Saturday, September 29, 2007

Ode on a Sugar-Filled Urn

Tonight was the annual MA/MFA student Literary Dessert Party, whereby everyone is asked to bring a dessert inspired by a work of literature. More points were given for creativity than taste, which only partially explains why we lost. (Also a big reason: some of the professors wanted a student to win and refused to vote for a professor. Which I thought, quite frankly, was idiotic. And no, that was not me trying to bribe my current students with extra credit points so that they would vote for our cake. And no, I'm not bitter that I lost the flashing tiara prize. Nope. Not at all. sniff...) Indeed, we were asked to vote before we were allowed to taste anything; after trying our cake, four profs came up to me afterwards and lamented that they had voted for someone else because they were just melting in the yumminess of our cake.

Anyway, the winner -- one of my former students -- was clear from the minute I walked in:In case it isn't obvious by looking at it, count the layers: it's Dante's Inferno Cake. That's right: nine layers of hellacious goodness. And yes, those are nine separate cakes stacked on top of one another. I mean, jeez, how could I not vote for that? Do you see how much frosting is there? "It's an architectural marvel!" one of us remarked. And it was actually tasty to boot.

Ours? Well, if you remember the last time Angela made a cake (that time for Xan's birthday), it should come as no surprise that we were also on the extravagant side:
Behold: Chocoblanca!
("It doesn't take much to see that the problems of three little people don't amount to a hill of cocoa beans in this crazy world.")

Yes, not strictly "literary," but I teach film in a lit department, so my field must be asserted somehow. The cake itself is a ridiculously delicious chocolate cheesecake, containing Bailey's Irish Cream and a full pound each of cream cheese and dark chocolate. And yes, the rendering of Bogey and Bergman is done is dark chocolate on top. Naturally, Angela made the cake, I only helped with the decorating at the very end. I also bought the ingredients. ("So, should I buy any of the light or lowfat versions of these ingredients, Ange?" "For this cake? Hell, no.")

The worst part? Poor Ange didn't feel well, thus missed a party whose raison d'etre was dessert, which tells you how ill she was feeling. Xan, meanwhile, ate six of the nine layers of my slice of the Hell Cake pictured above and then started zipping around the party like a wildebeast. These were, by the way, only two of what were at least 35 different dessert entries (two inpired by Dante, two by Achebe's Things Fall Apart, one "Love Song of J. Alfred Pruefrock," a Life of Pi(e), one Bluest Eye, one Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius and one basket of apples which came with the label Paradise Lost). I came home and immediately needed something salty.

Next year? Maybe One Hundred Cookies of Solitude.

The winner (a.k.a. Bitch stole my flashing tiara, dammit!!)


KC said...

That cake that Angela made TOTALLY ROCKS. I would have so voted for that. Hope she's feeling better.

rh said...

Those were some awesome looking cakes! I can imagine the internal struggles that goes on in everyone's mind: "If you wolf down that cake, you'll regret it; maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow but soon -- and for the rest of your life."

Hope you're recovering from the sugar high.

Matt said...

Wow, I thought the winning cake would reference Almodovar, something like Sweets on the Verge of Arterial Breakdown...

Chocoblanca? I'm shocked, shocked

all looks so yummy...i'd love for any one of them to be my final memory before hitting the ground

Ursa said...

OMG, I can't believe she stole _your_ tiara!!!

But, still, the Inferno thing was a pretty cool idea, right? Right?