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Would you serve a seriously ugly cake to guests?

Of course, I'd eat it, but the cake in question is for my mother in law's birthday. It's a four layer chocolate cake with fleur de sel caramel filling and chocolate ganache. Has almonds. It tastes good, but is just beyond ugly. I guess it was just beyond my skill level. Should I run out and try to find something at the bakery (there aren't any great bakeries around here actually), or just serve it and say the grandkids made it? It's not a huge party, just a few of my husband's sisters and their kids and MIL. It's just embarassing it's so bad! Not to mention it's ruining my day - I hate it when things don't turn out. (And I do like my mother in law, so don't say serve it to her out of spite).

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  1. I'd absolutely serve it. It sounds delicious and must've taken you hours to make it.
    Those spent hours + cake tastes good = serve with love.

    1. Sure - have fun with it! Serve it up with a bunch of cards strewn around it with "beauty is skin deep" type platitudes: it's not the suit, it's the man, etc. etc.

      1. I would not hesitate, nor would I address the appearance at the party. Just serve it and enjoy! It really does sound delicious, and homemade is beautiful in all the important ways.

        Let us know how it goes over.

        eta: would sifted powdered sugar or cocoa on the top help?

        1. Yes, I'd serve it but I might "repurpose" it as trifle. You meant to do that, right? It sounds like you might not have to do much except cube the cake, layer with some whipped cream, and top with more whipped cream and chopped almonds. The flavor combination sure sounds great.

          5 Replies
            1. re: rockycat

              or just put the whole thing intact into a trifle bowl, and top with whipped cream and chocolate shavings.

              1. re: alkapal

                That's what I do. It's happened several times that guests want to bring homemade desserts but they either drop them on the way or they're not master bakers to begin with, so I just portion them out in crystal ice cream bowls, maybe whip cream on top, and no one is the wiser.

                1. re: alkapal

                  yep a trifle is the way to go. maybe throw a few strawberries or blueberries in, mix it with heavy whipped cream.... yumm, all the flavor and it's supposed to look a mess.

                2. re: rockycat

                  I love graceful solutions like this.

                3. I feel your pain, it makes me crazy to serve something ugly, but everyone will appreciate the effort you went to, and it really is the taste that matters! You are a much nicer daughter-in-law than I am! :)

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: aforkcalledspoon

                    Pre cut, put into small serving cups, ramekins, anything small, dollop of whipped cream, dusting of coco powder. The beauty part