Hey y’all, it’s been awhile! Last week and this week have been very exciting and busy! I had my birthday last Thursday, our housewarming party on Saturday and today is my One Year Blogiversary!!! I can’t believe that a year ago, I started this little old blog and began this awesome journey. I’ve met so many incredible people and have made some great friends (some who I’ve even met in real life!) I’ve loved it so much and I wish I was making something awesome to celebrate, but I have been dying to show y’all what I made for the housewarming and the cake I did for my birthday, so I think I’ll share that instead… I hope that’s okay with y’all :)
First I’ll talk about the housewarming things I put together, and then I’ll move in to the birthday cake!
So we all know that I love Pinterest. Like love, love, love it. I have about 65 boards and 6500 pins (eeek I’m out of control!) Anyway, Matt and I decided to have a housewarming to celebrate moving in to our new place. So, of course, I took this as an opportunity to make a new board. Now, I didn’t make everything on that board, but I let it inspire me, and I definitely felt like I succeeded in making that board come to life! It ended up being a lot of work, but thankfully I had my friend Kristen in town to help me make all this stuff! Here are some of the highlights… I’ll add captions to describe them and give some instructions.
Me, hard at work, decorating the Cake and getting all the food out!
The night before, we froze some berries in an ice cube tray (with water) and froze lemon slices in two cupcake tins:
3 Different Bruschetta Options: Ricotta, lemon zest and honey (top left); Prosciutto, goat cheese and caramelized onion (top right); and Prosciutto, goat cheese and fig jam (bottom):
Left to Right: BLT Bites, Quiche Lorraine, Greek Bites (with side of balsamic), Spinach Quiche
Take a toothpick and add bacon, Boston lettuce, a cherry tomato and a piece of bread (I used the toasted baguette that we used for the bruschetta). I added a tiny bowl of bleu cheese for people to dip the bites in! These were a big hit…but can you really be surprised? I mean it has BACON… please, have you ever had anything bad with bacon? Didn’t think so!
Take a toothpick and add (from bottom up): Cucumber slice, feta cube (I cut it from a block), 1/2 kalamata olive (pitted obviously), and tomato on top.
I had a bowl of balsamic out so people could dip if they wanted but didn’t have to. I sprinkled fleur de sel over these bites just to give it a little something extra.
Now for the Cake y’all!
I wanted to do something a little different this year. I’ve always been kind of a vanilla cake, vanilla icing kind of gal… but this time I wanted something different! A few months ago, I had gone to the farmer’s market with my good friend Marina…you’ve met her before :) At the farmer’s market, one of the local peeps had some beet ice cream for us to try, and it was delish! They had topped it with chopped pistachios, and ever since then, I couldn’t stop thinking about it! I mean would you?? (see below)
So anyway, here’s what I came up with… I used my Flavor Bible, which I’ve mentioned before. It basically allows you to pick any food and look up what goes with it. So I found this incredible beet cake recipe, but it was chocolate and beet, which wasn’t really what I wanted. However, I loved the beautiful pink that she got from the icing, so I HAD to do it. I decided to start the cake with the icing and then use the Flavor Bible to decide what type of cake to make. I went with 3 distinct flavors that I wanted to pair with the beets: lemon, honey, and pistachios.
I had remembered seeing this beautiful lemon cake on Honey and Jam’s blog (I love her, especially her incredible photography!) I basically did exactly as the recipe suggested, except instead of 1/2 tsp. of lemon extract, I did 1/4 tsp. of lemon extract and about 1/4-1/2 tsp. honey. I made the cake as instructed and then made the beet icing, as provided by Joy the Baker’s recipe (click the links to get to the recipes).
Then it came time to decorate. I knew I wanted to highlight the icing, and I thought a fun way to do that would be to do the “inside out” cake design that has become increasingly popular. I’m not quite as good at it as I wish, but I still had fun. I decided to sprinkle finely chopped pistachios on it the top with some sprinklings of lemon zest on top as well. Oh, and between each layer (along with approximately 1 cup of the icing) was a generous drizzling of honey! It was so incredibly delicious. I don’t mean to toot my own horn, but y’all SERIOUSLY need to try this! It was so so so fantastic! (it was even a hit at work a couple of days later so–BONUS–it saves well!)
Happy Birthday to me! (and to my BLOG!)
Thank you all for your incredible support and friendship during this amazing journey! I couldn’t have done this without YOU!