Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Tuxedo Pumpkins for Pinktober

October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and, this year, our pumpkins are all dressed up in dashing tuxedos just in to for Pinktober celebrations. Black and white convey a timeless elegance. A dusting of pink glitter is a sparkly hat-tip to all the breast cancer warriors around the world. My original thought was to bake something (big surprise). But, a trip to the pumpkin patch quickly changed my mind.

Early Sunday morning, we headed toward a small family farm with our neighbour-friends who have a son about Daisy's age. She insisted on riding in their car so she could spend more time with him. They really are two peas in a pod. We got to the farm in time to beat the heat and the crowds. It was lovely up there. A small, rustic farm with loads of pumpkins in every shape, size and colour, many with beautiful twisty stems. The kids had a blast helping us mommies find the best ones, while the hubbies waited patiently under a big, old olive tree. There were lots of things to do, too. We took a little train ride through the sunflower field to see all the silly scarecrows the family had made. There was a corn maze, a haystack pyramid and a petting zoo. After lunch, we headed home, hoping the kids would crash in the car. Daisy was so excited that by the time we got home, she really had no intention to nap. So, I got the acrylic paint out and we got right to work. Daisy took her time, patiently painting a nice pattern. Hers is the prettiest one and stands out against the rest of the pumpkins. It looks like the Earth as seen from space on a black/white 1960s TV, right?

The original plan was to paint black/white stripes onto the pumpkins, but after my first try, I realized I had neither the steady hand of a surgeon nor the patience to make it work. Acrylic paint is very forgiving. So I painted right over my mistakes. Because I always have sweets on my mind, I decided to see how they would look with contrasting colours dripped over the stems.  These pumpkins almost look like cake or ice cream sundaes with the hot fudge dripping along the sides. The sparkly glitter on top adds just a touch of pink whimsy. Black and white look great in any room. Ours have already gotten a tour of most of the house. They sat on the front porch for a while and looked fabulous with our old letterbox, black cafe set against the pink exterior of our house. Our house is pink, but not by choice. That is how it was when we bought it. I do like the colour pink, maybe a little more than Shawn does. But, when we found our house, the colour was not a deciding factor. Originally, most of the interior walls were also pink. Even the old kitchen sink was pink and the walls are still covered in pinky wallpaper. The first thing Shawn did before we moved in was hire someone to help paint the main rooms. When the fellow arrived, he first thing he said was: "Who lived here? Barbie?!"

Let's get PINK!

Pinktober Tuxedo Pumpkins

What to Get
Pumpkins, gourds and squashes of various shapes/sizes, faux/fresh
Black acrylic paint
White acrylic paint
2 paper or plastic plates
Fine pink glitter
A cute li'l partner-in-crime

What to Do
Cover your work surface with several layers of newspaper to protect it against paint drips.
Squeeze some black paint onto one paint, white onto the other.
Paint some pumpkins white, others black.
Allow them to dry completely (30 minutes).
Use an alternating colour to drip over the top of the stem, allowing it to travel down the sides.
Before the drip paint dries, sprinkle some pink glitter on top.
Allow the pumpkins to dry thoroughly (45 minutes) before displaying.

In honor of Pinktober, lots of ideas were dancing around in my head. Painting these beautiful tuxedo pumpkins with my little sweetheart was a very messy, but wonderful way to end a beautiful Autumn day. They turned out so nicely that we also painted all the little fake gourds and squashes we had around the house. While pink is not my favourite colour (I love red), it has taken on very special meaning for me in recent years. I am grateful for the support of my loving family and friends. I am also fortunate to have received excellent medical care. Life has its ups and downs. As we get older, there will be more and more pebbles in our path. Pinktober is a reminder to celebrate every day, because life is the worth the fight.  

For more kid-friendly fun ideas, check out Bedazzling Pumpkins and Piggy Celebration Cake...

Friday, October 10, 2014

Spooky Soup: Cottage Zucchini + Cannellini

Another month zipped by already and it is already time for Andrea's October picks from the River Cottage Veg cookbook for our cooking club. For the first time, I made the dish before she announced it. Not bad for an Armenian woman, ey? (We are always fashionably late.) Maybe Andrea and I were thinking the same thing? In my continued (and failed) efforts to summon cold weather by cooking wintery dishes, I made an Italian style zucchini soup with parmesan cheese and fresh herbs. I ditched the heavy cream (Call the doctors! Something's wrong with me.) for cannellini beans not only to make the soup more creamy, but also to beef it up a bit. Made from fresh late-summer squash and basil, the vibrant green will soon give way to the reds and oranges of the coming season.

Making the soup was so quick and easy. While the zucchini sauté in the pan, make the "spiders" fashioned out of dark raisins.  First, you press down onto a raisin and flatten it a bit. Then you can use either a good paring knife or kitchen shears to snip little legs off each side. The process sounds easy enough. no? Well, either I was too picky or hungry, because more of these little guys ended up in my tummy than on top of the soup. The raisin spiders can be made ahead of time and the kids would love to help.

There is really no cream in this soup, apart for the bit used to make the spider web. I wanted to keep it light enough to serve as a starter or side. It easily adapts to a healthy and delicious dinner with a bigger portion. The parmesan cheese and cannellini beans add substance and flavour without making dinner too heavy. Serve right from the stove with a fresh loaf of crusty bread, because a full belly promises good sleep on a chilly night.

There are several types of zucchini. While it is one of my most favourite vegetables, some crops can be bitter and ruin your entire dish. The dark green zucchini does not seem prone to this bitterness and it is my choice.

The recipes serves 4, so you only need 4 raisin spiders. But, I found that making them was not as easy as I had thought. So I suggest you have a good little pile of raisins handy and eat the "ugly" ones as I did. Also, the web does not have to be right in the center of the bowl. Put it off to a side. Asymmetry is interesting.

The soup is delicious and ready in a snap. Do not let the long instructions fool you - I'm just chatty.

Cottage Zucchini + Cannellini Soup

Inspired by Page 165
Serves 4


For the Soup:
2 Tb extra-virgin olive oil
7 medium zucchinis (the dark green kind)
3 stalks leeks
3 cloves garlic
32 fl oz free-range chicken stock
1/2 cup grated parmesan + more for serving
15oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 lemon, juice + zest
handful fresh parsley
handful fresh basil
Salt + pepper to taste

For the Garnish:
handful of raisins
3 Tb sour cream
splash of heavy cream
plastic squeeze bottle


To make the spiders, press down onto a raisin with your thumb
to gently flatten it a bit.
Use kitchen shears or a sharp paring knife to snip little legs along
each side.

Pour heavy cream and sour cream into a plastic squeeze bottle.
Give it a gentle shake. Chill in the refrigerator until the soup is

Place a pot onto medium-high heat and
drizzle a bit of extra-virgin olive oil into it.
Peel, crush and mince garlic. Set aside for at least 10 minutes.

Was the parsley and basil, rinse, drain and set aside.

Wash and slice the leeks. Immerse into a bowl of cold water
to remove the dirt that may be trapped between the layers.
Rinse and drain.

Wash and cut zucchinis into about 1-inch pieces.
Sauté until golden and aromatic.
Add leeks and garlic.
Continue cooking until golden.

Add stock, cheese, beans, lemon juice + zest.
Reduce heat to low and simmer 15 minutes.

Shortly before serving, add the fresh parsley and basil.
Use an immersion blender to purée the soup until smooth.

Divide soup among 4 bowls evenly. 
Use the squeeze bottle to make several concentric circles with
the heavy cream + sour cream mixture 
over the top of the soup somewhere off-center.

Drag a toothpick from the center of the innermost circle
to the outer edges around the bowl to create the web.
Drop a raisin spider somewhere onto the web.

Repeat the decoration for the rest of the bowls of 
soup and serve with a fresh loaf of crunchy baguette.

The candlelit woodland-inspired tablescape sets the scene for a cozy, but festive dinner any night of the week. Details on how to make your own coming soon in my guest post for the stylish Janine of Happy Happy Nester. She has a crisp, fresh sense of design and cute craft ideas, like recycling old paper into paper leaves for a pretty wreath. She also shares some treasured family recipes, like her mom's almond cookie and her homemade chai tea mix.

Fall is a wonderful time of year when the mercury starts to drop and the anticipation of the holidays brings about old fashioned notions, like baking cookies, making soup from scratch, then gathering in front of the fireplace for board games with the kids. A warm and comforting bowl of this bright green soup is a salute to lingering gifts of summer and the spooky little intruder is not only cute, but yummy.

Get the kids to help make the raisin spiders and the cream cobwebs. Dinner will be super-fun and on the table in no-time, leaving most of the evening for you to enjoy playing games together.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Persian Olive Caviar (Zeytoon Parvardeh) for Mehregan 2014

There are times when something reminds me of my early days in Iran and suddenly, my heart feels heavy. I was seven when we left and am grateful to call the States my home. Every now and then, I do miss Iran. As the season marked by the bounty of harvest, Fall is a beautiful time of year there. The mountains are speckled with trees sporting reds, oranges and yellows and the breeze carries a crisp chill.  That is the best time for a stop at a teahouse where a warm cup of slow-brewed black tea is a comfort to a weary traveler. These small roadside stops are a dreamy memory for me now, with visions of pretty courtyards centered around ornamental pools and wooden beds under the shade of old trees. 

We are now on the cusp of Mehregan, the ancient Persian celebration of Autumn. Dating back to the pre-Islamic Zoroastrian days of Persepolis-ruled Persia, this festival was one of only two occasions when the King granted an audience.  Armenians were also present.. It has been noted that one year, the Armenian Governor presented the Persian King with a gift of 20,000 horses.

A small landlocked country with threatening borders, Armenia has always felt a close alliance to its Persian neighbour. While my childhood days of the mighty lion with sword in hand are long gone, political and religious differences are set aside and the friendship between Persians and Armenians continues to grow strong. As such, I am thrilled to have been invited to participate in the First International Mehregan Cyber-Feast featuring Persian food bloggers from around the world. Be sure to check out the delicious recipes each of these talented and beautiful ladies is featuring for the Fall celebration:

Ahu Eats                   All Kinds of Yum Bottom of the Pot     Café Leilee                    Della Cucina Povera 

Fae's Twist and Tango  Family Spice Fig and Quince Honest and Tasty       Lab Noon            Lucid Food                 Marjan Kamali        My Caldron              My Persian Kitchen     Noghlemey            Parisa's Kitchen          Persian Spice           Sabzi Blog                Simi's Kitchen             The Saffron Tales    The Salty Pear            Spice Spoon             The Unmanly Chef Turmeric and Saffron   Veggiestan             West of Persia            Zozo Baking

 My choice dish is one as rich as the history of our homeland - Persian Olive Caviar.     Sexy, no?

Better known as Zeytoon Parvardeh which means "prepared olive," it hails from the north-eastern tip of Iran close to where my grandmother was born. This tapenade highlights luxurious foodstuffs: Green olives, walnuts, mint, pomegranate molasses, garlic and one that is likely unfamiliar to you: Golpar. 

Mistakenly labeled "Angelica," golpar or Persian hogweed is native to mountainous regions of Iran. Its seeds are harvested and ground to a powder often sprinkled with salt over steamed lima beans for a delicious and healthy pre-dinner snack. Its name literally translates to "Rose Feather," but its taste is not exactly like that of roses. Very distinct and somewhat difficult to describe, its flavour is fragrant, mildly reminiscent of pepper or cardamom. You really have to taste it for yourself. 

Look for "Ground Angelica" in your neighbourhood Middle Eastern grocery stores among the spices. Be careful when shopping for it online as it can be pricey with the added shipping. It imparts very interesting flavour.

Unlike most mouth-watering Persian dishes that require time and patience to make, Olive Caviar is a snap to make. Lucky you. This rich spread is lovely on crackers with a slice of mild cheese. Roasted or grilled chicken is delightful with a heaping spoonful served with a side of vegetables. It also pairs beautifully with creamy avocados in a crisp green salad. 

Persian Olive Caviar (Zeytoon Parvardeh) 
Makes 1 cup

1 cup best quality green olives
3Tb pomegranate molasses
1/2 cup walnuts
1/2 tsp golpar
3 cloves garlic
1 bunch Persian mint
freshly cracked black pepper

Toss everything into the food processor and blitz to a coarse consistency.
If the olives are too salty, soak them in a big bowl of cold water for 5 minutes beforehand.

See what my foodie friends made for this ancient celebration of the Autumn equinox:

Ahu Eats: Badoom Sookhte Torsh | Sour Caramelized Almonds
All Kinds of Yum: Jeweled Carrot Salad
Bottom of the Pot: Broccoli Koo Koo (Frittata)
Cafe Leilee: Northern Iranian Pomegranate Garlic and Chicken Stew
Della Cucina Povera: Ghormeh Sabzi | Persian Lamb & Herb Stew
Fae’s Twist & Tango: Rice Meatballs | Kufteh Berenji
Family Spice: Khoreshteh Kadoo | Butternut Squash Stew
Fig & Quince: Festive Persian Noodle Rice & Roasted Chicken Stuffed with Yummies for Mehregan
Honest and Tasty: Loobia Polo | Beef and Green Bean Rice
Lab Noon: Adas Polo Risotto | Persian Lentils Risotto
Lucid Food: Sambuseh
Marjan Kamali: Persian Ice Cream with Rosewater and SaffronMy Caldron: Anaar-Daneh Mosamma | Pomegranate Stew
My Persian Kitchen: Keshmesh Polow | Persian Raisin RiceNoghlemey: Parsi DalParisa’s Kitchen: Morasa Polow | Jeweled RicePersianSpice: Fall in Love with Autumn
Sabzi: Ash-e-Mast (Yogurt Soup with Meatballs)
The Saffron Tales: Jashn-e Mehrgan – Iranian Autumn Harvest Festival
Simi’s Kitchen: Lita Turshisi | Torshi-e Liteh | Tangy aubergine pickleSpice Spoon: Khoresht-e-bademjaan | Aubergine Stew
Turmeric & Saffron: Ash-a Haft Daneh | Seven Bean SoupThe Unmanly Chef: Baghali Polow ba Mahicheh | Rice with Fave Beans and Lamb
ZoZoBaking: Masghati | Persian Scented Starch Fudge

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Monday, September 29, 2014

Stuffed Pumpkin (Armenian Ghapamah) Feature on the Zozo Baking Blog

Yesterday, we spent the day with one of my oldest and dearest friends who has twin girls Daisy's age. As soon as we arrived, the kids ran outside to play on the swings and slide. Looking out the window,  I could see Autumn is here. The trees were still green, but there was a breeze rustling the leaves and the sunshine cast a golden glow. Reflecting on all the goodness in my life, I have been savouring friendships, old and new. A recent friend at the helm of ZozoBaking came as a lucky encounter on Instagram, of all places. As lovely as her name, Fariba is a talented baker specializing in traditional Persian sweets. Lucky for us, she offers baking classes, but also frequents local farmers' markets with her homemade treats which are as beautiful as they are delicious.

Recently, she asked if I would submit a guest post for her blog and I was thrilled at the offer. My version of a traditional Armenian stuffed pumpkin has a filling inspired by South African flavours. See how the recipe evolved from this toe-tapping tune at ZozoBaking!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Eton Mess, My Way: A Simple Snack

Sometimes life is simple. When choosing between a healthy refreshing salad and a massive plate of loaded nachos, go with the nachos. You want the nachos, but feel guilty. So you try to convince yourself to consider the salad. Obey your cravings. Have the nachos for lunch and the salad for dinner.

In my early days, my cooking repertoire was nothing fancy. Actually, I did not take a serious look at cooking until some time toward the end of my college years. But, eating? That was always of interest. Despite my parents' best efforts to introduce me to classic multicultural cuisine, I could easily find perfect happiness with a jar of Nutella. Back then, Nutella was imported from Italy in glass jars. I could eat the whole thing with a spoon and not gain an ounce. That was breakfast. After school, a handful of graham crackers, dried tart cherries, raw pistachios, a sprinkle of instant coffee and a splash of milk thrown together into a bowl made the perfect snack before dinner. This was my Eton Mess and I had forgotten all about it, until last night.

Named after the famous college near Windsor in England, Eton Mess has been a tradition since the 1800's. Anything that stands the test of time that long has to be good. And, this one really is. Eton Mess is very much what its name implies: A bowlful of crushed meringues, strawberries and whipped cream. Who wouldn't like that?

Yesterday, I stayed home because our little blue-eyed beauty had caught a mean bug that made her feverish, sniffly, all-around miserable. The chicken nuggets she asked for went right to Milou's bowl, but at least she ate half a carrot and drank some orange juice. At some point, I realized I was a bit hungry. Too tired to cook anything, I just opened the pantry door and stared into the abyss. Meringues or a nap? I had to choose one. There was no energy for making meringues, but there were plenty of graham crackers.

And while Eton Mess can be made at a moment's notice with store-bought, ready-made meringues, few will argue the flavour and texture are a punishment. Graham crackers age much more gracefully on the shelf. Over the years, I have even tried various other types of cookies as stand-ins for the grahams. There used to be these irresistible gingerbread cookie sandwiches with a lemon cream filling at Trader Joe's.  Those did very well, but I haven't seen them forever.  I believe digestives and petits beurres may have found their way into the bowl at some point. They are all good, but my choice will always been the Honey Maid brand regular graham crackers, not the cinnamon kind. There really is no recipe here, just a combination of flavours. This is a simple snack that you can have any time of the day or night. It's so easy to "make," I recommend you try it at least once.

Eton Mess, My Way: A Simple Snack
Serves 1

4 graham crackers
1 Tb raw pistachios
1 Tb dried sour cherries
pinch instant coffee
2 Tb milk

Pick your favourite cereal bowl.
Break graham crackers into the bowl.
Top with pistachios and cherries.
Sprinkle a pinch of instant coffee on top.
Add a splash or two of milk.
Mix it all up with your spoon and enjoy!

The best things in life are free. The best things in the kitchen are simple. By definition, a snack should not be complicated. Keep your pantry stocked well and when the craving hits you, you will be prepared. Eton Mess my way is not very pretty, but it sure is tasty. The graham crackers soak up the milk and soften into a sweet mush, but the chewy cherry and crunchy pistachios hold their form under the tooth. And that hint of coffee gives you just the boost you need to carry on whatever it was you were bored doing before you got hit with the craving. But be ready to make another bowl, because someone else might want what you're eating.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Cottage Chili (Vegan)

According to my handy-dandy calendar, today is officially the first day of Autumn, but the trees are still quite green here in Southern California and the weather, still warm. Much like the Native American willing rain with a dance, I was hoping to summon chilly weather by listening to Christmas music. I may have had a bit of an effect as the weather has cooled off a bit, but not enough to justify sweaters and scarves. Actually, to be completely honest with you, I will admit it is the baking I miss, not so much the scarves. Last night, I stayed up late and watched The Blacklist with my parents. Those action-packed FBI shows really get me, even though my slow Evening Brain misses some of the quick-talk dialogue. There was some mumbling about chocolate brown Zegna ties having a thread woven into the fabric that actually functioned as a homing device. What this little fun fact had to do with the main topic of conversation which centered on the search for some villain, I have no idea! By the time the show was over, it was way past my bedtime. So I grabbed a cup of tea and a good (cook)book, bid my folks sweet dreams and settled down for some light reading. At the top of Andrea's picks for September's Cottage Cooking Club features was Hugh's pinto chili. I do not know that I read through the rest of the choices. Not even the hot weather outside could change my mind. Or could it be that I was somehow trying to change the weather by cooking something meant for a cold and windy night's supper?

Whatever the case, this chili had to be good. The picture looked good. The ingredients were fresh and simple. After we had dinner and my li'l sweetheart got a bath, bedtime stories and finally fell asleep, I went back into the kitchen and whipped this up. It was just that easy. There is one ingredient that is quite unexpected. Chili is, after all, an authentically American dish. Originally, chili was very simple, made of meat, chili peppers and salt, all bashed together and dried into brick shapes. Cowboys would take these with them on cattle drives. At the end of the day, they would set up camp, boil the bricks in a pot over a fire and reconstitute them back into a stew. Did you know that?

Hugh's recipe is just so easy. There is one ingredient that was a bit of a shocker: Red wine. Hugh is a Brit with something of a varied and refined taste. I doubt that the tough cowboy had any wine handy out on the trail to use for spiking his chili. But, times are a-changin' and it is very healthy to bend the rules a bit. I followed his recipe faithfully, so you know that red wine went into my pot. It sat on a very low flame for the rest of the night, bubbling and gurgling slowly like a tame lava pool. This is the sort of meal you want to make ahead of time. As the clock ticks on, something magical happens and the chili tastes even better the next day. There was one little addition I made to the original recipe: The luxurious toppings. No, the cowboys did not have sour cream, avocados, limes, cheese and coriander, but, count yer blessin's, Darlin',  bahcawse we sure DO.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Campfire Cake

Technically, summer is almost over, but the heat is here to stay, at least for a while. That means more splashing around the water, movies in the backyard, dinners outside on the back patio and campfires. Campfires set the stage for happy memories. Some of the best ones are at the beach with friends gathered around a roaring fire, listening to the sound of the waves crashing, sharing stories under the moonlight. Even when a trip to the seaside is not on the calendar, there is always plenty of reason to celebrate with a cake, especially one with a touch of whimsy. Vanilla sponge cake,  mocha whipped cream, cookie "logs," candy "flames," chocolate pebbles," butter + graham cracker "sand" are the makings of the cutest Campfire Cake.

Campfires take me back to my girl scout days. Every summer, our troop would go for a week-long camping trip in the Santa Barbara mountains. After dinner, everyone walk to the fire pit, listening to the birds chirping along the way. Before long, it grew dark, if not for the sunburst glow of the campfire flames. We would sit on logs in a circle, sipping hot chocolate, counting the stars and singing songs. 

At the sight of the first yawn, the troop leaders would send us to our tents. Some poor souls had to fight off the Z's and stand guard, against what, I don't know. Standing watch is an age-old tradition and the duty of any good scout. Inevitably, during some lucky person's shift, a fight would break out. Some boy would raid a girls' tent and steal someone's panties. Then, it was on! 

Those were my rockstar days. I have settled down quite a bit since then, but still know how to get cahrazy, as in baking this cake. Every step is fun. There is so much to do. My little sweetheart was happy to help and she makes everything more special. We sure made a loud racket, bashing the candies to a powder against the kitchen countertops! It was FUN (and cheap therapy). This is how the "flames" for the campfire are made.

The candy is crushed,  then the powder is sprinkled onto a piece of foil and sent to melt in the oven. It morphs into a bubbly goo in no time. Daisy loved watching the candy magic happen.

The hardest part is making the cake. Boxed cake mix works well. You could just grab your keys, zoom to the market and just buy a ready-made sponge cake. I like to make mine from scratch using my favourite sponge cake recipe. Daisy loves to help me and the result is always a winner. Do whatever works best for you.

Campfire Cake
Serves 10 sweet-toothed scouts

vanilla sponge cake
10 each Jolly Ranchers hard candies - red, yellow, blue
2 cups heavy whipping cream
2 tsp instant coffee
5 Tb powdered sugar
splash vanilla
6-8 Pirouette/Pirouline cookies (Pepperidge Farms)
1/4 cup toasted pecans (optional)
5-6 chocolate mushrooms (optional)
2 Tb cocoa powder

Prepare the cake - see recipe. This can be done a day ahead. Be sure to cover the cake to prevent drying. 

Unwrap about 30 Jolly Ranchers, red, yellow, blue. I used cherry, watermelon and blue raspberry. 
Separate the colours into 3 plastic bags and give them a good bashing with an old coffee mug.
Sprinkle the crushed candy onto a foil-lined baking tray and melt for about 5-10 minutes at 350*F.
Be careful as the candy will burn very quickly.
Remove from oven and let the candy cool completely til solid, about 15 minutes.
Break into shards and set aside.

Toast pecans in a dry nonstick pan for about 5 minutes.
Set aside to cool.

Pour heavy cream into the bowl of a stand mixer with a whisk attachment.
Add coffee, powdered sugar, vanilla and 1 tablespoon cocoa powder.
Whip until fluffy.

Slice each of the 2 cakes into half horizontally to create 4 layers.
Frost with whipped cream in between the layers and around the cake.
Place Piroline cookie "logs" on top, with their tips connecting in the middle
of the cake.
Insert a few shards of candy "flames" in between those tips in the center.
Decorate with candy rocks around the sides of the cake.
Sprinkle crushed graham cracker "sand" around the cake and on top.

Break pecans over the top.
Insert a few chocolate mushrooms here and there.
Sprinkle with cocoa.
Chill until ready to serve.

This mocha-sponge Campfire Cake has it all - looks, class and good taste. Even after summer is long gone, you will look for an excuse to bake it and find everyone rushing to gather around the fire.