Evan’s Second Birthday: Food

Even though I spend the majority of my pre-party planning on crafts and decorations, I spend 75% of my money and day-of preparations on food. I love food. Food is the reason I have parties at all.

Here’s an overview:


1. Mini-cupcakes
2. Marshmallow lollipop
3. Cucumber sandwiches
4. Mini quiches
5.Swedish meatballs
6. Mini doughnut cookies
7. Hand-made chocolate truffles made by and shipped from my friend Erin
8. Caprese salad sticks
9. Fruit salad
10. Veggie plate
11. Cheese and cracker plate
12. CAKE

Now here’s the deets:

Leftover cake batter (because I had to TRIPLE the recipe to have enough for the cake but only needed a little bit of that 3rd batch) turned into mini cupcakes in polka dot wrappers topped with peanut M&M’s on a cake stand from BJ’s.

I came up with these on Thursday morning when I found marshmallows on sale at Target. I stuck them on sticks and dipped them in colored melting chocolate and sprinkles. The little stands are Styrofoam balls cut in half and wrapped in tissue paper. They were SO EASY and delicious and popular with the kids.

The cucumber sandwiches were the only thing we ran out of. It’s just Wonder Bread with garden veggie flavored cheese spread and cucumbers, but they are SO DELICIOUS. And I even used the secretly whole wheat white bread to make them a little healthier. The mini quiches are store-bought and my absolute favorite party food in the world. They have been since I was about 12, when I decided eating mini quiches automatically made me look both older and classier.

My mom used her grandma’s recipe to make Swedish meatballs and I used my awesome crafting skills to glue felt circles to colored toothpicks to make them fancy. One of us worked a lot harder than the other.

My friend Kimberly sent me a link to these a couple weeks ago when I mentioned I was looking for round food and I fell in love with them. I actually baked and decorated them last weekend and stuck them in the freezer. They defrosted beautifully and were both adorable and delicious.

This idea came from Amy at Soup or Salad Blog – tomatoes, piece of basil and cheese. I just picked up the little mozzarella balls from the salad bar at the grocery store and made my aunt assemble them for me. The cute little stand was from last year’s birthday party!

Even all my fruit was round, thanks to my mom’s mad melon balling skillz. Cantaloupe. watermelon, red grapes, green grapes, blueberries and black berries. You can also see the corner of my round veggie tray – cucumber, carrots and radishes cut into circles.

I didn’t get a close up of the truffles Erin made, but there were extremely yummy and also adorable – she somehow put colored polka dots into the coating. She did vanilla and strawberry for the kids and then orange liquor and Kahlua for the grown-ups. I ate the leftovers for lunch. And dinner.

And finally, my cake:

It is not as pretty as I had imagined. It also doesn’t have the precise color coordinated stripes of dots I had planned on before I realized the “20-25 minutes” it took to bake this batter as cupcakes was more like 50-60 minutes in large cake pans in my crappy oven. Then I ran out of batter and when I tried to make more I was a cup of sugar short. Luckily, my run to the grocery store didn’t end up ruining anything besides my plans to make the frosting perfectly smooth and delicately place all my jelly beans in exact lines.

You know who cared about the uneven frosting and the random dots? NO ONE. Not a single person, including me, cared that the cake didn’t look like it was from a professional baker.

The main reason is because it was DELICIOUS.

I ended up making it all from scratch, using recipes from I Am Baker for everything. The cake is white cake with buttercream frosting and lemon curd filling (the recipes are in those posts, but you’ll have to scroll for them – which shouldn’t be too much of a hardship because her cakes are GORGEOUS). When I test drove the cake as cupcakes last weekend they were perfect. When I tried to make it as cake it stuck to the pan and came out a little dry, but honestly, it was such an easy recipe I’m sure that was baker-error and I can do better next time. I kept apologizing for the dryness, but I may have been the only person who was bothered by it.

The frosting is like store-bought cake frosting, which I love but no one else does. It is very sweet, but the lemon curd filling tempered the sweetness. The filling was DELICIOUS. I should have cut each cake layer in half and done three layers of filling in each tier, just to get more lemon curd into each slice. I may have put lemon curd on toast for breakfast today. And lunch. And dinner.

2 year olds can blow out their own candles

The number of sweets in my house (all the baked goods combined with all the candy from the decorations) is EPIC. I need to have another party just to get rid of the food from my first party. But I heard from all the guests that despite the sugar overload their kids all slept REALLY well on Saturday night and spent all day Sunday talking about the “balloons!” and “ball pit!” at “Baby Evan’s party!” I call that a success. An extremely delicious success.

p.s. I need to add that NONE of the food would have gotten finished if not for my amazing family’s help. My mom and my dad and my aunt never batted an eyelash when I insisted they cut every slice of cheese into a circle or told them to ONLY use certain colors of jelly beans on the cake. They cut and slices and cooked and arranged so I could focus on my cake. Even E helped with the food when he wasn’t wrangling toddlers and babies. Thank you all SO MUCH for the help!

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17 Responses to “Evan’s Second Birthday: Food”

  1. Audrey says:

    Wow. You continue to amaze me with your epic birthday parties. Can I hire you to come do the food/decoration for Everett and Delilah? Otherwise they’ll get stuck with a couple balloons, a few flowers and a jello octopus EVERY YEAR. :D
    Audrey recently posted… Blog Hop Idea

  2. It all looks so delicious and round and delicious. And I will be buying the stuff to make those sandwiches at the store tomorrow.

    Thanks for linking back to the caprese salad sticks! Can I add your pic to the post there? They look so pretty all laid out like that.
    Amy @ babybabylemon recently posted… Project 365 Days 92-98

  3. Other Erin says:

    Love! I’m so jealous I wasn’t there to help (says the girl with the insane love of prepping party food).

  4. Denae says:

    How cute! Looks like a success! Who needed perfect looking cake? As long as it tastes great. Plus everything looks so A+ I bet the cake looked artistically messy a la Ina Garten. ;D
    Denae recently posted… Pipe Dreams and Picket Fences

  5. Natalie says:

    Everything looks yummy and so fancy in your cute dishes and plates. I need to invest in cute dishes and plates. I’ve said that for four years. But soon! I swear!

    The cake turned out really well. I’m going to have to use the “tastes like store bought icing” recipe, b/c I’m the same way. Love it and everyone else thinks I’m crazy.

    I’m making those cucumber sandwiches. Soon. My favorite thing is cucumbers & cream cheese on those everything crackers. Or on a bagel. Yum.
    Natalie recently posted… SITS Photo Challenge 5- A Day In The Life

    • bebehblog says:

      Those square dishes in the front are actually plastic disposable ones from a party supply store, but I rinsed them off and can reuse them. White and/or clear glass always makes for a pretty table.

  6. desiree says:

    We loved everything, Suzanne – especially the cake! I actually ate 1/2 of Henry’s piece on the way home because it was THAT good! Thanks for posting the recipe link – I may try it for Easter :)

  7. TMae says:

    LOVE IT ALL. But that shouldn’t be a surprise.
    TMae recently posted… Road-tripping- Toddler style

  8. Leah says:

    Mini quiches ARE the best party food ever. It breaks my heart that I can’t serve them around here because of Calder’s egg allergy. I also want to smash my whole head into that cake and nom the ever-loving crap out of it. Thirdly, I never cease to be amazed at you capacity for style.
    Leah recently posted… Reptile Fest

  9. Kimberly says:

    Love love love! Even the candles had dots! I adore little details, and you are the queen of that :)
    Thanks for the shout out. I have yet to make them myself- but I have all the stuff sitting on my counter, so sooner or later…

  10. Brigid Keely says:

    Thanks for sharing your recipes! Everything looks super great and tasty.

  11. ryan says:

    i LOVE the look of the cake. it’s beautiful and reminds me of the cakes my mom used to make me when i was little. sigh.

  12. Sarah-Anne says:

    ohmygoodness, you’re making me starve.

  13. Annie says:

    Thanks for explaining how to make the chocolate covered marshmallows – I always thought they’d be hard to make. I will SO make them for my son’s 2nd birthday party in 2 weeks. How far in advance did you make them?

    • bebehblog says:

      The day before, but I kept the leftovers in plastic bags and they were good for several days after the party. As long as you keep them in something air tight you could probably get away with 4 or 5 days. Happy Birthday to your son!

  14. [...] Evan’s Second Birthday: Bubbles, Balls & Balloons (decorations, food, friends) [...]

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