The Origin of Sandra Lee's Kwanzaa Cake Revealed

The worst recipe ever created on the Food Network was the cringe-worthy Kwanzaa cake made by Sandra Lee on her “Semi-Homemade” program. It was so bad we wondered whether it was farce; it appeared to be genuine. It gave rise to questions, though: who created it? Who could be so evil as to open Pandora's recipe box? Certainly not Semi-Homemade Sandra herself; her talent runs more to ugly tablescapes and sticky sweet alcoholic beverages by the pitcher.

First of all, if you haven't seen the horror story that is Sandra Lee's Kwanzaa Cake, let us refresh your memory with this YouTube video. Note that Sandra Lee does not know the difference between cocoa powder and powdered hot chocolate, and that she says she's putting acorns on the cake, but then sprinkles on corn nuts. Put down the vodka, Sandra, then read the recipe before beginning.

The woman who created this recipe, Denise Vivaldo, posted a lengthy and hysterically funny mea culpa on the Huffington Post yesterday, in which she acknowledges that the cake (and the not-quite-as-awful-but-still-pretty-bad Hanukkah cake) sprang from her brain. She admits that the cakes are in terrible taste, and she points out that the angel food cakes had to be stuffed so that the cake would maintain structural integrity. There's much mockery of Semi-Homemade Sandra and a heaping helping of potty mouth (you have been warned).

The Hanukkah cake, which is simply an angel food cake with marshmallows stuffed in its center and frosted with canned icing and blue food coloring, is nearly as eye-watering; Vivaldo says the marshmallows were required in order to keep the cake from collapsing in on itself.

Ms. Vivaldo, we know you had a staff to pay and food to put on your table, but seriously, how could you? Angel food cake with canned icing? Corn nuts? Canned apple pie filling? Alice Waters must be twitching uncontrollably in a corner somewhere in Berkeley.

Ms. Vivaldo, we forgive you; we've all had creations that got away from us–like Frankenstein's monster. Don't ever do it again, though. We don't want to encourage Sandra Lee or her ilk–and you know you're bad when you develop an ilk–to step into a kitchen ever again.

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