I used to be obsessed with biscuits. But now I’ve hit 36 I’ve moved on. Grown up. I’m a changed man. I’ve refined and revolutionised my diet.
Yep. I’m onto cakes now.
Don’t get me wrong, I still love a nice biscuit. I’ve not forgotten my roots. There are few things in life that beat a freshly dunked chocolate hobnob, or a plain chocolate digestive, or a party ring or a… [pause to wipe drool off keyboard…].
But, recently cakes have taken over as my unhealthy grub of choice. The main reason is that when I went into schools in the past, people always used to offer a plateful of custard creams in reference to my first few books. But, since I brought out The Jam Doughnut That Ruined My Life, they’ve been replaced by doughnuts. I for one have welcomed this move. The beauty of the doughnut is that it usually comes in a set of six and has a shelf life of approximately three and a half minutes. What this means is that, when presented with a big platter of them, I’m usually obliged to guzzle the lot (I hate seeing food wasted and I refuse to add to the great EU doughnut mountain that the politicians are always banging on about).
I’ve had a couple of blazing rows recently over whether or not a doughnut is a cake. And of course I’m not alone. Apparently 96% of people have had a fist-fight with a perfect stranger over this very argument. Throughout history, wars have been fought and families divided over it. Indeed, this controversy may be what tips us into nuclear winter in the future. The same issue was raised over Jaffa Cakes a few years ago but a peaceful solution to that was found quickly (the clue’s in the name…).
Frankly I’m not interested in what anyone else says. To me doughnuts are cakes. If they aren’t then honestly what are they? What new classification could you give them? Dumpling? Are you insane? Pudding? You should be ashamed of yourself. Fruit? Well, I suppose there is a bit of raspberry in the jam… Animal? Now you’re getting ridiculous. In any case, I’ve asked the Oxford English Dictionary and there isn’t room in the English language for a new word to classify all deep-fried sweet-treats so we’re just going to have to get on with it.
Other than the doughnut, I’ve really gone back to basics recently. I didn’t touch a Victoria Sponge for years but I’ve been troughing them down like a mad pig over the last few weeks. A lemon drizzle is great cos it’s one of your five a day (ditto blueberry muffins). And chocolate fudge cakes are incredible because, if you adopt the face-plunge method of eating them, you usually have enough left over on your face for a second round later on.
The other reason for my cake obsession is that, now my kids are of party-going age, there’s usually a fair amount of cake knocking about the house. Is it wrong for me to tax the contents of their party bags though? If you listen to Jamie Oliver, you could argue that I’m doing them a favour. And anyway, you can always claim that a bit got stuck to the tissue paper they wrapped it in. The last kids’ party I went to there was an amazing chocolate hedgehog cake. I swear I had to be restrained from licking it. Apparently this “isn’t acceptable”. Huh. Party poopers.