One of the few things I miss about living in St. John’s Wood is being close to Camden Town. I used to walk there every other week or so to check out the 99p Store and Lidl, Aldi’s fellow cheapo German supermarket. Every time I would pass by The Little Baker and stop to gaze at the frogs in the window.
(Image courtesy Google)
(Image courtesy CamdenPeople)
But over four years I never caved and went inside the bakery… until today. Now that Lidl is 2.5 miles away, going there is a big production. There are no direct bus or tube routes and walking there takes too long, so I usually run there (with a reusable tote bag stuffed in my back pocket, as Lidl charges for bags), then walk back with my bag full of chocolate, fruit and nuts (the necessities, of course). Today I made the mistake of leaving too late, so by the time I ran to Lidl and made my purchases, it was past lunchtime and I was hungry.
Pro tip: don’t walk by a bakery when you’re hungry and 2.5 miles from home. The frogs were staring back at me cross-eyed.
(Image courtesy Yelp)
I needed to know if they tasted as good as they looked — for science. It would also be nice to support a local business, right? So I marched in and ordered a frog. The Little Baker offers a variety of cakes and pastries baked on site for ridiculously low prices, but since I am a child at heart who eats with her eyes, I needed to have the bright green thing with eyeballs.
I think frogs might actually be like sorority girls who look more attractive in a group — this is one sorry-looking amphibian cake. His “It’s not easy being green” looks more like “Eat me now and put me out of my misery!”
Or maybe he was just overheated (I really should stop personifying something I devoured). It was ridiculously hot today. I don’t know why 75 degrees (24 C) in London feels heat stroke-inducing, but it does. I was really struggling on my run, which may be partly why I thought I deserved a frog treat. (Because when you run 2.5 miles to get cake, then eat the cake as you walk 2.5 miles home, you break even, right?) When I finally made it back, the porter and I chatted about the weather, as you do in England.
“Do you like this warm weather?” He asked.
“No!” I replied. “It’s too hot and miserable inside without air conditioning.”
“I know!” he said. It felt good to finally hear someone share my sentiment — I’m tired of the “This weather is amazing!” camp. He said he actually hoped it would rain so it would cool off. I agreed. I’d like to have a proper English summer with highs of 20 C (68 F), please.
I went upstairs and put the remaining half of my frog in the refrigerator since he was starting to melt. The verdict is still out on the frog cake — it was good, especially for 90 pence (apparently the price has gone up since the photos above). But it’s been a while since I’ve had sweets other than chocolate and it tasted almost too sweet. It was better cold. I’m glad I can put the mystery of the bakery frog taste behind me, but I’m not sure I’d buy another one. It’s a sad realization when your healthy eating makes the bad food you used to enjoy not taste as good and even gives you a minor sugar headache, but I guess it’s for the best. I’ll stick to my Lidl dark chocolate.