Melanie’s Buttermilk Cake A Success; Mooner Weeps Tears Of Joy (Hopefully)


So. I want to take just a minute to do all the yakking I’m doing for today and Christmas day. I’ve got a houseful of happy and merry women, enough animals to fill a small zoo—like in that Matt Damon movie—and I’ve got myself a boarder that must be a sex robot.

I’ve made a doctor’s appointment for Mr. Dave for early next week. I can’t let anything happen to that gift from heaven. Squirt tells me I need to put him on a payroll for one of the companies so that I can get tax benefits for my covering his expenses. Me, I think I need to start a new business and put this boy on the street.

I want you to know that things here to the Johnson family ranch are happy, merry and quite peaceful. Notice I didn’t say silent. This place is like a hen house where all the hens are happy. I’ll swear some of these old bags are actually clucking.

But I most want to tell you about the Buttermilk Cake I baked with help from Melanie. She found the recipe for me. The cake is from my childhood, the recipe taken to the grave by its baker. But Mel dug it up and sent it to me. I somehow managed to get everyone but the animals out of the house yesterday afternoon, and we baked the cake.

First, please allow me to say that I now know why people buy boxed cake mix. I’m a good cook and cook often, but I’ve never been a baker. Baking requires precision of measurements, accuracy in the blendings, and following instructions. I am good with none of that. My ADHD won’t let me read an entire sentence straight through, and I can’t complete a four-step recipe without forgetting to separate the fucking egg.

But the Squirt was my able assistant and whip cracker, and we barged in. We got everything out and measured and organized. We almost emptied the cabinets of measuring devices doing so. We followed each step to a tee, and after an hour we had the finished cake batter. Which concerned me.

Oh, did I tell you that I intended to take pictures of each step? Since I forgot to tell the Squirt of that plan, I forgot to take photos as we went along. But I was happy with stuff until the cake batter was complete and ready to place in its bundt pan, or in my case a metallic two-piece ring mold dealie.

The batter was like very thick children’s’ paste—the kind we used to make with flour and water. I actually stuck the spatula in the batter and it stood at attention like a soldier. “Is that right, Mooner?” Squirt asked. “We could use that stuff to patch cracks in stucco.”

“I agree, little lady, but the instructions say, ‘spoon it into the pan,’ and not “pour,” so maybe this is as it should be.”

We put it in the oven to bake, and started fretting. “What if this fails, Mooner? I can’t have my first supervisory job be anything but a success.” The Squirt is, and has been trained to be, success oriented.

We watched and worried, and after thirty minutes we stuck the first toothpick into the cake. When it came out wet, I said, “Not yet, sweetie, let’s set the timer for five more minutes.”

It was still wet, and it took another five minutes to be all the way cooked. I removed it from the oven and placed it on a rack to cool, and my tear ducts opened like flood gates. In seconds my face was dripping onto the counter, the cake and Squirt’s little head as she got a close look at the cake.

“Oh for shit sakes, Mooner. You cry like a little girl over the silliest stuff.” Then, “Crikers, Mooner, you’re blowing snot bubbles. Get your ass away from my cake!”

Squirt is right. It’s entirely possible that I’m completely bonkers. But the cake is beautiful, and from the chunk I stole from the bottom and rubbed through the glaze bowl—perfect. It’s dense and buttery and chewy.

Thanks, Mel. When I get the chance to do so properly, I am placing you on my Bloggie Roller over there ====}}}}} in your place of honor. Here is a photo of the cake:


Happy and merry, and wishes for peace.

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5 Responses to “Melanie’s Buttermilk Cake A Success; Mooner Weeps Tears Of Joy (Hopefully)”

  1. mel says:

    I think you just made my day! So happy it turned out right. It can be tricky to find the right recipe that has so many memories and emotions attached to it!! Merry Christmas to all at the ranch!

  2. Go Mooner! Go Mooner! You are a man of many talents…and now, officially a BAKER too! I’m getting a little verklempt, I’m so proud of you!

  3. admin says:

    Mel. The cake was a huge success. Nothing but skelletal crumbs and the faint smell of butter and Madagascar vinilla remain.

    Reck. I had the Squirt to keep me on track. I don’t do directions, and a recipe usually brings me to my knees. But this cake is glorious.

  4. squatlo says:

    Well done, Mooner! That cake looks good enough to make a man wanna travel to Texas… well, almost.

    Hope your Hollerdaze went well. We’re out of the car, beers in hand, trying to get the road jitters out of our systems. People are crazy when they’re trying to get home from in-laws, I guess.


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