Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Family That Bakes Together...

We recently visited with some of my family to celebrate the birthday of my beautiful niece, newly in double digits. Her mom made one of the BEST birthday cakes I've ever tasted! She told my budding foodie of a niece to pick out a recipe for any cake out of her cookbook collection, and she definitely picked a winner for her mom to prepare!

The cake was yummy—a lemon-flavored cake mix that she doctored. The REAL star was the filling she put between the layers. It was very tangy and lemony, thanks to the very generous amount of lemon zest it contained. The frosting was a nice light sweetened whipped cream frosting, and she topped it with...you guessed it, more lemon zest! It was as pretty to look at as it was tasty.

It reminded me of another homemade birthday cake. Years ago, when I was even younger than my niece is now, I received a much-anticipated present. My very own Easy-Bake oven! My grandmother (Mom's mom) visited, and she made up recipes for cake and frosting mixes. She also pulled out the food coloring and various extracts and taught me how to use them (just a tiny bit at a time). We made a three-layer birthday cake, each layer a different color and flavor; the frosting on each layer was also a different color and flavor. I had a little tiered cake stand that I used, instead of making a layer cake. I really thought I was little miss super gourmet!

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