Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Birthday Food

I have always thought that what you have to eat on your birthday is very important. This most likely stems from Mum annually spoiling us with culinary delights, but it's not just a man's heart that can be reached through their stomach!

And so, when our dear Jamie came over a few days ago for her birthday I cracked the foody whip - and the birthday breakfast consisted of fruit, yoghurt, and homemade granola. Not difficult to make but so scrumptious you will spend the rest of the morning trying to get oats out your teeth just for the flavour. I kid you not.

To make enough granola for two, you need:
50g oats
25g demerara sugar
25g mixed seeds (linseeds, pumpkin, sunflower - whatever you like)
25g butter

Preheat the oven to 200°C. Put the oats, sugar and seeds into a baking dish and mix, then divide the butter into small pieces and sprinkle. Stick it in the oven for 15 minutes - BUT take it out at five minute intervals to stir, or it will burn.

Meanwhile, prepare your fruit. I used strawberries, raspberries and blueberries, but grapes or slices of banana are lovely too. Divide between two plates and add a generous dollop of natural yoghurt to each. When the granola's done divide that up too, and voila! If you're feeling super indulgent as we were, you can also drizzle over some maple syrup or honey (maple syrup is the best, but Tesco had none. Shame on them!).

You have to use plastic plates. To spend the day washing up instead of entertaining your birthday-having friend would just be rude.

For lunch, we took a picnic and skipped off to the Savill Gardens. There was lots and lots of food including my favourite ever Philadelphia cream cheese and cucumber sandwiches, and, of course - Birthday Cake.

Capitalised, because it deserves it.

Jamie opted for a coffee cake and I needed something wheat-free so Zosia could have some too, so Lorraine Pascale's Gluten Free Irish Cream Coffee Cake was the perfect solution.

I couldn't find the recipe anywhere online, so I took a photo from the book:

(I hope that's clear... I can post a bigger photo on request!)

I made the sponges the night before - mostly due to time constraints on the day - but also because the flavour of any coffee/chocolate cake will intensify the longer it's left for. Win-win situation. Also, I found with this recipe that the buttercream was just too runny after adding the Bailey's, so I stuck in extra icing sugar to give it more structure.

And here it is:

Would you LOOK at that. Amazing purple glitter courtesy of one of Mum's brilliant cheer-up parcels. Sadly the buttercream didn't stay quite so intact when confronted with a 20 minute walk at 28°, but it just made it all the more fun to eat. And to watch people eat. Like this:

Birthdays are fantastic.


  1. I just made this for my dad's birthday (he has coeliac disease). It's gorgeous! Thank you so much ^^ x

    1. Oh that's great! Happy to help. We'd love to see a picture if you have one - if you could post it on our facebook group http://www.facebook.com/ThisIsUniFood or email that would be wonderful! x