Monday 18 March 2013

A Cake, for no other reason but F*** (with linguistic explanations)

A friend of my brother's in university was very fond of some of the expressions she encountered in Ireland. On of these was "For f***'s sake" which she misremembered as "For no other reason but f***" which seemed appropriate for this blog about a cake I made just because it looked pretty and not really because anyone in the house wanted to eat it.

Z1 wanted to make fairycakes (as I like to call them, being Irish and resisting the American invasion of "cupcake". In the interest of full disclosure, she was, in fact, asking to make cupcakes) on a Sunday afternoon. For some reason, I took against the idea of fairycakes and insisted it would be biscuits (ah, more linguistic divides between Europe and North America - by "biscuits", I mean what are generally referred to as "cookies" on this side of the Atlantic). I even hardened my heart to tears in favour of fairycakes and tried to distract her with the wondrous look of the Zebra-striped cake. I succeeded. Hurrah!

cake, stripes, marble cake, zebra cake, chocolate cake, baking
After baking
cake, stripes, marble cake, zebra cake, chocolate cake, baking
before baking
Our cake mix was thicker than I expected but the dolloping and waiting for it to spread worked pretty well. I felt our pre-baking cake looked reasonably like the Pinterest picture.

As I dolloped, a niggly part of my brain kept telling me that this cake would not be eaten and it was a terrible waste of ingredients. The Husband is not a big cake eater and the Zeds generally lose interest pretty quickly. This didn't stop me from being very excited to cut the cake and see how it turned out. I had to restrain myself from slicing it before it had cooled and before it was iced.

cake, stripes, marble cake, zebra cake, chocolate cake
The final product - iced and sliced

It turned out magnificently in my not-so-humble opinion.  As it happened, the Zeds did eat several slices. So did I. Husband had none and by the time I realised I should have given some to the neighbours, it was a little old so I didn't feel I could. I am half-proud of not having just wolfed it all down myself like a glutton but also rather ashamed at the waste of good ingredients.

You may also be interested to know:
  • although I generally avoid posting updates about the same thing on multipe social media platforms, I was so excited and proud of this one that I think I did the triple whammy of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram
  • people on Twitter and Facebook and Instagram asked for the recipe - I haven't posted it here as I just used a Victoria sponge recipe that I found on the BBC recipe  website. I think it was probably Delia Smith's. I added cocoa to half the mix in place of some of the flour. I also got the buttercream recipe from the BBC and added cocoa in place of one of the ounces of icing sugar.


  1. This looks absolutely amazing! I will definitely be trying this at some point.. Yum!!

    1. It does look cool, doesn't it! I am proud.

  2. Yum! I hope the birds enjoyed the bits that didn't get eaten by the rest of you. I LOVE 'for no other reason but f***' - will be using that phrase.

    1. Yes, that phrase has really stuck with me. My brother saw this post and made sure his American friend, who coined the phrase, knew about it so she is pleased it lives on.