Perhaps the best way to coax this baby out of an obviously too-comfortable womb would be to invite it to a birthday party, complete with a freshly made cake. Even if my plan to entice this baby to come out and join us didn’t work, at least the rest of us fully gestated people could enjoy a nice dessert while impatiently waiting for my labour to begin. I chose the Carrot Cake with Fluffy White-Chocolate Icing recipe for baby’s birthday cake. Plus, I had been promising my sister-in-law/housemate/student to make it for months now. Carrot cake is her absolute favourite cake in the world.
Clearly this baby has decided to be ‘fashionably late’ and not respect the due date assigned nearly nine months ago. So rather than huffing and puffing my way through labour, I set out to make dinner for us instead. Fast, simple and healthy was what I was in the mood for and the barbecue-friendly weather suited the recipe for the Great grilled side of salmon.
Realizing that the now full-term baby in my belly could come any day now, it was time to prepare something for my husband and midwives to snack on while they alternate helping me in labour. I don’t recall what we gave them during the birth of my son, just over two years ago, but I can assure you that it was nothing that I had made. I thought that the Cranberry-bran muffin recipe would be perfect, since muffins are an any-time-of-day treat. Plus, I figured that freezing a package of them would be great for when I go into labour – we could throw them into the hospital bag, thaw them out in the delivery room and be ready to eat when my helpers got hungry.
I am a huge fan of goat cheese. In my twenties, I had the opportunity to live in the south of France in a prime goat cheese production region and that first taste of fromage de chevre I was hooked forever. In the naïveté of my youth I thought that I didn’t really like cheese due to my limited experience with bright orange coloured varieties that usually came out of a jar or a flimsy square of plastic. Thankfully, I had nine months in which to sample hundreds of cheeses, many purchased from markets staffed by local cheese farmers.
As you may or may not know, I am not an expert baker. My attempts are infrequent and my successes fleeting. But I sure felt like a star after I made these Gingerbread cookies and watched them quickly disappear at a toddler's birthday party, particularly when I saw adults also going back for more. And more. The cookies were soft, chewy and not overpoweringly sweet. They were, if I may say so, perfect.