As a child I always knew my age down to the month. Birthdays were a longed for day, even if we didn’t have big celebrations, because there was often something we could do when we reached the magic age. I was told I could grow my hair long when I reached ten (though of course I’d gone off the idea by then) and for some reason I imagined that when I reached seventeen I’d suddenly turn into a glamorous person frequenting sophisticated parties (which didn’t happen). But after the milestones of being old enough to drive, to vote and drink, followed by a birthday bash for reaching 21, the significance of birthdays seemed to fade. For ten years, I thought I was still 22 so it was always a bit of a shock when I worked out my real age. I still have to work it out now, though if I reach 100 I’m sure I’ll be only too happy to tell everyone what a great age I am.
The result of this lack of enthusiasm means that nowadays we don’t celebrate birthdays in our house beyond having birthday cake and jelly, unless of course it’s an important 0 birthday. The cake is always home-made and each of us has our favourite; I’ve made coca cola cake, a multitude of chocolate cakes, cakes decorated with sweets, a cake in the shape of a pig’s head and my favourite coffee cake.
It was Bill’s birthday this week so we celebrated with Rhubarb Crumble Cake and Rhubarb Jelly (we know how to live!), which was a good combination because the rhubarb was used for the cake and the juice for the jelly. Luckily Bill likes rhubarb.
10 thoughts on “birthdays”
I know what you mean about no longer keeping track of birthdays but, like you, I always make cake, whatever the age and whoever the person! Love your rhubarb jelly pic and graphic recipe. I know I”ve said it before but there’s the most wonderful book waiting to emerge from you and your culinary / artistic exploits! Happy Birthday to Bill – glad he enjoyed his cake and jelly – come to think of it what better way is there to celebrate?! E x
PS Curious to know about your pig’s head cake! Any pics extant? And er, was it sponge or brawn inside?!
The pig’s head was pre digital camera days when I was very sparing with my photographs! It was sponge made in a pudding bowl, inverted onto a plate with half a swiss roll stuck on the top for a snout and covered with fondant icing. Not quite Jane Asher and probably best left to memory rather than photographed. I like your thought process Elizabeth – brawn would have made a wonderful surprise.
Sounds yummy! Coffee cake is also my favourite. We are celebrating my son’s birthday this weekend…I’m hoping a volcano cake will look OK.
Goodness, a volcano cake sounds like enormous fun.
Happy birthday, Bill! I read that jelly recipe very carefully looking for alcohol, but I didn’t see any. What’s going on, Anne? 😉
That’s my family friendly rhubarb jelly recipe. Obviously when I made it for Bill I slipped in a little marmalade gin. The original recipe used sparkling wine but I couldn’t taste any difference when I made it with good lemonade, so why waste good wine.
Happy birthday Bill! I bet the Rhubarb Crumble Cake was delicious.
I agree, since turning 30 I often lose track of my age too! We are not really into big celebrations either but I do always make a cake for the kids. My little man turns 4 soon and has requested a banana cake, as in the shape of a banana! Is your son a George? We have a George too 🙂
I like the idea of a banana shaped banana cake; he obviously has good taste. Yes, we have a George – and a Beth, Ruth and Jack.
if I reach 100, I’d be boasting about it too!!
Happy Birthday Bill 🙂
Looking for Rhubarb recipes and found your Rhubarb Jelly – sounds fab – can’t wait to try it to use up some of our allotment glut ! 🙂
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