Sunday, May 15, 2011

Moon Birthday Cake - Trial Run

As a pair of geeks I think my husband and I are pretty lucky to have a child going on 4 years old who is so completely obsessed with all things space and NASA so of course I wasn't surprised that he really wants an astronaut birthday party and wanted a moon cake complete with a space shuttle and astronauts on the surface of his moon cake. For the trial run I did not decorate it with the space shuttle and astronauts as I knew I would never be able to retrieve the toys from him once he saw them.

The trick to making the craters in the frosting was to let the cake sit for a while so the frosting would harden a bit and then I took a flat bottomed measuring spoon and dug it into the frosting until when I pulled it out of the frosting I got a nice crater, I used a tablespoon for all of the craters and wasn't too particular about how the craters came out as I know they don't need to look perfect to really look perfect as things that happen in nature never appear as perfect as we assume they would appear.

I used the Wilton cake pan for making soccer balls, baseballs, basketballs, etc and made a double batch of vegan red velvet cupcake mix and a single batch of the vegan buttercream frosting recipe from The 100 Best Vegan Baking Recipes. We did dig into the cake after dinner tonight and I will say that this pan leaves a bit of a tough area around the rim of the cake, but nothing I see a bunch of 4 year olds complaining about as my own almost 4 year old said he liked the cake and later asked for more of the cake.

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Lemon Pancakes with Raspberry Sauce (vegan)

This morning I made one of my favorite breakfasts, lemon pancakes with raspberry sauce. This vegan version of a dish I had at a restaurant once is so nice and light and refreshing and yet satisfying. I first found this particular recipe when our lemon tree had so much fruit on it that I had to go theme for a week or two and make everything I could to use up all of those nice lemons. I made lemonade, learned to make lemon Italian soda and found a bunch of other fun recipes like the lemon drop cookies that I posted earlier.

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Lemon Drop Cookies (vegan) and Mexican Mocha Brownies (gluten-free)

Pin It The other week we hosted a little Mexican food party at our house so I made these lovely vegan Lemon Drop Cookies (found in The 100 Best Vegan Baking Recipes), my husband's favorite cookies these days. They are like a little tea cookie coated in powdered sugar, the powdered sugar makes a nice contrast with the tartness of the lemon cookie. The cookies are quite tart without being coated in the powdered sugar, at least my lemon drop cookies are quite tart without the powdered sugar but that may just be because I have quite tart lemons on my lemon tree.

Pin It I also made these gluten-free Mexican Mocha Brownies for the party as a friend of ours is gluten-free so the cookies my husband wanted me to make would not be appropriate for her to eat, as someone with a food allergy myself I try to accommodate others with food allergies and dietary concerns as I want to enjoy the food and want everyone else to be able to enjoy the food as well. These brownies were quite nice although the coffee in the brownies meant they were not really for kids or those who are pregnant. This was only my second gluten-free dairy-free recipe and I thoroughly  enjoyed these brownies, but look forward to trying them again when I can make the raspberry sauce to go along with them (maybe I will try the main recipe as opposed to the Mexican Mocha variation) and maybe I will open that bottle of chocolate raspberry mead to go with the brownies, it was something my husband picked up on a business trip.