Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Tell-A-Tale (Part 43): To Bake A Mockingbird (Cake)

I know you want me (want me)
you know I want cha (want cha)
I know you want me
You know I want cha (want cha)


Rumba (Si)
Ella quiere su Rumba (Como?)
Rumba (Si)
Ella quiere si Rumba (Como?)

The music blared and I was shaking 'mah hips when my phone rang. There was no caller ID nor number displayed. I picked up the call to discover that it was a woman on the other side of the line and expected it to be one of those phony calls which usually start with a something like Congratulations, you have just won yourself a car! Please give me your bank account number for identification. None of that in this call but strangely, she sounded like a tweeting bird.

Me: Wei? (in absolute Canto style)
Caller: *Tweet-tweet-tweet-tweet*
Me: Who this? What you talk???
Caller: *Tweet-tweet-tweet-tweet*
Me: *Getting impatient*
Caller: *Tweet-tweet-tweet-tweet*
Me: Burn in the oven with your tweets, damn bird!

And I disconnected myself from the madness.

Burn in the oven.

Oh gosh, my mockingbird WAS really burning in the oven! The instruction called for 180 degrees for 45 minutes but I was already 15 minutes late! I blame the addictive songs on the radio that morning. Rushing to the kitchen, I noticed that the convection oven was still humming in its usual manner but the glass panel had shattered. The mockingbird was gone.

She-bird called (or should I say tweeted) again, at this very wrong time. I was mostly pissed and didn't hesitate to greet her with some maternal curses, again, in true Cantonese fashion. She resonated to my wrath and hung up.

I felt a sudden surge in heat. A shadow was growing on the wall in front of me. It was my own silhouette. I turned to face a monster. It was a giant flying bird on fire, almost the size of an adult golden retriever. The immense brightness from the fire was blinding. It flew towards me and I knew that there was no way that I could survive. The bird would peck me to death while my hairy skin burn. My barbecued self would feed the bird well for days, given the size of my thighs and belly. And it would definitely appreciate the aroma of my layers of slightly charred, succulent fat. (Think melt-in-the-mouth roasted pork belly from Ah Wong or char siew from FSF).

As much as I hoped that Megan Fox would come to my rescue (in her bike), I was prepared to burn and be devoured. Just don't glaze me with malt syrup after I'm grilled, like how they do char siew. I hate stickiness, in every sense.

The bird got closer. I bit my lips and kept my eyes shut.

It stopped, somewhere about one metre in front of me. Shocked, I opened my eyes, only to be blinded by the violent radiance of the fire once more.


What now???


Huh, meh ar???


And I jumped out of bed.


It's amazing what excitement can do to you. First come restlessness. Then, dreams (both good and bad). I dreamt about she-bird just a few hours before attempting my first mockingbird cake. Not a hummingbird as I substituted oil with butter. And neither brown sugar nor cinnamon powder was used. Before going into the details of my experience, let me thank Fatboybakes (FBB) again for his constructive and practical recipe. Believe me, I've tried recipes of some famous TV chefs and my cakes turned into porridge or stones without fail.

So, back to the cake. I had a terrible experience baking with canned pineapple cubes before. My cake turned out absolutely soggy, even after draining and squeezing the cubes with my hands. This time, I roasted them in the oven until the edges browned to remove the excess liquid and to give it a slight caramelised taste. Hand-crushed pecan and walnuts were toasted as well for the crunch. Dessicated coconut was added for that grainy texture but there was not much flavour though. Will definitely try the grated Hawaiian type next time. A tablespoon of vanilla extract to give it a nice flavour. The rest of the ingredients were referred to FBB's recipe. As for the topping, the initial plan was to do a proper layer of cream cheese/icing sugar/butter/vanilla blend but since I was running out of time, I resorted to a simple cup of cream cheese spread instead. Personally, I thought it was good enough and more affordable (RM2 lesser than a 250 grams block of cream cheese).

The result was pretty ok, I thought. I like the contrasting moist cake/crunchy nuts combination. Lots of room for improvement though. For example, I will need to add more bananas for the exotic scent. The cake could have been fluffier too. Perhaps a blend of brown and castor sugar will give a more interesting taste. Oooh, how about some kahlua in the cake? The possibilities are endless but I just have to find the time to bake. Meanwhile, there's always the perfect hummingbird cake from The Daily Grind when craving calls. Will blog about that wonderful piece of cake soon!

Click here for FBB's mockingbird cake recipe.

Like what you see? Then join the FatBoyBakes Fan Club by clicking here.

Click here for The Daily Grind's website.

OHHHHH! Before I forget, the whole fire birdie saga was fictitious (obviously). The story was made up to relate the on-going tag (where one has to start a post with the opening line decided by the tagger) to my latest baking experience. I was tagged by TheNomadGourmand (the song and first line was chosen by her) and I will now tag Joe of Lotsofcravings. Joe, you have to begin your next post with:

"They have been contained for two weeks. But the durians managed to escape from Sungai Buloh with the help of the rambutans. It all started..."

Have fun!


Rebecca Saw said...

hehe...good one Hairy!! with the Tweets, birds and Megan Fox!

Watcha talkin abt? Ya cake looks like it could giv Daily Grind a run for its monies! all light and fluffy texture..me thinks cream cheese works wonderfully..

qwazymonkey said...

your bird is mine! lol

and that fictitious story!!!! respect lah. Damn comical if i have to say so myself

ladyironchef said...

ROFL!! wonderful story, i was wondering whether you really dream of it! there's really a cake call mockingbird cake eh? that time i ate one they call it hummingbird cake, what does all the birds have to do with the cakes i wonder :D

Ciki said...

nice one nic! Love the crank call and the bird burning in the oven!
Luv dat megan fox DIDN'T come to ur rescue! hehe..

bossacafez said...

yea i thought it was all along a hummingbird cake hehe :D but yours look fantastic, coupled with the niceeeee pic!!!! i must hv said it a thousand times already, your pics look fab lately! *chuckles*

i'm craving for some right now! could use a moist cake/pudding with a nice sinful frosting!

choi yen said...

Can I have 1 piece of it? We live so near each other, hehe ^.^

fatboybakes said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!! SOOOOO FARNEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!! thumps table. and i LOVEEEEE your next tag!!!! sooooo farneeeeeeeeeeeee!

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Very imaginative! So this is the cake that I missed, eh? Why no pic of Megan Fox?

Pureglutton said...

I want cake!

ai wei said...

nice one. too much imagination e.

can save a piece of cake for me?! Looks Yummy

backStreetGluttons said...

You are darn lucky it was only a mockingbird with a piece of cake, but dreams are good , right on !

Bangsar-bAbE said...

I.also.want.cake!!! =D

Selba said...

Ah... you should see my face when I read your post... I was so darn bluuuurrrrrr.... it's like what? what? what? Whoaaa... rambutan could be so harsh with a girl that sounded like a tweeting bird? *gasp.. gasp.. gasp*

Felt so relieve at the end of the story....*inhale deeply and luckily also not forgetting to exhale*

The cake doesn't really look bad at all :) I would love to have a bite of it.

Ah.. time to hit the oven again, it's not too long for preparing my celebration of the year ;)

J2Kfm said...

seriously ... i nvr heard of the Hummingbird (or Mockingbird for that matter) before.

only thru blogs.... people learn the darndest and delicious-est stuff.

Sugar Bean said...

Haha, what a title! Wish I could write like you, so creative. Btw, I wanna try the cake! Air mail it to me? Haha, just kidding.

Hehe, Joe's post should be interesting.

Unknown said...

Save some cake for me if you bake on Sundays, I go Kepong every Sun night to drop by kid off :p

Alexander said...

This look really good. Good work for making it.

Alex's World! - http://www.kakinan.com/alex

Camemberu said...

Hahaha, hot birds and hawt birds! So funny!!

"Huh, meh ar?" lawls!!!

HairyBerry said...

thenomadgourmand, thank you! :D aiyoh, no la, The Daily Grind's hummingbird cake is definitely wayyyy better. i'm not even worth mentioning..hehe... :D

qwazymonkey, which one? the one on fire? hahaha! woah, thanks so much for the compliment leh. it's really cool especially when it comes from the king of comics!

ladyironchef, thanks dude! no lar, the hummingbird cake is the real thing. mockingbird is just a name we made up cuz we dont really follow the original recipe.

cumi & ciki, merci beaucoup! yerrr, why u luv dat megan fox din come to my rescue leh? so that i can turn into siew yoke and u all can eat me? haha!

evan 이벤젤린, omg, thanks so much again for the compliment! i must thank the lens and sunlight! :D hope u had some good desserts this evening with the gang! :D

mimi, yikez, this one finished liao. ya lor, actually we shd meet up cos we live so nearby!

fatboybakes, haha, glad u liked the post, dude! had a fun time writing it. and THANKS AGAIN FOR THE RECIPE, DUDE!!! i hope i can try to make the apple pie soon!

lyrical lemongrass, thank you, thank you! :D yupe, this is the cake that u missed but we have a deal, right? *wink* why must hv pic of megan fox leh? she din come rescue me oso...must be busy with the transfomers la..haha!

pureglutton, let me practise more and hopefully, can prepare one for our potluck!! :D

HairyBerry said...

ai wei, thanks! glad u liked it! :D haha, sorry leh, this round finish already. hopefully i hv time to practise more la. :D

backstreetgluttons, sweet dreams are made of these, no? haha! mocking or humming, we like eating, right? :D

bangsar-babe, i.want.the.ribs! 1-for-1. deal? hehehe

selba, haha, i guess i was inspired by the whole bird thingy la...breathe in, breathe out...think cakes! haha! oh, thanks for the compliment on the cake. ooohh, u like baking too? cool! your birthday coming up? :D

j2kfm, we go to The Daily Grind for hummingbird cake next time!!! come come come! :D

sugar bean, woah, thanks for the compliment! i really shiok sendiri one la..hehe...hey, i think hummingbird is famous in uk as well. do check it out! :D yeah, joe's post is really creative!

babe_kl, sure but i seriously need time to practise la. so busy these days...sigh...ohh, so, u frequent kepong oso? cool!

alexander, thanks for the compliment, dude. i wanna have a piece of cake now! hungry at 2 am...

camemberu, ohhh, hot and hawt! i've never thought of it that way! cool stuff! hehehe, that "meh ar" got me laughing at myself as well. cant believe i thought of that..haha!

Unknown said...

erm kepong is my hometown ma :D

HairyBerry said...

babe_kl, kepong is your hometown? cool! i think it's a very convenient neighbourhood! :D