Sometimes, as when the previous day has included Doughnut Debauchery, I will make a drink composed of a cup of V-8 juice and two rounded tablespoons of flax seed meal. (You can add an ounce or two of vodka, if this is instead an advance measure taken in anticipation of a different sort of debauchery.) I will stir it up and drink it down quick like medicine: it’s thick to begin with, and it’s not exactly what I’d call tasty, and the flax seed meal will start soaking up the liquid if you let it sit around, so it’s not a SIPPING drink.
Paul, this morning, watching me make and drink it: “I’m sorry, that is too nutritious. I can’t eat my leftover doughnut after watching that.”
The doughnut situation happened because we celebrated the twins’ birthdays, and Edward chose a Doughnut Cake as his cake. Doughnut Cake (or Donut Cake, if you must) is an accidental invention. We think it started back during one of my pregnancies when I was craving doughnuts, but we’re not sure. All we remember is that the first time we had one was on one of my birthdays, when as my birthday dessert I said I didn’t really want a cake, I wanted DOUGHNUTS. So then Paul went out and got doughnuts, and he arranged them on a plate in a roughly cake-shaped stack. The idea caught on; I’d say we’ve had Doughnut Cake at someone’s birthday at least once a year since then.
For the top layer, I use three iced doughnuts, either with or without sprinkles, ideally matching. It gives it a “frosted” look. (Iced doughnuts should not be put into the underlayers: the frosting gets friendly with the doughnuts above. Additional iced doughnuts must wait in the box, or on a separate plate/platter.)
The other important element of Doughnut Cake is that, when the candles are blown out and it is time to eat it, the doughnuts should be cut into quarters—or halves at most. One does not “eat a doughnut” from a doughnut cake; one cuts off a quarter doughnut here and a quarter doughnut there until one’s tum cries out for mercy. The sampling of many flavors is crucial to the Doughnut Cake experience. (People who only like one flavor of doughnut are ALLOWED to just “eat a doughnut.” But the rest of us avert our eyes.) The doughnuts need not all be cut up at once; it is better to cut into each doughnut as needed.
This year I made a slight change to the construction of the cake, based on what happened last year: last year, the top layer of doughnuts kept slipping or threatening to slip—and when the top layer has LIT CANDLES in it, that is a bad idea. So. Shorter doughnut cake. The rest of the doughnuts stay in their box, to be brought from the kitchen after the candles are blown out.
…Oh, hey, I checked, and it turns out I have PHOTO DOCUMENTATION of last year: