Thursday, April 9, 2009

Lamb-entations

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Like the Mardi Gras King Cake, I suspect that the Easter Lamb Cake is just inherently Wrecky. I mean, this one Jamie B. sent in is a good one:

So really, it's like shooting apples* in a barrel to go after these things: just too darn easy.

However, I will go after the smoking lamb cakes:

I've seen several of these cigarette-puffing lamb cakes now, and I'm totally baffled. I get the lamb/Easter connection, but where's the cigarette feature? This one Monique R. found actually has a "Happy Birthday" sign around its neck, but most say "Happy Easter". Here's a better example:

What I find even more hilarious is the fact that it looks like both lambs are wearing chocolate yarmulkes.** Oy vay! An Easter lamb schmokin? What kind of mishegas is going on here?

Here's a variation, lest you think only one bakery out there is making these crazy things:


I'm guessing this is some kind of regional tradition, but I look forward to you lovely readers filling me with your wisdom. Explain this madness to me in the comments, so we can all learn something today, eh?

And before I leave you, here's one more photo sent in by Kat:

It's not really a Wreck; I just love that little girl's expression as she's preparing to lop off the lamb's head. You can almost hear the Responsible Adult going "Now, dear, let me help you..." as she's gleefully hacking away. Heehee! Oh, and that spot of jam is well-placed, too.


*Yes, I know it's supposed to be "fish in a barrel", but I would never shoot a fish. Too messy.

**For the record, this is the hardest word to learn to spell by looking up in the dictionary,
ever.

UPDATE: And the answer is....[drum roll]

I don't know. Yep, despite having lots of theories floated my way - each one seemingly more bizarre than the last - I still haven't heard a silver-bullet explanation for the smoking lamb cake. However, reader Rosemary was kind enough to compile the most prevalent/reasonable-sounding theories in her blog here, so check those out and see which you think it is.

«Oldest   ‹Older   1 – 200 of 321   Newer›   Newest»
Trevor said...

Maybe Joe the Camel has been having fun with some sheep....

El Comodoro said...

The gleeful expression on the (lamb-murdering) little girl's face kind of gives a Stalin-esque impression, does it not?

I would keep her (1) out of politics and (2) away from the borders of any weaker national neighbors.

http://www.captainjackmakesport.blogspot.com/

Ophelia said...

I'm assuming that by "good" you mean "good compared to crap"? That first lamb is really scary.

Baffled & Befuddled said...

I've read this too early, no one else has commented yet and I really need an explanation for these smoking lamb cakes!


WV: geded. I geded no sleep until I know about the lamb cakes!

Jacki said...

What in the world? I have never seen anything like this, I'm almost too scared to google the smoking lamb cake now.

Leslie said...

The second one I thought could possibly be Joe Camel and the third one looks like my mother-in-law's chihuahua more than a lamb.
Maybe the church is being financed by tobacco companies now? I know there has to be an explanation behind these and I hope it's interesting and peppered with Yiddish.

Ashleigh said...

Is the smoking lamb supposed to be Joe Camel? That was my first impression.

D Dennis said...

I'm thinking the lamb with the cig looks more like the Marlboro camel, no?

Tabitha (From Single to Married) said...

that is so weird! I'm curious, too, to see if people know why there is such a creation?

Jessica said...

*deep breath* Okay...I've been doing some research, because I must - MUST - find an explanation for this madness or else my brain will implode. SO, with that said, the very best I could possibly come up with (and, yes, I know it's a stretch) is this: there's a brand of pipe tobacco from New Zealand called Lamb's Cake Slices. Perhaps these cake wrecks are making some sort of reference to this product? Please? I realize pipes and cigarettes aren't the same thing, but I can find no other link that brings lamb cakes and smoking together, so I'm going to have to accept this as an explanation until someone else comes up with something better. And I reeeeeally hope someone comes up with something better.

Great site! Thanks for the hilarity!

StuffCooksWant said...

Oh...lambs and cigarettes, they go waaaay back... doncha know?

Love the cake with the little girl about to whack off the lambs head. That's the funniest part about making your own bunny or lamb cake, cutting it.... you just want to yell "Off with it's head" as you're cutting it. Or maybe it's just me.

Sally said...

I came for the comments. Really hoping someone can explain these ...

HorribleLicensePlates said...

Okay, I am going to say it: These are very baaaaaaahd.

Heehee.

Lauren said...

I personally love the first two... the bakers had time to create cigs' for them to be "a smokin" but not the time to do any sort of icing besides the Jackson Pollock splatter-paint?

lauren said...

okay, i'm jewish, so i don't know anything about all this madness with the lambs and the cigarettes, and it seems that google doesn't know either.
on my travels, however, i did find this rather creepy wreck:
http://images.allrecipes.com/site/allrecipes/area/community/userphoto/big/184047.jpg

Anonymous said...

I too am not going to sleep until there is SOME EXPLANATION FOR THE SMOKING LAMB!!! The only thing I could find was that some lower east side bakery in NY is making them. ACCCKKK -- what IS THAT?

Anonymous said...

Is that last girl cutting a cake, or a butter mold? It'd be a pretty big mold if it is, but looks like there's the tell-tale seam running down its back. My mom used to make one of those for Easter, and it looked just like that, but not quite as big. Heck if I know what that spot of jam is, though.

Cindy said...

I'm thinking it's a 'scroll' in the lamb's 'mouth' (excess quotations marks intentional). Hideous in any case.

Hestias Gem said...

Best Hannibal Lector voice --- "You still wake up sometimes, don't you Clarice? You wake up in the dark and hear the screaming of the lambs"

Ang said...

Here's my guess for the smoking lamb. The members of some religions choose to give up something for the 6 weeks of lent, and many of those people give up bad habits. Perhaps the smoking lamb is celebrating with the arrival of Easter that a person can now return to their vices?

Other than that, I'm at a complete loss.

Haiku Joy said...

O, how vice conquered
innocent lambs, Christ-like, pure!
Let's hack off their heads!

Ann said...

I've decided it is a birthday horn. Really-- I have to believe...please let me...can't mentally accept lamb cigarette.

Ace said...

I have NEVER seen a smoking lamb! What's the deal/point? Besides being hilarious I mean. Because now I totally want to go find one for my family!

Anonymous said...

I've been, um, deprived of these lamb cakes. I had never seen them before. I think I'll stick with misshapen bunnies and kooky chickies for my Easter table, though, not being into the whole smoking thing.

Ann said...

I've decided it is a birthday horn. Really-- I have to believe...please let me...can't mentally accept lamb cigarette.

Anonymous said...

My unverified opinion is that cigarette-puffing lamb cakes stem from regions with Eastern European influence. I celebrated Easter once with a Polish familiy in rural Poland and would not put such a lamb cake past any of the housewives I met.

Melanie said...

I hate to sound like the morbid person, but could they actually be representing the sacrifice of the lamb, so that the doors could be marked so the angels of death would pass by? although that's more Passover than Easter... but it makes me wonder if the bleeding of the lamb is what they were going for... odd for a cake though...

Mary said...

My grandmother would always make a lamb cake (never looked this awful: coconut wool and raisins or chocolate chips for eyes/nose).

We always ate the butt first.

And it never smoked.

ELISABETH said...

It's truly troubling to me to see a small child lopping off the lamb's head with diabolical glee. I had always imagined that the lamb represented -- in addition to springtime and youth and fertility and what-not -- *Christ*. A child with a butcher-messer hacking away at a metaphorical Christ with red jam oozing from the wound is deeply disturbing, and may be an [admittedly inept] analogy to the human condition: Let his blood be on us an on our children . . . who will then lop his head off with a butcher messer in his most innocent allegorical incarnation . . .

Then again, I suppose I should have real trouble with that same image as a smoker.

Jenni said...

Those lambs actually look like the smoking camel from cigarette packages...

Laura said...

Smoked lamb for dinner and smoking lamb for desert?

Molly G said...

I think I might have a good idea for why the lambs are smoking, but it is still just a guess. Easter marks the end of Lent and I assume a lot of people give up smoking for Lent. The smoking lamb symbolizes their regained freedom to smoke on Easter.

Lots of people give up sweets for Lent so the cake in itself is usually reward enough, but hey, smoking lambs are hilarious so let's do that too!

Klayre said...

I don't know about the smoking ones, but a lot of lamb cakes are filled with raspberry or strawberry jam so that when you cut into it, it will ooze jam "blood." Whose gross idea was that? Probably an ancestor to whoever decided the lambs needed cigarettes.

Dearness said...

Clearly, smoking kills. Let this be a warning to us all - direct from beyond the grave. do do do do....

Karin

Jaye said...

What the heck? A lamb smoking? WHO thought up this craziness? lolol...I too eagerly await some great wise one explaining this phenom!
As for the girl chopping off the lambs head, that has got to be the funniest thing I've seen all day...wait..it's only 7am..there COULD be something funnier happen today, but I doubt it...
As for the other lamb cakes, all I can say is 'ewe'

The Mayor said...

Allow me to shed a bit of light on that last one. In the Polish culture, every Easter we make a Butter Lamb (a lamb carved from butter). This one looks like it's made from mashed potatoes, though. Here is a little Wiki entry for you!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Butter_lamb

But that smoking sheep is questionable at best.

Anonymous said...

I think it is meant to be a candle not a cigarette. For Easter it would be a Paschal candle and for a birthday a birthday candle.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paschal_candle

Judy said...

Okay, I too HAVE TO KNOW or I'll go MAD I Tell YOU MA-AH-AH AH- D!!!!

Okay this is what I've found so far ...it appears to be some sort of brand of pouch tobacco and the character is called "Smooky"

http://en.dawanda.com/product/3002182-tabaktasche-smooky-das-rauchende-schaf-rot-weinrot-oder-oliv

Etiquette Bitch said...

jen -- in chicago here, i've never seen the smoking lamb. i thought cw3 was, perhaps, joe camel.

re: spelling words via the dictionary: I read the word "yarmukle" before I ever heard it, and I always thought it was pronounced as it looked: "yar-mukle." as i got older, i couldn't understand why young jewish men needed a "yamika." i somehow figured it out. (no surprise - i have been rejected to appear on jeopardy.)

Laura said...

Alright, so instead of googling "smoking lamb" I googled "Smoking sheep" and I came up with a website, a Facebook and Myspace fan club for "Toot the Smoking Sheep."

Here's a picture:
http://i160.photobucket.com/albums/t185/tootthesmokingsheep/Tootwithballoon1.jpg

Rachel said...

You know, that second one looks like a camel....LMAO!

WakeGrace said...

omg horriblelicenseplates!: i almost fell off my bed i was laughing so hard.

also Jen, can we have an update if we ever find out what the smoking lamb means? im in class and its hard to sneak cakewrecks if i have to scroll through the comments. ha ha ha.

the best is the little girl. i agree with el comodoro. lets keep her out of politics shall we?

w/v: redicq - smoking lamb cakes are sooo redicq.

Tara said...

I don't know why or any sort of back story, but from what i remember, Hot Bagels & Pizza (formerly on Houston in NYC--I'm pretty sure it closed last year), I believe, was sort of known for the lamb & cigarette cakes and others picked up on it... like everyone else, I'd love to know the back story!

Cheesy Ninja said...

oh lovely. first the demented bunnies, then the sincerely screwed-up chicks, now smoking LAMBS?! sheesh......i have no adequate explanation, but let me just say that is WEIRD!!!!

Kari M. said...

Like others, I'm thinking it's supposed to be Joe Camel.

Patricia said...

If the lambs smoke cigarettes than that would explain their ugly and misshapen forms. Yes/No? It's a really inventive 'do not smoke' ploy...

Mary said...

Going out on a limb here...

Maybe the tobacco sheep were part of a "Happy Re-birthday Jesus" marketing ploy? And they didn't go with the "It's a boy!" cigars because they're too big for the sheep's head. Maybe?

Or maybe all the sheep gave up smoking for Lent. And once Lent is over they're free to smoke all the chocolate-dipped, sprinkle-tipped cigarettes they want?

marybindc said...

The first one looks like it says "Chappy Easter"

PW said...

If the lamb is for passover it would make sense that it's actually a scroll. Of course, why would a lamb be holding a scroll in its "mouth" like a cigarette? But I'm going with it being a scroll...

Lana said...

It's telling us that ewe shouldn't be smoking!

Half Assed Kitchen said...

I thought maybe it was supposed to be a deer during hunting season, awaiting its fate. But then the Happy Easter sign makes no sense.

Am perplexed.

Angie (from over at www.HalfAssedKitchen.com)

Brooke said...

I'm wondering if it's not more of a Paschal lamb. The "cigarette" might be the brush used to paint the blood on the doorframes during the first Passover. The last one definitely looks more like a bloody paintbrush than a cigarette! Not that that makes it any less of a wreck! Maybe MORE of one.

Anonymous said...

I have no direct confirmation of this butter/sugar/cake lamb business, but I think the symbolism is fairly obvious.

The lamb is a sacrificial symbol. Thus the raspberry filling symbolizes blood and the cutting of the cake symbolizes the subsequent sacrifice.

The cigarette is no doubt a reinforcement of this symbolism. Just like the offering of a final cigarette to the condemned prisoner standing before the firing squad.

Abby Normal said...

Cigarettes are ban on Passover (Pesach) by some Orthodox Jewish traditions. So it's possible the cakes are representing the sacrificial lamb and the sacrifice of giving up smoking cigarettes for Pesach. But I'm just guessing.

Sara said...

It is supposed to be a scroll...from Revelations, "Then I saw, between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders, a Lamb standing as if it had been slaughtered, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. The Lamb went and took the scroll from the right hand of the one who was seated on the throne."

I just didn't know that scrolls were supposed to resemble Salem Lights.

Rachel said...

Okay, so my theory would be that you eat the lamb for Easter dinner, so it's having its last cigarette. Kind of a death-row thing, maybe?

Elyse said...

I agree that the lambs are supposed to be holding paschal candles in their mouths.

LeahBear said...

Maybe they're giving it a cigarette because they're about to execute it? You know, to calm its poor fuzzy little nerves.

Samantha Weisel said...

My grandma used to make a lamb cake for Easter every year and it was NOT a wreck. It was very well done and I really wish I had a picture of one that she made to show you. She's still alive, but gave away her lamb cake pan, so there's no chance I'll talk her into buying a new one to make one again.

Also, I can't answer your questions about why we eat cakes shaped like lambs.

Karen and Lew said...

The lamb cakes remind me of that episode of M*A*S*H (had to get the asterisks in) where Radar saved the lamb from being eaten at the Greek Easter celebration. They had a spam lamb instead. It looked just like that second cake -- minus the cigarette.

Redgryphon said...

You know, the cigarette-smoking lamb is probably some colossal mistake. Someone probably made one once as part of an in-joke, and it got seen by earnest-but-misguided junior cake decorators, who then thought that was how it was done.

It has since spread, with no-one willing to look ignorant and admit they have no idea what it all means.

Movie Maven said...

Okay, so Tara's comment got me Googling, and I found this blog post about Hot Bagels and Pizza that references the smoking lamb cake. Apparently it closed last fall. WILL WE EVER KNOW THE ANSWER?!?!

Lisa said...

We always make a lamb cake for Easter, because it's a family tradition, but I have NEVER seen a smoking lamb! Grandma may have been smoking when she made the cake, but I don't think it would have occurred to her to let the lamb have a puff! lol I really must know what the back story is!!!

Anonymous said...

Nothing says "Spring" like a lamb smoking a cigarette.

Minyassa said...

Maybe it is a sacrificial lamb and either 1) it is being given a last smoke (though shouldn't it be blindfolded to go with that image?) or 2) they don't have the heart to kill it quickly so they are letting it smoke itself to death?

I too would love to see an update when the mystery is solved...surely some reader out there works in a bakery that makes these!

WV: supshing. I shink shumbody snuck supshing into my lass drink.

Areia said...

I'm fairly certain (because I have a nearly identical photo of myself) that the little girl in the last picture is cutting the head off an ice cream lamb for her (Catholic) First Communion. When I had mine in Belgium in the 80s they were very common for both First Communions and Confirmations; I don't know if they still are.

They're made the same way as the Easter butter molds, and some have a small reservoir made out of sugar embedded in the head, with a sugar tube running down the neck of the lamb. The reservoir is filled with grenadine, so you gets to "sacrifice the lamb" and watch fake blood run out. And then we all eat ice cream!

mhb said...

The scroll seems likely, but there's "blood" or something on the scroll, which makes the Passover doorway-blood-paintbrush theory make some sense, but I'm wondering if this is a bastardization of the imagery of the triumphant lamb (Christ) holding a staff with a red banner flying from it.

I've never understood the lamb-cake thing, anyway. Why would you hack in to sugary-symbol Jesus for Easter? He just went to all the trouble of resurrection... some gratitude.

sarah said...

"Why would a lamb be holding a scroll in its mouth?" you ask? Why, because it lacks opposable thumbs, of course!

mel said...

@HorribleLicensePlates that was very funny to my weird little head. =)


I need to know why this cake exists. PLEASE update us when you find out!!!

Mella said...

I love the dress of the little girl (but she has way to much fun decapitating the poor cake)
I hate the smoking lambs, cigarettes and food should not be mixed (radical non smoker here)

Majka said...

"Lamb cake" is pretty normal here for Easter (Czech republic). Every family with children get one. The most traditional is fruit cake covered with chocolate.
For a mostly atheist country the religion reference to "Agnus Dei" is holding very well. But I suppose not many people here know where the lamb reference comes from.
As for the "smoking lamb" - no idea. Never seen it - thank God!

knitorpurl said...

Tried to find something to connect the cigarette smoking lamb. No luck.

I can just imagine the google people trying to figure out the sudden spike in searches for "smoking lamb cake".

greyfuzzy said...

I'm going with 'scroll' as well.
I just don't see why a lamb has to hold said scroll in its mouth, from one end, with a blob of chocolate and orange sprinkles on one end that make it look like it's on fire. Why not, say, a ribbon... or a well-placed blob of icing 'sealing wax'? Why not have the lamb holding it from the middle instead of the end? Why not just have it next to the lamb and not in its mouth at all???

I am thankful that cake decorators don't seem to think of simple things like this... if they did, we'd have a lot fewer wrecks to, um, enjoy.

veggievixen said...

haha no way! i have never seen such a cake but it looks adorable.

Terri said...

I was thinking the lamb is blowing a birthday party horn?

Bunny said...

I guess maybe there aren't many M*A*S*H fans here. I am pretty sure the smoking lambs are tributes to the Spam lamb, sculpted by Trapper and Hawkeye to replace the live lamb Radar managed to spirit away. I believe he is shown with a cigarette in his mouth, and possibly wearing a hat, near the end of the episode when everyone is quite drunk on Greek wine.

Anonymous said...

I've been trying to come up with some reason why an easter lamb would be smoking. I think maybe I've got something. They're not cigarettes, but paintbrushes with blood. (several are red on the end) Maybe they're supposed to be passover lambs. They're still hideous though.

lindsey.hefner at gmail.com said...

My god. Who would bring one of those to a celebration with children? They are sure to induce nightmares.

trish said...

I also googled the whole smoking lamb deal. I found a fellow in Germany that went to the in-laws for Easter. They had all the Easter trappings; chocolate eggs, chocolate bunnies, chocolate, and more chocolate (which is ALWAYS a good thing!!!). BUT they also had a picture of a lamb cake. Looks like a normal white cake with a glaze on it (just like the honey dipped donuts at Tim Horton's actually...yes, I'm Canadian!!) not the nasty icing atrocities in the wrecks and had a nice coconut mohawk along the top of its' head and back. There was no evidence, however, of a cigarette stuck in the lamb's mouth. From the lousy angle of the picture, there doesn't appear to be anything in its' mouth at all.

Also noted in my readings, that some bakery in NY sells lamb cakes with smokes stuck in their mouth every Easter. Perhaps it's a NY thing?

Rory said...

Ok, I considered what was in the first lamb's mouth a scroll...it's believable, but when I checked the link for the next pic, it actually is a Parliament cig in it's mouth. Someone should find out what store these came from and call them....

Froggylady said...

My vote is for Joe Camel. That's what it looks like and not a lamb and there's some decorator out there patting himself on the back for salvaging that unwanted cake by putting Happy Easter on it.

Judy said...

Okay, I've decided it's a tutorial for delinquent kids.

Okay bois ann goils we've finished all our lessons on cherry bombin the toilets and messin wit da teachas and stuff now here's da icing on the cake.... ( *wink and point to exhibit A) This, my little friends, is how EWES smoke!

(pause)

b,
b,
b....BWHAAAA! HA! Ha!

Oooooo...hoooo...hoooo (wipe away tears)

Monique in TX said...

I'm pretty sure the lambs are having cigarettes and not scrolls. I found a lot of these cakes on the web, and some of them had real cigarettes.

I have no explanation.

WV: ulingly adv. with stubbornness and pouting. "*I* wanna be the one to cut the lamb's head off," said Billy ulignly.

knittinandnoodlin said...

Maybe it is a reference to Franklin's Dolores? http://the-panopticon.blogspot.com/

Although Dolores is not quite a lamb. =)

Alicia Leigh said...

I would believe it was Joe Camel except that still does not explain why they are use for Easter cakes.

I found a site that mentioned that Polish Easter cakes are shaped like lambs and always carry an Easter banner . . . maybe these are rolled up banners?

I am also a fan of the "Lent's over! We may resume smoking!" theories.

thetoddlerwhisperer said...

hhhmmm ciggy looks like it might be a brush...representing the painting of the doorpost at passover with lambs blood...still strange to represent in cake form.

David B said...

Perhaps the smoking lamb cakes are reworked Joe Camel cakes?

Melinda said...

I just read through 70 comments. I am sad to be more confused than when I started. I too, NEED an explanation!

Enna said...

Maybe it's the lamb's cigarette before he goes before the firing line aka little girl's who cut into him with GLEE.

Little Luxuries said...

Tbat next-to-last one looks more like an Easter Ferret to me.

Twisted Serenity said...

smoking lambs, whats next?! (hehe! Psst...cant wait to see!)

Heidi said...

I bet those lamb cakes are addicting.

Charles said...

OK, the only thing I came up with for the igarette is related to executions. Wasn’t it customary to offer the condemned a last cigarette before going before the firing squad? As the lamb could be construed to represent “the condemned” perhaps the cigarette is the ceremonial last cigarette before the slaughter. That’s all I could come up with.

Yes, I Live On The Internet, Why Do You Ask? said...

There is a fairly common Internet meme that goes "animal smoking a cigarette"; the smoking lamb is clearly an offshoot of that.

Like this...

http://cache.gawker.com/assets/resources/2008/08/dog-smoking-cigarette.jpg

Video of dog smoking, probably the most famous "animal smoking" meme.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MAH-YAhkU9M

Baby clothes from Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Onesie-cigarette-animal-smoking-gambling/dp/B0017LBVHC

Video of monkey smoking http://www.metacafe.com/watch/1207456/monkey_smoking_cigarettes/

It's around, on the Internet.

Bakers got hold of the idea as a joke Easter cake, is all. There's no deeper meaning, about Joe Camel or Lent or anything.

Connie said...

The lambs are holding a paint brush in their mouths with their blood on it to symbolize the Passover.

It is celebrated because those houses with the lambs blood over their doors were passed over by the Angel of Death, which was meant to kill the first born of the Egyptians.

If you didn't have the blood on your door, your first born child was killed.


There's the reason for your "cigarettes". ;)

Haiku Joy said...

Knitorpurl, Google
techs' confused brains smoke; they start
frogging our search threads . . .

JoeDuncan said...

Uhm, maybe this is a dumb question, but why not just ask whoever took the photos? And if they can't provide an answer, then ask them to ask the bakery where they bought/saw the cake?

I mean *someone* posted the photos, so they either took it, or got it from someone else right? It shouldn't be too hard to go back down the associations and find out, six degrees of separation etc...

emporess-zia said...

Maybe it's like passing out cigars when a baby is born. You know, Christ has risen, so let's pass out cigars again? I have no clue, really.

msyendor said...

Cake #: lipstick on sheep. Uh-huh. And a ciggy afterwards. ok.

J. Applebee said...

El Comodoro - you are my hero!

Also, I love the way the little girl looks like once she's cut through the lamb's neck, she'll just keep swinging that sharp blade right into her dad's crotch!

'I don't want any more brothers or sisters!'

Lynette said...

My first thought was the M*A*S*H episode "Private Charles Lamb," too. But I don't recall the infamous Spam Lamb ever having a cigarette...

Jenifer said...

I'm guessing they are supposed to represent either smoked lamb or baked lamb (depending on the kind of cigarette it is). ;)

SarahW said...

No solution to the mystery, but apparently this is not a *new* tradition; here's a young woman waxing nostalgic about lamb/cigarette cakes. here

My speculation is that the cig started out as a real paschal candle or "candy" paschal candle decoration,
but this religious decoration was coopted into an "end of lent" joke by some clever blashphemer as an easter party joke.

Amy said...

I'm trying to connect smoking lambs to Passover, but it's not coming together.
Now, let's see..
Blood on the doorways to prevent the angel of death from entering your home, skull cap (yarmllukas ) as you always cover your head in a holy place..uh...nope. Not finding the connection.
Joe Lamb!! Hahaha

~Amy B

carebear8six said...

No idea but that it's the traditional last ciggarette before the sacrifice/shotting squad.
My lamb cakes were always buttercream frosting and coconut grass. mmmmm cake.

Anonymous said...

I think we've hit on it. It's a Passover lamb, with a paint brush to mark the door frames, and a Jewish yarmulke on it's head.

That Communion explanation sounds about right for the one with the girl, though I'm not Catholic and can't verify.

Hyena Overlord said...

Nice pic of Clarice at Easter silencing a lamb.

The badly iced white lamb smoking in the library also appears to have a drinking problem. Not to meantion a housekeeping problem, take a look at the grime on the remote. EWE*LOL*

wv woolve....wolves disguised as sheep.

Jenifer said...

I also found a sermon for sundays after Easter titled "The Lamb and The Scroll" So I'm going with Sara's explanation. I actually found several of these. Try googling "easter lamb scroll".

I have a feeling some unknowing wreckerator decided it was a cig instead of a scroll and made with the creative fire decorations.

Jumpyham said...

Did the first one say "Chappy Easter"?

Fluffy Cow said...

I LOVE these!!!! Smokin' lambs!!!

Redd said...

The paschal lamb with a brush with blood on it makes sense--kind of. But frankly, I find the image of a lamb ready to paint the doorframe with its own blood much more disturbing than that of a lamb smoking.

Oh, and I love the little girl. I totally would have been that little girl, if the religion I grew up in had a simalar tradtiton.

Eric said...

So I did some googling of my own...I think originally it was supposed to be a scroll not a cigarette (of course if you roll up a scroll and stick it in something's mouth, what else is it gonna look like?)...based off of this bible quote:

"'You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth...Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!...To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!'" Revelation 5:9-13; John 1:29-34; 1 Peter 1:19-21, Revelation 5"

Anonymous said...

I was wondering the same as JoeDuncan. Why not have the people who took the pictures ask the bakery?

Amanda #1 said...

That last lamb-smoking cake looks like it's frosted in mashed potatoes.

Tigerwolf said...

“Smokin’ in the lambs’ room,
Yes indeed, I was smokin’ in the lambs’ room!
Now rancher, don’t you clip off alla my wool,
‘Cause everybody knows that smokin’ ain’t allowed in school!”

^..^

shoeaddict said...

King Cake is awesome.

Leslie said...

Okay I'm officially going with what my friend said. It's a sacrificial lamb...only the baker didn't realize that lambs are typically sacrificed with a knife - not in front of a FIRING SQUAD. All it needs is a blindfold and you've got the quintessential firing squad image. The doomed with the cigarette hanging lop-sidedly out of the mouth and a sort of grim resignation about the whole thing.
That's my story and I'm stickin to it.

Leslie said...

Okay I'm officially going with what my friend said. It's a sacrificial lamb...only the baker didn't realize that lambs are typically sacrificed with a knife - not in front of a FIRING SQUAD. All it needs is a blindfold and you've got the quintessential firing squad image. The doomed with the cigarette hanging lop-sidedly out of the mouth and a sort of grim resignation about the whole thing.
That's my story and I'm stickin to it.

Miki said...

Guys, look closely at those pictures...they are clearly REAL cigarettes! So no scrolls, no paintbrush.

I'm going to go with the jokey end of Lent, now we can smoke again theory.

Erica B. said...

So many think it's a Passover lamb but forget that you're not allowed to have cake during Passover! So I highly doubt that's the case.

Jesica said...

I just read 111 comments, and am no more enlightened than when I got here. The lamb and the cigarette is going to bug me all day!

Anonymous said...

If you google "Lamb of God", (i.e. Jesus) go to the Wikipedia definition (opposed to the heavy metal band sites) and there are some pictures of altar pieces depicting a sacrificial lamb that has blood pouring out from its chest. So, my guess is that what is supposed to be a spear has, for all intents and purposes, become a cigarette!

asifyoucare said...

Last lamb is definitely a butter lamb. A HUUUUGE butter lamb, but a butter lamb nonetheless.

Jennifer said...

I'm going with the M*A*S*H explanation - makes the most sense....

amber of TheAmberShow said...

The passover lamb doesn't make sense... Cake is not kosher for Passover.

I asked Twitter what they thought.

swenholt2 said...

Well if you think about all the people who love to gleefully bite the ears off chocolate Easter Rabbits, then the little girl's grin at lopping the head off a lamb cake isn't that far a stretch.

BreeAnn said...

If it wasn't enough that these lamb's are smoking cigarettes... why are the cigarettes dipped in chocolate and SPRINKLES? lol

RememberMe said...

I'm Catholic and have never heard of bleeding lamb ice cream. But, I'm of the South Louisiana variety and not the Eastern European. I'm confused with the "sounds about right" comment. What part of a small child beheading a bleeding ice cream lamb "sounds about right"?

And, what's up with dissing King Cakes? Seriously?

Anonymous said...

Eh... maybe it's the lamb going to slaughter and it's having one last smoke before it dies? That's really, um. I don't have any words for what that is.

Fyrefrog said...

Yeah, I'm going with 'a condemned lamb's last request'.

ZombieCat said...

@JoeDuncan: You beat me to it. If I hadn't taken the time to check the meme links that "YesILive..." posted I may have been the first to offer this seemingly simple solution.

So Jen? Can you help us out here, or sic someone else on it because I'm sure you have more wrecks to hunt down.

People, if these bakers have the time to hunt down a lamb cake mold and haphazardly decorate it, I'm pretty sure they could find a frigging paint brush (and not a what is clearly a cigarette) to represent a bloody paint brush. I think you're reaching a bit far with the whole scroll thing too. Your precious lamb is smoking, deal with it. Why? I have no idea. Perhaps he learned it from watching "ewe". ;)

p.s. I'd like to know why the cigarette is bigger than he is, and where I can get one.

Lauren said...

I can't explain the smoking lamb cakes at all... Especially since the lamb cake is supposed to symbolize the Passover lamb and new life and Jesus... But what do I know. I'm not a cake decorator.

Kathye said...

All of the tips of the lamb’s cigarettes have been dipped in chocolate and have red/orange sprinkles on them!!! LOL! The lambs lit up!

shann said...

maybe someone was just making fun of all the lamb cakes and thought putting a cigarette in the lamb's mouth would be a funny way of disrespecting it?

Nakia said...

I don't think scrolls or other guessed objects would be decorated with an orange flame with dark sooty area behind it. For whatever inexplicable reason, I'm convinced they are supposed to be cigarettes.

Anonymous said...

Please post when the mystery of the smoking lamb is solved!!!
Thanks!

Zorilita said...

I actually still have this cake pan set. It also came in rabbit form too. This of course was back when butter cream was the norm and you actually had to know how to use cake tips. These are just kind of scary especially the ones without icing.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the lamb is smoking his/her last ciggie before the chopping block?

lori said...

@ Judy:

FABulous! Your comment made my day.

I'm gonna have to ask around on this one. I have a couple of interesting sources: 2 pastors and 1 sheep farmer in the family oughta do it, don't you think?

Anonymous said...

Smoked lamb is a common food at Easter feasts. Perhaps people don't like the taste of smoked lamb and are getting the cakes to keep up the tradition without having to eat the meat?!? (best guess)

Anonymous said...

Could be a candle, see http://www.flickr.com/photos/picturesbyann/2359305815/

NYCGirl said...

To Trish at 11:01 AM-- Nope, not a New York thing. Unless it's a New York Easter thing-- being Jewish, I couldn't speak to that.

Word verification-- outies "Get these things outies here!" ;)


http://leastlikelytoblog.wordpress.com/

Meg said...

Many thanks to Hestia Gem for including the obligatory Silence of the Lambs quote.

Susan said...

The "Agnus Dei" is the Lamb of God. If you google images for Agnus Dei, you will find many pictures of the Lamb holding the banner. The banner is usually held by the Lamb's front right leg. But in some pictures, the Lamb's head is turned, and if you don't pay attention (as some cake decorators are wont to do) it almost looks like the flagpole is being held by the Lamb's mouth. That would explain the red on the end of one of the "cigarettes"; it's the flag on the end of the victory banner's pole.

mnmlst said...

Maybe the lamb gave up cigarettes for Lent.

Holly said...

I can't believe no one yet has suggested it's not a lamb, but a smoking gnu.

Anonymous said...

I am taking a guess here, but it would be the "chocolate" lamb cake smoking is suppose to be a BLACK Sheep? Like in, the black sheep of the family? Just a guess.

Joan said...

Since when is Easter a jokey holiday?

The second one is clearly a real cigarette. Chocolate and sprinkles represent indicate a lit ember.

The white meregue-y looking one could be holding a symbolic paint brush in its mouth, but the surrounding items (dusty remote, liquor mini, book titled "Karma") lead me to believe it may be a lamb with a lit joint, which gives new meaning to "wake and bake."

blair said...

Random(ish) guess?

I think that the lambs are smoking because Lent is over, and if you gave up cigarettes for Lent, you can have them again for Easter...does that seem plausible?

Deanna said...

Don't those lambs know that smoking is baaaaaaaaaa-d for you?

Mrs. B said...

I don't understand why so many of you are upset by the little girl whacking the head off of her lamb cake. I think it's a normal children's attitude to pretend to destroy things. When I was that age, I alwyas had to bite the heads off of my gummy bears before eating the body.

Katelynn said...

Here's a picture of a lamb cake that's being done by a bakery in my hometown. http://marquettebaking.com/baking/?p=88 I think it's actually kind of tasteful and I've gotten one for my mom for Easter. That said, I'm not really looking forward to lopping its head off :(

D.B. Echo said...

The Paschal Lamb is often depicted holding a flag or pennant. I wonder if the cigarette evolved from someone saying, "Well, can't we just stick the flag in its mouth?"

Amanda said...

aww, just look up kipa then it should redirect you. ^_^

Lauren said...

Hey! Leave my King Cakes alone!

steeple333 said...

I don't know why people are freaking about the tot with the knife. I mean, who among us hasn't gleefully bitten the heads off of animal crackers or gummy bears? It seems like a natural kid thing to do.

Anonymous said...

I agree with some people on here. It is a scroll.

SarahW said...

This lamb cake is on fire.

here

Cara said...

Here's my theory, not that you asked. They're supposed to be scrolls, but the wreckerators, in all they're wrecky ingnorance, did their best to copy off of an original, which we've all seen fail before, and somewhere along the line, they've misinterpreted it to be a cigarette. Kind of like a bad game of telephone, where you whisper something in someone's ear, and by the time it gets to the 20th person in line, all semblance of what was originally said has disappeared.

Anonymous said...

All the smoking lambs here, and a few others I found, trace back to New York City, and I would bet to that one Hot Bagel & Pizza place. So this isn't any kind of national phenomenon or ethnic eccentricity. And it appears to have been available year-'round with a birthday angle, so the Easter variation is probably either a homemade sign or just some baker adapting the tradition to the season.

Molly said...

ummmmm on a side note: what the heck is wrong with king cakes?????? theyre DELICIOUS!!!!!!

Bootiecat said...

Wow, a Google image search of "cigarette cake" turns up some really nauseating cakes! And yet another lamb with an actual cigarette (about to get his head sliced off):

http://farm1.static.flickr.com/164/394420612_ec729fd542.jpg?v=0

Some clues for the sleuths:

It may be a loaf of bread and not a cake, the photos were taken on November 17 (National Bread Day??), the caption says "Russian delicacy", and you can see a "Happy Birthday" card in a second photo.

The lack of info out there makes me believe this is a joke/meme and not a real tradition.

ashleyalvina said...

Susan - your explanation makes the most sense. Anything hinting at the cluelessness of the decorator seems like the most logical explanation to me :)

Sandi said...

I would love to see Sara's scripture made into a cake!

"Then I saw, between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders, a Lamb standing as if it had been slaughtered, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. The Lamb went and took the scroll from the right hand of the one who was seated on the throne."

Seven horns and seven eyes . . . wrecktastic!

Sage said...

Well, this is really quite obscure, but there is a poem but James Wimsett Boulding called Agnus Dei in which there is a line "Lo, I saw thee stand amidst the opened heavens what time the lamb was smoking on the alter." It's in book VII--pg. 151 if you look at it on Google books. Maybe someone got a little literal.

Annie Japannie said...

Heh. None of these explanations sound even vaguely accurate.

Cake is not exactly a Passover food, friends. :)

Anonymous said...

Sorry to burst all the Joe Camel theories, but these lamb cakes do NOT look like Joe Camel. Nor do they resemble real camels, whose ears are significantly smaller in relation to the size of their muzzles. Besides, Joe Camel is always represented anthropomorphically, and these are clearly not.

As for why these lamb cakes are smoking?? Yeah, haven't a clue...

Sheri said...

I think susan is right and it is someone's interpretation of the pascal lamb with the banner in the back...perhaps they saw a 2D version that flattened it out...I mean we are talking about wreckorators here!

Vanilla said...

Baa Baa Black Lung.

Jenny.Headlee said...

Okay this is making me NUTS but this is the only thing I could find. at least one bakery in question is in Texas and I found this news story. http://www.myfoxhouston.com/dpp/news/090306_cigarette_burns_sheep

could this really be the reason for the smoking lamb cakes?

Jen H.

Pam the Yarn Goddess said...

First of all, does the lamb have to pay the new, ridiculous ciggie tax in California?

Second, DH thinks it might have something to do with the putting of blood over doorways per the Bible. Then again, he thought the second one was Joe Camel.

Being a pagan, I'm always amused by Christians associating lambs, bunnies, eggs, etc., with Easter. I was born and raised a Catholic, so I'm no stranger to all the weird rites for which there seemed to be no explanation. However, ancient religions call the occasion "Ostara". From About.com:

"The word Ostara is just one of the names applied to the celebration of the spring equinox on March 21. The Venerable Bede said the origin of the word is actually from Eostre, a Germanic goddess of spring. Of course, it's also the same time as the Christian Easter celebration, and in the Jewish faith, Passover takes place as well. For early Pagans in the Germanic countries, this was a time to celebrate planting and the new crop season. Typically, the Celtic peoples did not celebrate Ostara as a holiday, although they were in tune with the changing of the seasons."

And, of course, Eostre seems to have something to do with... ta da!... eggs. Hmm... could the elusive Easter egg hunt finally be associated with the rising of Christ?

It's well known that when the Christians decided that we were... um... Pagans, and needed to be converted, many of the Pagan worshipping sites became the sites of new churches (which the Pagans were forced to build), and many of the Old Rites were bastardized to become Christian holidays. Check out some old cathedrals or churches. Chances are you'll find a gargoyle or twenty. Think those are Christian? Nope. The literature thinks they were put there as a form of protest by the Pagans - a sort of thumbing of the nose, if you will.

For all I know, the ancient farmers lit up some ganja as they planted (or built).

ebe said...

clapping!!!!! i, i just don't even know what to say! i can now bring your post to easter dinner to proove to my husband's disapproving catholic family that i am not the only one who makes a Lamb of God cake for easter!! They can eat it this year with crow.

Anonymous said...

In a google search I found that there is sometimes a "flag of victory" associated with the Easter lamb. Here is my adaptation of the thought process one baker went through that started this whole cigarette cake craze:
"Hmmm, the cake is done, but it seems incomplete. I remember as a kid always seeing the lamb with something..... I remember it was white.... with some red.....was it wispy?... I just can't put my finger on it.....I'll take a smoke break and think about it more.... Wait a minute! It must have been a cigarette! Yes! That must be it! I can just take this cigarette, dip the end in chocolate, roll it in orange sprinkles, and stick it the lamb's mouth! Now THAT looks complete!"

Melissa said...

Google Angus Dei CAKE and found this:
Agnus Dei. A cake of wax or dough stamped with the figure of a lamb supporting the banner of the Cross, and distributed by the Pope on the Sunday after ...

sendingtheclowns said...

((SIGH))
Here we go again...the bad- influence lamb is getting ALL of the attention!
And there is that sweet and innocent little darling in the first picture (yes, there IS a first picture), just minding her own pretty business... sitting there in her freshly-swirled frosting, her two best jelly beans cuddling at her side, and look-- she even has on false eyelashes to sweeten the pot. But does she get any recognition? NO! Not Little Miss Goody Two Shoes! Her wistful expression says it all (*sniff*)...while putting on a brave face, she's trying to figure out what all the fuss is about...what she could possibly have done better...



.....where she might be able to procure her own cigarette.

Jennifer A. said...

Yeah we make one every year, except last year where the lamb pan got lost and still isn't found, so we will have Easter Chick Cakes this year, complete with yellow frosting!

Tawn said...

Perhaps the cigarette is replacing the cross--if you're smoking it's your cross to carry? Stretching here...

domino_dreams said...

that's definitely Joe Camel... he's got the hat thing going on i think.

vespabelle said...

A sly reference to the band The Smoking Popes!

Diana Newton said...

http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/photo.php?pid=364020&id=1077805038

My kids love to decapitate the lamb cake, last year's was the garotte.

Kerry said...

it's meshuga

or meshugah

or sometimes meshuggah

but never mis-anything

You so crazy!

Still trying to find out why it is smoking. I like the "Lent is over, back to your vices" theory, but I wonder if there's not more to it.

Abby Mars said...

I'm guessing that the cigarette in the lamb's mouth has something to do with Lent. I think people might give up smoking for lent and now that it's Easter they can smoke again? Just a wild guess.

Abby Mars said...

Oh, someone already said that.

Anonymous said...

OMG, my mother still has the pan to make one of those lamb cakes! Of course when she made one, it was usually for the church Passover dinner (the whole thing was symbolic, not meant to be the real thing) so she always decorated it to look like a real lamb, but wow....

Laura said...

My take on the smoking lamb: Mary's little friend is flying in the face of conventional Easter traditions by a) not being frosted, aka, strutting her "natural" beauty, and b) expressing her freedom to smoke should she so choose. I mean, if a newly shorn (naked) lamb cake can't smoke, then who can?

It doesn't have to make sense to be utterly hilarious.

Jennie said...

I live in an area with a lot of Greek families, who celebrate Orthodox Easter (or 'Greek Easter' as it's known in Melbourne). I've seen lamb cakes in shops around here and they do seem to have scrolls in their mouths rather than anything tobacco-related. Maybe these bakers just got a bit carried away, or are copying a reference picture done by one smartarse baker who thought, "Hey, they scroll looks kinds like a cigarette!"

I know of one display case 'lamb' that looks a lot more like a llama.

terrib said...

Easier way to spell yarmulke- kippah. That's what it's called in Hebrew.

ANd I have to agree with the others- it's not a Paschal lamb. No cake for us Jews until sometime next week- though we can enjoy the ones here- semi-guilt free;-)

Anonymous said...

Okay first of all, you crazy people, those things are *definitely* cigarettes. Not scrolls, not candles, not paintbrushes.

If you look at the second one, it's even got that thin line of color where the "filter" would be, like many cigarettes do.

As to why, though... man, ya got me. I could see it being one bakery's joke about it being the lamb's last ciggie before being executed, but these clearly came from different bakeries, so...

So far Google is failing me but I'll keep looking!

Eric

Miriam said...

The only time I've been served a cake like was at a Passover Seder, but it was just a lamb, no cigarette or other decorations. If the bakery uses real cigs, does that mean they can't sell te cake to anyone under 18?

Julie said...

I'm from Belgium and it's a tradition for kids on their communion to have an icelamb with raspberry filling, so that it bleeds when you cut it up. Don't really know the meaning behind it (it's tasty though), but it's supposed to be a sacrifice. There's more pictures if you do a search for "ijslam" (icelamb in dutch) on google.

Anonymous said...

Don't some people eat lamb for Easter dinner? Maybe it's smoking it's last cigarette, just before the slaughter.

kosher and cakeless in VA said...

Even if those lamb cakes were made of the terrible kosher for Passover honey cake (since anything leavened is unkosher during Passover, so you need special cakes), there is something inherently and grossly unkosher-seeming about having even a depiction of a lamb holding a paintbrush of its own blood in its mouth. Just...eww. Also, Passover really isn't the kind of holiday you celebrate with a humorous cake.

Julie said...

AHA! Found some more about it:

"But I am glad to hear that the dessert ritual has not been discarded. There is still an "ijslam" or "ice lamb": a cake topped by a spotless little lamb made of vanilla ice cream. The communicant is invited to stand in front of it and is solemnly handed a large, sharp knife. Wielding the knife with more or less dexterity, this seven-year-old proceeds to saw off the lamb's head! His or her effort is rewarded when the head rolls onto the platter and red syrup (grenadine) oozes out of the neck.

Gruesome? I find that there is something innocent and very appropriate about it. It is a moment when the religious spirit of the day is reasserted, albeit rather crudely. Still, as for myself, I don't remember grasping this point at all: I was just thrilled to be holding that big knife, and looking forward to the ice cream."

from http://customsholidays.suite101.com/article.cfm/firstcommunionfood

Apparently it is a Belgian thing, never knew that. The cigarette is a mystery to me as well though.

SaraJo said...

found this about the "Hot Bagels" place in NY, apparently the lamb cakes are made by an Uzbekestani guy, but still doesn't really explain the cigarette thing.....

http://www.yelp.com/biz/hot-bagels-new-york

Anonymous said...

Jessica is incorrect; the Lamb's Cake Slices by Kane's of New Zealand is a spoof product (but I love that people truly think NZ'ers would smoke/produce tobacco containing "real lamb juice and a hint of mint".)

Areia said...

Here's an example of an ice cream lamb from a place in Belgium (which, for the benefit of the Louisiana commenter is in fact not in Eastern Europe ;).

The Dutch copy reads:

"All lambs are made of vanilla and strawberry ice cream, with blood. Available without blood or in other (ice cream - ed.) flavors by request."

Is the concept of small children celebrating their entry into the Roman Catholic Church by beheading ice cream livestock weird and creepy? Sure, but then so is transubstantiation.

Children of the Nineties said...

The only thing I can think of is the sacrifice thing. Who would buy one of these for their families? They're actually sort of scary.

http://childrenofthenineties.blogspot.com/

Emily said...

It is a Passover lamb, and that is a bloody paintbrush in his mouth, representing the lamb blood painted over the doors of the Hebrews so the spirit of the Lord would "pass over" their homes.

As for cake being unkosher during Passover...I would imagine the cake is intended to celebrate the END of Passover.

chattyscrapper said...

I think it's very funny how we all are a little moritified by the little girl cutting off the head...the funny thing is, give almost anyone one a marshmellow peep or chocolate bunny and see what body part they bite off first....9 times out of ten it's the head. LOL or ears then head, depending on the size of the bunny.

Lorien said...

If you do a google images search for "smoking sheep", you get a bunch of images from a website called www.yesmoke.eu, which i think sells cigarettes online. I can't tell you for sure, cause my company has blocked the website :P The picture looks JUST like the cakes, though. Now the question is, why would anyone make a cake using the logo from a European cigarette seller?? Where are all these pictures from?

«Oldest ‹Older   1 – 200 of 321   Newer› Newest»