walking down her 87th year

We celebrated my mom’s birthday last night.  I think her favorite gift was the Oxford Book of American Poetry.  It is amazing to me how much poetry my mom has memorized and recites on whim.  She knows a poem to fit just about any occasion!  I hope when I am “walking down my 87th year,” I will still enjoy birthdays so much!

Here is the recipe for the lemon birthday cake.  I served it with raspberry sherbet which turned out to be a perfect combination.

Lemon Cake

2 cups sugar
1 cup softened butter
4 eggs
2 ½ cups flour
1 TBS. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
Juice and zest of one lemon
1 ¼ cup half and half
3 drops yellow food coloring
(You can also add a tsp. of lemon extract to cake and/or frosting if you want a stronger lemon flavor but I prefer it to have a more subtle lemon taste.)

Cream butter and sugar.  Add eggs.  Combine flour, salt, and powder and add.  Add the juice and zest, along with the food coloring, mixing well.  Slowly add the half and half.  The batter will appear to be grainy from the combination of milk and lemon juice.  Spray 3 round cake pans with Pam and dust with flour.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.  Remove from oven and cool on rack for 10 minutes.  Gently remove from pans and allow to cool completely. Frost.

Lemon Frosting

1 cup butter softened
2 pounds powdered sugar
Juice and zest of one lemon
2 drops yellow food coloring
Half and half to get accurate texture

In mixer, combine butter and sugar.  Add lemon juice and zest, reserving some of the zest for garnish.  Add food coloring.  Add half and half until frosting is desired consistency.  (I probably used about ¼  to ½ cup.)

And, of course, after Happy Birthday is sung, the birthday salutation is delivered, this year by Ben.

“Many happy returns to the day of thy birth
May joy and gladness be given.
And may the dear Father prepare thee on earth
For a beautiful birthday in heaven.”

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  1. says

    My godmother’s mother was 96 when she died a number of years ago. When I look at the much younger Mom here, I remember how wonderful it felt to have my “Gram’s” cheek pressed up against mine when we hugged! There’s nothing like giving a grandma a peck on the cheek.

    Wrinkles may not be fashionable anymore, but there’s something about a grandma’s cheek that seems to hug you when you brush up against it, right along with the baggy tricepts that so many women try to get rid of. Their brush and bounce is like an extra hug inside a hug.

    It made me smile.

  2. Stacie says

    Grandma looks great, I like her hair uncurled like that 🙂

    The cake sounds divine, I loooove lemon!

  3. says

    I just have to say that this lemon frosting was the perfect texture, too. It was humid that day so maybe that was one of the reasons it spread so perfectly. I never know the answer to these things.

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