!

Your cake was just lovely. In an'A for effort'-experimental way. The frosting looks pretty damn good.

A Refocused Life said...

Thanks for taking time to confirm our actually was as bad as it sounded.
I knew Sandra had issues the first time I realized that she redecorates her kitchen to match her daily scary is that?