For my birthday this year, I had one wish. To have a roast lamb lunch, with some great red wine, my family to share it with me and Miss Alice to help me blow out the candles.

my birthday cake

And guess what? I got my wish – in all ways but one. When I pictured the scene, I saw us on the deck in the winter sun but Canberra is in the grip of some seriously horrid weather at the moment – gale force winds, below zero temperatures. Hardly sunny deck weather.

And so a lunch Sean and I put on for a few family members was all indoors.

The family who could be there gave me the perfect excuse to cook a BIG cake. I often look for occasions to make something big, something that isn’t worth making when there are only two of you. Two people might be able to consume a big cake but I don’t think the results would be pretty!

Here’s the cake I made. It’s Smitten Kitchen’s Best Birthday Cake and I’ve gotta say, it wasn’t far off!

The recipe, an American one, describes it as a Yellow Cake – I’ve never heard the term before and figure it was most likely what we’d call a butter cake. The inside was gloriously yellow. Two layers, with that gorgeous chocolate icing between the layers as well as on top. The icing is melted dark lindt chocolate, sour cream, vanilla and corn syrup. Quite decadent and grown up.

Alice had been excited since the cake made its appearance earlier in the morning. Cake! Cake! Cake! (It’s a favourite word in her small vocabulary.) So very exciting. You can see in this photo she’s sitting here with her little spoon all ready to go. Isn’t she looking grown up in this photo? She’s a big girl now!

me alice and cake

We ate a huge leg of lamb, drank champagne and then pinot noir and somehow managed to fit in some cake.

I got my wish. Alice helped me blow out the candles. So did my dad (it’s his birthday soon, too, so it seemed only fair).

blowing out candles

Another year older…..sort of. Not until a bit later in the week, but this was a lovely way to kick of the Birthday Festival, which continues next weekend when we get out of town for a couple of days.

It’s nice to have simple wishes and have them come true, don’t you think?



33 thoughts on “Cake!

  1. Happy Birthday, the cake looks just delicious! It doesn’t take long for little ones to grow up, they are gorgeous at that age. Have a wonderful weekend away.


    Simple wishes are always the best and usually the ones you remember the most. The cake looks so delicious and sweetly decorated and the photos are equally as sweet – have a lovely day on your special day 🙂 xo

  3. That blowing-out-the-candles photo is so cute!
    I think of a yellow cake as having egg yolks in it, where a white cake (one old cookbook I have calls this a “silver cake”) has the whites but not the yolks.

  4. Happy birthday! What a lovely way to begin a birthday week.

    The cake does indeed sound like an American yellow cake. That frosting sounds incredibly decadent.

    You and Alice are so cute together!

  5. That icing sounds awesome. So good I was tempted to make some, even if there was no cake to go with it…

    Hope you’re having a most excellent Happy Birthday Week!

  6. Happy Birthday for later in the week!! I love the cake, it looks so pretty too. I also love the way Alice is looking , impishly, at the camera!!!

  7. Alice is getting so big! Don’t you wish you could just stop the clock sometimes?… What a wonderful celebration with family. I hope you have a great birthday this week.

  8. The cake looks wonderful, we have just hit the start of Birthday season in our house, maybe it will make an appearance on our menu too!
    Looks like you have had a great start to your Birthday week, Best Wishes for the rest of it to be that way too 🙂

  9. Look how Alice’s hair has grown (and you don’t look any older!) lovely looking cake, very nice way to celebrate your birthday! Make a whole week of it!

  10. Beautiful cake… beautiful Alice… beautiful Bells. Looks like you got all the bases covered! Happy Birthday to You!

    Generally cakes in the US are called Yellow when they include both butter and whole eggs.

  11. Happy birthday week! Isn’t family and good food (even if the weather is dreadful) the best part of birthdays?

  12. All of Smitten Kitchen’s recipes that I’ve tried have been great – this one looks like no exception. Lindt chocolate in the icing… Mmmm. Happy Birthday for later in the week.

    • I’d heard of Smitten Kitchen before but hadn’t ever really explored. She came via a recommendation on twitter and I was delighted. Also it was handy that she writes her recipes in both metric and imperial!

  13. happy birthday, lovely bells! sounds like a great start to the festivities. that cake looks amazing! and lamb and pinot – yum! gorgeous photo of the three generations together.

  14. Such a lovely birthday. I’m glad it all came together. Miss Alice is certainly looking older (and I can see me in her too).

    Happy Birthday Bells!!!!

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