My dear friend’s son recently turned three so a small group gathered to celebrate with food, drink and cake. An absolutely gorgeous cake I might add and decorated (by my friend) to the max with animals precisely “drawn” with brightly multi-colored icing.
Let me preface this by saying that when I am with friends and family, I keep my food opinions to myself. But if asked, I do speak up. So as we were cleaning up from the small fête my close pal said, “I just want to know what you think when you see a cake like this.” My reply, “I don’t judge. My boys ate the cake.” And then she quickly chimed in “Stef c’mon, I want to know what actually goes through your head when you see a cake like this." Well, now that she asked…
I can’t stop my brain from running through the ingredients in the store bought colored icing that include everything from partially hydrogenated genetically modified oil, GMO corn based ingredients, chemical preservatives and not-so-fabulous food dye as in yellow 5 lake, blue 1 lake and more. I want to scream about healthier alternatives because they do exist and beg people to stop using these horrible foodstuffs.
I more or less said that to my friend and she suggested that a blog was necessary to give parents some ideas for a better birthday cake (in a jiffy). So here it is. But I will say this, doing anything a little better may take a little longer (and may require a little planning). My two cents…
- If you don’t want to do a cake from scratch, opt into a more purist (and utterly delicious) cake mix (icing too). Some of my favorite brands are Pamela’s and Arrowhead Mills.
- If you want the color on or in your cake, indulge in India Tree, the one-stop shop for food dye (plus all other decoratives) derived only from plants
A thought—if everyone could work towards a better birthday cake then better birthday parties could someday be the norm even with “healthy” candy filled piñatas and party favors.