Jessica's Birthday 2014

Jessica with her strawberry shortcakes

If you know Jessica, then you know she’s the most adorable person that ever lived. So, when she asked for strawberry shortcake as her birthday dessert, I immediately started brainstorming how I could make it as cute as her. Okay, that’s not possible, but I at least had to try. Strawberry shortcake has this connotation, for me at least, as being this hard biscuit with shapeless pieces of strawberries strewn about, and a glob of whipped cream. It’s not an attractive dessert. The colors are nice, but that almost always happens when you’re willing to sacrifice taste (ahem, chocolate) for looks (brown is just not a cute color, pretty much ever).

So, after a lot of brainstorming, I finally narrowed it down to 3 possibilities. Keep in mind, this dessert will be served at a bar, so it can’t be a big beautiful layered cake with perfect triangle slices on cute colored plates with bamboo utensils. This isn’t that kind of birthday party. It has to be a low-maintenance, easy-to-sneak-into-somewhere-if-needed, easy-to-consume type of dessert.

So, the 3 finalists: 1) layered in small mason jars, 2) A swirl roll, but I’ll have to put it on a lollipop stick or skewer to keep it from being too messy to eat, or 3) Bite sized strawberry shortcake hors d’oeuvres. Okay, while I know Jessica likes the swirl and would very much appreciate it, I don’t think I want my first time experimenting with something difficult to be on her birthday. So, now I have it narrowed down to 2. Since I don’t yet have a dishwasher(!!!), I think I’ll choose #3!

The plan is to make biscuits (that aren’t too hard) and to use the cute scalloped cookie cutters that I borrowed from Jessica to cut out cute bite-sized biscuits. Then I’ll cut each strawberry into heart shapes. Then I have to attempt to make a whipped cream that will hold up outside of the fridge for a number of hours (this is the real challenge!).

I think I nailed it.

The scalloped heart biscuit…

Heart biscuit

The whipped cream that held up to piping, and even stayed throughout the night.

Whipped Cream

The heart shaped strawberry slices held together with heart toothpicks.

Jessica with her strawberry shortcakes

Elizabeth and Jessica

So, that was part 1 of the Jessica birthday weekend. Part 2 consisted of a tea party at the Crown & Crumpet pop-up shop in New People Mall. I’ve only ever been to the big Crown & Crumpet for Jessica’s half birthday one year, so this was a bit different, but it did not disappoint! Our server, or as they call them “Trolly Dolly” was a super cute punk rock girl with colored hair and an adorable voice. Even though, I brought my own creamer (they offer soymilk, but I am really partial to the coconut creamer by so delicious) and my own daiya cheese for the tri-colores sandwich (It’s vegan if you just have them make it without the mozzarella, but I’m a piggie and I wanted the cheese on it), our Trolley Dolly still said I was the best vegan she’s ever had!!! That is the first time anyone has ever said that to me. I can die now.

Here’s a picture of my plate. The house salad is vegan by default.

Tri-Colores Sandwich

And the adorable birthday girl, Jessica.

Birthday Girl

And what would a trip to Japantown be without an obligatory trip to Pika Pika?

Pika Pika

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