Of course, I had a few other challenges during the process. For one, our electricity supply has been erratic, to put it mildly, so I'm never sure when it's ok to pop in a cake. As it turned out, over the long weekend, we had power long enough to bake a few potatoes, but about 10 minutes after I'd huffed and puffed and popped the party cake in, the power went off for over half an hour. I was in a real quandary because I didn't know whether I should re-mix the cake batter to get it airy again. Eventually I didn't, so I'm not sure if the cake turned out as light as it should have.
Then I needed to cover the layers with raspberry jam but I butter-fingerily dropped the jar and smashed it, so I had to use blueberry preserves, which were much thicker and full of whole blueberries - delicious but not very spreadable. I also forgot whether I needed egg whites or yolks for the icing and used up the whites by mistake, so I had to separate another bunch of eggs - we had a loof scrambled eggs last weekend as a result. Being really untalented at decorating cakes, I overdid the blue food colouring so I got a deep blue instead of the pale colour I had wanted.
The only mishap that I was anticipating but which didn't happen was that the butter cream icing didn't curdle. It came together beautifully, white and fluffy and was great fun to use.
I used some blue-coloured coconut flakes for the sides of the cake and a handful of hundreds and thousands came in handy to cover the top of the cake where the icing was slathered on roughly.
I must admit that the cake was a huge hit. Mom loved it and didn't cotton on that the icing had raw egg whites in it - in fact, she commented that there was no smell of egg. A's office pals and my colleagues were impressed that I'd actually decorated it at home. And I find myself already contemplating doing this over for my daughter's birthday, if only I can get someone to come along and decorate it for me!