Wednesday, February 01, 2017

Vanilla crime roulade

Here's everyone I love the most gathered après-Outback for birthday dessert at my sister's house, minus by brother-in-law who wisely leans away every time he sees me reach for my phone to capture a meaningful selfie moment. It's zero-to-sixty self-preservation instincts like his that have time and again snatched him from the gaping, indiscriminate maw of my unquenchable Facebook narcissism, shielded him from the emasculating humiliation of being photographically recorded as one of my beloved family members, and kept him securely and anonymously ensconced in the federal witness protection program, where nobody knows his name is Steve. I mean Kellyanne.

The desserts my sister made -- thank you for asking -- are -- or at this point were -- a traditional Norwegian raspberry-meringue-vanilla cream (or crime, if you believe autocorrect) roulade that is so hyper-rich it doesn't pay any taxes but is so hyper-delicious it makes you erupt in spontaneous cascades of uncontainable yummy sounds with a beguiling Norwegian accent and a chocolate cake prepared curiously with a can of Coke stirred into the batter and frosted under a layer of icing curiously prepared with readily visible chunks of insufficiently melted butter in it. The Coke cake -- as we call it -- is an age-old family recipe that dates back to when I didn't really like it but didn't dare tell anyone and risk not getting any at all when I was a kid. The butter-chunk icing is a family tradition my sister started tonight.

But our day is complete, we have collectively eradicated every last crumb of mysteriously delicious brown bread from our friendly neighborhood Outback, Mom has safely and joyously made it to 76 with the help of loving good wishes from family and friends near and far, we've exhausted every possible trombone reference despite not knowing a single accurate phrase of the lyrics, and I am rolling carefully into bed so as not to exacerbate my brown bread bloat.

Next up on the family birthday calendar: Me! ME ME ME! And nobody will sleep that day until I get my fill of vanilla crime roulade.

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