Hiiii!!! How were your Thanksgivings and Thanksgiving leftovers?? Ours was great, Eggboy completely knocked it out of the park with his annual pumpkin pie. I have never truly freaked out about a pumpkin pie, but this one was subtle and pudding-like, which I promise you is not just code for under seasoned and undercooked. He did indeed omit the cinnamon since mum is allergic, and the center never actually set, but I think those were two of the biggest contributing factors to why I loved it so much. It was creamy and light, not heavy and mashed root-vegetable-y. I can’t stop dreaming of it. This is the recipe he uses, from Sarah! The only other change he made aside from omitting the cinnamon was using more heavy cream instead of creme fraiche, and then I think he also cooked the filling for like three times longer than Sarah says to because he was over in the kitchen stirring the pot for half of the dog show.
After Thanksgiving we went downtown and I survived my high school reunion!!!! I even remembered everyone’s names (and if I didn’t you’d have thought that I did because I had the liquid confidence of 1.5 margaritas). Everybody is nailing it! Everybody seems happy, has great hair, is doing cool things like designing airplanes/tesla batteries/fancy meat and molding the minds of future generations. It was just like time hadn’t passed and we were back in high school all over again minus the awkward turtles. I’m so glad I went, it was totally worth all of the hours stressing out about my outfit.
We came home with a suitcase filled with various types of chocolate covered marzipan from both Christkindlmarkt and my all time favorite chocolate shop, Anderson’s, in Richmond, Illinois, which makes their own candy bars. I haven’t had them in like 20 years but now mum lives not too far from them and we went over the weekend and their dark chocolate covered marzipan is exactly how I remember it.
Now we are home and ready to celebrate Eggboy’s 31st birthday, a.k.a. his reverse Bar Mitzvah, h/t to Drake for that inspiration. Tonight we’re going over to the Eggparents’ for salmon and birthday cake (it is also Eggpop’s birthday!) and tomorrow is Eggboy’s official birthday, so we’ll eat birthday cake for breakfast and then have goulash for dinner.
Over the weekend I spent quite some time sitting on mum’s couch waiting for commercials to be over because Skate America was on (holy cow Nathan Chen’s short program, holy cow Bradie Tennell, and holy cow Shib Sibs!!!). During these commercial breaks I picked up one of the Vanity Fairs from the coffee table and flipped to a story about three very stylish English sisters that were the daughters of a duke and duchess who had descended from a family that came over from France in, like, the year one thousand. I am pretty much a sucker for any story involving stylish royal people our age (go Meghan!) but my greatest takeaway from this particular article involved their family traditions. It was per tradition that they moved into the 356 room castle when their grandpa passed away, and it was per tradition that they threw elaborate balls for their 18th birthdays, and per tradition, weekends are spent in the country riding horses with their flock of English hound doggos. And when they plant trees they have to envision how they will look in 300 years.
Suddenly I was hellbent on finding a traditional birthday cake that will be relevant one thousand years from now.
So! I knew it’d be a yellow cake since Eggboy always wants a yellow cake for his birthday and he always makes me one on my birthday. The past couple of years for my birthday he has used the recipe in the Mast Brothers cookbook which he bought me years ago. Admittedly, this has brought on monstrous disasters every time, except for the first time when he made a bunch of random uninformed substitutions that somehow worked out but that he didn’t write down. I always assumed his disasters were just because the amount of pans wasn’t specified and because his baking experience is limited. But then when I tried to bake this cake earlier this week, guess what happened! Total disaster. Crater larger than the Grand Canyon. Expletives all over my texts to Michelle. Angry notes written in pen on the page.
I'll spare all of the details and just cut to this birthday cake that is sitting in front of me and that I am very happy with and that was last minute made three-tiered because it's fun! It has Mast Brothers' frosting because Eggboy loves it, it is cream cheesy and tangy and good, but I have decided that Sarah's yellow cake, which I made last year, is officially the front runner for becoming our traditional family birthday cake. It's delicious, moist, a true classic, all you could ever want in a birthday cake. Eggboy, consider this my official proposal to make Sarah’s cake + Mast brothers frosting the official family birthday cake. Please and thanks!
This three-tiered sitch is made of two batches of cake: a full 8" cake on the bottom, and then the 6" tier and 4" tiers make up the second batch. The sprinkles are a mix of India Tree's nature's colors confetti and cylinders, wilton gold pearls, and grocery store sundae sprinkles and chocolate sprinkles. Just call me a sprinkle mixologist.
***Throws sprinkles in the air and dashes off to go wrap Eggboy's presents***
Hooray!!!!!!!! Happy birthday, Eggboy and Eggpop!!!!!!!
classic yellow cake with chocolate cream cheese frosting
cake from sarah kieffer's the vanilla bean baking book, frosting based on the mast brothers cookbook
makes one 2-layer 8-inch cake
for the cake:
3 large eggs
2 egg yolks
1 tb pure vanilla extract
3/4 c sour cream
1/4 c buttermilk
2 c (284 g) all-purpose flour
1 1/2 c (297 g) sugar
3/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 lb (2 sticks; 227 g) unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into 1-inch pieces
for the frosting:
8 ounces (226 g) dark chocolate, chopped
1/2 c (1 sticks; 113 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 lb (454g) cream cheese, room temperature
1 tb pure vanilla extract
a good pinch of salt
2 c (226 g) confectioners' sugar
for the cake:
adjust an oven rack to the middle position. preheat the oven to 350ºf. butter and flour two 8 by 2-inch round cake pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper.
in a medium bowl or liquid measuring cup, whisk the eggs, egg yolks, vanilla, sour cream, and buttermilk.
in a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt on low until combined. with the mixer running on low, add the butter one piece at a time, beating until the mixture resembles coarse sand. with the mixer still running on low, slowly add half the wet ingredients. increase the speed to medium and beat until incorporated, about 30 seconds. with the mixer running on low, add the rest of the wet ingredients, mixing until just combined. increase the speed to medium and beat for 20 seconds (the batter may still look a little bumpy). scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl, and use a spatula to mix the batter a few more times.
divide the batter between the prepared pans and smooth the tops. tap the pans gently on the counter 2 times each to help get rid of any bubbles. bake 17 to 22 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through, until the cakes are golden brown and pull slightly away from the sides and a wooden skewer or toothpick inserted in the centers comes out clean.
transfer the pans to a wire rack and let cool for 30 minutes. turn the cakes out onto the rack, remove the parchment paper, and let cool completely. once cool, the cakes can be wrapped in plastic and refrigerated overnight or frosted.
for the frosting:
melt the chocolate in a double boiler or in a microwave in 30-second increments, stirring after each.
in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, cream together the butter, cream cheese, vanilla, salt, and confectioners' sugar. Add the melted chocolate and mix until smooth.
layer and frost the cake. enjoy!