This morning, over breakfast, Snags comes up with an idea for a science experiment. My husband thinks it’s an awful idea. Snags thinks it’s a wonderful idea. I am stuck somewhere in the middle, like the narrator in How the Grinch Stole Christmas, thinking it’s both: a wonderful, awful idea. Snags wants to take Gobstopper and Dum Dum brand fruit flavored candy canes that we have left over from Christmas and put them in a bowl with hot water and baking powder and bake it to see if it will turn into a cake. He wants to see what will happen to the Gobstopper candy canes when they hit the water because they are layered with different colors and flavors throughout. He figures the water will have some interesting effect on them, and the baking powder might make them bubble. My husband announces that this will never work. I am reminded of Sharon’s secret recipe for freckle juice and I decide that no matter what happens, I am not eating this concoction.
I haven’t even swallowed the last of my toast and already Snags is yanking mixing bowls from the cabinets. He’s breaking brightly colored candy canes up into pieces and placing them in the largest mixing bowl we own. He adds a ½ cup of flour on top of the candy canes, then dumps in two ½ cup measures of hot water. He stirs the lot and comments that it “doesn’t look like batter yet.” I suggest that we add some more flour to thicken it up, so we add scoops of the stuff until he decides the mixture is thick enough to be called a batter. Snags is ready to bake it at this point, but I suggest that if he wants it to turn into a cake, that we might want to add some sugar and some egg replacer (since he’s allergic to eggs). At the last second we decide to melt a chunk of margarine and I help Snags stir it into the mix for good measure.
Only then does it occur to me to ask Snags if he actually peeled the plastic wrapper off each candy cane before putting it in the bowl. He doesn’t sound certain as he says, “I think I did…” I decide that I better check, and luckily so, because as I fish through the odd pale purple-brown colored batter I find several pieces of broken candy cane still encased in clear plastic shrink wrap.
Snags pulls out a cake pan and we grease it, flour it, and dump the batter in. I set the timer on 350 degrees for 25 minutes and Snags watches the action through the little window in the oven door. He announces at least once a minute that he can see it rising. And yes, for those of you keeping score, that would be 25 renditions of “it’s rising!”
When the timer goes off, I stick a toothpick into the middle of the pan and it comes out clean. I figure whatever we have cooked up is most likely finished, so I remove the cake pan from the oven and set it on the stove top to cool. Snags looks at it and decides it isn’t complete until he dumps a half cup of cake sprinkles on top.
After the “cake” cools, Snags wants a piece. I cut into it. It looks like a cake. It smells like a cake, albeit a VERY fruity one. It cuts like a cake. At least the top does. The bottom is a hardened mass of melted candy canes that have to be chiseled from the cake pan. I put a piece of the cake onto a plate, a chiseled melted candy mass beside it.
Snags eats it, declares it “Yummy!” and notes that “Daddy said this wouldn’t work!”
“Yeah, well what does HE know?” I reply.
My husband wanders into the kitchen. “You cooked that?” he asks. “I thought you were going to dump it in the trash.”
“We had to bake it, it was an experiment, we had to see what would happen,” I say.
Snags’ science experiment is a success…
My husband eats one piece, then asks for another. I’m still thinking about Freckle Juice. And I’m still not eating any of it.