{326/365} red velvet cake

This recipe just doesn’t compare to the Kowalski’s red velvet cake we had for Gus’s birthday. I blame it on the oil. I prefer cake layers made with butter. Nathalie from 120 Water Street is going to send a red velvet cake recipe that calls for butter and sour cream. I can’t wait to try that one. (Thanks, Nathalie!)

Every time I hear about red velvet cake, I think of Steel Magnolias and Aunt Fern’s dreadful red velvet armadillo cake.

I love every character in that movie, but Clairee, played by Olympia Dukakis, is my favorite. “Well, you know what they say: if you don’t have anything nice to say about anybody, come sit by me!”


{323/365} birthday cake

Gus turned 12 today. My kids would pretty much rather have store-bought cakes than homemade for their birthdays. Gus chose the same cake that we got for Max’s birthday in September: Kowalski’s red velvet cake.

I’m going to bake a homemade red velvet cake for Monday night when my sister Michelle and my mom come over to celebrate. Please keep your fingers crossed that the boys like the homemade cake better. I’m trying to score some points.

French Fridays ~ caramel-topped semolina cake

Caramel-Topped Semolina Cake

I hadn’t taken a very close look at it this recipe until Laurie posted the official November recipes at French Fridays With Dorie, and I was a little surprised to see Cream of Wheat on the list of ingredients. I’ve loved Cream of Wheat since I was little. As far as breakfast food went, it ran a very close second to CoCo Wheats.


Dorie explains in her book that this cake is usually made using a box mix in France, and I have a feeling that hers is superior to that mix.


The base of the cake is Cream of Wheat (farina), milk, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and golden raisins.



Then there’s the lemon-kissed caramel.



These are my three favorite photos of the week. I love them so much, I’m posting them as a triptych AND individually.




Those bubbles are awesome. And SO fun to shoot.



I loved this cake. It reminds me of everything comfort food should be. I just wish my kids had liked it more than they did.


My mom really liked it. So maybe I’ll just save it for when she visits.

Next week: pumpkin-gorgonzola flans.
Last week: roast chicken for les paresseax.

French Friday ~ Marie-Hélène’s apple cake


My cake doesn’t quite look like Dorie’s. I accidentally used a 9-inch pan instead of an 8-inch. Plus, a couple of my apples were a little on the gargantuan side.


But let me tell you: my cake is still plenty pretty, and I’ll bet it tastes just like Dorie’s. It must, ’cause it tastes like heaven.






Be sure to check out some of the the other apple cakes at French Fridays With Dorie.

Next week: roast chicken for les paresseux.
Last week: hachis parmentier.