We're celebrating Thanksgiving in California for the second time, but this will be our first full-fledged holiday dinner in our own home. Last year we'd just arrived on base, and cobbled together a little feast for just the two of us in our hotel room kitchenette, thanks to some supermarket rotisserie chicken and pumpkin pie from Trader Joe's. It ended up being a lovely day.
|Last year's Thanksgiving dinner. If you know the Lt., you know that no feast is complete without Dr. Pepper.|
This year, we are very thankful to be in our own home and with friends, even if we can't manage to make it back to the East Coast to spend the holiday with our families. The Lt.'s good friend is driving out here from Phoenix to spend the weekend with us, and my best friend here in California, whose husband is in Afghanistan, will also be joining our little party. She'll be bringing her little boy, who is literally one of the cutest children I have ever seen.
|A seriously cute little boy.|
I was hoping to get a few other officers from the Lt.'s unit to come as well, until it suddenly became clear that either one of them or I would be hosting a huge party of 20-30 hungry Marines. This 8-months-pregnant gal has gracefully bowed out of that race. (Not, of course, that I am actually physically capable of bowing gracefully right now!)
I'm a little behind in my preparations, thanks to a bad cold I've been battling for the last week or so, and am only now making my menu and lists to take to the store. But I thought you might be amused by a recent baking fail of mine.
For the last several weeks I've been wanting baked goods available at all times. Nothing overly sweet - this spiced applesauce cake over at Smitten Kitchen looked perfect. "Snacking cake" for me, with a bit of cream cheese frosting for the Lt. (to whom cake without frosting is a waste of time).
Since I don't actually have a small cake pan, and since more cake seemed like a better idea than less cake (duh!), I decided to double the recipe. However, I made the crucial mistake of attempting to double a recipe in my head while I was:
B) on the phone (with Sukie).
It wasn't until I took my cake out of the oven (after I had more than doubled the baking time and it still refused to set) that it occurred to me something might be wrong.
Indeed, I had very carefully doubled every ingredient... except the flour. Resulting in something I, for lack of a better name, dubbed spiced applesauce pudding.
|Because I'm sure you wanted to see another picture of the Cake Fail.|
It tasted... like it would have been an excellent cake. We valiantly struggled through a few pieces of it, but no more. Sigh. Next time.
(Really, I am quite convinced that it would've been a delicious cake, and this should in no way be construed as a condemnation of the recipe, which I intend to try again - perhaps paying a little more attention next time.)
In much more tasty news, I soon after made (but sadly did not photograph) these Homemade Twix Bars, which were amazingly good. They consist of a layer of shortbread, a layer of caramel (I actually used a simpler caramel, which I had in the fridge already because the Lt. was on a caramel apple dip kick), and a layer of chocolate, and they looked and tasted exactly as wonderful as you would hope they would.
Hopefully my Thanksgiving baking (and yours!) is more uniformly successful!