Mom's Birthday Cake

So today is mom's birthday!  Happy Birthday, Mom!  And, yes, it does seem like it was just dad's birthday.  Their birthdays are really close together.  Which usually doesn't mean cake overload (unfortunately), because we celebrate them together.
Which is also kind of sad because mom has a very unique cake story.  I mean, having a birthday cake that you always request, year after year after year, for your birthday isn't unusual.  I mean, I think I've had a carrot cake every year for my birthday for almost as long as I remember.  Except maybe the castle cake.  And the Lamb Chop (think Shari Lewis puppet, not food) shaped cake.
But mom found her cake in a Better Homes and Gardens magazine at her aunt's house when she was 10.  And she's had it (off and on) ever since.  Gram used to make it for her when she was little and now dad makes it.  There, proof I let him bake sometimes.

I just think that's such a cool story.  And well, it's probably evolved.  Because when mom was 10, it probably would not have been expected that you would go out and get a box of cake mix and a can of frosting, but it totally works today.  And, it still the most unique cake I've ever had.

Salted Peanut Cake
from Better Homes and Gardens Magazine

1 chocolate cake, mix or otherwise, prepared as 2 9-inch layers
1 can chocolate frosting
 2 cups heavy cream
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup peanuts, chopped

Mix the cream, sugar and vanilla, and beat on high until it becomes whipped cream.

Frost the top of the first cake layer with whipped cream and sprinkle with half of the peanuts.  Put some whipped cream on the bottom of the top layer before placing it on.

Place the second layer on top and frost the sides with the rest of the whipped cream.

 Frost the top with chocolate frosting.  Sprinkle with the remaining peanuts.

Voila!  Cake.  And unique cake.  Especially when served with Vernor's ginger ale.

Vernor's is another story entirely.  Vernor's is very gingery ginger ale that's not sold on the east coast.   Except apparently in the grocery store I go to.  Yup.  My parents discovered it because of a friend whose family was from Michigan and then learned to love it when they lived in California.  So some appeared for mom's birthday.

Oh, and by the way, that's a right handed piece of cake.
This is left handed.  It's important.
By the way, this is my itty bitty butternut squash.  It ripened!  Although, the monstrous squash behind it makes it look a little sad.
So, to celebrate mom's birthday, we went up to Vermont.  Although the leaves were not exactly perfect anywhere up there, it was still very nice.
It was nice to be back up there, and to get to see the places we couldn't see at Labor Day.  There are places where the damage is staggering.  This used to be a bridge.
It's not any more.  And there are definitely places where the roads were obviously patched or washed away.  But Vermont is still there.  
And it's still as lovely and Vermont-y as ever.  Especially in the fall!
And I even got to go to my favorite farm stand ever -- complete with pies and purple peppers and gourds!  And flowers from NES!


  1. Thanks, lb! Lovely pictures! Mom


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