A fast re-torte
Sunday September 26th 2010, 11:05 pm
Filed under: Friends,Life

Okay, so here’s what’s been going on in the background:

Richard came home from work sick the other day. Thursday, I was afraid I was catching it and not wanting to expose more people, stayed home from Knit Night.  Friday, he was better and I was fine other than that I was still very very tired.

That night the Boy Scouts were having a fundraiser spaghetti dinner. There was to be an auction of desserts at the end.

Anyone who knows me knows that means one of my chocolate tortes had to be there.

And so I pulled myself together enough to get out the door to buy manufacturing cream, one of the key ingredients, at Milk Pail. It’s 40% butterfat, no additives, and it has a short shelf life.

Now, that place is a good one for locavores, good produce and cheeses, and it is very popular. It’s also in a badly-designed lot with minimal parking unless you’re willing to walk a ways (and climb through bushes and walk through a blind intersection and never mind).

Willing is one thing.

I went. The lot was as full as if Thanksgiving were coming.  But there was one spot, right in front, right there–and their employees had commandeered it for the moment.

I had nowhere else I could safely go, sunwise, and I just barely had the oomph anyway, so I put on my turn signal and figured they’d finish up shortly.

Every single car that encountered mine after that as I waited had some totally stressed-out person for whom I was just the last straw.  Pounding their steering wheel. Yelling. Losing it.

I had done not a thing wrong. I’m still trying to understand it.  I wasn’t even close to blocking anything.  Maybe they were all trying to run a quick errand on their last bit of energy and couldn’t find a spot except for the one already spoken for?

The last woman’s behavior was such that I was afraid of her screaming at me in the store. Bag this–I went home.

Where I put a note on the ward chat list, not mentioning the screamers, just saying I hadn’t been able to park at all and I’d really really wanted to make a chocolate torte for the Scouts; if anyone else more hale and hearty had the time to try for me, I would so happily make them a torte too as a thank you.

And then I put myself on timeout and took a quick nap, realizing that if I were complaining to my whole church about the disappointment over such a small thing, I was having a meltdown and needed a nap.  Bring me my blankie.

I got up a short while later, much refreshed, checked my messages, googled, and found out that hey! Smart and Final carries manufacturing cream too–who knew?

So I sent out a second message saying thanks, all’s cool, I’m getting some after all.

I got my usual pair baked but with not the time left to cool them. I improvised: I put the cakes on a metal baking sheet to conduct the heat away, moving them to another baking sheet as that one heated up. It did help some.

Ten minutes before we were supposed to be there, I started the glaze. I tried too hard; I zapped the chocolate and cream too long. I wrecked the top of this one; I decided, oh well, I’ll have to take that one–the one that lost a piece to the side because I took it out of the pan before it was cooled.

It still hadn’t entirely cooled. It melted the top even more.

You’ve seen those lava cakes? I had a volcano in full flow with the side of the mountain given way for it to pour down.

We got there late.  By the time they got to the auction, it had set–looking like that, but at least it had set.

I noticed the scouts picking up all the desserts but my Charlie Brown Christmas Tree one and leaving it quietly behind. I grabbed a scout (whom I didn’t know) and told him, Tell them it’s Alison Hyde’s chocolate torte. They’ll know what it is.

Okay, lady.

It was one of the last ones, then, and some of the crowd had taken their little kids home to bed by then.

Dave, bless him, held it up high and asked, What am I bid for Alison Hyde’s world-famous CHOCOLATE TORTE!

My friend Phyl started it at $20. That quickly went to $40.

And I thought, Thanks, you guys, but–did you SEE that thing?!

Phyllis was having company Saturday night and told me later, I didn’t care, I knew what it tasted like!  But Jessica outbid her and got it with great glee.

Earlier in the day, Mary, bless her, had seen my first email and had immediately jumped in her car to go get that fancy cream for me.  But for all that, Milk Pail, alas, was out by then.

Tyler, bless him too, emailed me to say he would go in a flash if he could, if it weren’t for being at work, even before he saw the offer part of my email.

Those messages (there was another, too, but I’m not done yet) completely and totally made my day on a day I so much needed that. Just their acknowledging me made it all feel better; the fact that Mary ran immediately to go help meant the world.

Now.  A half gallon of manufacturing cream is a lot of cream.  Eight tortes’ worth.

I went back to Trader Joe’s: I stocked up on their bittersweet 500g Pound Plus bars. Baked, cleaned pans, baked.  And then I started calling/emailing/knocking.

Phyllis’s guests stopped me today to tell me how good that torte had been.

When I offered to bring Mary one, she and her husband instead came here and picked it up.

Ditto Tyler and his wife.

Jessica got a prettier one, two for the bid of one.

I’m not done yet!

15 Comments so far
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That torte sure is goooood. Yum. I wouldn’t mind a piece at all, though my doctor would yell at me for eating something that “un-healthy”. (But something that makes you feel that good must be okay, right?) 🙂

Comment by Monica 09.27.10 @ 12:06 am

what a story! people can be so surprising, on both sides of the line. now i want your torte; too bad i live so far away. 🙂

Comment by lori 09.27.10 @ 3:57 am

Good story. There are wonderful people out there, and you are one of them. Not everybody would share the wealth with every one.Not just the wealth but also the work. I can alsost tase the torte. YUM YUM. Pat

Comment by pat flores 09.27.10 @ 4:04 am

What a great story! I loved it. It started my day on the right foot!

Comment by Joansie 09.27.10 @ 5:01 am

What goes around, comes around. You’re a good person, and so are those that helped you.

Comment by Sandra 09.27.10 @ 6:04 am

Don’t we all wish we were there to help you


Comment by Sherry in Idaho 09.27.10 @ 6:51 am

and I SO wish I lived close enough to pop over and share the baking chores — and maybe get a slice for my very own

Comment by Bev 09.27.10 @ 6:59 am

All I can say is it is totally unbecoming to drool on one’s keyboard. Now, see what you’ve done! 🙂

Comment by Barbara-Kay 09.27.10 @ 7:27 am

I’ve never understood parking lot rage. I do understand chocolate though. 😉

Comment by Channon 09.27.10 @ 8:29 am

Now see what you’ve gone and done? Someone else is drooling all over a keyboard! I don’t think that’s sanitary.

Am and I used to shop at Milk Pail, but I became more and more disenchanted as the parking became worse and worse. Now I just don’t go there.

So may I bid on a chocolate torte?

Comment by Don Meyer 09.27.10 @ 9:37 am

I’m imagining the smells of chocolate tortes baking. Absolutely magnificent.

Comment by robinm 09.27.10 @ 1:49 pm

chocolate, oh my, I can almost smell them baking. You have such a wonderful church family.If only all churches were like that.

Comment by Kris 09.27.10 @ 5:15 pm

My mouth is happily remembering the lovely chocolate torte that made it’s way here a few weeks ago….yum!

Comment by Ruth 09.27.10 @ 6:06 pm

Man, I SO wish I lived next door!

Comment by Diana Troldahl 09.28.10 @ 10:43 am

I’m drooling into my keyboard…

Comment by Lene 09.29.10 @ 6:57 am

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