mint heaven / by Carey

June is a crazy month for us. There is our anniversary. Then my birthday. Then Shawn's birthday. Then Father's Day (which is sometimes ON Shawn's birthday). Then Cora's birthday. Craziness. And Poor Nathan! With all this birthday talk, he just KEEPS asking about HIS birthday.

Is it my birthday? what happens after my birthday? Is Daddy going to share his cake? Is Cora going to share her cake? Will there be balloons? Will we sing "Happy Birthday"? Do we blow out the candles? Can I blow them out too? when is it my birthday? is there going to be a party?

And on and on. whew. His isn't for four more months. That's gonna be a LONG time...

I love to cook, and I actually love to bake as well. Though I have really not done either of those the last 3.5 years since we entered the land of childrendom. That is partly due to the fact that these kids just do NOT agree with following our plan of having children who eat crazy wild things like we do! And partly because with a lot of things I like to cook and bake that are involved, you can't just stop them and go change a dirty diaper.... or break up a fight.... or pull Cora off the top of the piano... So I've had to just NOT do them... and our diet has SUFFERED, I tell you. SUFFERED.

Can I just say that I am stinking TIRED of cooking phenomenal food only to have their noses turned up at it?? It would be one thing if I cooked nasty, dry, tough, unpalatable delights. But I cook GOOD food. Ug. [Vent over.]

At any rate, every day with Cora is getting better and easier, so I decided to be brave and tackle an historic favorite dessert of ours for Shawn's birthday. Years ago before the land of childrendom, yet again, I grew herbs.... because I love to cook, remember? One of those herbs was mint. And if you've grown mint, you know what happens. It spreads and you have a lot of it. Any Good Eats fans out there? Oh how I adore Mr. Alton Brown. Up until 3.5 years ago, I KNOW I'd seen every episode. Period. I have his books. And I've lusted over the DVDs... many times. In his tea episode, he discusses simple syrup. And his is infused with mint. So I made some with my abundance of mint. His recipe makes a TON. So THEN I needed a recipe to eat my mint simple syrup on... So I was perusing Food Network, as I used to do.... (oh, fond memories), to find recipes to use my mint in. And that's how I discovered this.

It is involved, but it is so very good. I LOVE mint and I LOVE this cake. Hard to believe it has to have been at least four year since I've MADE it. Time is flying.

I thought in light of this joy class that I'd document the process of making it. Since Nathan was going to HELP me make it, right? yeah, he was a LOT of help. Lasted for about 0.5 milliseconds and he was happily done. Oh well. But I had fun thinking of how to create the montage of our day and the cake. These are NOT superb, but it is fun to see them all together, isn't it?

I hope this inspires YOU to give this cake a try. If you like mint, you will NOT regret it.