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I started to do some research on beautiful and esoteric crowns of the world, but I was tragically distracted by hunger. Somehow the two extremely different impetuses fused into one peculiar quest and I wound up looking at a bunch of beautiful cakes shaped like crowns.

725874d0ed163ffdfa4d2db52f2ed691I guess crowns and cakes do share a few characteristics. A cake after all is a high status food for fancy occasions. Many cakes are cylindrical. Cakes tend to be highly decorated and they are often given over to the person of the hour in the manner of Roman crowns and garlands. Yet on a more fundamental level, crowns and cakes are quite dissimilar—one is a fancy hat betokening authority over others, whereas the other is a tasty dessert.

cake2500a Chrisbirthdaycake1 coolest-crown-cake-5-21348151 crown_l f6b356dfb9bffa5f5c59a2c9a6460501 IMG_1530_1 img_1671 Princess crown cake princess-crown-5x7 Yet there are so many crown cakes—many of them quite lovely. Is this because of the cylindrical shape, or is it because more people like crowns than you might expect? Is it part of “princess culture”–that formidable marketing confection which affects so many little girls? Maybe it has something to do with king cake or some other traditionalist throwback to customs of yesteryear. Whatever the reason, I really enjoy looking at these extraordinary confections. Also, thanks to the gifted royalist bakers of the internet, I have managed to throw together an airy yet still quasi-relevant post at the very end of a long day. I promise I will address weightier concerns tomorrow…

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Now if only I had one of these delicious cakes! Maybe there is something to this princess business.

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King Cake (Wayne Ferrebee, 2012, oil on canvas)

King Cake (Wayne Ferrebee, 2012, oil on canvas)

In the Northern hemisphere today is the summer solstice—the longest day of the year. Here in Brooklyn, the Saturday closest to the solstice (which, this year, happens to also be the solstice) is the occasion of the Mermaid Parade, a great festival to Neptune, the Roman god of the ocean. Revelers gather in Coney Island which is a famous beach by the Atlantic Ocean. Artists, mummers, and lovers of the ocean dress as sea creatures, mermaids, and oceanic beings and parade down Surf Avenue before proceeding through Luna Park and to the beach. As a Brooklynite, I thought I should likewise celebrate Neptune and the glorious beginning of summer—which I am doing by showing one of my paintings. The title of this work is “King Cake” and everything you see is some sort of king. There is King Neptune, a king salmon, the king of herring, a king vulture, and a princely crown. The colorful torus-shaped cake is known as a king cake, which is eaten down south during carnival season. When the cake is consumed, the person who receives the piece with the baby baked inside is given a golden coin…or maybe sacrificed to the ancient gods (depending on one’s denomination and traditions). Carnival and Mardi Gras are not celebrated in Brooklyn: instead we have the mermaid parade on the summer solstice! Hail Poseidon! Hail summer!

A Cake Shaped like a Catfish!

A Cake Shaped like a Catfish!

America is living in a golden era of cake decoration: shows about amazing cakes like Cake Boss flood the airwaves and the internet is in love with websites featuring “cakewrecks” hilariously ill –conceived &/or botched pastries.  Even so, I am still surprised at the lengths some people will go to in order to celebrate their favorite activities in cake form.  Today’s post features a list of photos of astonishing catfish cakes.   Check out these amazing sugar fins and icing whiskers!

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I am guessing that these cakes are for anglers and are not designed for ichthyologists studying the amazing diversity and complexity of siluriforms around the world, but who knows?  At the very least these amazing desserts demonstrate how obsessed people still are with catfishes.

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