cinnamon roll birthday cake

cinnamon roll birthday cake

Nothing says good morning on a special day like a cinnamon roll. We have a solid family tradition of using them to celebrate the most important days of the year. First day of school, yes! Christmas, every year. And now here is an awesome way to use them for birthdays as well. Making a caramel drizzled cinnamon roll into a cake sounds like the most perfect way to start a birthday.

Make a cinnamon roll cake for a morning birthday party, for the office, for the classroom, or to celebrate at home before the day of festivities begin. Any chance to enjoy this gooey, hot treat will make your favorite people’s special day so much sweeter.

cinnamon roll birthday cake

cinnamon roll birthday cake

cinnamon roll birthday cake

cinnamon roll birthday cake

To make a caramel drizzle cinnamon roll cake at home you’ll need:

For the dough: 1 package (2-1/4 tsp) active dry yeast, 3/4 cup whole milk, warmed, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 4 large eggs, 4-1/2 cups flour, plus more as needed, 1-1/2 tsp kosher salt, 6 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into chunks.

For the caramel: 6 tbsp butter, melted, 1 cup firmly pack light brown sugar, 3 tbsp dark honey, pinch of salt, 1 cup coarsely chopped pecans.

For the filling: 4 tbsp butter, at room temperature, 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar, 1 tsp ground cinnamon.

For the cream cheese icing: 2-1/2 oz cream cheese, softened, 3 tbsp milk, 1-1/2 cups powdered sugar, more if needed.

cinnamon roll birthday cake

Start by making the dough. In the bowl of a stand mixer, dissolve the yeast in the warm milk and let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes. Add the granulated sugar, eggs, flour, and salt. Attach the dough hook and knead on low speed, adding a little more flour if needed, until all your ingredients come together. Toss in the butter and continue to knead until the dough is smooth and springy, about 7 minutes. Lightly oil a large bowl. Form the dough into a ball, put it in the bowl, and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise at room temperature until it is doubled in size, 1-1/2 to 2 hours.

While the dough is rising butter the pans, we used an 8-inch, 6-inch, and 4-inch round cake pans for the stacked cake and an 8-inch for the single layer cake.

Make the caramel by stirring together the melted butter, brown sugar, honey, salt, and pecans. Divide and spread the mixture in each pan.

Punch down the dough and dump onto a floured work surface. Cut the dough in half. Roll out each half into a rectangle about 10 by 15 inches. Position the rectangles vertically.

Fill the dough. Spread each rectangle with 2 tablespoons of the room temperature butter, then half of the brown sugar and half of the cinnamon. Take a pizza cutter or sharp knife and cut about 8 strips from each rectangle.

cinnamon roll birthday cake

To make the center of each “cake” take one strip and starting at the end closest to you, loosely roll up the strip. Place the roll in the center of the pan. Coil the remaining strips around the center roll by joining the strip to the end of the previous one, until the pan is filled. Continue these steps for the other pans. You may have leftover strips of filled dough which you can make into regular cinnamon rolls.

Cover the pans loosely with plastic wrap and let stand in a warm, draft-free spot until puffy, about 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 350F. Bake until the cakes are golden brown, 25-30 minutes (watch the smaller pans for doneness sooner). If some parts of the cake start to rise more than others, take a spatula or cake server and lightly press down on the spot.

cinnamon roll birthday cake

Let the cakes cool in the pans on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then carefully invert each pan onto a plate (you can use a cake stand for the large cake) and unmold the cakes.

While cakes are cooling, make the icing by whisking the cream cheese in a stand mixer until creamy. Add the milk and whisk until combined. Sift in the powdered sugar and whisk until smooth. Drizzle cream cheese icing over the top of the largest cake. Stack the medium-size cake on top of the large cake, drizzle with icing. Top with the small cake and drizzle with icing. Serve and enjoy!

(Project styling and photography by Athena Plichta for A Subtle Revelry. Recipe adapted from Home Baked Comfort by Kim Laidlaw)

Posted August 18, 2014 4 Comments
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why don’t we – go back to school school stickers


The twins are starting school on Monday. It may only be kindergarten, but their school goes up to sixth grade, and they will be eating in a real life cafeteria, and having homework that must be done on my computer, and I just about hyperventilated last night when their teachers said, “the kids will have weekly spelling quizzes throughout the year”. What!?!

It is exciting, overwhelming, and I couldn’t be more happy for them. For us all.

Back to school is one of my favorite events of the year – I love getting organized and ready for a new season. Having a cute planner is an important part of this process. Even if by school I mean… work next Monday! This year, the planner won my cutest planner of the year award. It includes the brightest, most fun stickers and a slew of amazing “to-do” lists.

While I fill in our fall calendar with ideas like cleaning my house in roller skates. Here are some other fun back to school ideas:

Our chalkboard cake and candy chalk will always be a fall favorite

Free download back to school poster, by Melanie Burk

Fruit stickers to fill a lunch with sweet notes

The best stapler for making my desk more fun this fall

School inspired nail art

Make traditional back to school schultutes for a festive first day

Back to schoool “about me” printables

Bright labels to make brown bags less brown

My favorite tennis shoes for fall + the party style board with loads of festive hair and outfit ideas for any fall party

Happy new school year!

Posted August 15, 2014 3 Comments
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25 cocktails to make this fall

25 cocktails to make this fall

While enjoying the porch last night I noticed how quickly it is beginning to get darker in the evenings. Although summer is a favorite season for many reasons. Fall is even better!

The chill, the busyness, the general excitement of fall can’t be beat. In this busy season we quickly move from entertaining with long lingering feasts, to inviting friends over for drinks and a quick bite after practice, before bed times, and whenever it works. To help the effort – we’ve collected 25 favorite cocktails to make this fall. Each recipe is awesome for warming up, inviting guests over and enjoying moments of revelry in the midst of the fall crazy.

1. Pumpkin Pineapple Cocktail – Cookie and Kate | 2. Bourbon Apple Cider – Set the Table | 3. Autumn Punch – Scout | 4. Smoretini – Creative Culinary | 5. Rosemary Maple Bourbon Sour – Country Living | 6. The Hot Apple-Ginger Toddy – Free People | 7. Warm Coconut Milk with Hazelnuts, Honey & Bourbon – The Gouda Life | 8. Guinness Cream Soda – Chow | 9. Figgy Maple Bourbon Fizz – Cheese and Chocolate | 10. The Hibernating Honey Bear – In Sock Monkey Slippers | 11. Pumpkin Butter + Wheat Whiskey – Dessert For Two | 12. Cider Jack Cocktail – Food Network | 13. Pomegranate and Ginger Spritzer – Drizzle & Dip | 14. Chattanooga Rudy – Alabama Chanin | 15. Caramel Apple Cider Cocktail – Creative Culinary | 16. Vanilla, Pear, and Vodka Cocktail – Two Tarts | 17. The Jim Dandy – The Boys Club | 18. Spiked Apple Cider Floats – Food + Words | 19. The Old Fashioned Vermonter Cocktail – Bakeaholic Mama | 20. Spiced Pumpkin Punch – Domesticate Me | 21. Spiced Apple Cider Sangria – Keep it Skinny | 22. Espresso Martini Affogato – Chasing Delicious | 23. Sailor’s Ale – Design Sponge | 24. Hot Buttered Hazelnut Whisky – Adventures in Cooking | 25. Sparkling Pumpkin Cider Beertail – Brit + Co

(Graphic design done by Jamie Bartlett for A Subtle Revelry.)

Posted August 13, 2014 1 Comment
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decal imprint candles




Making plain white taper candles beautiful is a favorite of mine. As we begin transitioning into fall – candles are a wonderful way to bring the party indoors.

Printing decals on candles makes for a nice combination on the table for a gathering this fall. In the past, I’ve created a decal look using Modge Podge which works awesome, but then I realized there’s an even easier way, and it leaves no glue residue in the air when the candles burn. Perfect! All you need is a drawn on tissue, wax paper, and a heat source see the full tutorial right here.

Posted August 12, 2014 2 Comments
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summer berry pavlova stack

Summer Berry Pavlova Stack

Making a gorgeous Pavlova stack is a great way to end a seasonal meal with friends. A light, fluffy meringue mixed with scrumptious summer berries makes for a dessert guests will absolutely adore. August is my favorite time for making this sweet – since berries are at their peak harvest, and I don’t need to turn on my oven during the hottest month of the year.

The cake is especially great for dinner parties and birthdays. All the elements can be prepared separately for this sweet stacked cake. When ready to serve, simply stack the cake together and bring out – just be ready to hear applause for the beautiful presentation.

Summer Berry Pavlova Stack

Summer Berry Pavlova Stack

To make the pavlova meringue, whisk four egg whites in an electric mixer until light and fluffy. With the machine still whisking, slowly add in eight heaped tablespoons of caster sugar, letting each one thoroughly mix in. Add half and teaspoon of vanilla extract, and a teaspoon of white vinegar. The vinegar keeps the meringues fluffy on the inside and crunchy on the outside.

Keep whisking until the mixture is shiny and forms stiff peaks. You should be able to hold the bowl upside down over your head when it is ready!

Summer Berry Pavlova Stack

Divide the mixture into five circles on baking trays lined with non-stick paper. These don’t need to be even, it works better if a few are larger or smaller.

Bake in a pre-heated oven at 110ºC/230ºF for 90 minutes.

Once cooled, start with the largest pavlova meringue and load it with whipped cream and berries. Load each meringue before placing on top of the stack.

Top tip! If you are worried it will topple over, poke a wooden skewer through the middle.

To serve, remove each layer onto plates for guests to slice through and enjoy.

Summer Berry Pavlova Stack

See more great summer cakes right here.

(Project styling + design by Claire Cassidy for A Subtle Revelry.)

Posted August 11, 2014 4 Comments
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why don’t we – have a fruit party

Peelable apple fruit invitation

Peelable watermelon party invitation

Peelable banana party fruit invitation

It’s the season for celebrating fruit! Our garden harvest is ready and having a fruit themed party to celebrate the end of summer sounds like a great idea. Why don’t we?

There are hundreds of fruity tutorials to help in the process, although these peelable fruit invitations might be my favorite ever. What a fun way to invite friends over. Add a great fruit inspired DIY, to a big bowl of freshly harvested fruit, and a cocktail infused with berries for an easy late summer party.

While I get harvesting for our own fruity party this weekend, here are a few favorite fruit inspired projects and recipes:

Printable fruit favor boxes

Watermelon gummy bears for the kids

Fruity inspired honeycomb decorations

A fruity door mat to welcome your guests in summer style

Cute fruit magnets to give as favors

Individual strawberry cream pies

Fruit balloons

Guava sangria

Fruit pinatas

Plus, I’m planning on using our recent watermelon cake toppers, making these fruit cakes, topped with fruit candles, and hanging back up the pineapple wreath. Have a happy weekend! xoxo

Posted August 08, 2014 3 Comments
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