A few of my aunties were in town over the weekend, and since Auntie Shelfee's birthday is coming up and we were going to be taking her to an early birthday dinner, I decided to make her favorite dessert - canelles. They're made with milk, butter, flour, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and the secret ingredient - rum - and then baked in silicone molds at a very high temperature to give it a crusty, almost burnt exterior, while maintaining a moist chewy cake-like interior.
I also had two 6-inch chocolate cake rounds in the freezer (previously baked and then double-wrapped with saran wrap and stored inside a large ziploc bag), that I had intended to make into ice cream cake for Matthew's birthday (but never got around to doing), which I defrosted and then made a quick coffee buttercream frosting to ice it with, so that we could bring a cake to dinner for dessert.
First we hung out at the house and played with the kids, while snacking on canelles, coffee, and my mom's homemade banana bread.
Then we were off to dinner at our favorite local Italian restaurant. We dined on fried calamari, polenta with cheese and mushrooms, caprese salad, butternut squash ravioli with sage and brown butter, linguini with seafood, and gnocchi with sausage, spinach and red wine sauce.
Then it was time for dessert!
Happy (Early) Birthday, Auntie Shelfee! See you at Thanksgiving!