Tuesday 29 March 2011


It's my sister's 34th birthday today and apparently when you've known someone for almost 32 years thinking up new ideas for birthday and Christmas presents can be tricky.

As teenagers there were baskets from The Body Shop filled with bottles, soaps, lotions and bath pearls. We picked the basket and the things to fill it and took it to the counter where they would nestle everything in shredded paper and wrap it in cellophane. First there were animal shaped soaps, later dewberry everything.

On her 30th there was a silver charm bracelet with a small heart charm and in the few years since gifts inspired by summer holidays to come. A Greek cookery book, a beach bag, and some trashy beach reads. A Spanish cookery book, paprika, paella rice, saffron.

But this year I was struggling.

I decided to send a cake.

A cake I have been meaning to bake for a long time now.

A cake that I baked and wished I could taste.

This cake.

A cake that was wrapped in foil, baking parchment and bakers twine before being placed inside a tin, inside bubble wrap, inside a box and taken to the post office.

A cake to be eaten with whipped cream or ice-cream. A cake so rich it should really just be for adults but a cake that I suspect will be greedily devoured by a certain seven year old and a certain eleven year old.

Happy birthday Zoë.


charlotte said...

i've no doubt that will rate as one of the best presents ever.

i also remember the dewberry years - my school bus smelt of little else :) and a friend of mine once ate the tail of a body shop strawberry-scented fish-shaped soap as she loved the smell so much...

Anna's kitchen table said...

Happy birthday to your sister!!

Did it get there safely...I've never tried sending a cake in the post...

is it Nigella's cloud cake?


Emily said...

hey, I gave you an award on my blog. Be sure to check it out if you'd like to accept it :) http://girlof1000faces.blogspot.com/2011/03/versatile-blogger-award.html

Molly said...

Oh, I love this! Yes, happy birthday, Zoe.

Gemma said...

My sister called after her birthday dinner to say that they loved the cake and, thankfully, it arrived safely but it was pretty carefully wrapped!

Anna, it's Molly's Winning Hearts and Minds Cake which you can find here: http://orangette.blogspot.com/2004/08/and-then-cake-came-forth.html

Emily, thank you so much!

Charlotte, I remember that very soap...

Molly, now I just need to make one so I can actually taste it!


Alicia Foodycat said...

That's amazing. I love the idea of posting a cake!