My mom is a pretty hands-on kinda person, so her real b-day dinner was take-out from PF Changs Saturday night. Getting take-out is often the only way to get her to sit still and attempt to relax, rather than spending the entire night in the kitchen. I forgot to take photos of everything from PF Changs because I was too hungry to wait, so here are photos from Sunday night, which is when mom made lasagna and Sissy and I baked her b-day cake.
We started with a lasagna recipe from an old Disney cookbook we have. I used this cookbook when I was kid to cook some of my first ever dishes. This was my first time my mom ever made lasagna (which I was shocked to learn). We followed the directions to a 'T', but it came out a bit dry. We'll have to add more sauce if we make this again.
Mom served the lasagna with a nicely sized romaine-leaf salad with red onion and tomato. I used some Olive Garden salad dressing they had on hand to top mine off. I keep forgetting you can buy the stuff (mental note: buy OG salad dressing next time you're there).
Sis doc'ed up a regular ole' box of Butter Pecan cake (our mom's fave flavor) using a recipe adapted from The Cake Doctor (which I can't post b/c i don't have it! Oops!) to make the cake extra moist. Mom shared a trick to getting exactly half of a batter in each of two baking pans – weigh them. It seems so obvious and yet, I didn't think to try it last time I baked in two cake tins.
After the cake was done baking and while the cake cooled, I was in charge of the frosting. I had a vision in my head of how the finished cake would look. I had this really cool Praline-kinda cake a couple years ago (ok, several pieces of this cake, but over a few months) and it was a delicious two-tiered cake with sloppy layers of frosting that casually and lop-sidedly (that's a word, right?) draped the sides of the two layers of cake without completely covering them. It had this nifty mad-hatter look to it that made it look as though it had put together without a care for what it looked like, but it looked tasty to me.
I layered the first cake with what I thought would be enough frosting to squish out the sides, but it wasn't. I barely eeked out of one side, so I scrapped my original idea and just frosted the whole thing like a regular two-tiered cake. Maybe next time I'll be able to re-create my magical praline cake?
We only found one candle for the cake. It was broken, too, but it worked.
You can excuse all the large-sized cake photos, right? You know the sweet-tooth in me likes to see these sugary photos as big as they get. :) (Psst…the photos get bigger if you click on them!)
My slice of the cake…yum! Happy Birthday, Mom!