annual Scrabble clout and cake fest

Once again, this month, it’s not that we haven’t been eating… but most of the time when I’ve been on the computer, I’ve been distracted by putting together my annual tiny holly ©ejm2005Advent calendartiny holly ©ejm2005.

The following list shows when I came in here to try to put together a post.

  • 23 Nov made vinarterta, lost at Scrabble – as usual. Fun day.
  • 24 Nov Hey!! what’s that white stuff doing on the ground! It’s not Christmas yet….
  • 26 Nov Advent calendar finished… nick of time!
  • 28 Nov And the snow is gone again (but it’s probably coming back again in a couple of days.

Yes, the vinarterta is made. It took us hours to make two cakes. This, of course, is not because it really takes that long. It’s because we were just having too much fun. My sister arrived at around 10:00 and we started. I had already got the ingredients out. This year, I was particularly pleased with myself because I remembered to put the butter into the oven (light turned on but oven turned off) overnight. This makes it SO much easier to cream the butter. In winter, we almost don’t have to keep butter in the fridge. It’s pretty much the same on the counter as in the fridge; the butter is hard. (heh heh, I cannot help but think of Grandpa’s favourite response: it’s harder where there’s none!)

So we happily went about our usual tasks – I prepared the prunes and my sister mixed the cake dough. (Next year we HAVE to switch! It has been eons since I made the cake part.) Then, naturally, we had to stop for lunch. I cleverly maneuvered my sister into making her tunafish on toast. I love that tunafish. When we were growing up, it was a simple white sauce with celery and maybe some onion served on toast. But the recipe has evolved and my sister added at least two kinds of pepper (a jalapeno from their garden harvest and some red pepper from the market), celery, onion, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, etc. etc. to the simple white sauce. I provided the toast – from two different kinds of bread: regular sandwich and molasses fennel rye and apple cider to drink. Delicious!! That tunafish on toast is one of my very favourite things about making vinarterta!

After lunch, we baked the layers and played Scrabble. I thought I might manage to squeak by with a win this year but no. I even thought that I might get a mention on the inside of the Scrabble box, where highest scores are listed because I kept throwing the J back into the bag so she would be trapped with it at the end of the game. Silly me. Instead, I got trapped with 5 vowels that I couldn’t get rid of in time! So with our ridiculous scoring system, I lost again, although not quite spectacularly enough to receive yet another entry into the Hall of Shame section inside the Scrabble box.

The last of the layers were baked and cooling. We played a round of Blockhead (or was it two?) and then put the cakes together, wrapped them and put them in their tins to cure. Zero mishapstiny holly ©ejm2005 this year (if you don’t count the fact that we had to use some regular sugar instead of berry sugar in the cake layers because someone whose name begins with E thought there was enough berry sugar in the cupboard) And at around 4:00 (or was it 4:30?) my sister headed off home to be in time for dinner.

And our dinner that night? Pizza! Why not? The oven was nice and hot… (I made the pizza dough that morning just before my sister arrived).

about that other time….tiny holly ©ejm2005

This entry was posted in baking, cakes, pastries, cookies, etc., dessert, food & drink on by .

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  • C

    The advent calendar is lovely as always. I notice, however, the Premature lighting of the second advent candle. I was surprised, given the lengths to which you have gone to prevent people from peeking ahead. There was on on Nov 30 that was particularly good — but of course I saw it only because I tried to peek on Nov 29! I can’t see it now.

  • ejm

    Thank you, I’m glad you like the calendar, C. There was premature lighting of the Advent candle? and you saw it on the 30 Nov page? Or did you peek ahead to 4 Dec on 29 Nov? Very very naughty to peek ahead!!! You do know that SC notices these transgressions, don’t you?

    Thanks for telling me. I believe I’ve fixed it now.

  • C

    I saw the two candles on your main page a day or so ago. But, of course, an image with two candles is correct now, because it is the second Sunday in Advent!

  • C

    I believe that on Nov 29 I peeked ahead to Nov 30 — but I used a special creative method which has sometimes worked in previous years. There was a very special creative image that I believe said “nice try.” But I haven’t been able to see this one since — only the “usual ” admonitions and warnings. I still try sometimes when I should be doing other things, but of course you are far too clever to allow us to peek ahead very successfully (except that of course some time zones get to see earlier than others). I expect I’ll be getting switches, ashes, lumps of coal, etc. this year.