Q: My soon-to-be 3-year-old has requested a strawberry cake for his birthday. Strawberries are by far his favorite fruit. I questioned him about the cake, and he insists that this is a pink cake with white frosting and strawberries on top. I can do the cake pretty easily, but the November berries are really lacking in flavor and awesomeness. Any ideas?!
Making Ursula's birthday cake is always an exercise in balance. I learned my lesson big time last year when she asked for a rainbow cake and I decided to take the opportunity of her turning six, combined with the fact that the rainbow has six colors, to make her a six-layer chocolate cake frosted with a different color of the rainbow from the bottom up; red. . . orange . . . yellow. . . you get the idea. I almost didn't see life on the other side of that cake and swore I'd take it easier this year.
So when a few weeks ago she said, "Mom, all I want is a carrot cake. . ." I was thrilled. Simple, straightforward, a crowd pleaser. And then she added, "With raspberry frosting." The record scratched. "And also, not as sweet as last year, ok?"
A discussion of chocolate cake should always be prefaced by Gourmet columnist Laurie Colwin: "Anyone who spends time in the kitchen eventually comes to realize that what she or he is looking for is the perfect chocolate cake." Each cook has decided preferences when it comes to his ideal chocolate cake, but they usually fall somewhere on the spectrum of Colwin's three types: flourless, fudgy, and cocoa.
Today what I have for you is the third on that list: a tender, moist, fluffy cocoa cake that is still deep, dark, and chocolatey. Oh, and super quick.
Q: My little boy is turning 1 on September 30th. We are throwing his party in the afternoon. It will be a mix of kids and 'foodie' vegetarian adults. I'm hoping for some input on what to serve at his party. I'd like to provide wholesome snacks and some kind of light vegetarian main coarse but I would also like the baby to be able to enjoy the food too.
Kids know how to party! Check out the latest festive celebrations from the Apartment Therapy's Family channel, which posts kids' parties every day. We'll be bringing you a roundup of these inspiring parties every week.
I'm not talking about your favorite pair of jeans (but if you've found the perfect pair, do tell!). I'm talking about why you party the way you do, and who taught you. I came across my baby book recently, and lost about an hour in the pages. As the first daughter, I was the recipient of some pretty intense birthday parties and a meticulous mother who
recorded it all, including my height and weight the year of each party.
A chalkboard menu hangs prominently in our living room, and if you look closely, you'll notice the remnants of a faint inscription scribbled in large capital letters. GUINNESS CAKE! This cake is a special delight my wife prepares for me every year on my birthday. And it gets better every year — one of those things worthy of its own tradition.
Kids know how to party! Check out these festive celebrations from the Apartment Therapy Family channel, which posts kids' parties every day. We'll be bringing you a roundup of these inspiring parties every week.
One blessing in having such an early Thanksgiving this year is that it gets us into the holiday spirit with a little more time to spare for planning and making gifts. Now that Thanksgiving is over, it's a good time to look ahead to those warm little gifts from the kitchen that are so appreciated by friends, coworkers, teachers, and party hosts. If you're looking for some inspiration for these edible gifts, then we've got you covered. Here are 15 of our all-time most popular homemade gifts, from the best chai mix, to homemade doggie treats, to granola, to beer and pretzel marshmallows. (Yes!) There's a simple, delicious liqueur, and homemade flavored salts. Read on for these and more — each a tasty, simple gift from the kitchen.