This past weekend was jam-packed with things to do, places to be, and I loved every minute of it. My grandmother turned 90 (!) last week and some of the family got together to celebrate. It all began Friday with the arrival of my super-awesome cousin (and cake decorator extraordinaire) Jana. She traveled all the way from Ohio and spent the night with Tex and I. We decorated, drank wine, played Scrabble, and watched Pretty Woman. Yeah, favorite night in a long time. The next morning we all got up earlyish to head down to my sister’s, where the party was to take place. We fueled up with my own overnight oats recipe, but that is another post.
The cake recipe I borrowed from Smitten Kitchen–I also made it the night before and froze it to save time. I have made a few of her recipes and they always turn out great. She is so talented, in both the cooking and writing realms. You can find her recipe here. The only adjustment I made was the flour. I hadn’t originally planned on using whole wheat, but the grocery store I stopped at was out. of. cake. flour. What is that? I was pretty bummed because I planned on going all out for this cake. I mean, how many people turn 90? Instead of beginning a wild goose (er, flour) chase, I decided to go with white, unbleached whole wheat. The cake still turned out pretty darn good. (I would have been happy with a bowl of the batter… but I garnered an ounce of self-respect and stopped myself. ) The cake was springy, moist, and full of classic vanilla flavor.
Jana came in with the frosting. She brought her own recipe, which was a buttercream we dyed lavender. It is a great buttercream to decorate with; it holds its shape well and spreads easily. That is, unless you add fresh lemon juice; which is what I did and resulted in a semi-soupy mess. Jana saved the day and fixed the cupcakes, but the two-hour ride to Columbus was not kind to them. Droopy frosting aside, they still tasted good–raspberry jam-filled lemon cupcakes with lemon buttercream are almost always a guaranteed hit. We topped the cake with fresh yellow roses and made the birthday girl very happy. She’s not one who expects a fuss, but everyone needs a good fussing over now and then.