Chapter 66 – Special Yoghurt Cake (c)
Translated by Gumihou
Edited by Gumihou
After realising just how much further above them the other person’s Cultivation was likely to be, Elder Liu nearly fell over himself to agree. There was no way he was going to offend this mysterious master. Moreover, it pays to make a good impression with a powerful person, right? Right.
However, once he had calmed down, he nearly kicked himself.
What if the other guy was just randomly calling out a large bid just for the sake of it? In anticipation for Elder Liu to bargain him down? If he had thrown out valuable goods just over such a terrible reason… besides, the goods within the Treasure Pavilion did not belong to him. Taking just one item from the Third Floor would be considered a great favour from the Headmaster. If he were to take another item, the Headmaster might run after him with a sword and chop him to pieces…
“That is… you must know that I am merely the Gatekeeper of the Pavilion. I would have to negotiate with the proper authorities for the release of one more item, would that be acceptable?”
Though Old Gu realised that he had placed Elder Liu in a difficult situation, he had no intention of talking through the matter now. No matter what, he was not willing to relinquish any advantages gained by either Shiyu or Lin Fan.
“Let’s have a drink tonight.”
“Yes, yes, let’s drink! Let’s drink!”
The three of them clinked glasses.
As the three powerhouses chatted cheerfully enough together, the people around them pricked up their ears, eager to listen in. However, no matter how they strained and listened, none of them could hear what these three masters were saying. In the end, they could only lament their own Cultivation for being far too inferior to even eavesdrop on these men.
At a table not too far away, Liu Yi was seated with Mo Yin and Meng Li. All their attention on the Shiyu’s table. Liu Yi’s feelings could only be described as ‘complicated’, while Mo Yin’s could be represented with the words ‘envious resentment’.
To think that that Shiyu girl would suddenly produce an amazing teacher out of nowhere like this? Furthermore, a teacher that could even cause the Elder Lius to act so deferentially to him.
Nonetheless, no matter how one looked at it, the two Elder Lius added quite a lot of shine onto an already sparkly birthday banquet. Majority of the guests present at the birthday party were business partners of the Ling Family. After tonight, the Lings would have a great boost in reputation thanks to their illustrious guests.
Not to mention the mysterious guest in black. Everyone was stealing glances at this person, wondering just who on earth he was. Even his so-called students were given more than a few glance or two.
As the banquet neared its end, Ling Xiaoxiao suddenly piped, “Shiyu, you did prepare something for me, right? Why did you leave it till the end? Can’t I have it now?”
Shiyu glanced around at the extra people at their table and thought: Because I’m afraid there won’t be enough for everyone. So it’s better to let them fill their stomachs first.
“Actually, this is just the right time for it,” she smiled and signalled to one of the stewards.
From the end of the hall, someone pushed a covered cart over. The cart was a standard pushcart for food, but whatever was on it was shrouded with a layer of cloth and was very tall. To be honest, Shiyu was worried a little that something would fall onto the thing and had people cover it with a cloth.
When everyone saw this tall thing on the cart, whispers fluttered around them, wondering just what the heck was being wheeled in.
“Is that… a type of main dish?” Ling Xiaoxiao looked at the draped tower uncertainly.
“Ahem, it’s more like a dessert. It’s called cake.” Shiyu nodded at the servants and they reached up to pull the cover off. The cloth had been sitting on a box made of thin ice that disappeared into a puff of snowflakes the moment the cloth was taken off. As soon as the snow settled, everyone was treated to a view of an eight-storey cake. The cakes were actually seated on specially made racks with the largest cake at the bottom and the smallest cake at the top.
After the impact on the eyes, the guests were assaulted by the scent of sharp snow and sweet cream.
In this time and space, Shiyu had confirmed that there were very few snacks made with milk. Apparently, people objected to the smell of milk, either finding the scent unacceptable or too childish. Here, however, the milk had been processed into white cream before it was applied onto the cake, giving off a sweet buttery scent instead.
When the snow settled, everyone could study the cake in detail. The surface of the cake was painted with white frosting and decorated with various colourful fruits cut into the shapes of flowers and dolls. Stacked together, the eight-tier cake was as tall as a man. It was a very impressive display of skill, ingenuity and impact.
“Sadly, the flowers looked rather inelegant,” someone commented.
Shiyu felt sweat beaded on her head. Well, it looked like she has no talent in arts and crafts. It took her a long time before she gave up trying to paint on the cake with coloured cream and just taught herself some simple fruit carving techniques to make some cut flowers and figures instead. So sorry for being inelegant.
Luckily, the birthday girl, Ling Xiaoxiao did not care about little details like that. She gushed, “I’ve never seen such a huge dessert. You spent so little time in the kitchen too.”
“That’s because your kitchen staff and chefs all helped me.” The cake was not at all difficult to make since she had opted for the safest and most stable recipe utilizing yogurt for extra durability and creaminess, sacrificing a little fluffiness.  Everyone in the kitchen helped with the mixing of the batter and beat the egg whites. It was a relief to have professional chefs watching the fire at all times while the cake steamed. When the cake finally came out. Shiyu took charge of the icing and decoration of the cake.
When Ling Xiaoxiao heard this she immediately turned to the steward and said, “Reward! Reward for the kitchen staffs!”
The next thing to do was to light the candles and make a wish. Then, it was time to cut the cake. Shiyu just gave them the general idea of how to celebrate with a birthday cake, skipping the idea of a birthday song. Moreover, she was a little embarrassed by her decorating ability and would rather they quickly cut up the cake and eat up the evidence as soon as possible.
The cake was so large that Ling Xiaoxiao had to borrow Ling Tianyi’s sword to cut it. When Shiyu recalled what such sword was normally used for… she lost all appetite for cake. Which was not a bad thing, really. Now she need not worry that she would gorge on the cake and find herself an extra kilo heavier the next day.
No one else seemed to have the same reservation though. In the end, though the cake was quite plentiful, it was not a lot when split among so many guests. Nevertheless, the unique fragrance of cream, combined with butter and the refreshing tang of yoghurt was not bad. Naturally, girls especially seemed enjoyed this dessert as they have fewer defences against sweets.
When the last of the cake was gone, the banquet was drawing to its end. The second Elder Liu warmly invited Old Gu to visit the Liu Family house. Clearly, they were eager to foster a closer relationship with this mysterious man, but were immediately rejected.
In the end, everyone could only watch with complicated expressions as Shiyu and Lin Fan left the Ling Family House with their black-robed teacher.
When the last of the guests have dispersed, Ling Tianyi called Ling Xiaoxiao to his study.
“Father, is Little Shi’s teacher someone incredible?” Ling Xiaoxiao addressed the heart of the matter at once. She has a rather straightforward personality. However, rather than naïve or careless, she has a merchant’s sense of cutting right into the matter and dealing problems in the most efficient manner, abhorring the social-political games played by her noble peers.
Because she was seated at the same table as the two Liu Elders and the mysterious teacher, she was able to feel their suppressed aura subtly pressing against each other, testing each other’s strength.
Ling Tianyi nodded, “This is what I wished to speak to you about. That young woman, what do you think of her? It’s worth befriending her if her character is good, however, keep your distance if you think her character is not good. Connections and strengths aside, the most important thing about a person is their character, I’ve taught you this before!”
The thing about mixing around with high profile and powerful people. The slightest mistake could mean the destruction of an entire family. Befriending a powerful person does not guarantee safety, in fact, it would like befriending a sated tiger. You never know if the tiger might come and eat you. The only thing you can marginally count on is a person’s character. A person might eventually change, but you can stack the odds for yourself by befriending people of good character rather than trying to make connections with powerful people only.
When Ling Xiaoxiao heard this, she quickly reported Shiyu’s conduct. “Father, now that people knew the Feng Clan would be facing a crisis soon, a lot of people have begun to distance themselves from Feng Luo. I personally inform Shiyu about this matter because I know she considered him one of her friends. I believed she did not know about this matter until she saw with her own eyes how the others did not bother to greet or approach him. However, she did not change how she treats Young Master Feng and still greeted him cordially in public. This daughter believes that her character should be fairly good.”
“Is that so?” Ling Tianyi thought for a while and recalled  how, aside from his own daughter, Young Master Feng was the only none outsider seated at her table. Also, it certainly looked like Feng Luo was a friend of Shiyu’s rather than Lin Fan.
Meanwhile, Patriarch Liu and Elder Liu were discussing the very incident as well.
“What do you think of it?” Elder Liu asked his elder brother. He had no idea how to go forward, not knowing exactly how strong their opponent was. Could he really be a Divine Transformation Stage Cultivator?
Patriarch Liu frowned and shook his head, “I can’t tell. However, that should not matter to us, not now at least. Our goal is the Immortal Jade Petal Lotus. Therefore, we should cultivate a good relationship with them now, no matter what.”
[Gumihou: … was triggered…]
 Yoghurt in cake –
A good idea because: Adding yoghurt in cake batter will result in extra moistness, creaminess, and stability.
But: I must question Shiyu’s decision to make an 8 tier cake in a strange kitchen, regardless of how helpful and numerous the staff were. Also, most yoghurt cakes I’ve seen are small, about 2 to 3 inches tall and looked more like cheesecake than a true sponge. So decorating it cream and fruit is not a good idea. There’s a good reason why most yoghurt cakes are served naked or dusted with powdered sugar only, have you ever seen an iced cheesecake?
Here’s a steamed yoghurt cake recipe. Personally, though the chef makes it look easy, I do believe there are quite a few technical difficulties that have to be addressed for the cake to turn out good.
Moreover, there are several MAJOR LOGISTICAL ISSUE faced by Shiyu:
It takes 40 minute of high heat steaming to make an 8-inch wide, 2 inches tall cake. Gumihou has lots of questions:
– How big are your cakes Shiyu?
– You can’t ice them when hot
– You cannot speed up the 40 min
– Bigger cakes take longer time (more than 40 min)
You still need to crack and split the eggs, beat the whites, mix the batter all the while making sure there is no protein in your egg whites (it will collapse). Assuming that you have all the steamers, moulds stoves and container needed, you will still need at least 30 min with fully trained staff to do all of this. Cake Boss Buddy and his staff could probably pull it off in 10 minutes for 8 small cakes, but not with the amount of cake you seem to imply.
30 min to mix and sort batter (assuming Shiyu brought her own cake tins)
40 min to bake (no less, more if cake is beyond 8’)
15 min to force cool (with magic, any faster your cake will collapse, again, more if your cake is beyond 8’)
Assuming she had pre-cut all the fruits, and had someone whip up the cream, or pre-whip the cream… a professional pastry chef could ice an 8’ cake within 2 minutes. Buddy could do it in 30 sec, but that’s with the assistance of a turntable. Shiyu is not a pro, has no turntable, so 5 min, plus time to stick the fruits on. Allocating 5 min per cake is… 40 min to ice all the cake.
30+40+15+40 = 2 hours 5min is the absolute bare minimum of time need to make a cake tower consisting of 8 small cakes.
We haven’t even considered time taken to stack the cake, freeze the ice box over it etc.
So… ‘the cake was so big that Ling Xiaoxiao had to borrow Ling Tianyi’s sword to cut…’
Why don’t you just cheat and ‘Cultivate’ the cake out of thin air? Or, you know, make it the day before and stuff it into your space ring and bring it out in the kitchen along with the cart? Don’t pretend that a large cake like that could be realistically made in less than 5 hours (2 days without staff) of very careful cooking and speciality tools?
Please don’t look down on baking.
Gumihou is angry.
Even Su Nuan Nuan needed a whole morning plus at least four assistants to make a 7 tier cake at Chapter 110 of The Feast, ah!!!
 Added More Detail for Clarification: Patriarch Ling recalled that ‘that was indeed the case’, yeah, whatever. I’ll just fill in the details for you, shall I?
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