(Video link here.) Of the many episodes of The Little Rascals produced in the ‘thirties,  this clip has to be one of the best: the poor, ever-resourceful, uninhibited, unsupervised gang of kids make a cake filled with prizes, following the recipe in a completely original way.

The backstory: Dickie’s abusive dad is so mean to Dickie’s mom that Dickie decides to cheer her by buying her a $2 dress for her birthday. Not having the money, he tries to raise it by baking the cake with his pals and selling prize-filled slices to other kids..

Prize-filled slices!!!!!

With big thanks to Chris Eldredge.

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3 replies on “tv break: the little rascals improvise a cake

  1. Reminds me of the first cake I baked unsupervised. I wasn’t even 10, I don’t think and I was baking a honey cake. It said to separate the eggs. So I cracked them, put the whites into one bowl and the yolks into another (just as I’d seen my mom do) — and then poured both bowls into the batter….no one said anything about whipping any egg whites in the recipe!

    Then the recipe called for 1-1/4 cups of coffee. So I got out the instant coffee, measured 1-1/4 cups and put THAT in the batter. Hmmmm. It’s not like I’d ever drunk coffee to know that that might be a *tad* too much.

    Needless to say the end result wasn’t much to anyone’s liking….

  2. But – on the prize front, my mom had a great idea for one of my birthdays. She’d gotten some capsules from pills (I dont know if she’d emptied out the medicine or just got the capsules by themselves), typed up a bunch of riddles/jokes, put one into each capsule, and baked them into the cake.

    Each person got a great surprise (or more than one) in their slice of cake, and would read it out to the group.

    I still think that was a pretty genius idea on her part.

  3. Wow, very cool idea. I would have thought the capsules would have dissolved, since they are usually made of gelatin, which dissolve in liquids eventually. H-m-m-m.

    When I was a kid, my Greek grandmother would back a cake into which she would drop a silver dollar. Whoever got THAT piece got luck for the year. It was always thrilling to cut that plain cake.

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