Girl Lacer turned 10 today, double figures eek! The festivities lasted two days, a very small (but still incredibly noisy party) yesterday and today on her actual birthday, a quieter day, a dance class as normal, unlimited access to the laptop to play her new Sims game (Sims 3, as requested, according to the kids Sims 4 is just not good) and pizza at Pizza Express this evening.
Birthdays of course involve baking, I tried to keep it simple though, life is busy at the moment, the very small party included puff pastry twists (a sheet of ready made puff pastry, cut in half, one half spread with pesto and sprinkled with grated cheese, then the other half is laid on top, the puff pastry sandwich is then cut into thin strips – a pizza cutter is good for this – then twist, holding onto both ends, bake at around 200C for about 20-25 minutes), mini cheese rolls, brownie bowls from Nigella (for ice cream and sprinkles) and for the candle blowing, ten iced cupcakes, made with the Bill Granger Cake For A Crowd, which is, as always, my go to recipe, which I make so often (made recently as well for a cake sale) that to be honest it’s a little boring but it always works. Today’s birthday cake is another old favourite, Coca cola cake from Domestic Goddess. I wanted to bake something in a savarin tin, ideally an actual savarin, but even with my way too big baking book collection, it was very difficult finding a recipe, also I didn’t want to try a new technique for something that definitely had to work, so I used the coca cola recipe. The tin held about half the cake batter, I made cupcakes with the remaining batter. Of course that made the timings up in the air, so I had to keep an eye on it, it took 35 minutes but that doesn’t particularly mean much considering how unreliable my oven is. The icing for this one is great, Girl Lacer doesn’t like buttercream icing, this icing is melted butter, coca cola, vanilla, cocoa powder and icing sugar, making a thick but liquid icing that dries quickly to form attractive drips, it does make it a bit of a pain to move once iced though but that’s a lot due to it being ring shaped. Girl Lacer did really like the icing and everyone commented how doughnut like it was, which was the point, it’s not too chocolate-y either. After Boy Lacer’s much more chocolate-y birthday cake, which we managed about a half of before having to chuck, I deliberately wanted to use a ring mould because you get the size but less cake, there’s only 4 of us and rarely hold birthday parties on the same day as actually birthdays, so excess cake is always a problem (who’d have thought). As it is we still have left over cupcakes and brownie bowls from yesterday, which will probably end up in the bin (specially the iced cupcakes from yesterday, I really must stop using icing in a can, it’s rank but easy and convenient). I wish I lived in the sort of neighbourhood where I could share cakes with neighbours but as the sum total of my neighbourly interactions usually involves complaints about leaks / rubbish / builders, there ain’t going to be any cake sharing going on.