I have heard it said many times that the Queen Mother’s nickname in her heyday was Cake.
And I love Cake. I once bumped into her, in fact, before she died, on one of the most significant days of my life.
I had just finished my university finals and was sat there, wearing my uniform of “sub fusc” (don’t ask), garnished with balloons and champagne, drinking a pint outside a pub in the sunshine (it was 2001. That’s practically the nineties. Pints were a thing) and she drove past in a car the like of which one expects to see chauffeuring squawking pre-teens around for a tenth birthday party while they go crazy on fruit shoots and dib-dabs, waving her regal hand as she passed.
“It’s the Queen Mum!” I shouted happily, taking it as a sign that I was to be blessed with good fortune the rest of my life that I had seen a royal on the day I finished my Finals. And she waved back, a still-living link with history, who had been there at some of the twentieth century’s most era-defining moments. And worn a pretty fabulous outfit during one scene in The King’s Speech.
I did not know, at that time, that Cake and Mums were inextricably linked.
I know now, of course.
I think it’s because once you have children, the wine doesn’t flow quite as freely as it did before, and so coffee and cake become the poison of choice.
It must have been this seemingly unbreakable association that prompted a tweet from Baker Days, makers of personalised cakes, last week. They wanted me to review a cake.
I nearly fell off my chair.
I have to admit I dithered. I am one of the few parent bloggers whose Twitter bio doesn’t reference cake. Why me? What did they want with me? Would I be selling my soul to The Man for a piece of cake?
I said yes immediately. I mean, it’s CAKE.
And lo and behold, this little beauty arrived through my front door.
I know, it’s a tin. A CAKE tin.
Firstly, this was put through the letterbox. How it managed to survive the journey I’ll never know, but it did, perfectly intact. This is surely a miracle of science.
I had it personalised with a Valentine’s message.
Well, I do live with her. And I wasn’t intending for Piglet to eat any of the cake, so I was running out of Valentine’s options.
It was actually really nice, and apparently lasts up to fourteen days. I’m not sure what secret ingredient is keeping it fresh on its journey through the Snail Mail, but it tasted pretty good. With a giant knife (had to cut it nice and cleanly, in an attempt to get the photos right, innit) and my mother yelling from the kitchen about how that’s a carving knife for cutting meat and no don’t use that one use the serrated one instead, I cut it into four good-sized pieces, and then ate
all a few of them (sort of felt obliged to give one to my mother, since it was her name on the cake and everything).
The moment was only slightly ruined by Piglet, who had refused the (very small) piece of cake he was offered, which I was pleased about. As much as I am partial to the odd slice of cake myself, I would much prefer him to choose to eat only kale, spirulina and organic goji berries for his afternoon tea, and
not steal my cake be really healthy and stuff.
Instead of partaking in the general cake-fest, he went off into the middle of the room to play with some toys, and then suddenly, for no apparent reason, started vomiting all over my mother’s carpet, about which she was at one point quite precious, but fortunately no longer is after the amount of general food-throwing it has been forced to endure.
I emphasise that this was an unfortunately timed coincidence, and had NOTHING TO DO WITH THE CAKE.
So thus my enjoyable afternoon tea and cake came to a very abrupt end. In summary I recommend these Baker Days cakes, but probably best savoured during a child-free moment for full enjoyment of the experience.
n.b. I was sent this cake from Baker Days in return for a review. All my opinions are my own including, obviously, my completely irrelevant ramblings about waving at the Queen Mother.