Attempting Mrs Oberon’s Cock-a-Hoop Honey Cake

One of my son’s favourite childhood books was Margaret Mahy’s A Busy Day for a Good Grandmother.

The good grandmother is Mrs Oberon, summoned by her son Scrimshaw to deliver one of her cock-a-hoop blue borage honey cakes — the only thing that will pacify his crying, teething baby son.

Her journey — by trailbike, plane, raft and skateboard — involves navigating rapids, and fighting off hungry vultures and alligators.

Arriving to find Scrimshaw at the end of his tether, she not only calms the baby but teaches her son to make his own honey cake.

I was reminded of the book recently by Amanda at Silkannthreades, and began wondering what a cock-a-hoop blue borage honey cake might look (and taste) like.

I did find a recipe, but not only was it missing blue borage honey, but seemed to lack the ingredients one might expect in a teething remedy.

This is my first attempt. It’s flavoured with blue borage honey (naturally), as well as cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and chamomile — to soothe.

It’s ok. The texture is good, but none of the flavours emerge strongly enough and it looks disconcertingly like gingerbread.

Definitely not a six-word post this week — but bookended thus.

So, back to the drawing board.

Posted to Debbie’s Six Word Saturday

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38 thoughts on “Attempting Mrs Oberon’s Cock-a-Hoop Honey Cake

  1. Looks nice all the same and nothing wrong with gingerbread 🙂
    I love the sound of “blue borage honey cake” – maybe you just need to throw in some blue borage flowers?
    And the book sounds fun too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The book is fab. It really turns the traditional story-book notion of grandmothers on its head.
      I think you and Tracy are onto something with the idea of adding flowers. It definitely needs a more distinctive taste.

      Like

  2. A very promising start. I wonder if we have to take into account that flavors are usually mild for a baby. I am just now remembering that I used to make a delicious Ethiopian honey bread which was more cake than bread. I think it had some cardamom.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What a lovely connection between the book and this scrumptious looking cake! My mum wasn’t too much into baking when I was a kid and bought a honey cake that I always thought too dry and even a little bit bitter. But I bet yours wasn’t and I’d love to try a slice or two! 😄

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you. I can’t believe it took me so long to try and figure out how the cake would taste.
      This one was very moist, and kept really, really well without drying out. The flavour developed over time too, which was interesting. I’ll hopefully have perfected the recipe before you visit 😀

      Liked by 1 person

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