Episode 35: The Cake!

And then there’s the cake …

… orange pound cake …

… packed with sugar, sweet butter, Grand Marnier, heavy cream, more eggs than you can imagine, the zest of a peck of oranges. It rises four feet from a bed of freesias, a centerpiece of joy and affirmation.

Sam and her mother make it in the kitchen of the Russian Embassy on Connecticut with the help of four chefs: beating, stirring, melting, gently folding the batter into a set of graduated cake pans that served faithfully throughout three centuries of Tsarist celebration.

The decorations are designed by a refugee from Azerbajan with a lifelong passion for monuments to love. He succeeds beyond his wildest imaginings.

Top to bottom, they cover it with butter-cream tinted pink with the first pressing of tea roses from a hot house in Baton Rouge and garland it with candied violets and spun sugar.

Previously on The Rocky Road of Love… Episode 1: One Fine Day. Episode 2: Fate and Chèvre. Episode 3: The Rocky Road Ahead. Episode 4: Could This Be Lunch? Episode 5: I Only Have Eyes for Stew. Episode 6: Harry in Love. Episode 7: Dinner for Two. Episode 8: Sam, Line 2. Episode 9: Romance at Home. Episode 10: Barbecue, Beans, and Slow-Pitch Softball. Episode 11: Play Ball! Episode 12: How ‘Bout Them Dawgs! Episode 13: Mercy! Episode 14: Harry Gets Mad! Episode 15: Harry and the Hopelessly Inadequate Ballet Buffet. Episode 16: And Now Sam’s Mad! Episode 17: The Last Goodbye. Episode 18: The Big Breakup. Episode 19: Chocolate on Her Mind. Episode 20: Life without Harry. Episode 21: Life without Sam. Episode 22: Of Rice and Men. Episode 23: Lasagna to the Rescue! Episode 24: Together Again! Episode 25: Black Velvet! Episode 26: Romance on the Town! Episode 27: Dancing! Episode 28: At Long Last Breakfast! Episode 29: Paradise! Episode 30: A Vision in Sausage and Pink Chenille! Episode 31: Battenburg Lace. Episode 32: A Wedding Most Glorious! Episode 33: You Are Invited Episode 34: A Union of Serious Cooks

New this week … the grand finale … Episode 36: Oh, Promise Me!

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