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Whatever you call it... it’s still cake

Saturday, December 28, 2019

My mom made a vegan chocolate cake for almost every family birthday celebration for about 30+ years or more. Some people call it “Depression cake” (it has no eggs, half the sugar, etc. things which were harder to come by during the Great Depression), and some call it “crazy cake”, because you can (theoretically) mix it in the baking pan... which is just crazy! Mom tweaked it over the years, increasing the amount of chocolate, and adding a chocolate glaze, but it was essentially the same cake. The memory of its taste brings back pleasant memories for me, and the smell of chocolate cake baking is a good memory too. Some times mom would cut small pieces, other times bigger pieces, but there was almost always enough for a few people to have seconds. Sometimes it would get served with ice cream or whipped cream. I especially liked when the cake was served still warm from the oven with good vanilla ice cream on top! These are all good memories, but whatever you call it or how it is served it’s still cake. I have very little stopping sense when it comes to anything chocolate, but especially brownies or cake. I can handle it when it’s served at a family celebration, because it gets eaten up... and there are (generally) no leftovers. What I cannot do is bake a chocolate cake at my own place... for just myself... because I know myself well enough to know that I will return the pan and have “one more” small piece, until half the cake is gone. So, I don’t bake it for myself. Indeed I have stopped baking almost entirely. The temptation is too great, and my resistance is too minimal (especially if I went to that much effort) to successfully portion out a “serving” and not overindulge. It’s said of a lot of things that awareness is the first step. I have the awareness down pat. But cake is still CAKE!! So, I avoid it except at special occasions. Sometimes that is the only solution for a temptation. And sometimes it’s necessary to avoid it all together. (When I feel like it’s too much temptation, I wait until everyone else has been served... and then serve out seconds to whomever wants them... and usually the cake is gone before I get around to thinking about serving myself a piece). The mental gyrations required to forestall a slide into carb overload can be silly, but I figure whatever it takes to stop it is what I will do. The memory of the chocolate cake is pleasant, and you know...? Most of the time it can just be a memory that evokes pleasure and memories of mom. But sometimes it’s a trigger food. The choice to make is whether to avoid it all together on the off chance that it provokes a carb binge, or to try and enjoy it in moderation, because of the visceral, emotional memories involved. Wherever you are in the world I hope you have a marvelous day!!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • FLORIDASUN
    I don't bake much at all. Never did a lot of baking because I go into carb overload and then I'm off to the races. Spark does have a little mug cake that you could whip up for a special little treat every once in awhile. I've been doing really great on my challenge but went to Dunkin' Donuts today to get an iced lattee...only $2 between 1 & 6 p.m. and ended up ordering a Boston Cream donut...awh oh. Good thing I did my weigh in yesterday! emoticon
    65 days ago
  • KATELJM
    I hardly ever bake, I tend to focus on the main meal, which fills me up. In fact, I can satisfy my craving for cheesecake when one of the warehouse clubs offer a bite to sample. My poor DH, he just buys his own pie or cake, because he can't count on me to supply him.
    70 days ago
  • JLPEASE
    My mom used to make a wacky cake when I was little! I hadn't thought of that in years. I used to bake when my kids were little and I did a lot of Christmas baking to give away, but now I pretty much only bake when I find a good recipe for muffins on Sparkpeople or somewhere else that I can grab and take for breakfast. I enjoyed your post and appreciate the reminder of wacky cake! Have an awesome 2020!! emoticon
    89 days ago
  • AKA_TROUBLE
    I don't bake - I know how, my grandmother taught me, but I don't want the stuff in my house. If I must have a piece of cake for a birthday or such, I just go buy a slice at the bakery where they have teeny, tiny little cakes or pre-cut slices for sale.
    91 days ago
  • _CYNDY55_
    I have not baked anything in a long time. I think about baking, and then don't.
    emoticon
    92 days ago
  • ROCKYCPA
    I make rugelah every year because my friends, co-workers and family enjoy it. I can usually get ride of it before eating any but it is hard!
    93 days ago
  • BJAEGER307
    This is the first year in quite a long time that i have baked. I gave it all away because I am like you, if I had it in the house I'd be eating it and could not stop myself. I feel that's sad on my part, why am I like this? So like you I use avoidance to control my over eating. I am hoping that someday I will be able to know my limits, and stick to them. I never realized how out of control I can get.

    Just trying to stay on track here. I realize my health is more important to me.
    93 days ago
  • DUCKTURNIP
    I make Wacky Cake once a year, and then only for other people. Like you, I never make cake or cookies just for myself. They're always for other people at a potluck, etc. where I can share.
    93 days ago
  • HAPPYSOUL91
    I don't bake but you do have a happy memory of your mom and what she did for the family. emoticon
    93 days ago
  • CHERIRIDDELL
    That cake sounds marvelous I can see why you would not bake it without help to consume it !
    93 days ago
  • 1CRAZYDOG
    You have a good system of serving others first, and even 2nds, giving yourself a chance to 'settle down' the urge.

    I do not bake for myself, either.
    93 days ago
  • DESERTDREAMERS
    I don’t bake or bring in baked items very often (except bread, I buy bread & can keep from eating a slice when ever I walk by it - my usual reaction to baked goods). Better the memories than the pounds.
    93 days ago
  • ROADTOFREEDOM
    I understand completely.

    emoticon
    93 days ago
  • JRDUPREE
    I am with you and understand temptation when it is in the house! Best to not have it in the first place to avoid the backslide.
    93 days ago
  • SLIMMERJESSE
    Moderation has been a lifelong lesson for me and I still haven't passed!
    94 days ago
  • HMBROWN1
    I only buy baked goods in small portions now also. Sometimes I miss baking, but I don't need a big cake or 6 dozen cookies in my house either. We all know where they will end up!
    94 days ago
  • GOLFGMA
    Nice that you have the wonderful memories of chocolate cake and can still pass up having it at Christmas. That's great control! emoticon
    94 days ago
  • GARDENCHRIS
    i don't bake that much myself either any more for the same reason
    94 days ago
  • 1BLAZER282005
    Sweets were my downfall. I cut out sugar as much as I could and now I don't even like the taste of sweets. Now I can bake and make sweets for my partner witout being tempted. It took 5 years to change my behavior.
    94 days ago
  • MIRELICA
    I only bake a few things now: a sort of souffle made from eggs, different veggies and condiments; almond bread with seeds; and fruit desserts like backed apples with cinnamon and real maple syrup. So things like that, very simple, very tasty, clean and with real ingredients. emoticon
    94 days ago
  • NELLJONES
    I don't bake anymore, either, unless we have guests. There are only two of us now, hubby's diabetic, the temptation would be too great and I'd end up putting in down the disposal.
    94 days ago
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