Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Worst Cake meets a Great Giveaway: Guest Author Ginger Garrett

**Weds. June 19th 11:15 AM  CONGRATULATIONS to our giveaway winner, "bonton," and thank you ALL for stopping by Authors' Galley! **

Today I'm excited to host an award-winning author with a passion to create novels and nonfiction resources exploring the lives of historical women: "art from history." Please wave those Authors' Galley wooden spoons and join me in a warm welcome for our special guest:  Ginger Garrett. 

The Worst Cake I Ever Baked
By Ginger Garrett

In 1996, I suspected that my boyfriend would propose very soon. When he invited me to fly across the country to spend Thanksgiving with his family, most of whom I had never met, I knew that my intuition was probably right.
Our families came from very different cultures. His family was from the Basque country in Spain. They loved red wine and women who cried easily. My family was from Texas. We loved unsweet tea and women who could handle a shotgun or a soup kettle with equal ease.
But I desperately wanted to make a good impression when I stepped off the plane. I envisioned carrying a lovely basket of treats to offer them, thus proving what a great cook (and catch) I was.
I phoned my mom for the perfect recipe. She read a cake recipe to me over the phone. “A family favorite,” she assured me. Even though the recipe was for a cake that required candy I had only seen at the circus, in the shape of orange jellies, and I did not remember ever eating it, she assured me that it would be a big hit.
So I whipped it up, too lovestruck and nervous to question my mother.
That was my first mistake.
When my boyfriend and I boarded our cross country flight, we were forced to wait on the tarmac for hours before taking off. Extra delays were added once we were in air, and the airline offered no snacks except a measly bag of peanuts. We both stared at the cake box nestled peacefully at our feet. That was my golden ticket, my assurance that everyone would want me in the family. I forbid him to touch it until the pilot announced we had to circle around the city for another thirty minutes.
When we got off the plane, I greeted my future in-laws with a half-eaten cake that was made from circus candy. And it tasted worse than it looked.
The cake went in the trash, but to my na├»ve surprise, the family wasn’t all that concerned. They were much more interested in whether I loved their son. Cake never even entered into their deliberations.
A year later, I was wearing his ring. And the cake? Turns out, “family favorite” was the title of the magazine article my mom had clipped it from. No one in our family had ever made one. Today, the handwritten recipe I wrote that night long ago is an heirloom I intend to pass on to my girls.
It’s a family favorite, indeed.

Oh, Ginger, I'm still laughing : "red wine and women who cry easily" vs. Texas women "who can handle a shotgun or soup kettle with equal ease"--classic! Thank you so much for sharing this memory with us, and for being the very first Authors' Galley guest brave enough to offer a kitchen blooper! 

And now here's an equally delightful treat: a peek at Ginger Garrett's newest novel:

Beyond the Drama, Her Heart Was Real

From the moment her marriage to prince Ahab thrusts her into the intrigues of palace life, Jezebel’s exotic beauty opens doors and her will breaks down walls. Torn from her homeland and wed to power in a strange country, Jezebel vows to create a legacy and power all her own. Some might call her a manipulative schemer, bent on having her way. But they don’t know the whole story, and she was much, much worse.
As she moves through the halls of power, her heart struggles between devotion to the gods she worships, the prince who loves her, and her thirst for revenge. She sparks a battle between her strangely powerless gods and the God of palace administrator Obadiah—a God who confronts her with surprising might. She will fight, though victory may cost her everything.

As a bonus, the awesome Wynn-Wynn Media has put together a great giveaway prize package:  a copy of REIGN, a cute kitchen tea towel, AND a bag of that classic (and unforgettable) orange slice candy! How fun is that?

To enter, please leave a comment below (maybe share your own recipe blooper?), including your e-mail address. US entries only, please.  I'll draw the winning name (via Random.Org) on Wednesday June 19th and notify the winner by e-mail.

Meanwhile, bon appetit . . . and happy reading!


Gram said...

Oh my...what a recipe! I'm happy for you that it didn't matter to his family.
The book sounds interesting. How many months did you have to invest in research? Dee

karenk said...

I love this recipe :) Thanks for sharing!!! I really enjoy your novels, Ginger. Looking forward to reading your latest one.

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Amy Leigh Simpson said...

LOL!! Oh, what a great story! And love the book cover btw. Crossing my fingers for the Wynn. ;)

Ann Street said...

That is so funny. They sound like a wonderful family. :)

Ginger Garrett said...

Hi all!
Gram, it took me about two years of research. Jezebel is not the most loved woman, as you may well know. I had to figure out why. And I got the answer in a very unexpected way--by reading the morning paper. The article is covered in detail at the back of the book.
So glad this awful cake disaster has finally served some use. Even my dogs wouldn't eat those candies I bought for the picture!

Anonymous said...

Fun story! I've had my fair share of bloopers. It seems like a lot lately. Ay cooking ability I've had I seem to have lost. Just ask my family, they'll tell you!

The book sounds interesting. Haven't thought much about Jezebel.

Andrea Skaggs

bonton said...

Would love to read this book - thanks for the giveaway opportunity!

Believe it or not - I think I made the orange slice cake years ago for a family Christmas gathering (instead of fruit cake). Can't remember how it turned out - so - like you, I probably wasn't impressed with it -although my father loves orange slices!

Michelle Prince Morgan said...

Great post. When me and hubby were dating he committed he would love some chicken spaghetti. I spent the whole day making homemade tomato sauce for the spaghetti. I was so proud. When he walks in and lifts the pot lid he gets a funny look on his face, by the time he asks what it is I know something was wrong. My spaghetti was great but where he came from theirs was more of a fettucini not tomato based. We laugh now but I wanted to dump the post over his head then.

CandaceCalvert said...

Honestly, Ginger, this post makes me chuckle AND remember--a Valentine cake (with a cherry pie filling heart outlined with mini marshmallows) I made for my in-laws to be. Such angst, so many fragile hopes . . . and sugar calories!
Dee, Karen: I'm so glad you stopped by.
Amy: "for the Wynn"--you are the clever one (and former guest)!
Ann: Isn't that the truth about family? Ginger was blessed and vice versa, for sure.
Andrea (our last winner!): we could all collaborate on a Blooper Book.
BONNIE: I so LOVE that you've made this cake!
Michelle: hey, NO fair that hubby said "spaghetti" and not fettucine--but I'll bet the love and good intentions made that great anyhow. Thanks for sharing!

Unknown said...

I have had many bloopers and like Andrea says more now that I m older then before. but the one my hubby will not let me forget. was when we first married 43 yrs ago and I tried Fried chicken. I found a batter and cut the thing up, dipped and put into deep fat. oh my it looked so good nice and crispy, he couldn't wait to bite into it. well when he did blood came out!! it was still raw in most of the middle!. we didn't have a microwave so I couldn't fast nuke it. had to put in oven for a hour to cook. cant wait to read the new book it sounds good.

CandaceCalvert said...

Congratulations to our giveaway winner, "bonton"!