Column: Tradition? Tastes like year-old wedding cake

• Originally published in the Kane County Chronicle on Oct. 26, 2009

We’ve all heard of day-old pizza – a wonderful treat, especially cold – but year-old cake?

My wife and I decided to save the top part of our wedding cake for our first anniversary, which we celebrated on Sunday.

It had been sitting in our freezer since last October, wrapped in a box and a plastic bag, idling by while frozen dinner roommates came and went.

When we finally removed it from its frozen home on Sunday and opened the box, we quickly saw that it had developed a mild case of freezer burn. Easy enough. Butter knife, stat. A cut here, a cut there, and the cake was all better. We dug out a piece for both of us and sat down to enjoy it.

Before I go any further, though, I should mention that I have issues with food and expiration dates. I don’t eat anything after its expiration day. As soon as that date passes, the food might as well be poison as far as I’m concerned. That’s right. One minute past midnight, perfectly edible food suddenly becomes an invitation to death’s door in my mind. That milk just became spoiled. Sorry.

So, I wasn’t exactly looking forward to year-old wedding cake despite the lovely symbolism of it. Symbolism is no substitute for preservatives. Cake should be eaten within a day or two after baking. I might have a piece after three days, but only after convincing a family member to taste it first.

I had to try this, though. It was our wedding cake, after all. I forked out a piece of cake – carefully avoiding the buttercream frosting (I have my limits) – and carefully put it into my mouth.

I’d love to tell you it tasted as good as I remembered it. (This would be a lie in any case. My wedding day is a complete blur. I’m fairly sure I said “I do” at some point in the festivities, but the rest is a little hazy.)

It tasted like year-old wedding cake. I took one more bite and gave the rest a proper burial in the trash can.

My wife didn’t mind, and the rest of her cake joined its brethren not too long afterward.

After all, while we said “in sickness and in health,” nothing was mentioned about year-old wedding cake.

I’m fairly sure, at least.

Joe Grace is the editor of The Chronicle. Write to him at jgrace@kcchronicle.com or call him at 630-845-5368.

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