TWD: Rum Soaked Vanilla Cakes
June 29, 2010
I grew up in a small town that had one “fancy” restaurant reserved for special events. While I am not certain, I would guess that I spent most of my birthdays there as well as the birthdays of aunts, uncles, parents, and my brother. I’m sure my parents celebrated all of their anniversaries at this supper club. I remember it as the spot chosen for my final senior prom. It was located at a public golf course and had large windows overlooking the lush green golf course. On the weekends they had a piano bar that we would have to walk through to get to our table. I remember the feel of my tight patent leather shoes as we walked through the parking lot and the excitement of our upcoming dinner. It was here that I had my first encounter with a “dessert tray.” For a child that grew up on TV dinners and McDonalds, going to a restaurant of this caliber was thrilling. I felt that I had some idea of what it must be like to dine at a 4-star restaurant in NYC each time we ate here. The height of sophistication, I thought, was the desserts. I have to admit, I really don’t remember most of the dessert choices very well. I believe they were always the same, which didn’t bother me in the least. The one that I loved the most was the rum cake. Looking back, it was likely made from a mix, but I didn’t care! It was soaked with rum and covered with ice cream, more rum sauce and whipped cream. It seemed the closest thing to an alcoholic beverage I was going to get at age 10. My grandmother would tease me that I would get drunk each time I ordered it.
So, this was the back drop to my making Dorie’s Rum Soaked Vanilla Cake. I shied away from using all of the syrup and I think I baked it too long (how do the rest of you deal with dry ends and not quite done middles?). But the flavor of rum transported me back to our local supper club and the feeling of a young child who felt she knew what it was like to be a grown up. Once again….thank-you Dorie.