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Would you serve/eat cake that was on a wooden train track? *updated PHOTO post 1* - Page 2

post #21 of 126
I would run the wooden tracks through the dishwasher (my wooden spoons have certainly been through many times) and then serve directly on them. With a proper platter underneath the tracks of course.

Actually I would test one train track in the dishwasher first and make sure it doesn't crack from the heat, before doing the rest.

As a guest I would not have a problem eating the cake off the wooden tracks... I would presume my host has cleaned them properly.

(Buttercup--The wood tracks don't have a lot of nooks and crannies--I've not owned the plastic ones so not sure how they compare. There is just the fairly wide track for the train's wheels. I actually think they would be sanitized just fine with a good soak and scrub in soapy hot water, but personally I would go dishwasher route for added safety.)
post #22 of 126
Originally Posted by jeminijad View Post
I would absolutely eat it, and would not think twice about it.

If someone said something, I would tell them they were being ridiculous.

Has no one ever picked something up off the floor- maybe a book that had fallen- and then a few minutes later, eaten a piece of fruit or a cracker, without lathering up?

As for toxins, you aren't applying heat to it and I believe transfer will be minimal or nonexistant.
That's a great way to make people uncomfortable in your house. I guess if you want only people that think 100% like you do, then that's fine. Some people don't eat anything off the floor, and some people are fine picking up something that falls down on their own floor and eating it, but not on the airport bathroom floor, or even a restaurant floor. And some people are fine with anything. To say someone is ridiculous because they don't have your exact idea of cleanliness is extremely judgmental.
post #23 of 126
OK, I actually wouldn't serve on a wooden track. Only because wood is absorbant, and it could have been treated with something. Whenever I'm having a party I try to make the food in a way that a restaurant or bakery would. Would a bakery serve a cake on tracks not specifically made for food?

What about turning your whole table into a serving plate? You could cover it with foil and colored cling wrap. Or you could get a big piece of cardboard and cover it. I mean, obviously some of us would question the cake being served on toy tracks or at the very least notice it and wonder. Why take the chance of someone feeling uncomfortable with it?
post #24 of 126
You have to post some pictures of this! I can see both sides of this. I'm kind of a germaphobe. But I think I'd be comfortable eating off them if they looked clean. If kids play with something, it usually looks like they do. If they looked clean, I'd be comfortable assuming they were, especially if I knew you.
post #25 of 126
Originally Posted by ChristyMarie View Post
Well these are wood, relatively new, clean and I'll wash them first with dishsoap if that makes a difference.

I have to make 16 of these little train cars so I'm setting the track up on my kitchen table. I don't have a serving platter anywhere near big enough. I was originally going to do a serving platter with licorice or such but the party, and the cake, grew.
OK... weirdly enough, and I guess I'm only a sample of one, but although the train tracks didn't bother me, eating right off the kitchen table grosses me out a little. I'm germ phobic and assumed that the train tracks would be very well washed, but other people's kitchen tables... that's a different line for me to cross LOL.

Could you put down some parchment paper or foil and then lay the tracks on top of that? Just *something* so it isn't sitting right on top of the kitchen table... because things fall off and land on the table and then I'd be afraid to eat whatever touched the table. Even just some green tissue paper or something (although I guess train tracks don't run across grass, so maybe that isn't a helpful decorating idea).
post #26 of 126

I have this cake pan and made the trains for ds' 3rd b/day - it was so much fun to decorate!:

As you can see, I got a large board and piped a line of icing for the track, then stuck bootlace sweets to the icing. The initial idea was to have the train track going all over the table - weaving in and out of the party food, but I was concerned that it would take too much time to set up. If I did it early in the day, I was sure the cakes would dry out.
To answer your original query, I wouldn't have any issue with eating cake from a toy track, because I would trust you to have washed it

Edited by annamama - 1/24/12 at 7:50am
post #27 of 126
Originally Posted by LaLaLaLa View Post
Our train tracks are grimy and have been touched by lots of little hands in various states of cleanliness. I wouldn't expect that someone else's tracks were any cleaner.

Even if they had been thoroughly washed, I'd still have something of an ick factor eating off of toy tracks. I'd wrap the tracks in foil, like many others have mentioned.
I'd assume someone using toy train tracks for a food use would boil them and let them dry thoroughly first.
post #28 of 126
Originally Posted by poppan View Post
Even just some green tissue paper or something (although I guess train tracks don't run across grass, so maybe that isn't a helpful decorating idea).
But add in mini M&Ms as gravel at the sides of the train tracks and you've got something.
post #29 of 126
I wouldn't serve directly on the table. This actually grosses me out more than the tracks. Although really, I would cover the tracks with cling wrap (you can get quality cling wrap realy realy tight and trasparent), buy some cheap ones just for this (you never know if you will be able to get moist cake out of the tracks and wouldn't want to wreck his good tracks and it would be cleaner) , or make an edible track.

And Annamama, so so freaking cute!!!! Good job!
post #30 of 126
I assumed you would buy brand new tracks for this purpose ... so eating off of old kids toys (especially porous wood!) totally grosses me out. And I don't think it is fair to the toy either .... which will want to be played with later!!

I vote for making edible tracks out of something else. Sorry mama!
post #31 of 126
Originally Posted by HappyMommy2 View Post
I assumed you would buy brand new tracks for this purpose ... so eating off of old kids toys (especially porous wood!) totally grosses me out.
Me, too. My grandmother loves to bake and does some really cool things. She always buys new if she incorporates non-food items, though. I wouldn't want to eat off train tracks that people have been using.
post #32 of 126

It would not even occur to me to feel grossed out about that. Maybe if they looked chewed or had visible fingerprints on 'em. Still, it seems enough people find it icky that in a 16-person party your chances of disturbing someone are fairly high. I like the pretzel-tracks idea; I'd avoid licorice myself as so many people hate it. Jelly snakes could work too, or popsicle sticks or dowelling if you really want the wooden look... or, ooh, if you're feeling really Martha Stewart, you could bake gingerbread tracks!
post #33 of 126
But wouldn't boiling or even washing in really hot water increase the chance that chemicals in the wood would seep into the cake? Seriously, wooden toys, unless it says specifically that it's not treated with chemicals, I wouldn't chance eating off of it.
post #34 of 126
Annamama, that is sooooo cute!! Just adorable. And I love your frosting train tracks. How did you make your platter?
post #35 of 126
It's less a chemical issue (these are kids' toys we're talking about) than a food-borne-illness issue. The reason some things aren't food safe (like stuff made with Sculpey or Fimo clay) isn't because of toxins, but because they have big pores in the surface that make them hard to clean, thus raising the odds of bacteria growing in the old food.

Personally, I wouldn't have a problem letting my kiddos eat off of them, but if you want to play it super-safe, spray them down with bleach-water and let them dry fully, both before serving on them and after.
post #36 of 126
Really, I'd eat it and wouldn't have thought to be concerned or grossed out. If someone mentioned concern, I'd still probably go ahead and eat it.

However, were I making it, I'd probably go for setting it up on a baking sheet with pretzels or candy tracks instead (for my own convenience - like the pp, so I could get it prepared ahead of time and all).

(p.s. way cute idea - kids'll love it! and the pp who'd made it before - cute pics ).
post #37 of 126
I would have agreed with you about the children's toys before we found out how much lead and god-knows-what-else is on them. I'd still eat the cake, but I would take notice and think "hmmmm". I'm sure there are others that would not eat it.
post #38 of 126
I wouldn't serve it on tracks because...well, I am lazy and wouldn't want to have to scrub them clean afterwards. Or have the kids wander away with them and toss them into the train box with frosting and crumbs still on there. (even though, to be perfectly honest with you, when trains were big at our house there were far grosser things that ended up in the train box on occasion)

I don't think it would bother me to eat cake on a train track, as long as I didn't have to clean it up afterwards and as long as I didn't get an unexpected lip piercing from a splinter.

I have put "Sand" and "Dirt" pudding in newly purchased and clean sand pails (served with their accompanying shovels) and have eaten "litterbox" cake out of a (CLEAN, NEVER USED, NEW) litter box though so...perhaps I am the wrong person to ask about grossout factor!
post #39 of 126
I wouldn't do it, at least not off of wooden tracks. The few times we've gotten our tracks wet (from like a spilled glass of water or something) they've warped horribly - once dried they are mostly OK again, but their still a bit out of wack. I can't even begin to imagine what putting them through the dishwasher would do to them... And anything less would be quite icky to ask other people to eat off of. If they were *my* tracks I probably wouldn't worry too much, but a friends'??? Icky.
post #40 of 126
Hi Mama,
Haven't read...... but wanted to say: I did this cake for DD1's 2nd birthday. It was soo cute. I made various colors of sugar icing (powdered sugar, lemon juice, food coloring) and colored the different cars different colors. I also used a sugar crystal stick for the smoke stack, and put nerds in the coal cars. I iced a board in green icing for grass and brown icing for tracks for the cakes to sit on. It was super easy and took maybe 15 minutes to do the board and I'm not cake decorating-y.

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