The Time I Tried To Invent The Sausage Cake

Image result for plus signImage result for sausage 


Have you ever tried to find something that you know will be incredibly good but have been unable to find it because the rest of the world doesn’t share your vision? To most people this would be highly frustrating and they’d just go without seeing their dreams come true. To a select few of us, though, this kind of scenario presents an opportunity. After all, necessity is the mother of invention. Man needed to fly and so the aeroplane was invented. Man needed to shelter from the elements and so houses were invented. Man needed an illustration of just how evil the world can be and so Daniel O’Donnell was invented. And with a similar yearning for fulfilment, I set about creating sausage cakes.


The reason for this is that I like cakes and I like sausage (steady on, Madam!). It seems natural to me that if a man that likes both salt and vinegar can combine the two to have his ideal condiment combination then I can do the same. Just like the man that liked mini biscuits and cheddar cheese and invented Mini Cheddars, or the man that liked crisps and Guinness and invented Guinness flavour crisps.


The idea for sausage cakes had been with me for some time but was sadly delayed as I have absolutely no ability when it comes to baking. It’s partly because of this that I don’t bother with much technical stuff in the kitchen – you remember the TV programme ‘Can’t Cook, Won’t Cook’? Well, that was like a life mantra for me. I do know the difference between a tbsp and a tsp, though. This is thanks mainly to my mother confusing the two once upon a time well before I was born when she was making a chilli con carne. Such was the explosiveness of the dish she served up that, even though it happened around fifty years ago, my father still walks with the hint of a limp and a glazed expression on his face. He recounted the tale regularly as I grew up and so tablespoon and teaspoon identification have kind of been drilled into me.


My reluctance to go into the kitchen delayed the sausage cake idea coming to fruition for years. By the time I did get around to attempting it you could actually search the world wide web and find that others had already tried to make my dream food. However, I didn’t know this when I first devised the idea all those years ago, just as I didn’t know that bananas on toast existed when I requested it (and it was delivered!) for lunch when I was approximately four years old. Honestly, how I wasn’t heralded as some kind of food inventing child genius is still beyond me!


Bearing in mind my lack of culinary experience, I decided to get as much help as I could to pioneer the world’s first Sausage Cake. I had a few options available. I could make a cake out of pure sausage meat and decorate it appropriately. Or I could bake a cake then add cooked sausages to it and have them sticking out of the top to make it look a bit like a culinary Millennium Dome. Or I could put the sausages in the cake mix and bake away. The only trouble with all three options was that they required me to ‘bake’, which is something I’ve never really done. I remember my Nana used to do it regularly, so thought I may have inherited some sort of hereditary cake making gene. And I remembered that from when I first met her until she died she was always an old lady to me. Let’s face it, if an old lady can bake cakes then I thought surely I, in the prime of my life, should find it a doddle! (For the record, my Nana’s chocolate cakes were amazing! Every Monday when all the aunties, uncles and cousins from that side of the family used to gather at Nana’s house for tea, the chocolate cake was always a highlight.) However, Nana isn’t around any longer which means that I had to get help from elsewhere. I enlisted the assistance of Betty Crocker.


Betty provided me with my cake mix, I had my sausages, I had eggs, vegetable oil and I had water. I thought that would be all I needed but I was still slightly daunted at the prospect of making a cake. I needed even more inspiration. All of a sudden, I remembered that one of my old friends had once said that if I shaved my head and wore glasses then I’d look a bit like cooking pioneer and celebrity chef Heston Bloementhal. I protested that 99% of people in the world would look like Heston if they were bald and wore glasses but he was adamant that I would look especially like him. What’s more, other people have subsequently agreed with his lunatic theory! And so, with baking on the agenda, I decided to get into character.


Sadly the days when I would shave my head for no better reason than baking a cake were behind me at that time so I decided on an alternative – a swimming cap. I noticed that I looked nothing like Heston Bloementhal (see picture below for evidence) and cracked on with my baking.



In my haste to create the world’s most revolutionary cake, I had to improvise in places. For example, Betty wanted me to finish the cake off by adding her own icing. I thought she was taking advantage of me by asking me to buy even more of her products so, noting the sausages that were integral to the cake, I would use ketchup instead of icing. However, it wasn’t just icing that I lacked. Betty advocated the use of butter to grease the cake tin. I didn’t have any in and improvised by using some Vaseline I had left over from my 2011 charity walk. I knew that would come in handy one day but hadn’t quite imagined that it would be for this purpose.


Then I got mixing. And around three seconds later Paul, one of my six housemates, came into the kitchen. He had an expression on his face that suggested he’d never seen a man in the kitchen wearing a swimming cap getting busy with Betty Crocker, Vaseline and a load of sausages before! I explained what I was doing and carried on. He looked perplexed and left, quickening his stride as he did so.


The sausages were chopped up and added to the cake mix, which was then added to the cake tin, which was then added to the pre-heated oven. All was going to plan! This baking malarkey was literally a piece of cake! Especially as the sausages required the exact same time to cook as the cake. Honestly, it seemed as though fate was on my side. This was CLEARLY meant to be!!


I had to wait. Betty had advocated leaving the cake in the oven for 23 – 28 minutes, which I doubted would be long enough. I decided to monitor the cake and pull it out shortly before it got burnt. Approximately 33 minutes later, this was done. I complimented myself on the spongy top of the cake. It looked to have turned out perfectly! Then, having seen people on TV do this kind of thing with cakes before, I then put the wire rack on top of it, flipped the cake over and then lifted the cake tin, anticipating the glorious sausage-filled cake that would be revealed as I did so.



It seems Betty had lied to me.


As the cake tin was lifted, the cake kind of flopped out of the sides of the tin as a gooey mess. I’d imagine that the way it glooped into the wire rack was similar to how most of Rik Waller would flop over a toilet seat when he’s having a dump. It’s the most dispiriting thing I’ve experienced since some evil little witch stole the Goofy sticker from my pedal go-kart when I was six years old. (And yes, Sarah Roberts, if you are reading this then I’m referring to you. I still haven’t forgotten and will one day exact some terrible vengeance upon you!)


I tried to salvage what cake I could and placed it back in the cake tin for a few more minutes in the oven. I resurrected what I could from the edge of the wire rack and even grabbed a couple of sausages. Amazingly, they hadn’t cooked. At all!! Proof if proof were needed that Betty had clearly not done her research properly! I was sorely tempted to write an angry letter to her to inform her that her cake mixes should clearly contain instructions not to put uncooked sausages in the mix.


I decided that this first foray of mine into baking would be classed as ‘research’. It may have been an unsuccessful attempt on this occasion but I was confident that soon afterwards, with a few more attempts, I would yield a truly glorious sausage cake that would revolutionise not just my world, but EVERYONE’s world!