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Feb 21, 2012 12:15 PM

A Birthday Cake for...."ME!"

My lovely, wonderful, sweet husband and son are the best. However, they are not going to bake a birthday cake for my birthday this Friday. It just isn't their thing - it's more up my alley! Therefore, I ask you all: What kind of cake should I make for my birthday? Thanks!

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  1. happy birthday! but what kind of cake do you like? are you a chocolate person? or a lemon person? (nobody is both.)

    4 Replies
    1. re: hotoynoodle

      Thanks! Oddly, I AM both.....strange of me, I know! I am actually considering a beautiful white cake with beautiful REAL buttercream.....the way old-fashioned wedding cakes were before they became chemical, frosting-loaded, flavored-up nightmares!

      My dilemma is that I don't necessarily want to spend most of my birthday working on my cake....

      1. re: sandylc

        cakes like that can be fully made the day before. you could even make the cake layers well ahead of the big day and freeze them. cakes freeze very well. when i worked in a bakery's commissary we put an initial layer of frosting on still frozen cakes to avoid crumbs in the finished outside.

      2. re: hotoynoodle

        I love both chocolate and lemon, depending on my mood. For instance, two weekends ago I made lemon bars and last weekend Thomas Keller's brownies, and I loved them equally!

        Anyway, as to the OP's question, if I were going to make myself a birthday cake right now I'd probably go with a coconut cake, but only because coconut cake was featured in one of my food magazines recently and it sounded SO good. I also really love cheesecake as a birthday cake, likely because that's what my mom usually made me when I was growing up. As much as I adore chocolate cake, I don't ever think of it for my own birthday (although I have made plenty of them for other people's birthdays).

        1. re: hotoynoodle

          I love both, too...though not together. I could also go for a good coconut cake. That said, a white cake w/ buttercream sounds good, although I'd probably make it almond based w/ a raspberry or strawberry filling. CI's Best Recipe has a very good white cake, along those lines. It's a very light, fluffy cake.

        2. Happy Birthday...... Chocolate cake with cannoli cream filling. I prefer either chocolate fudge or fresh whipped cream frosting. I'm sure almost any frosting would do.

          1. Sandy.. I make my own birthday cake every year! I always make Nigella's Nutella cake.. my absolute favorite. However, I have also made Dorie Greenspan's perfect party cake for friends.. a nice old-fashioned cake..
            Happy b-day!

            4 Replies
            1. re: rstuart

              rstuart would you mind sharing these two recipes with us.They both sound delicious!

              1. re: glebe

                Here's the Nutella Cake - you better believe I added this to Pepperplate IMMEDIATELY!

                1. re: biondanonima

                  Yes, that's the nutella cake! I skip the hazelnuts on top.. it's so, so good. And it definitely serves more than 8.. more like 12!
                  Here is a link to the Dorie Greenspan recipe (although I strongly suggest the purchase of "Baking: from my home to yours".. it's such a useful cookbook!
                  and some tips from Dorie:

                  I used my mother's raspberry jam with chambord as the filling...

            2. Thanks, everyone! I am still undecided - mainly because I'm coming down with a cold, and I am thinking I might have to delay the big baking day until I can appreciate the results more fully! I am sipping blisteringly hot tea right now, in an attempt to kill the little buggies that are making my throat hurt. Damn you, cold germs, get away from me!!! I don't have time for you!

              3 Replies
              1. re: sandylc

                Hope the tea helped!
                If you're still looking for recipes , try Rose Beranbaum's Buttermilk Country Cake ( although it doesn't have lemon, it has a tangy taste from the buttermilk). You could satisfy your chocolate craving by slapping on a Sour Cream Ganache.

                1. re: sandylc

                  If you want something over the top, this chocolate peanut butter cake from Smitten Kitchen is the way to go. I don't even like peanut butter in desserts and I loved this.

                  I also like the cakes at this blog - it's where I learned to make Italian and Swiss meringue buttercream frostings. I just made this cake for my roommate's birthday, but with only 3 layers. but she also has good white cake recipes. I made the pina colada cake in December and it was a big hit too.

                  1. re: LisaPA


                    THIS CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER CAKE ON SMITTEN KITCHEN IS THE BEST CURE FOR YOUR COLD. I don't even particularly care for pb BUT Smitten Kitchen's recipe is brilliant good.

                2. Oh, the coconut cake sounds beautiful and screams for a tart lemon filling. What a gorgeous combo. Just have a box of good chocolates to munch while you make the cake and your chocolate yen will be satisfied.

                  10 Replies
                  1. re: mamachef

                    Now that really sounds like a plan!

                    1. re: sandylc

                      Was that coco cake featured in BA or Gourmet?

                      1. re: mamachef

                        The one I mentioned was actually featured in Saveur this month - they have quite a spread on cakes from the South (there's a recipe for a lemon layer cake that sounds fabulous as well). Here's the link to the coconut one:

                        1. re: biondanonima

                          Ya know what? It WAS Saveur. Thank you for reminding me. It was a terrific issue, and it's on a rack with 1,000 other magazines, in my kitchen.

                          1. re: mamachef

                            Boy, do I ever understand. I actually have about 20 years of Gourmet in magazine boxes in the basement!!! And, yeah, that issue of Saveur is really good....that magazine has come a long way over the years....

                            1. re: sandylc

                              Yes, Saveur is actually my favorite food magazine now that Gourmet is no more. I don't cook from the recipes as much as I do BA or even F&W, but I enjoy the articles and the general style of the magazine much more.

                              1. re: biondanonima

                                Is F&W better now? I haven't liked it in years past. Although I did just get their 2011 Annual Cookbook at the library and it looks pretty good so far.

                                1. re: sandylc

                                  I don't always love the magazine itself, but I generally enjoy the recipes I try (they're pretty trustworthy, very few duds). It's a little more style than substance, though, and I often feel like the articles are aimed at people with a lot more money than I have (especially when it comes to wine).

                                  1. re: sandylc

                                    You know, I like F&W. As biodanonima said, I don't cook from it as much as I did Gourmet, but the articles are fantastic, especiallyl the wine stuff. (We sound like men of a certain age talking about Playboy - "I only read the articles.")

                      2. re: mamachef

                        I was actually thinking key lime curd with a coconut cake would be sublime! Great minds!