My brother's daughter turns 1 year old today. Over the past year I've fallen head over heels in love with this little squishball and have delighted at watching her grow. We celebrated her birthday this past weekend and, yes, I brought a cake. But it couldn't be any old cake for this little girl.
Pardon the messy board, this cake traveled 200 miles on a bus
For whatever reason, my niece has acquired a plethora of monkey-festooned clothing and accessories and she is often referred to as monkey, so I knew what the cake was going to have to look like. And since monkeys love bananas and my brother and his wife have a soft spot for Nutella, I crafted a three-layer cake comprised of vanilla genoise, banana pastry cream, hazelnut praline paste, and chocolate-hazelnut ganache. And a tiny pink bow made of fondant.
Slice of monkey face!
I think my niece wasn't quite sure what to make of the monkey head on the dining room table. She stuck out her tiny finger and poked its nose, which I failed to capture on my camera, but the sight of which I can't forget. She was none too interested in eating the cake (the girl is like my brother - no sweet tooth) but she sure did enjoy crumbling the small piece we gave her. And I think the adults in attendance enjoyed it.
My niece vs. the monkey
Happy 1st birthday to my favorite little girl in the world!