Thursday, May 22, 2008

Beloved Birthday Cakes

A few weeks ago, Apartment Therapy asked about readers' favorite birthday cakes, either made or received. There are some great responses in the comments if you need some ideas for a cake!

I would highly recommend reading the original inspiration, an entertaining NY Times article titled "The Birthday Cake as a Milepost." An excerpt:

There is an irresistible charm to these flight-of-fancy cakes, and fueling children’s imaginative rides in the early years is part of a parent’s job. But I think the real reason we bake far-fetched cakes is because we hear in our children’s birthday-cake requests, whether spoken or not, this: "You can do it. You’re Mom."

My husband's paternal grandmother has always been the family cake-baker. I think she took some Wilton classes and helped out a professional cake decorator once, but however she honed her skills, the entire family still talks about "Bobbie's cakes." She even has entire photo albums (not one, mind you, but many) of her creations! I think the first cake she made was for her oldest son, when he was very young, but it soon spiraled out from there to include other family members, and she even made birthday cakes for her friends' children as they were growing up. The ABC cake featured on this post was one of her famed caramel concoctions.

One of the most-fondly remembered cakes is a computer cake she made for my husband when he was 9 or 10. It was modeled on an Apple IIE, complete with caramel squares for the keyboard letters! I don't have a picture of that, but I did find this old snapshot of the carousel cake at his 2nd birthday many, many years ago.

If you have a favorite birthday cake you have made or received or made, please share with us in the comments!

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