Sunday, February 06, 2011

Happy Birthday to me…

I haven’t thrown myself a birthday party in a while, but thought it would be a good way to see some friends. I also thought it would be a good way to enjoy some desserts. Once things got going I was having fun and forgot to document the vast array of sweets that filled my table, but you’ll have to trust me that they were awesome, and included oreo cheesecake, coconut cream pie, peanut butter cups, chocolate chip cookies, flourless chocolate cake, chocolate cookies, dark chocolate cupcakes, salt caramels, and marshmallows. I confess, however, that I was most excited by the marshmallows I made earlier in the day. This was not because they were the most delicious offering (by a long shot!), but because they were the most novel to me. I exhorted people to eat them all night, but am not-so-secretly pleased that there are leftovers today!

I was inspired to make the marshmallows by a post I read on Design*Sponge, and while I didn’t manage to put together the beautiful table arrangements that were the feature of the article, I immediately bookmarked the homemade marshmallow recipe. I followed it pretty exactly, stirring in a few spoonfuls of hot cocoa mix at the end, so I won’t duplicate it here, but I encourage you to give it a try.

In addition to the marshmallows, I made salt caramels (delicious!) and dark chocolate cupcakes, so I had a lot of materials (aka, butter) at the ready in the kitchen...

It turns out that marshmallows are really just hot (240F) sugar whisked with cool moist gelatin for a while.

Once they'd cooled completely, I started cutting them into little hearts because that was the only cookie cutter I had (and covered them with powdered sugar). I think I got rid of some Easter themed cutters a few years ago, and in retrospect should have kept them: the possibility of actually good-tasting peeps might motivate me to make this recipe again in the spring and cover them with colored sugar.

When I got tired of that, I cut up the rest into squares.

Finally, here are the cupcakes, the last photo taken before the fun began. (Actually, I'm pretty sure that between the taking of that photograph and the actual start of the party, I cleaned my entire apartment, made chocolate buttercream frosting, and frosted them, but who's counting...)


  1. Coconut cream pie!!?!! *Powerful Envy*

  2. It was kind of crazy... In an awesome way... I would highly recommend recruiting the best cooks you know in your area to cook for your birthday!