daily dessert

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Faryn and I, with the gracious and life-saving help of my best friend and former roommate, Daniel, made a huge (and really heavy) cake on Saturday night. It was a “Fancy Nancy Cake” – if you’ve never heard of that, click here for some Google image search results and you’ll see what we were up against.  And it was for our friend Ali’s daughter’s 3rd birthday. Ali’s wife, Beth, the little girl’s mother, had invited us to attempt this cake, knowing that it’s not something Fanny & Jane usually does. But she said she’d be happy to let us give it a whirl, since she didn’t need anything quite as elaborate and “fancy” as some of these cakes she’d seen. (Apparently Fancy Nancy parties is a thing.) Plus, the cake was going to be consumed in a matter of minutes by a gaggle of hungry three-year-olds, so if there were some design flaws, they’d be forgiven. (Phew.) We decided to take on the challenge, for an educational experience at the very least.

Faryn and I had a lot of fun planning the cake. We’d been working on it for a few weeks and we’d split up the different jobs (buying decorations, making frosting, baking the actual cake (oh yeah, that), learning how to make fondant, making fondant, freaking out over making fondant). We finally came together on Friday night to assemble the whole thing.

It was an event, to say the least. The fondant handling was by far the hardest part, and since, as I mentioned, this is not our specialty (we’re really more red velvet experts, than anything) we were jumping without a net. After many hours and a lot of flour and powdered sugar covering all three of us head to toe, Daniel, Faryn and I successfully created a beautiful, if not somewhat messy and silly, cake. We adorned it with all sorts of fancy princess stuff, and it turned out exactly as we hoped it would – fancy, pink, imperfect and fun. The fondant itself wasn’t as ideal as I hoped it would be – we definitely had a few minor fondant errors, but again, it was to be admired by a three-year-old, who, I’m hopeful, doesn’t have much of an eye for flawless fondant.

Here’s a sneak peak of the final product:

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After Faryn and Daniel left my apartment on Friday night, I, for the first time in dozens of hours, finally slowed down. I could literally feel my internal pace – where ever that resides – slowing itself to a much more comfortable hum. I took a huge deep breath and laid down on the couch to zone out in front of the TV, with a beer and a little Fat Witch brownie to keep me company.

One of the partners at my law firm desk job had a birthday, and someone sent him a bunch of Baby Witch brownies from Fat Witch, which he generously shared with the office. I snagged one to eat later on that night as a reward for getting through the day. And what a reward it was. Very yummy. I didn’t even take a picture of it outside of its wrapping, because I just didn’t care anymore.

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I delivered the cake to the Fancy birthday party yesterday afternoon. It was another mildly stressful event to transport it several miles into Manhattan, but Kevin, The Best Guy Ever, helped me. And Beth loved the cake. Another, PHEW. I also got an email from her later that evening saying that it was delicious, and that it received many compliments from the parents of the party-goers. Thank you, Universe, for that.

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