Archive for the 'Events' Category


B’s 5th Birthday Cake

For her 5th birthday, B requested a rainbow cake with flowers. So, I did some searching and found this amazing rainbow cake and figured hey, why not? So I bought the gel food coloring and the two boxes of simple white cake mix (5 year olds don’t care how this stuff tastes!!), mixed up the lemony Swiss meringue buttercream and we ended up with this:

I then put a plate on top as a template and trimmed the edges so that we would have nice straight lines to work with.

Then I frosted the whole thing with more lemony Swiss meringue buttercream. One note that was not in the original recipe (as I recall) was that you really need to use unsalted butter. I used salted (which I generally do unless instructed otherwise) and it was a bit strong. A few weeks later I made another buttercream that called for unsalted and it was so much better and more delicately flavored.

Then came the flowers part. I found this great tutorial on how to make gum paste flowers and gave it a go.

I made big ones and little ones, pastel ones and brighter ones. It took a while, so I watched episodes of Cake Boss (for inspiration, of course) on Netflix instant streaming while I worked.

Then it was time to figure out how to arrange the flowers on the cake. I searched lots of images of wedding cakes and tried to adjust some designs to fit on a single tier cake rather than a 3 or 4 tier one. I gave it a practice run on a sheet of paper so that I wouldn’t make the cake look all goofy by moving flowers all over the place.

And then I put together the final product! I added some sugar pearls to give it just a little more fun detail.

I was very pleased with the final product, as was the Guest of Honor (disguised here as Snow White).

The really fun part was not telling people that it was a rainbow cake though, and then when we cut it open…

…everyone was surprised!


Meet Jude

Jude Bennett was born at 1:44am.  He is 8lbs 11oz, 21″ long

Mother and son are both doing very well.


peanut butter cups

I know this is a bit late for Valentine’s Day, but if you have to celebrate late this year like we do, then it’s just in time! I took an old standby of a recipe and put it in those fantastic silicone baking molds to make heart shaped peanut butter cups. I lost the “family” recipe, but I’m pretty sure it was almost identical to this one. Here’s how they looked….festive, huh?


Valentines Day Dinner

On the menu is a simple meal of linguine with marinated salmon, and a greek sort of salad of my own invention.


  • 1 pound of linguine
  • 1/2 c. cottage cheese
  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 lb. asparagus, chopped into 2″ pieces
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • parsley
  • sea salt, fresh ground pepper


  • 1/2lb salmon skinned and deboned
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 c. brown sugar
  • olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar


  • romaine lettuce
  • red & orange sweet pepper
  • feta cheese


  • day old bread cubed
  • garlic salt
  • olive oil


  • Olive oil
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Sea Salt and fresh ground pepper

Day Before Prep:

Croutons – Cube bread slices and leave out to dry for several hours. Before going to bed, drizzle generously with olive oil and season heavily with garlic salt. refrigerate overnight.

Marinade – thinly slice 5 cloves of garlic and spread onto a shallow dish. Place fresh or frozen salmon filets on top. Sprinkle  with brown sugar and drizzle olive oil over the top. Cover, refrigerate, turning every several hours.

Day of Directions:

Croutons – Preheat oven to 325′, bake croutons until slightly browned, turning once or twice.

Salmon – Bake in the oven or fry in a frying pan, with juices. Be sure to use a small frying pan or a small baking dish to keep the moisture inside the fish. You can tell salmon is done cooking when it starts to fall apart on you.

Linguine – bring a large pot of salted water or stock to boil over high heat. Add pasta and cook until al dente. Drain the pasta. Mix cottage cheese and pasta together in a large bowl. Fry asparagus in olive oil, salt, pepper and juice squeezed from the zested lemon. When asparagus turns vibrant green, it is time to add in the pasta mixture. Fry for a couple minutes more, stirring constantly. Transfer the whole shebang to a serving dish and mix in lemon zest and parsley.

Salad is easily assembled and self seasoned with salt, pepper, oil and vinegar.

I’m thinking a very dry white wine would be perfect for this one.

(Note: Watch your olive oil when it’s heating in a frying pan. When it beings to subtly ripple, it’s ready.)


Happy Independence Day!

Just dropping in to say that we hope you all have a wonderful 4th of July! My husband is starting the day off with a rifle competition, then it will probably be an early afternoon nap, then we’re headed over to my parents’ house along with Andrew’s family for some barbecued ribs, potato salad, fruit salad, chocolate mousse, strawberry rhubarb pie, peach-riesling sangria, and much more. We’ll follow that up with a few little fireworks for the kids and then, as this is Andrew’s last night in town before he leaves for school in Seattle for 6 weeks, my parents are keeping B for the night and we’re taking Eva along with us on a little date. We hope you have a fun and happy 4th! Here’s last year’s pictures, again:


Happy Easter!!