Happy Birthday Chrissy

A Happy 22nd Birthday to Chrissy!

I enjoy baking quite a bit, but I’m really not much of a baker.  Why not?  It’s simple:  Baking is unreasonable. It’s absurdly expensive, especially if you consider the cost in terms of nutrition.  And I don’t mean, oh, cookies make you fat, because whatever.  The issue with baking is that thirty dollars later, there’s still no dinner on the table.  Plus, Ryan avoids refined sugars as a general rule, and I’m cool with frozen yogurt in the freezer and good fruit for snacks, and I can’t eat five dozen cookies, so I just don’t bake very much.  Now, I do want to bake: I dream of nutty banana breads and sometimes attempt healthier muffins and what not, but at the end of the day, it’s the stove, and not the oven, that beckons…

This is precisely why God/Martha Stewart invented the birthday.  Forget your arteries, your leafy greens, your wallet, your wellness, and pick out that dessert you want most in the whole world.

If you’re anything like my good friend Chrissy, you’re going to want a classic, super-sweet vanilla cake with vanilla icing and sprinkles, sprinkles, sprinkles.  Of course, the icing will be pink.  And adorably childish.  A princess cake.  For the fun of it, and because a picture is worth a thousand words, I want to share some of the really wonderful things Chrissy and I have baked together in the past.  Proceed with caution; we’ve made some questionable desserts.  I just recalled the well-intentioned failure that was our vegan-reduced-fat-peanut-butter-fluff-and-graham-cracker-dairy-free-butter-pie created my sophomore year of college…

Cupcakes, July 2007

This was a Duncan Hines Night

Cookies? September 2007

Nothing Neon Icing Can't Hide!

Yes, we purchased this ICE CREAM MAKER.

Chocolate! New York Apartment, 2008

Chrissy's 21st Birthday

I spent days looking for a perfect white cake recipe.  The only go-to recipe I have for a solid birthday cake is a rich, classic chocolate cake that I make with a crazy-amazing cream cheese frosting and chocolate chips.  Chrissy had no interest in such a thing.  And so I scoured through my cookbooks.

Apparently, there are two ways to make a great white cake:

  1. Buy a box of the Duncan Hines mix.
  2. Get married, or at least shell out the money for a wedding cake.

Now, I was not interested in either of these options.  I understand the utility of a box cake: it’s foolproof and won’t cost more than four bucks and 40 minutes of your time.  But I’m not a mother whose kid decides, at 9:15 on a Sunday night, to announce that her best friend of the week is having a birthday and needs funfetti cupcakes tomorrow morning or else.  I’m a girl who loves the process of creating something amazing.  And that’s precisely why, after a long search process, I settled on these two recipes:  the smitten kitchen’s best birthday cake and a simple vanilla americana buttercream that I adapted from Organic and Chic, a beautiful cookbook my mom got me for my birthday.

The cake came out exactly how I wanted it to: sweet and moist and crumbly but firm, with a perfectly humble (and natural!) yellow body.  The frosting was fluffy and fresh and so sweet and light as air.  While yellow cake and chocolate frosting were made for one another, it really didn’t matter, as the vanilla buttercream still worked wonderfully.  The cake was an out-of-this-world blend of butter and sugar and milk; it was absolutely, positively unreasonable—like all good birthday cakes should be.

A classic, buttery vanilla cake with fluffy americana buttercream, dyed pink, of course.

I’ve attached a slideshow of the cake creation and consumption process.  Check it out!

Yay!  Happy Sunday!  I’m off to get some fresh air.

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Comments
8 Responses to “Happy Birthday Chrissy”
  1. Mo says:

    Ah, I’m *such* a baker. Strangely enough I’ve never made a “real” cake. Looks great! 🙂

  2. Monet says:

    Your posts make me laugh, smile and want to spend time with my precious friends…I love this cake and I think you have a long career of baking ahead of you!

  3. Casey says:

    Laur! I love your blog! I just read all of the past posts and it was great. I love the pictures and slideshows. You’ve been bookmarked 🙂 I look forward to reading more posts! ❤ xo

  4. Chef Dennis says:

    great job with the cake!!

  5. Mom says:

    Your cake looks fabulous. I can’t wait for the next installment of your culinary adventures….

    Mom

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  1. […] and actually, the earthquake kit was that big Ziploc box I hacked away at and used to transport Chrissy’s birthday cake in, so the earthquake kit is actually now a shelf with some canned pineapple on […]



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