#Amber40 | Backyard 40th Birthday Party

From August 2014 until February 2015 I thought about turning 40 years old.   Then, from February 26th {my birthday} until today I haven't thought about it a single time.  That is to say except for remembering the celebrations! I had a week full of parties; sort of like and timing to coincide with MARDI GRAS, but without the debauchery. 

Today is the half-birthday mark of 40 years old, and I have a few details of my backyard party that I wanted to share; Naked Cake, white lights, and great food.  

One REGRET that I need to put out there is that I don't have better photographs.   I know that Apple has billboards all around the US with "taken by an iPhone" gorgeous photo spread, but I promise they will not be asking me for rights.   Just imagine that my pictures are less blurry, more saturated with color, and professional.   This one regret aside, this is the best party I have ever had at my house; better than Summer Thanksgiving, White Desserts, Cinco De Mayo, et al.


White Bean Hummus with Crudite

Warm Chicken Salad with Kale, Raspberries, and Goat Cheese

Stone Baked Flatebread with Gorgonzola, Proscuitto, and Arugula

Quinoa Pilaf with Roasted Mushrooms and Califlower

Homemade Rolls with Fleur de Sel

Roasted Herbed Wild Salmon

Sparkling Water and Sparkling Rosé Grape Juice

Diet Coke and Diet Dr. Pepper 


Naked Pound Cake with Raspberry Coulis, Raspberries, and Vanilla Buttercream


My birthday cake was inspired by a cake I saw on Matchbox Kitchen. I loved it the second I saw it.   Sara Tso, the baker and founder shared her Naked Cake details with DesignLoveFest and they posted all of the details and an incredible amount of gorgeous photos on their blog.  Check in at DLF for photo instructions. 

Naked Cake

• 4″ and 6″ cake, each about 2″-3″ tall
• sturdy frosting, such as american buttercream or italian meringue buttercream
• fresh fruit, sliced for filling and whole for decoration (raspberries and strawberries are used here)
• small offset spatula
• small pastry brush
• powdered sugar
• cake stand or cardboard cake board
• 6″ bamboo skewer, optional

• Slice each cake into three even layers. Place the bottom layer of the 6″ cake on a disposable cake board or cake stand.

• Add a dollop of frosting to the center of the cake, then use a small offset spatula to gently push out to the edges. Place prepared fruit on top of frosting. Add second layer of cake and repeat frosting and fruit. Make sure each layer of cake is centered and even.