My Other Blog

What's a Wreck?

A Cake Wreck is any cake that is unintentionally sad, silly, creepy, inappropriate - you name it. A Wreck is not necessarily a poorly-made cake; it's simply one I find funny, for any of a number of reasons. Anyone who has ever smeared frosting on a baked good has made a Wreck at one time or another, so I'm not here to vilify decorators: Cake Wrecks is just about finding the funny in unexpected, sugar-filled places.

Now, don't you have a photo you want to send me? ;)

- Jen

Happy Hanu...Channa...Festival of Lights!

It's Chanukkah, everybody! I can't believe you didn't remember! I mean, I've known for... uh, weeks and... weeks. [poker face] And, naturally, since I knew this day was coming well in advance, I've been saving all the best Hanukah wrecks for this very moment.

Like... um...this one:

Now, Jen's the one with the Jewish roots, but I believe this is called a "men-OR-ah."

What's that, Jen? It's not a Hannnukah cake? But...but... it's blue and white!


Everyone knows that Hanuchah is the Festival of Lights. So, um, here's a candle:

As you can see, it's very Jewish.

And here we have the great patriarch Moses, crying over the fact that the oil has run out for the holy Jewish lamps:

(For some reason Jen isn't looking very happy right now. Hm. Well, better just keep going.)

Channikah lasts 8 nights, of course, and each night the Ghost of Chawnucahs Past visits all the good little Jewish children...

(Ow! Stop that, Jen, I'm on a roll!) ...bearing holy Jewish Dream Catchers:

And finally, while Jen is busy nursing that headache, let's end with a traditional Hawnuka cake from the great Jewess herself, Sandra Lee:

Yes, I believe those are plastic pearl beads.

Um, Jen's just gone apoplectic, but through the screeching I think I heard something about showing you the video of Sandra making this culinary delight, so you can judge for yourself. So, here 'tis:

Huh. Well, after watching this, all I can say is: thank goodness marshmallows are kosher.

[Update: That was sarcasm; marshmallows aren't kosher. Unless they are. In which case, they would be kosher. Those, however, aren't kosher. Glad we cleared that up.]

Now to all of our awesome Jewish readers - who have even awesomer senses of humor - have an amazing Hanukkah. Also, Jen says to say that she didn't teach me any of this stuff. (Aw. She's so humble.)

Elizabeth B., Allison P., Shannon B., Annie P., and Alex M., I don't know why but now I totally have Hakuna Matata stuck in my head.

And now you do, too.

It means no wo-rrieees... for the rest of your daaaaaays...

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Reader Comments (228)

Yes, Sandy, you are right! In some parts of the country, don't want a heavy holiday meal. Followed by a MARSHMALLOW-STUFFED CAKE SPACKLED IN CANNED FROSTING!

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMrs. Q.

I was so grossed out by the marshmallows until I realized the alternative was probably her filling the entire cake with frosting. So really, this is much better.

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKayla

I just watched the Kwanzaa clip.
I need to go scrub my brain out now.

The Santa cake...sorry, Moses cake is crying the Native American guy from the 70's commercial about littering...and with good reason.

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterEat Cake

I don't get the Food network so I've never seen this woman at work.
Somebody please tell me the show isn't serious. Is it a spoof? That was the most horrific cake decorating show I've ever seen. Stuffing marshmallows in the middle of the cake? Oy!

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMarnie

When Sandra Lee brought those faux pearls out, it made my baby cry. Not making that up.

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRobyn (Baby Mama)

Really? That blue thing called "cake" actually made debut time on a t.v. show? Though I like how she had to remind the audience that the pearls are not edible and we have to take them off before cutting. Thanks Sandra Lee! >.<

And I never knew Sauron was Jewish!
( In reference to the candle cup-cake cake XD )

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

What these wrecks prove is that those of us who celebrate Chanukah become so desparate to find something *NOT* Christmas-related that we'll take pretty much anything even remotely Chanukah-related.

At least Bakers don't need to worry as much over being called wrecks due to spelling Chanukah wrong. We're very flexible!

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTechyDad

"The great Jewess herself" bahahahaha!!!
I enjoyed lots of the comments just as much as the guys are awesome. but...I am disappointed in those of you who chose to find something to be offended by. Anyone who has read this blog for any length of time should know that John and Jen's only goal is to make you laugh, not to hurt anyone's feelings. If you don't get the the post again before getting your panties in a wad.

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I couldn't stop myself from googling dreidel cakes. What a horrifying mess of hilarity. I have no idea if they were professional bakers or not so I didn't post a link but try it yourself for some giggles. ;-)

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNova Kristin

LOLOLOL L'chaim to life

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I have actually seen frosted angel food cake quite a few times. Often, it is not only frosted but plastered with a thick layer of coconut as well.

As for Sandra Lee... Hubby and I occasionally watch her just for the laughs. That whole matching the frosting to your decor thing is totally par for the course with her since matching her food and her decorations is a big part of her philosophy. She makes me nauseous, but she is good for an "OMG, she can NOT be serious!" laugh once in a while.

Love the blog, guys. It makes my day.

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterwinsomebulldog

I didn't even look at the video and I'm already whimpering in pain. I saw the Kwanzaa cake she did last year, and have a feeling that this would only be slightly less traumatizing cause there are less items.

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I am crying. And laughing that weird soundless laugh.
The post was great and the comments are even better. Love this blog!

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPaula

Just wanted to say that I had a really rough day today and was in tears by the time I sat down to the computer this evening. Your wreck-commentary really got me smiling and I feel much better now. Thanks for the free therapy!

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBea

Be sure to catch Sandra's next special: "How to fool your guests into thinking they are worth your time."

If 'my' cake just had to have a bogus decoration in the middle, I would give some thought (!) to, I dunno, maybe not using a cake that always has a hole where I want the decoration to be. Especially if I don't want my guests to be 'surprised' by the 'filling'.

Given how long that cake is likely to be around, matching the decor would be a prime consideration.

But you know, we all have the problem of what to serve during the searing heat of Christmastime -- it sure seems to me that angel food cake stuffed with marshmallows and troweled over with frosting ought to be ideal. Maybe the idea is to distract guests from the heat by nursing a toothache. What planet is she from, anyway -- Mercury?

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCraig

I had Adam Sandler's "Hannuka Song" stuck in my head... You managed to make me sing "Hakuna Matata" to that tune. Weird.

December 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterShelley Parker Chandler

But seriously folks, if you haven't seen Sandra Lee's Kwanzaa cake, google it right now. It is so much more terrifying. CORN NUTS!

I'm heading to the Epcot shelter, and I'm bringing graham crackers and hershey bars to go with all those kosher marshmallows!

WV: predne- as in, I'm predne sure that cake is not kosher.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCat

Wow... I have never heard of Sandra before. What quality programming! No wonder people think we Americans are morons. It always makes me cringe to watch TV cooks try to ice a cake. I just want to slap them. poke poke slather smear. ick

John- you are hilarious as usual. Thanks for the laughs.

runhes- That cake gave me the runhes.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Um...'kay. Sandra Lee is just...uh...geez. I don't have words for the horribleness that is her iced angelfood/marshmallow monstrocity, except to say that her "Star of David" looks like a plastic bead necklace Patrick Star (you know, from Sponge Bob). That is all.

Oh, and I'm sure people are way more offended by the Sandra bit than the completely accidental (obviously) misspelling of Hanukkah. ;)

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMeg

Something's not kosher with Sandra, and I mean more than the marshmallows. Granted her semi-homemade creations are usually anything but orthadox, but seriously, this whole thing is just Torahable.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterElizabeth Douglas

Can someone tell me if Sandra Lee is a parody or not? I'm not sure if she's an abomination, or very funny.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I never thought it possible but looking at that "Candle" cake I am struck dumb.. I have nothing to say that wouldn't get me into trouble lol. Sad.. and scary. At least Sandra Lee's cake looked like a cake albeit it had plastic pearls on it.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterArlene

She IS an abomination & must be STOPPED!!!! I feel faint...

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterakprincess72

Oh no, my decor is green...does that mean I can't make one of these delectable looking cakes? Ptoui, I'm so disappointed, and I had some plastic beads out of the toy box and some wire out of the garden shed all ready too....

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCaroline B

As a Jew, I deem this post hilarious.
(For anyone offended: you are reading into his hilarious 'clueless gentile' persona WAY TOO SERIOUSLY. Oy.)

and I knew Sandra Lee was a high-functioning alcoholic, but...ohh no. I hadn't seen this. this is great.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Ohhhhh I thought you were telling me Sarah Lee was a real person. I just now caught they're two different people...
By the way, worst semi-homemade jewish cake ever. Just no, people. No. SOmeoen should rub her nose in that pile of doo.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMissNay

OMG..Sandra Freakin' Lee...MESS.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMJ

For those lucky enough to not have cable/or seen the show. I can tell you for a fact that Sandra Lee is real and doesn't intend to be funny, which makes the wreck so much more, wrecktifying... Her show "Semi-homemade" has been a staple on foodnetwork for a few years now. I remember watching a behind the scenes show of a bunch of chefs (trust me I didn't watch it to learn about Sandra) and remember Sandra going on and on about the concept of ther show and how each episode has it's own theme and how she goes to party stores and antique stores to decorate her set for each episode... yeah...

Those wrecks are horrifying, even though they aren't actually Hanukkah cakes... perhaps to stem the Epcot tied you should link to some of your old Hanukkah wrecks and sweets? I know I've seen them when browsing through your archives.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterVeggieT

Hi, I normally just lurk, but I had to reply to the person who asked if Peeps were kosher. They didn't used to be, but they are now, at least in America. This apparently was a Big Deal to my friend who was raised Catholic and converted to Judaism.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNan

I can't believe Sandra Lee gets her own show to show you how to ice a store-bought cake with store-bought icing.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAmber

Dear Jen, John, and the rest of the awesome people who read this blog and post.

There is an even greater source of Sandra Lee Wreckiness out there. I don't recall ever seeing it here, so I apologize if it has been. Have you ever seen Sandra Lee on the old Mario Lopez show making a "wedding cake?" I'll try to post the link below, but if it doesn't work, just go to you tube, search on "Mario Lopez Sandra Lee" and look at the third clip from that show.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTrevor

I was giggling all the way through the post today....till I got to good old Sandra. GROSS!!!! That literally made me sick. And my mom just lurves her to pieces. *smacks forehead*

Oh, I live in southern Arizona where it is hot, hot, hot IN THE SUMMER. However, considering we just came through a cold spell where it was 18 degrees where we live, I think I'll stick to my heavy meals and (actual) homemade, delicious cakes my daughter makes.

I'd be more inclined to go scoop up some horse poo and prickly pear cactus for dessert than eat sandra's cake. I'm diabetic - that cake can kill!!

BTW, the Jewish candle - hilarious!

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTerry in Arizona

I always asked for an angel food cake for my birthday each year because that's my favorite kind of cake. When I was seven my grandma asked me what kind of cake and I said, "Blue angel food!" And by golly, she frosted an angel food cake blue.

I was seven and had no judgement skills. What's Sandra's excuse?

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAmazing Cakes By Vanessa!

that marshmallow cake looks awful! I can't decide what is worse, the marshmallow stuffed in the middle or that tragic star of david.

I think the crying Moses, is actually Hanukkah Harry.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLittle Lovables

My friend and I tuned into Sandra Lee all the time in undergrad. We were amazed by her "recipes", but we really just loved how she redecorated the kitchen EVERY show. My favorite was the pool party where all the swimming suits, pool toys, and dishes were the same shade of orange! And who can forget the "tablescapes"! I still remember the rusted birdcage she wrapped ribbon around to decorate for a visit by her son. I'm sure he loved that!

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJessica B, Future DVM

I'm so happy you posted that video. I've been watching Sandra Lee on youtube all morning and haven't laughed that hard in ages. She's a hot mess!

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTyree

Say what you want about Sandra Lee's Chanukah cake, but it's still better than her Kwanzaa cake. Of course, what isn't?

WV: gronc. I still don't gronc why Sandra does that to a poor angelfood cake.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGary

She makes it seem so natural to throw marshmallows inside an angel food cake. Stuffing a turkey? Hand over the marshmallows! Out of bread crumbs for the stuffed mushroom caps? Mini marshmallows, please. Son caugh his first fish? I could go and on...

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLaura E.

Sandra Lee should be stopped. immediately.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan & Jennifer

I cannot beLIEVE that video.
Stupid. Disrespectful.
And I'm not Jewish.

*taking swig of cold stale coffee, trying to gather thoughts*
*no good; thoughts ran and hid in the bathroom, won't come out*

Is Sandra Lee perhaps the bitter, jealous sister of Sara?
Please tell me the show's a clumsy put-on. Please.

PS As an antidote, find Julia Child's program wherein she persists in destroying a poor innocent Buche Noel until she administers the coup de grace--a haystack of spun caramel.
A masterpiece of horror and suspense.

Happy Hanukkah!
--Blondie's Mom

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Dear Jen & John -- I will never, ever forgive you for introducing me to the abomination that is Sandra Lee. I'm off to YouTube now to watch more, since I've already watched all the car wrecks and painful surgery videos. Painfully yours, Joy

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJoy

I have a Sandra Lee cookbook, given to me by a friend, and most of the recipes in it are too complicated for me. I understand that her creations are a joke compared to people who really cook and/or bake, but for those of us to whom the kitchen is a minefield that nevertheless has to be walked every day, she's not completely ridiculous.

That said, if a person is going to make a cake for a religious holiday they're not familiar with, some research would be in order. I do hope this episode received enough negative backlash that she doesn't try to do it again.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered Commentersiltedrepose

KAH KAH KAH HACK...omy, i choked on a pearl. Did you know they are not edible?????

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

@Cat--they're not Corn Nuts, they're Egg-corns!

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBuffy

Hilarious post! I agree that the candle CCC is very Jewish.

On to Sandra Lee. I have been watching crazy videos of her all day on YouTube and found some other cakes that I think this blog has featured. And then I found this:

It's obviously a spoof about a real intervention, but she could certainly use one, and not just for her alcoholism (It's cocktail time!). She is so incredibly OCD about her decor (perhaps why she dyes her icing to match) that she even dresses to fit the theme or color scheme of the show. In the video above, if you go to 4:27, you can see how she bought a hideous t-shirt with lemons on it that look like curtains you might have found in my mom's kitchen in 1992. And then she built an entire show around the shirt, complete with lemon "recipes" and lots of yellow decorations.

I know it's already been said, but how can she be so daft (a) to think that someone would actually eat that monstrosity (or the Kwanzaa cake with "acorns"), and (b) to not do some research and figure out that marshmallows shouldn't go in the center of a cake for a Jewish holiday, let alone the center of any cake! Seriously, they were trying to escape while she frosted the cake.

I vote that we have "12 Days of Sandra Lee" postings. Come to think of it, 12 days may be too many in a row. Our heads might explode.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

does a Star of David made out of snowflake ornaments count?

and stuffing the hole with marshmallows...that's almost as ridiculous as Kwanzaa cake.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I am Jewish and Sandra's cake is just a hoot.. it is sort of a like a train wreck.. you just cannot help but to watch the disaster.
I like another poster, was thinking of My Big Fat Greek Wedding.. but she didn't use a bundddttt cake. :-)
Seriously- sticking two triangles together would have been much better than that sorry ash start.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

From what I've read, most marshmallows are made with pork gelatin, so most of them aren't kosher.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJanus

I'm completely serious when I say that either Sandra Lee is drunk on cooking sherry or she's handicapped and we should all be ashamed.

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMelinda

Sheesh. Talk about not celebrating in style.

"Afh yenems tukhes is gut sepatchen" (Someone else's ass is easy to smack.)

December 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCake Cop

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