Wednesday, 2 December 2020

Marbled Walnut Sheet Cake

Perry McDaniel makes some very fine cakes. I’ve had several in the hoard for a while now, but this one had eluded me for quite a while. Whenever I found one on an auction, it seemed someone else wanted it a lot more than I did, so when I was recently offered a copy out of the blue, I didn’t really have to consider my response for very long… and now I have a slice of Marbled Walnut Sheet Cake too.

This was Perry’s own exchange puzzle at IPP26 in Boston and it resembles, rather nicely, a corner slice of neatly iced walnut cake. As you’d expect of a walnut cake, it’s made of, err, walnut, complete with, I think, maple frosting. A classic combination in any kitchen.

It’s worth spending a little time admiring the packaging, complete with its nutritional information – there’s a lot of fibre in there! And a bit of crushed bugs…

Look at it carefully and you’ll spot some trademark, slightly impossible, dovetails in the centres of the walnut sides, and there appears to be something inside there rattling.

If you’ve solved a few of Perry’s dovetails before it should take you too long to solve, but this one does have a neat little kicker to it. Get past that and you’ll expose the little void inside which carries a cute little bit of treasure – which may have been what you heard rattling around inside there at the beginning…

The tolerances are quite amazing on this little box – it has a void inside, it’s a box! – it’s definitely worth bearing the notes about caring for the puzzle and caring for the puzzler in mind as the sharp, pointy bits are indeed very sharp and very pointy!

Definitely another classic bit of baked goodness from the master confectioner.

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