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Lyme Disease and Tick Cakes

May 21, 2018



The Merry Month of May in the Mid-Atlantic USA, we are in the thick of tick season.  After a long 

dry spell, we have been experiencing a deluge, so those ticks and mice better hang on tight! 


A new book by Mary Beth Pfeiffer calls Lyme Disease "the first epidemic" of climate change. She looks at trends in this disease and how the climate/disease link developed highlighting my 2003 paper that related Lyme Disease incidence to soil moisture published in the. Am. Journal of Epidemiology


It is Lyme Disease awareness month, and I am inspired to share my cake recipe for a Lyme Disease awareness event.   Park rangers have been serving up Lyme-ade made with either

lemons or limes, along with brochures about prevention and tick checks.  But if you want to give

your guests something to remember, I suggest a tick-cake. 


My cake has three parts: torso, appendages and forest detritus



1.  Torso:  Choose a  round or oval chocolate cake with a filling of either raspberries, strawberries or cherries. I prefer raspberries, but a Black Forest cake is okay too.


2.  Appendages:  Buy four to eight chocolate candy bars such as butterfingers, which are more flexible when warm.  Bend them slightly in the direction of the letter "C." For small cakes you can make do by breaking the bars in half. In any case, make sure that you can give your cake eight, slightly bent, legs.  


3.  Forest Detritus:  A variety of options are available, but my favorite is to use the classic rolled wafers that go by the trade name Pirouette.  A mixture of vanilla, chocolate and hazelnut, give

you a variety of "sticks" that can be scattered above or alongside the cake.


Bon Appetit!











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