The Un-birthday-cake Birthday Cake

2 Apr

Although I'm crafty, I'm not an artist so birthday cake decorating is not really my thing. But, each time, my kids always say they love my cakes and that means so much to me.

Every once in a while I have one of those slap-myself-on-the forehead realizations, the kind where I think to myself, “Why didn’t I think of that,” or even “Why didn’t I think of that sooner?”

Birthday party cakes was one of those moments.

Although I don’t bake them from scratch, I always make our cakes at home and do my best to decorate them despite my lack of artistic ability, but the funny thing is none of us in our immediate family actually really like the traditional birthday cake kind of cake, you know the yellow or chocolate cake with the birthday cake frosting on it. Yet, I just kept making them three times a year, six times if you count friend parties AND family parties. Sometimes I’d do cupcakes instead, but still it’s like cake.

And then last year it happened: my sister in law and her family were here for Elizabeth’s birthday and I made some kind of comment about making the cake even though none of us actually eat it.

Her brilliant answer: “You know, I’ve done brownie cakes and chocolate chip cookie cakes instead, and frost them just the same. It works out great.”

Light bulb.

Slap on forehead.

Why didn’t I think of that????

We love brownies! And, we love cookies!

Elizabeth's "cake" this summer was our first brownie birthday cake.

So last summer I tried out a frosted brownie cake for Liz’s party and it worked out great! I did it two more times over the summer, once for her friend party and once for July 4th, and then again in October for Caroline’s party. Over and over I just kept thinking to myself, “I can’t believe I never thought of this!”

Here it is again, birthday party time and once again, we are doing the un-birthday cake birthday cake. I briefly toyed with the idea of trying out a cookie cake this time and I even grabbed the recipe from my friend Shelley, but I just didn’t have the time to pull it off this weekend. Next time….

In any event, a great time was had by all, and everyone loved the “cake.”

Surprise, it's a brownie! And, this was a budget-friendly brownie cake with the brownie mix from Price Rite and the frosting from Aldi's. My secret ingredient: I throw chocolate chips into the batter.

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6 Responses to “The Un-birthday-cake Birthday Cake”

  1. Jenn Maguire April 2, 2012 at 8:43 am #

    Great idea Jen! I am not a fan of regular cake either. Do you have a recipe for the cookie cake?
    P.S. I think it’s a great Hello Kitty Cake!

    • thewholebagofchips April 2, 2012 at 8:52 am #

      Shelley said she uses a regular recipe for Tollhouse cookies and bakes in a glass dish at 375 for 23 minutes. She does not frost hers the way I frosted this one but I think my sister in law does or at least does some sort of decorative frosting on top. I still hope to try it another time!

      • Jenn Maguire April 5, 2012 at 9:48 am #

        Thanks Jen! 🙂

  2. ParentsDesk April 2, 2012 at 10:09 am #

    I am sitting in a doctor’s office reading blogs on my phone

    This made me smile

  3. Mary Lou Cowart April 2, 2012 at 9:14 pm #

    When Jessica made this for the first time it was soooo good and rich. Everyone loved it and had seconds. Now she has given you the same love of this cake…:-) so good!

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