Manolo for the Big Girl Fashion, Lifestyle, and Humor for the Plus Sized Woman.

June 7, 2011

What Miss Plumcake is…

Hello my chubby compadres, how’s every little thing? Me, I’m great. Just getting used to being back in Texas –by which I mean the face of the sun– after a glorious month of actual springlike weather in DC. Well, it’s Tuesday, so it’s time to find out
What Miss Plumcake is…

(now with sales code AND a recipe!)

ReadingRomancero Gitano by Frederico Garcia Lorca. A beautiful collection of poems from Spain’s most famous modern poet. He described his 1928 work as “a carved altar piece of Andalusia with gypsies, horses, archangels, planets, its Jewish and Roman breezes, rivers, crimes, the everyday touch of the smuggler and the celestial note of the naked children of Córdoba. A book that hardly expresses visible Andalusia at all, but where the hidden Andalusia trembles.” Read it in Spanish if you can, but a reputedly excellent bilingual collection of Lorca’s work is available here. If you’re interested in this sort of thing, this is an interesting blog outlining the relationship between Salvador Dali –who is responsible for the portrait of Garcia Lorca above– and the poet.

Watching Evil Under the Sun. How had I never seen this before? It is early 80’s (possibly unintentional) high camp in all its glory! Diana Rigg and Maggie Smith as bitchy aging chorus girls done good! Roddy McDowell at his screamingest queenie best! Jane Birkin! Hats! Turbans! Turbans UNDER hats with coordinating clip on earrings! Peter Ustinov as Hercule Poirot! Cole Porter soundtrack! I just about died.

HearingThe Sweetest Thing by U2. My favorite love song and is even nearer and dearer to my heart since going to Ireland. Say what you will about Bono, the boy knows how to apologize. Watch the video here. From now on, I refuse to accept any apologies not accompanied by the cast of Riverdance, an elephant and mostly naked men stripping on a firetruck.

Smelling Organix Tea Tree Mint Shampoo. Do you want to smell like a Thin Mint? Of course you do. I’m no ‘poo except for the summer, but this sulfate-free stuff smells great and leaves my hair nice and healthy.

Loving – Horchata. Horchata is a creamy refreshing summer drink served throughout the Spanish-speaking world. The Spanish version is made with tiger nuts, but since I wouldn’t know a tiger nut if I stepped on one (and trust me, I’m not about to do that), I make a version of the variety they serve most commonly in Mexico and South America, flavored with rice, almonds and cinnamon. I don’t have a precise recipe, but here’s the gist:

Miss Plumcake’s Horchata:

Bring 2 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot, with a few cinnamon sticks. Remove from heat and add a cup and a half or so of uncooked white rice (do not rinse), give it a good stir, cover it and let it sit at least 5 hours, ideally overnight. In the morning, give it a final stir and strain the rice water into a large pitcher, reserving one cup of liquid and dispose of rice (you could probably do something with the rice, but I don’t eat rice so I don’t know).

In a large microwavable measuring cup or small pot, combine one 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk and reserved rice water, heating until it has the consistency of fresh milk, then add it to the pitcher of rice water. Add a few drops of natural almond extract if you’d like, then chill. Serve over lots of ice with a few toasted almond slivers if you have it. Sabroso!

Hating Flaccid Unnecessary Ruffles. Seriously. What is with these things? It’s like every top I see is just dripping with random bits of fabric flotsam. It just looks sloppy and cheap and if I wanted to look sloppy and cheap believe me, I’d be doing it in a much more entertaining way than just wearing stupid ruffles.

Wanting – All Espadrilles All The Time. My affection for the espadrille is well-documented, and especially now that I’m Fake Spanish, they’re pretty much all I want to wear this summer. The Emmah from Calvin Klein scratches my neutral-color, leg-lengthening high wedge itch (to be worn with shorts) and I’ve been wearing my wild Lacroix ones all spring, but really any ‘drilles will do.

Belted Linen Dress by La Redoute. As I mentioned yesterday, I’m heading down Mexico way for a month for some hot Night of The Iguana action and I’m going to wear mostly white linen. Because when your house comes with a maid, you can wear white linen every day. This dress is easy and versatile, use the belt that comes with it, your favorite scarf, wear it as a dress or a tunic. Whatever. Available in white and navy, you can get it for cheap if you use code OSPCOUPON16 to take 40% off your most expensive item.


  1. Re: Ruffles:
    Really?! Still?!!! Again??!!
    That makes me so sad.

    Comment by Church Mom — June 7, 2011 @ 11:48 am

  2. Thank you, Miss Plumcake, for once again broadening my horizons. I have always loved Bono as an angst-y Irish hunk, raising my social consciousness while providing high quality eye candy. “The Sweetest Thing” shows quite another side of him. The bar has definitely been raised on any future apologies due me.

    Comment by Skyepeppersmom — June 7, 2011 @ 12:23 pm

  3. Plumcake:

    I was just thinking the same thing about the ruffle issue YESTERDAY! SO TIRED of the random ones (and I love a good ruffle!). “Sloppy and cheap” is exactly what they look like.

    FYI: “Evil Under the Sun” is currently available streaming on Netflix.

    Enjoy your time in Mexico–I hope you will still be blogging; I’ll miss you terribly if not!

    Comment by Rubygirl — June 7, 2011 @ 1:18 pm

  4. The ruffles on tops say “I don’t think my front is interesting enough. Make my front interesting!!”

    My front is interesting enough on it’s own, thank you designer-people.

    Comment by Ellen W. — June 7, 2011 @ 4:12 pm

  5. SO with you on the sad ruffles. Back in the early days of Project Runway, I remember one designer (Santino, maybe?) being criticized for ruffles and bunching and general fabric flippery that looked entirely too much like intestines stapled to a dress. And now that I’ve seen that, I can’t un-see it.

    Comment by Emily — June 7, 2011 @ 6:09 pm

  6. I’m an admitted ruffle lover. I can’t help it. I love them. lol

    Comment by Kimaloo — June 7, 2011 @ 6:15 pm

  7. I’m a ruffle lover, too. I think they can add a little something to an otherwise basic shirt. But THOSE ruffles on THAT shirt are awful! Blech.

    Comment by ChristianeF — June 7, 2011 @ 7:38 pm

  8. Is “Evil Under the Sun” the one where the frumpy wife comes down stairs to the hotel lobby in a fabulous, fabulous hat (dramatic black and white outfit)? I love love love Agatha Christie and that movie adaptation is hysterical. I had thought it was made earlier than the 80s, but maybe that was because it is set in the 50s or 60s (right?)

    As for the ruffles, I think it really depends on one’s shape. I have a friend who has a ruffled blouse and she looks truly fantastic in it. Inspired by her success, I tried one on and I looked like I had been attacked by a squid. It works for her, but not for me.

    Comment by marvel — June 7, 2011 @ 9:12 pm

  9. I just recently watched Evil Under the Sun again myself. Fabulous! How can you not love a movie in which Roddy McDowell wears one of those old-fashioned onesie bathing suits?

    Comment by Bubes Radley — June 7, 2011 @ 10:12 pm

  10. re Ruffles: I don’t object to ruffles as a species, but flaccid unnecessary ruffles. I want my ruffles to have some pizazz and some pep, not just drooping there like an old man’s…coinpurse.

    Comment by Miss Plumcake — June 8, 2011 @ 12:34 am

  11. OoOoooOOoooo I see a future of tequila and tomato juice. Yuuuuummmmmm.

    Those Calvin Klein espies are a steal. My CK shoes fit my very wide feet wonderfully, and they have worn like *iron*. My favorite heavy-duty pump, right up there with Rockports.

    Comment by Lisa from SoCal — June 8, 2011 @ 3:18 pm

  12. And I think one of the problems with that yucky shirt is that it’s not a great shade for that model, or it’s not photographing as a good shade for her. I don’t think ruffles work on most knits. On some sweaters, with enough heft, they can be nice, but with t-shirt type fabric they don’t work for me, and I’m in the pro-ruffle camp too, often the breaking the whole “if you’re busy don’t wear a neck ruffle rule” on the argument that more is more and pooh on anybody who doesn’t like it.

    Comment by Lisa from SoCal — June 8, 2011 @ 3:22 pm

  13. My mother is OBSESSED with ruffles. Since she and I have absolutely opposite tastes, clearly I agree with you 100%, especially in regard to the sad, silly little ruffles. Bleech.

    As for the linen dress, I love it but I fear wrinkling (even though I know linen is inherently wrinkly.) My big question: are you supposed to iron linen or just let it be itself? My mother irons EVERYTHING except underwear so she’s taught me to iron linen but I remember reading somewhere that ironing linen is a no-no.

    I was not expecting to talk about my mother so much…. :/

    Comment by Kate K — June 8, 2011 @ 5:12 pm

  14. Ms. Plumcake: would you be so kind as to give a shorts tutorial? I haven’t worn shorts in years because I’m terrified of the sisterhood of the traveling hemline. I’m a definite pear, but with a bit of a belly that doesn’t lie large and flat. Finding pants/shorts that would otherwise fit me well in the waist won’t even pull all the way up due to various bits of undulation.

    Anyway, sorry, ranting…shorts? Help? Please? Thank you!

    Comment by teteatete — June 8, 2011 @ 11:35 pm

  15. I just spent about two weeks obsessing over espadrilles until finally deciding on the Viscata Tossa. They are fabulous and I’m going to have to get another pair in red. :)

    Comment by njchi3 — June 9, 2011 @ 12:25 pm

  16. Thank you SO much for recommending Evil Under the Sun. I would never have otherwise picked it on Netflix Instant, and it’s just too fabulous for words. :-)

    Comment by Sarah Fowler — June 18, 2011 @ 7:24 pm

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