naturally colored rainbow cake + bernie is one!!

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Bernie is ONE!! Yes, it went by so quickly! Yes, she gets more delicious every day!! Yes, I began planning her vegetable-themed birthday party more than six months ago and spent hours and hours searching for the perfect garlands and outfits, hand drawing her invitations, developing new recipes, sketching out her table scape, typewriter-ing the seed packet party favors, and scheduling the prep down to the minute. (And yes, in retrospect, I see what Nick meant when he said that I am… crazy…) And then yes, we had to cancel it ☹️! But!! Even though we missed our fronds and family dearly, it was truly a magical beautiful Bernie day and we loved every single moment of it. We had sprinkle pancakes and blueberries for breakfast, homemade chicken and stars soup for lunch, and turkey spinach meatballs with freshly made fettuccine for dinner. In between, we played in pools of Cheerios and visited the farm cats. And then we had cake! Obviously!

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I am so pleased with how this naturally colored rainbow cake turned out. It took a bunch of experimenting and tweaking to get the shades to match and to figure out a method that wouldn’t require too much fussiness/juicing/boiling of beets/etc. I tried using turmeric but that was too bright, and I tried using a store-bought precooked beet but that wasn’t bright enough and just got messy. In the end, I went with a combination of store-bought carrot juice, store-bought beet juice, and a big bunch of fresh mint. The cake is based on my go-to vanilla butter cake that is so incredibly moist, dense, and delicious. It’s one of my proudest cakes! The flavor of the beets and the carrots is undetectable and the flavor of the fresh mint shines through just a wee bit, enough to lend its herby flavor but it’s far from overpowering. I went with a basic cream cheese frosting to add some nice tang and decorated with Fimo clay cake toppers.

For Bernie’s mini cake, I stacked up the scraps that I cut off from leveling the layers and cut out tiny layers with a biscuit cutter. No separate cake pans necessary. I was so excited when I realized this would work! The cake is so moist that the scrap layers stuck together without a need for frosting between them. Bernie loved it! I took enough photos of her eating it to break my phone and she didn’t even make a huge mess which makes me think that one day she’ll make a great cook that will be good at the whole clean-as-you-go thing. 

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Weeks ago, I baked the cake layers, let them cool, formed Bernie’s mini cake, wrapped everything in plastic wrap and froze them so that I could have one more thing checked off my to-do list for the party. It also made frosting them, especially the mini cake, way way easier. I always like to frost frozen cakes (and then allow to sit at room temperature for a few hours or overnight before serving). 

Important note about the layers! This cake was originally supposed to be three layers (pink, yellow, and green) but I added a blue layer at the last minute because we were going to be expecting more guests than my usual three-layer cake serves and also because I needed to test two of the layers again so figured I’d experiment with a blue layer for the third. The blue layer is not a part of the recipe below but if you’d like to make a blue layer, simply use the same method as the green layer but sub out the mint for wild blueberries (I used frozen). You’ll have to either add another third batch of batter (using a scale and weighted measurements will help with this and ugh sorry about the 1/3 of an egg thing!) or replace one of the other colors with the blue. I’m sorry for any confusion that this causes!!


Naturally Colored Rainbow Cake

Makes one 3-layer 8” cake (and a mini cake!)

Ingredients

3 1/2 c (450g) all-purpose flour

1 tb baking powder

1 1/2 tsp kosher salt

1 c (225g) unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 c (112g) refined coconut oil, room temperature

2 1/4 c (450g) sugar

4 large eggs, room temperature

1 tb vanilla bean paste or extract

1/2 c (120g) sour cream, room temperature

1 c (236g) whole milk, divided

1/4 c carrot juice

1/4 c beet juice (storebought is fine, the one I get has a little lemon juice added and that’s ok)

1/4 c firmly packed fresh mint leaves


Frosting:

1 c** (225g) good quality unsalted butter, room temperature

8 oz (224g) cream cheese, room temperature

4 c** (480g) powdered sugar

1/8 tsp kosher salt

1 1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste or extract

3 tb** (45g) heavy cream

**if you’re making a mini cake, I recommend adding another 1/2 c of butter, 1 c of sugar, and 1 tb of heavy cream to the frosting in order to have enough!

Clues

To make the cake layers: preheat the oven to 350ºf. Grease and line the bottoms of three 8” cake pans with parchment and set aside. (For a 4-layer cake, which is the one on the pictures, please see my note above!)

In a large bowl, sift together the flour and baking powder, and then lightly stir in the salt and set aside.

In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter, coconut oil, and sugar on medium high for 3-4 minutes, until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each. Reduce the mixer to low and add the vanilla and sour cream. Gradually add the dry mixture and mix until about 80% combined (you’re going to continue to mix once you add the coloring so only partially mixing at this stage prevents over mixing the batter). Divide the batter evenly into 3 bowls (using a scale helps with this!). In the first bowl, add 1/4 cup of milk and the carrot juice and fold together until smooth and just combined. In the second bowl, add 1/4 cup of milk and the beet juice and fold together until smooth and just combined. In a blender, blend together the mint leaves with the remaining 1/2 cup of milk until very smooth. Add this to the third bowl and fold together until smooth and just combined. Transfer the batters to the cake pans and spread them out evenly. 

Bake until the edges of the cakes are lightly browned and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few crumbs on it; begin checking for doneness at 30 minutes and try your darnedest not to let it over bake. Let in the pans for 10 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. 

To make the buttercream: 

In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat together the butter and cream cheese until creamy. Gradually add the powdered sugar, and then mix in the salt, vanilla, and heavy cream. Mix until creamy.

To frost the cake, level the top of the layers and then stack them up with a layer of frosting in between. (The cakes bake up generally pretty flat so there won’t actually be that much to level off.) Frost all over and decorate as desired.

To make a mini cake, stack the leveled scraps of cake up, give them a good firm pat so they stick, and cut out four 2 1/2 inch circles with a biscuit cutter. Don’t worry if some of the scraps tear, the cake is moist enough that when you stack up the scraps, they’ll all smoosh together. Stack them on top of each other and, if you have the time, wrap the cake tightly in plastic wrap and freeze for a few hours or even a few weeks. This will make frosting this tiny cake way easier! Frost while frozen and let come to room temp before serving.

This cake is super moist that you could definitely decorate the day before serving. Let it sit at room temperature overnight.

Print this recipe

-yeh!

Summer of Bernie!

The summer is over! It’s quarter-zip fleece weather! But still acceptable birkenstock-with-no-socks temperature! The apples are getting their color, th…

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The summer is over! It’s quarter-zip fleece weather! But still acceptable birkenstock-with-no-socks temperature! The apples are getting their color, the sky is cloudy on the reg, wheat harvest is here, and two nights ago we ate PHO. This is my dreamscape. Good gosh geez I love being on the cusp of peek coziness sooo much, I can taste the pumpkin bread already. Bernie’s world is about to start smelling less like fresh basil and Eggboy sweat and more like cinnamon and brussels sprouts with spätzle and butter and it’s awesome. Ok but I didn’t want to zoom to the next season before documenting some of my favorite moments from this summer!

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We went to the the county fair! Bernie met baby goats, baby chickens, mini ponies, and a 7-day-old alpaca! We danced to Eggboy’s big band concert and then I ate a big sausage which tasted exactly how fairs smell, smoky and meaty. And we drank a chocolate strawberry malt. A+ day.

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We went on our first little family trip, to Bemidji! We stayed about two feet away from the lake in a tiny cabin with gigantic windows, so all of my nightmares about arriving at our destination to find that we had forgotten Bernie’s sound machine went out the window because we had nature's sound machine of the waves all night and it was the loveliest. During the days we hiked, ate pizza and spumoni, had wild rice in our pancakes, tried on Lester Nygaard hats, waved to Babe and Paul Bunyan, and picnic’ed on fancy cheese and ‘ndujia. It was a short but sweet trial vacation for the next time when we choose a destination that’s more than two hours away!

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I went to LA for, like, a few hours because that’s all I could manage for a first trip away from Bern! It was for a little work trip and I got to get all dressed up and stand in front of a background while someone shot a fan at my hair. This is what that looked like! Thanks to Getty and Benjo for the left photo and to TV Guide and Maarten for the right photo!

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Bernie met Bernbaum’s and all of our other Fargo faves, like India Palace and Twenty Below and Zandbroz and Sandy’s and Barnes and Noble. (Umm have you been the new Bernbaum’s?? It’s epic, get the black and white cookie.)

We had so many visitors! Sonja and Alex came for a pizza party, my bridesmaids came for a Girl Meets Farm episode, and Auntie Cathy even came and did her famous turkey impression :)

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I forgot what TV looks like. Every time I turn it on, even just to have Savannah and Craig chatting in the background, Bernie cranes her head and only wants to look at it and not sing Baby Beluga so I stopped turning it on. What happens after they fall down the elevator in Stranger Things? Anything good?

Baby Beluga is always in my head. Always.

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We went to The Lake! I don’t know what summer weekends are like where you live, but here everybody flocks to The Lake. The Lake refers to any number of lakes in the area and what I’m told from Eggboy is that the lake is a place where you eat potato chips and relax, either in the water or in a chair looking at the water. I didn’t get it when I first moved here because I thought, we already live in a very calm relaxing place and I already eat potato chips, why do I need to get more relaxed and eat more potato chips? But I’m slowly starting to get it, that’s where the weekend energy is and floating in a lake is fun and it’s acceptable to subsist on boloney on white bread (in addition to potato chips) at the lake. So even though we don’t have a Lake house we found the public access spot where we’re going to go from now on anytime we feel like chips. And next time Bernie will actually be able to go in the water!

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I had my fifth summer at Unglued Camp!!! I only went for a quick second since you-know-who had bedtime and other you-know-who was harvesting but in that time we made fancy uncrustables, splatter painted cake, ate delicious ice cream sandwich sliders, and gossiped with all of my new and old fronds. Camp is the bessst.

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We celebrated nephew Cliff’s first birthday! I made his cake and smash cake and wow making cakes these days takes serious nap time ninja moves but we did it and Cliff smashed it!!

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We gardened, we looked at the baby in the mirror, we danced, and giggled!

Ok the end, craziest/best summer ever!! Welcome, fall!!!

-Yeh!

Rainbow Cake with Strawberry Buttercream + My Blog is Ten!

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10 years ago this week, this blog was born! I feel like I should make a speech?? I’m terrible at speeches (see: the time I officiated Stoop’s wedding and made the speech about farts), but I’ll give it a try anyway because I’ve been getting a little emotional reflecting on these past 10 years and thinking about how much fun and fulfilling it’s been to keep this blog. She’s been with me through so much! My bangs and eyeliner phase, my schnitzel eating phase, my lunch packing bike riding phase! The first layer cake I ever made is buried in these archives, as is the first recipe I ever wrote. I blogged about my first date with Eggboy, our move to the farm, our wedding, our Bernie... I’ve made so many of my closest friends through my blog and documented adventure after adventure after weeeeeeird adventure. And seriously now that I think of it, I really would have no friends here if I didn’t meet them through my blog haha. 

This blog has led to my book and my show and helped me cobble together a job that I wake up every day excited to go to and I couldn’t be more grateful for that. I am also so extremely grateful for the connections I’ve made to you. I feel like I have pen pals all over the world! The internet and social media world has changed so much in the past 10 years (can you believe that this constituted a blog post back in the day?!) and it’ll continue to change but this blog is like a roach, it’ll never die because it’s my diary and since I was 7, I haven’t been able to *not* keep a diary. I just have always had this wild urge to document, no matter how normal my week was.

Thank you for being here and reading and following along and sending over your sweet comments. You really do make the world feel like a smaller warmer cozier place. 

Ok that’s the end of my speech, I’m done being mushy, let’s celebrate with cake!!!

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This is my first layer cake postpartum! Making it was a journey. it took like three days! I wasn’t even sure I’d be able to, with all of my time now spent singing Baby Beluga and changing diapers, but finally I put Bernie in the sling and committed. We walked around the house collecting ingredients and remembering where I put the measuring spoons, and the stand mixer white noise sound was like music to her ears. I stuck some cake scraps under her nose so she could smell them and I think she liked it! I also tried to make the colors good and bright so that she could appreciate them. 

I am so happy with the end result, both aesthetically and texturally. I was admittedly nervous about the texture since adding food coloring to batter requires so much extra stirring (and an over-stirred batter can lead to a gummy weird cake) but I ended up basically saving the last stir until I divided the batter between the six bowls and added the food coloring, and that kept the texture just how I like it: fluffy, dense, and moist! This cake is sooo rich, delicious, buttery, and sweet. I like adding coconut oil in addition to butter to up the richness. I typically use refined coconut oil, which doesn’t have any coconutty flavor, but this time I went with unrefined and the tiny hint of coconut flavor was so good, almost almondy. The frosting is flavored with a plop of strawberry preserves which adds a hint of sourness that balances the sweetness quite nicely. I loved eating this cake! I would have eaten way too much of it if I didn’t have the Girl Meets Farm crew here to share it with. 

The colors that I used were all Americolor and in ROYGBV order, they are: chili pepper, pumpkin, dijon, moss, wedgewood, and eggplant. In another world I would have maybe tried to go the all-natural coloring route with matcha and freeze dried berries and turmeric but there was only so much Baby Beluga singing time that I was able to give up so I figured this was an OK compromise!

Obvi you can forego the food coloring all together and just make a hella good vanilla cake with strawberry frosting and maybe even add a layer of strawberry preserves between the cake layers, ooh that’d be good. 

Happy baking!


Rainbow Cake with Strawberry Buttercream

makes one 6-layer 6” cake

ingredients

3 1/2 c (450g) all-purpose flour

1 tb baking powder

1 1/2 tsp kosher salt

1 1/4 c (300g) heavy cream, room temperature

1/2 c (120g) sour cream, room temperature

1 c (225g) unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 c (100g) refined or unrefined coconut oil, soft but not melted

2 1/4 c (450g) sugar

4 large eggs, room temperature

1 tb vanilla bean paste or extract

1/2 tsp almond extract, optional

food coloring (see notes above for specific colors that I used)

 

strawberry buttercream:

1 c (225g) unsalted butter, room temperature

1/4 c (80g) strawberry preserves

5 c (600g) powdered sugar

1/8 tsp kosher salt

1 1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste or extract

6 tb (90g) heavy cream

a drop of pink food coloring, optional

clues

to make the cake:

preheat the oven to 350ºf. grease and line the bottoms of six 6” cake pans with parchment and set aside (if you don’t have six pans, you can bake in batches).

in a large bowl, sift together the flour and baking powder, and then lightly stir in the salt and set aside. in a large measuring cup, whisk together the heavy cream and sour cream and set aside. 

in a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter, coconut oil, and sugar on medium high for 3-4 minutes, until light and fluffy. add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each. add the vanilla and almond extract, if using. reduce the mixer to medium low and add the dry mixture and cream mixture in 3 alternating additions, stopping right after you add the last of the dry mixture and cream mixture- don’t mix them in completely because when you mix in the food coloring you’ll continue to mix and that’s when everything will get combined. (the reason for this is that you want to prevent over-mixing at all costs!) divide the batter between 6 medium bowls (using a scale is the most efficient way to do this) and stir in good big plops of food coloring until the batter is bright. distribute the batter evenly between the cake pans and spread it out evenly.

bake until the tops of the cakes are set and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few crumbs on it; begin checking for doneness at 22 minutes and try your darnedest not to let it overbake. let cool in the pans for 10 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. 

to make the buttercream: 

in a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat together the butter and preserves until creamy. gradually add the powdered sugar, and then mix in the salt, vanilla, and heavy cream. mix until creamy.

to frost the cake, level the tops of the layers and then stack them up with a thin layer of frosting in between. frost all over and decorate as desired! enjoy!

Print this recipe

-yeh!

photos by chantell and brett quernemoen

Bernie’s Nursery!

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She’s got a nursery!!! I am soooo excited about Bernie’s nursery reveal today and if I’m interpreting “Oo Goo Ehh!!” correctly, Bernie is too. So is Mr. Hippo, he loves the camera. 

Having an official nursery for Bernie feels way overdue because between my complete lack of interior design skills, the fact that Bernie’s been sleeping in our room, and the Jewish superstition that decorating a nursery before a baby is born could bring bad luck, Bernie’s room had been pretty bare bones. I did a tiny bit of zhooshing when I was 36 weeks pregnant and in major nesting mode, but the room remained a kinda boring half crib corner/half guest room and honestly the most it got used was when my mom came to visit the weekend Bernie was born.

So when Crate and Kids offered to wave their magic wand over the room we threw imaginary confetti in the air because it meant that Bernie would finally have a space of her own to grow with and love. Crate’s Scandinavian-inspired style is so beautiful and, ahem, perfect for our Scandinavian baby. Also, I grew up down the street from Crate’s headquarters outside of Chicago, so this project was a total nostalgia trip for me. 

This room in our house has been many things: Eggboy’s aunts grew up in it, Eggboy slept here when he had weekends at Grandma’s, it was the hair and makeup room for Girl Meets Farm, and it was the room that we slept in for a week when a tree outside of our bedroom was looking a little gnarly and like it could fall. If these walls could talk, I imagine they’d be patient, grandmotherly, and warm. And maybe a little high from the Girl Meets Farm hairspray fumes?! JKJKJK! From the beginning, even at times when it had very little decor at all, this room has had such good, homey energy.

In designing Bernie’s new space, Eggboy and I wanted her to feel that cozy warmth and be surrounded by her animal friends. We also wanted the history of the room to come through and for it to really feel like it was part of a farm house while also feeling fresh. Functionally, since this is the only bedroom in our house other than ours, I wanted there to still be a bed for Grandma visits and for when Bernie grows out of her crib, but for there to also be a space to sit and hang out. 

I love how Crate’s design team ran with this. They wove their vintage-inspired pieces, like their midcentury crib and brass shelving, in with the existing old paneled wall and peppered in our special personal items, like the rainbow from Lily, Alana, and Michelle, the hippo from Great Aunt Judy and Cousins, the needle pointed alphabet wall hanging that we found in the basement, Bernie’s favorite animal mobile, and the little wooden egg family from our shower. And they swapped out our big old ugly guest bed for a twin-sized daybed with a trundle (Bernie’s going to have the best sleepovers!) so it totally feels like we have a big comfy couch in here now. The muted rainbow colors, cozy layered textures, and warm lighting are so soothing. This room truly has an amazing balance of exciting and calm, modern and vintage. And just being in here feels like a hug! 

For now, the room is filled with bunnies galore because Bernie loves bunnies! The crib sheets, the pillows, the changing table cover, the wall decor, and, my personal favorite, the removable wallpaper (!!) all have bunnies. But what’s great about the large furniture pieces is that they’re sturdy, timeless, and safe enough to be able to grow with Bernie. So when she’s older and potentially over bunnies but into, I don’t know, astronomy? martial arts? the trombone? these pieces will be able to be dressed up to reflect those loves.

Ooh and the closet is a whole other wonderland! Bernie officially has the most organized closet in the house. It’s filled with bins upon bins because I find that bins are the easiest way of organizing all of the necessary baby stuff, especially stuff that requires quick access during, like, emergency wardrobe changes and sudden diaper explosions. It’s also packed with imagination-fueled toys that she can play with now (like her soft eggs and bacon set!) and when she gets older (like the prettiest wooden blocks I’ve ever seen). 

Now whenever I’m in this room, I can envision all of the blanket forts and make-believe games in Bernie’s future. It makes me so verklempt! Yes, I am soaking up all of the moments right now while she is tiny enough to cuddle up on my chest, but at the same time it fills me with so much joy to think about watching her grow in this beautiful Bernie space. 

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-yeh!

Thank you sooo (!!!!) much to Crate and Kids for transforming this room and for sponsoring this post! Here are links to the items featured in this room: rug / yellow pouf / brass book shelves / crib / crib sheet / crib skirt / bunny / other bunny / bunny blanket / animal wall decor / rainbow wall hanging / bunny wallpaper / floor lamp / midcentury wall shelf / midcentury wall decor / mirrors / hippo / bear hamper / diaper pail / dresser / changing table / changing table cover / daybed / trundle/ bed linens / pillows / bunny pillows / pink pillows / ballerina pillow / white closet bins / pink closet bins / campfire set 

Photos by Chantell and Brett Quernemoen

Bernie, Two Months!

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Hello from Bernie’s 10th week! She is nearly 2 1/2 months old and smiles more and more each day! We have settled into the best little routine where every morning we have wiggle time, then go to the gym to stroll and listen to Unorthodox, and then come home and make a big summery salad for lunch. In the afternoon we do a fun thing like read crinkly tail tale books or swat at hanging vegetable toys before snuggles and nap time (that’s when I watch Jeopardy and read Bringing Up Bébé). Then we make dinner and Eggboy and I watch Fargo while we wait for Bernie to poop so that we can then give her a bath without worrying that she’ll poop in it (yep, learned that one the hard way haha). It’s peak maternity leave livin’ around here and we are soaking it in. Also the weather has been amazing, so we are, as Bernie puts it, “GOO!” Some highlights from this past month include:

-Our first little family picnic! On Memorial Day, we grilled sausages, potatoes, and broccolini, and drank rhubarb soda while we enjoyed the evening breeze.

-Bernie’s first out of town visitors! Jaclyn and Katie came to town and we had the best weekend ever, which included a trip to Fargo for the Antiques Roadshow (with a stop at Silver Lining Creamery after), the North Dakota Shakespeare 5K (err- we walked 3Ks of it ;), an afternoon picnic in the backyard with cookies and cookie dough (and carrots for balance), and cinnamon roll pancakes at Darcy’s.

-Cuddle time with Mrs. Moose. Bernie’s been grasping and swatting at toys and in true baby fashion she definitely prefers the super saturated weirdly colored high contrast ones. The muted rainbow lover in me is like “😳🙄 But Bernie, this hot pink neon green bumble bee clashes terribly with your navy car seat, mustard outfit, and olive pacifier…” but it’s ok, maybe one day she’ll love dusty rose like I do??

-Bernie’s first Syttende Mai, Norwegian Constitution Day! She is 5/16ths Norwegian, so we went to Sons of Norway and ate lefse, krumkake, rømmegrøt, and all of the other faves. She wore her Norwegian accessories from our friend Trude in Norway and had the best time!!

-My first Mother’s Day, it was delightful! Bernie and I worked on her cookbook and snuggled the day away. Then the following week it was my birthday and we went out to lunch wearing identical outfits and spent the rest of the day baking cookies and cake!

-Bernie talks soo much!! We have great conversations about Ooo and Ahh and Goo, I love them.

-She has gotten very tall, she has Eggboy’s legs. Hallelujah!

Ok, we’ve gotta go pick rhubarb!! Bernie’s sending some friendly hiccups in your general direction and I’m waving! Bye!

-Yeh!

pancakes and sausage on a stick

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Back in March when I was doing all of my meal prep, I realized that Mother’s Day would happen soon after I gave birth! It was a wild realization that I’d suddenly be an honoree of the day and I obviously immediately got the urge to cry and be emotional. I imagined my perfect Mother’s Day with a newborn (which is different than my perfect Mother’s Day with, say, a 6-year-old because by that time I can expect some super cute breakfast in bed, right?!) and what I imagined was holding a little nugget in one hand and eating my special brunch in another. A brunch on a stick. And one of my favorite brunches ever, pancakes and sausage! I mean, a bouquet of flowers would be nice but a bouquet of pancakes and sausage on a stick would be nice and tasty. So here we are, I made my own Mother’s Day brunch and it’s in the freezer now waiting to be microwaved. Lol. Pressure’s off, Eggboy! 

Pancakes and sausage on a stick were one of my faaaavorite breakfasts growing up. We’d get them in bulk from Market Day at school (does Market Day still exist?! Omg, it does!) and I’d have them before early morning ice skating practices. These days I can’t walk by them in the freezer section of the Super Target without seriously considering buying them every single time but then I look at the ingredients and have to put them down. So with this homemade version, even though they’re a totally fried breakfast version of a corn dog, I feel a little better about eating them because I can use my fave sausages (I like Applegate’s natural chicken sausages) and then also add some oat flour to the batter. More oats = more boob milk! Yeah! And the oats add a nice nuttiness to the pancake.

So here’s a big batch that you can make, freeze, and nuke for breakfast in a snap and Mother’s Day with a newborn and the like! 


Pancakes and Sausage on a Stick

Makes 18

Ingredients

1/2 c (65g) all-purpose flour

1/2 c (65g) oat flour, or more all-purpose flour

2 tb sugar

3/4 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1 large egg

2 tb flavorless oil

1/2 c (120g) buttermilk

18 pre-cooked breakfast sausages (if frozen, heat them a little just until they’re soft enough to insert with lollipop sticks)

Flavorless oil, for frying

Maple syrup, optional, for serving

Clues

Fill a large heavy pot or high sided skillet fitted with a thermometer with 1” of oil and heat over medium high heat to 360º F.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. In a separate small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the egg, oil, and buttermilk. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir to combine. Transfer the batter to a tall skinny glass or measuring cup (this step isn’t completely necessary, but it will make coating the sausages easier). Working in batches of 3 or 4 sausages at a time, insert popsicle sticks or lollipop sticks into the sausages, pat off any excess moisture with a paper towel, and dip them into the pancake batter to fully coat, scraping off excess. It doesn’t need to be a very thick coating as the batter will puff up when frying. Carefully lower the entire thing (stick included) into the hot oil and fry until golden, 1 1/2-2 minutes. Use tongs to transfer to a paper towel or wire rack. Repeat with the remaining sausages. Cool slightly before serving. 

To freeze, cool completely and then store in a ziploc bag in the freezer for up to 3 months. To reheat, wrap loosely in a paper towel and microwave for about 40 seconds, or until heated through. Let cool slightly and enjoy!

Print this recipe

-yeh!

photos by chantell and brett quernemoen

Passover + Bernie’s First Month

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Despite getting aggressively sick of matzo and showering millions of matzo crumbs all over Bernie every day (sorry, Bernie!), we had the best Passover ever. My mom flew in like a true Passover Mary Poppins and prepared the most delicious brisket, sweet potato kugel, matzo balls, and charoset while I fumbled around just trying to melt some dang chocolate for a flourless chocolate cake while Bernie snoozed but sometimes wailed in her ring sling. (Check out the finished cake! Whatever the cake decorating equivalent is to the Ravel Piano Concerto for the Left Hand, I’m practicing for it.) We set the table with my favorite flowery tablecloth and a makeshift seder plate, complete with Bernie’s toy beet because we couldn’t find a bone and it turns out that a beet is commonly used on vegetarian seder tables, and had the Eggs over for a short and sweet Seder. Bernie slept the entire time and even let me put her down in her bouncy chair so that I could safely eat some soup. She kind of woke up to telepathically guide Eggboy to where she thought the Afikoman was hiding and won, of course. Her prize was a Mo Willems book from Auntie Elaine.

The rest of the week consisted of leftover brisket matzo pizza, cheesy matzo brei, matzo lasagna, pb and j on matzo, kewpie and swiss on matzo… If I was an octopus I would have fixed big beautiful ramp-filled spring salads while also cuddling Bernie, but I’m not an octopus so I chose the next best route which still involved cuddling Bernie but required having to just one-hand scarf the most readily available calories on top of matzo. (And I only cheated once when I determined that one hour of solid Bernie screaming earned me one unit of chametz, which I redeemed in the form of a Jimmy John’s Turkey Tom.)

Other than Passover, we have had such a wonderful month, the first month of Bernie! It has included lots of firsts and lots of learning: 

-Bernie took a pacifier for the first time yesterday and I melted almost as quickly as I did the first time I held her. What is it about baby faces with pacifiers sticking out of them that are sooo outrageously adorable??

-We baked challah for the first time! Bernie was nestled in her Solly wrap while I braided. We made three loaves: everything bagel, cinnamon raisin, and sea salt. I hope she enjoyed the smell of it baking. Imagine smelling freshly baked challah for the first time!

-I learned how to not get projectile pooped on. (Of course, it took getting projectile pooped on to learn that…but it was my own fault for standing in the line of fire.)

-I learned how to plan a Sunday to avoid the witching hour so that Bernie would be calm throughout Game of Thrones.

-This morning I took Bernie up a flight of stairs for the first time. She was in her sling and fast asleep but in my mind it was a *moment*.

-Bernie had her first bath and I think she likes bath time!!

-I learned that the acoustics in the grocery store are not actually that bad when combined with Bernie screams. The acoustics in the gym kind of are though. Conveniently, it’s easier to drop everything and leave the gym than it is to drop everything and leave the grocery store. 

-And lastly, I learned how to have reasonable limits. Do one thing every dayjust one, advised Eggsister, and it’s been the best goal. One outing (like going to the grocery store or on a walk at the gym, but not both) or one project (like writing this blog post or baking something or working on Bernie’s baby book) plus all of the necessary baby stuff (feeding, changing, tummy time, bath time, cuddling) and adult stuff (brushing my teeth, eating a granola bar, staring at Bernie, and occasionally showering) makes a successful day these days. I’ve been slow moving but doing my best to savor every bit of it. 

Ok now if you’ll excuse me I’ve wanted a piece of challah for the past three hours so I’m going to prepare to make the journey with Bernie from living room to kitchen for that piece of challah. See you in a month!

-yeh!