Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Cake Boss Poisons His Sistah Or So Mama Thinks

Cake Boss with Buddy Valastro

Plants, Pranks & A Proposal

Buddy has a team meeting to announce that they’re doing a cake for the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens. The cake is supposed to look like “wicked plants”, inspired by a book called “Wicked Plants” by Amy Stewart. AND the author will be there to do a walking tour and a book signing.

I suppose they think a cake that looks like it could poison people is a lot of fun. That's not necessarily MY idea of a good time, but each to his own. Sonal from the BBG explains that the “wicked” plants might have itchy qualities or they may be poisonous or even carnivorous. Buddy makes a face. He looks scared.

Another, BBG person, Susan, tells Buddy about the Venus flytrap that eats meat, insects, as well as small frogs. Buddy is incredulous.

Buddy imagines that the center of the cake will be the Venus flytrap (it looks like a dinosaur’s head on a stem). He’ll do flowers around the bottom that are beautiful, but (he adds gleefully) also poisonous.

Mauro gives the Cake Boss some ideas on how to construct the cake and he keeps using the word flange. That makes me think of a cross between a flan and a sponge cake. Yum! I bet Buddy could make that…

Buddy makes the base out of vanilla and chaw-co-lot cakes and mocha filling. Hmmm! I don’t remember him using mocha before. They’re using PVC pipe for the stem. Normally Buddy wants everything to be edible, but he needs it for its flexibility and strength.

Buddy has a consult with some guy. Buddy is so affable as he asks him what he can do for him and calls him “my friend”. The guy tells Buddy he wants to propose to his girlfriend. Buddy congratulates him. The guy continues. He wants to do it THERE…in the bakery, because he and his girlfriend love the bakery so much.

Buddy takes the idea and runs with it. He suggests a ring box cake with a huge (cake) diamond on it, with a note that says “Will you marry me?” Awww. Buddy is such a romantic. He says they can put it on the display counter and then the couple can be casually looking around until she sees it.

The guy wants the actual ring to be on the cake. He is either MORE romantic than Buddy or really not too bright. THAT’S just asking for trouble. I predict (wish for) a Buddy meltdown when someone loses the ring. Buddy says he’ll put the ring in “safekeeping”.

Buddy makes the actual mold for the ring that he'll make later. Wow. He pours silicone over a fake huge diamond. He’ll then remove the fake diamond and pour some goo in to make the replica of the diamond. He yells when he runs out of the food grade silicone he’s making the mold with. THIS is complicated. And does “food grade" mean that you can eat it, or that food can touch it and you can eat THAT?

Buddy moves on to making the flowers for the poison cake. He’s making hydrangeas, which he loves, but he tells us they have cyanide in them. Hmm. He says it takes 3 or 4 hours just to make one bunch, because of the number of flowers you have to make. Next he makes beautiful “freckled” lilies. He paints over them with petal dust. So pretty.

Mary comes in to annoy Buddy. He’s not too nice. She doesn’t believe that lilies are poisonous. He says, “If I’m making them for this cake, they’re poisonous.” She says he’s making it up. Then he goes off (to us) about why would he go to the trouble of making that up. He does have a point, but still, Buddy, be nice to yuh sistah! OMG, Mary takes a bunch of fresh lilies and takes a HUGE bite.

He says “Are you crazy?” Mauro says, “Hasta la vista, Baby”. Buddy continues, “My sistah Mary is an idiot. DON’T try this at home!” That was funny, at least. I have to admit I’m with him on this one.

Mary says they tasted good. He says he doesn’t want to hear about it when she starts having problems. “It’s NO problem. I take full responsibility. This is all BS,” she yells as she leaves the room.

Buddy takes a look at the mold. It’s hard. He takes the "diamond" away. Next he pours in isomalt, “a sugar substitute used in candy making,” to make the diamond for the cake.

Uh-oh, Mama’s here! She comes traipsing in with Mary behind, yelling “HEY Buddy! What the hell did you make her eat?” Mary points at Mauro and says “Him too, Ma.” (I love it.)

Buddy explains, “I didn’t tell her to eat it, she wanted to eat it.” She denies it and Buddy keeps to his story, which, this time, happens to be true. Buddy yells at us that his ”sistah is nagging his muddah” to yell at him. He’s 32 years old and “not a baby anymore.”

Mama can tell Mary is lying. Buddy says,” She ain’t gonna die, she’s gonna get the runs.”

Buddy goes back to the proposal cake. He uses Rice Krispie treats to make a box. One of the sistahs takes the real ring to show people.

Some gorgeous gal, Lauren, in hot pants (actually shorts…but hot pants seem more fitting somehow in Buddy’s world) comes walking in. Buddy greets her and then reminds us of when cousin Ant-KNEE dropped the cake down the stairs. He says Ant-knee thinks he’s off the hook, but Buddy is “like at cheetah sitting in the Serengeti waiting and watching.” It’s nice to know that Buddy watches Animal Planet.

OH, surprise, surprise the whole thing’s a setup. The gal comes in and pretends to be looking at cakes and she just happens to start flirting with Ant-knee. Buddy is going to do something mean and, if the previews are true, it’ll involve having a bucket of something red fall on his head.

Conveniently Buddy and Mauro leave the area, while Lauren gives Ant a little attention.

Buddy pops the diamond out and is making the band. He puts it in what looks like a reddish wooden box, but it’s a cake, of course. Buddy adds a tag that says, “Heather, will you marry me?” How much do you want to bet that he’s lost the real ring? And that chaos will ensue?

I’m guessing it’s a new day and Mauro sends Ant-knee downstairs for some pretend errand. The guys quickly mix up some red stuff. The plan is that the hottie will pick up the cake; Ant-knee will help her load it into her car; and she’ll plant him against the wall where they’ll drop stuff on him.

Doesn’t Ant-knee think it’s strange that a stranger came and ordered a cake from the inner sanctum of the bakery? AND that, rather than pick it up in the usual way - from the sistahs - she comes upstairs again? I guess he’s not the sharpest tip in the piping set.

Lauren moves away to pretend to get her phone from the car and they drop red stuff on him and then tons of flour, except the flour mostly misses him. Buddy comes running out and says that’s what happens when you drop cakes. THEN MAMA runs out and says, “I don’t understand. I DON’T THINK THIS IS FUNNY! Enough of this! First you do it to Stretch and now all this. What’s the reason???”

Buddy says calmly that Ant-knee dropped a cake. (And, really, it wasn’t just ANY cake. It was a complicated many layered Sweet 16 cake.) Mama tells Buddy this better be the last time.

OR WHAT, MAMA? You raised a little prince and this is what they do.

It gets better. She says they better not pull this stuff again and she demands that they apologize to Ant-Knee. She carries on, “THIS is not acceptable. You better hear me, CAKE Boss, ‘cause I’m the real BOSS!” “Ma, C’mon!” I don’t see no apology, before they move on to finishing the Venus flytrap.

They cover the Botanical Garden cake in green modeling chaw-co-lot. Buddy uses pink fahn-dahnt for the tongue and the roof of the mouth. He paints lips (THEY HAVE LIPS?) with petal dust. And then he makes fangs with more modeling chaw-co-lot.

He moves on to the ring box. He opens the box that holds the ring, and, guess what, it’s missing. What a shock!

Buddy says he’s going to kill somebody. What else is new? They look in all the batters and the icings. Grace walks in and asks what’s happening. They say they’re looking for the ring. She says she took it to clean it. She wanted it to be nice.

Okay, I can perhaps believe (maybe, not completely, but maybe) that an entire cake falls down the stairs, but I do not believe for one minute that that looking-for-the-ring scene WASN'T a huge set up. But who cares, I just want Mama to come in and amp up the drama. Mama doesn't appear and Buddy says thanks for the heart attack as Grace leaves.

They move the Venus flytrap on to the cake base. It looks really creepy. (That reminds me of the old how-do-you-handle-a-Venus-flytrap joke. VERY carefully.) They add all the LOVELY flowers to make the cake look like a flower bed, with this huge killer plant in the middle.

Everyone always wants Buddy and his crew to do all these unusual, crazy looking cakes and he does do them amazingly well. But his FLOWERS are where his real artistry stands out. They look so real that it’s hard to believe they aren’t. And incredibly, we’ve seen that he can do them blindfolded.

Buddy is worried about delivering the cake, though, because he has to drive through Man-Haht-IN to get to Brooklyn. Joey is in the back of the truck holding the head of the Venus flytrap. After the drive, Joey says, “That was brutal.”

They bring the cake into the Botanical Gardens to lots of applause and cheers. I hope we see a real Venus flytrap. The “Wicked Plants” lady is sooo impressed. She says, “HOW did you do POLLEN?” Buddy says we try to be botanically correct. Funny. She’s also impressed with the freckles on the lilies. She takes a bite from the hyacinth, the one made from sugar.

Back at the bakery, Buddy takes the Proposal Cake downstairs and puts it on top of the showcase. The bakers and sistahs watch as the couple comes into the bakery. They start to browse.

The only problem is that Buddy put the cake too close to the front and so the two see it almost immediately. It might have been nice to drag it out a bit.

When they get to it, the guy says how about that one? She looks closer and sees the sign that says, “Heather, will you marry me?” She gapes at him and says are you serious and he drops to one knee and proclaims, “Ever since the day we met, I’ve known that I wanted to marry you.”

You’d have to be a Grinch not to be moved. Grace is clutching her chest in emotion. Buddy is oohing and awing. AND Heather says yes. Buddy and the group come out and everyone applauds. Buddy looks like he wants to make a speech. He says he was honored to do the cake and she loves it.

We’re left with Buddy’s ruminations about why he loves what he does – “When I see peoples’ reactions and I can see all my hard work is appreciated, that’s why I do what I do. That’s it, it’s dear to my heart.”

The last scene brings us out of our romantic revelry. We see a bathroom door, we hear flushing. Mary walks through an empty bakery, yelling “Buddy”.

THAT we didn’t need. I sure hope Mama thought the Cake Boss did good, real good, in spite of his shenanigans with Ant-knee and his sistah poisoning herself.


Micah said...

Nice blog you got right here... I enjoyed reading your posts. I'm sure I'll visit here more often. Anyway, if you are interested, you can take a look at these amazing French macaroons and Almond macaroon cookies I've been trying to make.. It's very hard though... :) If you know how to make these, maybe you could give me some tips. Thanks!

Sue said...

You sell macaroons. I'm sure you can give ME tips. My only advice, don't even think about it on a humid day.