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Saturday, January 28, 2023

The Great Texas Baking Disaster by Bea Tifton

 I don’t want to blow my own horn, but I used to be rather a good cook.  Somewhere during years of living by myself, I stopped cooking full meals. I didn’t eat all prepared meals, but I just sort of coasted and ate odd things. Now that my parents and I have combined our households, I’m slowly getting back into practice. And then comes baking.

Today is my parents’ anniversary. We’re going out to lunch, but I wanted to mark the occasion with a cake. I harbored visions of this lovely cake worthy of a television cooking competition. My parents would ooh and ahh as I brought my surprise to the table, and I would modestly duck my head and blush, of course. I got up early this morning to make it before anyone woke up. But we are dog sitting a cute little poodle right now, and she gets very excited. Her bark could cut glass. So, we woke the whole household. This morning I realized that after a family-wide deviled egg binge the other day, we were completely out of eggs. After taking care of the dogs, I had to rush to the closest grocery store. 

I assembled my ingredients, checked them twice because I was nervous, and forced myself to slow down.  I talk to myself a lot as I cook or bake, so I’m sure my parents wondered what was going on, but no one came in to investigate. When I got to the flour, as I dumped it into the bowl, the fluffy white goodness Poofed! up and swirled into the air, landing, well, everywhere. It was at that point that I realized I had left the silverware drawer a wee bit open so as to access the measuring spoons as I went along. We live in a charming fifties ranch house, and the silverware drawer is built in. I wiped as much as I could out with a clean dishcloth, but I’m going to have to remove the silverware and vacuum. Flour even got into our toaster. And I won’t be going anywhere in my current outfit. Did you know flour doesn’t brush off sweaters too well? Sigh.

When the cake came out after the clean knife test, I gasped. I had carefully swirled my wooden spoon over the batter before I baked it, but it was uneven and bumpy. It looked like a toddler had baked it. Well, not much to do but cool it. Maybe it would taste good? (Even I know to cool a cake before icing it. Hey, I watch The Great British Baking Show.)

After it cooled, I iced the unfortunate result of my early morning efforts. Now, icing can cover a multitude of baking sins, but not the peaks and valleys of my erm, unfortunate effort.  My parents were excited about news that I had baked my father’s favorite cake, if not a little nonplussed when I produced it. But, I have to say, it tasted good. My poor little ugly duckling tasted like an applesauce cake/caramel icing swan.

Have you ever had any baking disasters? Leave your story in the comment below.

Photo Credits: 

Mikhail Nilov "Beautiful Woman Holding Bowl"

Anna Villacorte "Birthday Cake in Close Up Shot"

Klaus Nielsen "Flour in Metal Bowls with Baking in Kitchen"

Amina Filkins "Cute Black Girl in Chef Costume" 

Bea Tifton The End Result


  1. We enjoyed the story and your parents enjoyed the cake, so all is well that ends well, right? It sounds great, too!

  2. Cute story- and on so true on single girl eating. When we were young, my brother made a german chocolate cake- and you know the part where you melt the chocolate? He dropped the egg in there. Anyway, the cake was so terrible, we tossed it in the yard and even the old hound dogs wouldn't eat it. Finally, after a few weeks, it rained and dissolved.

  3. The proof of the puddin' is in the eatin', so I guess the same goes for cake. Plus, speaking for myself, it's always a special treat when someone makes something from scratch and gives it to me. That takes their time and caring, which is priceless, and doesn't always look like a perfectly decorated cake. (But I must admit, I'm in awe at some of the cakes I see on the internet!)


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