Baking a cake at home wasn’t as easy as it is today. I’m talking about those days when the microwave oven was starting to make an appearance in the market and ovens were not a natural part of a middle class household. So I was thrilled when my mother successfully baked a cake in the pressure cooker and poor thing, she was battered by my requests for a cooker baked chocolate cake. I would ask her about this every now and then. So would you imagine my delight when I saw a perfectly round, huge (by the cooker standards) chocolate cake when I came home from school one day.
It was standing in a corner of the kitchen, all by itself in all its brown glory. The sunlight shined just rightly on it, making it the center of attraction. It looked so airy, let alone touch it. I could see that my mom had used the stackable vessel that used to come with the ancient cookers (do any of you know what it even looks like? I can’t find pics of it in Google!). It was so perfect that I didn’t want to touch it. The excitement in my voice was palpable when I asked my mom if she had really baked a chocolate cake. Now I was too impatient to wait for her answer or even to be aware of whether she was around. I just decided to have a piece of it, icing or no icing. As I broke off a piece of the cake it crumbled. I thought I would let my mom know but the need to taste it was overwhelming compared to the information on how the cake had turned out. So there I opened my mouth wide, careful not to let the crumbs fall (very difficult for me, you know!), eyes closed, anticipating the yummy taste of the cake, the richness of chocolate and a soul soothing experience.
It was a soul soothing experience alright, but for my brother and mother – it still continues to be. For the mouthful of that crumbly but rich looking chocolate cake made me retch over the sink and had me washing my mouth very carefully for the next few minutes to the background of howling laughter from my sibling and my mom. They didn’t stop even after I came to ask them indignantly as to why nobody bothered to tell me what it was! I don’t remember if I was upset for too long but I have taken it well over they years for sure. We still laugh wildly at my expense whenever this incident is recalled. Oh and I forgot to tell you what the “cake” was. It was a cake alright, but a cake of used tea leaves that my mom used to collect for conditioning her hair! Now you know why I order the pineapple pastry as opposed to the yummy looking chocolate pastry/mousse/whatever every time!
P.S.: I had earlier published this on one of my now defunct blogs. Seemed like a good blog to restart my blogging here 🙂