Allison’s Ahoy It’s a Boy Shower Part II: The Food

Ever since Samantha’s hospitalization on Monday, Jake and I have been pretty drained and still in semi-shock. Although I’m way behind on getting things done around the house, I’ve put our never-ending laundry pile to the wayside and have simply been enjoying playing with the girls at the park or at home. It’s hard to believe that at the beginning of the week, Samantha was completely out of it, and now she’s running around the house, laughing and playing with Amelia. It’s so nice to have our Samantha back!
I’ve also been backlogged on posting updates about all the happy, fun events that occurred prior to our horrible experience on Monday. So, while the girls are napping, and since I’d rather be updating the blog than doing laundry, back to Allison’s Ahoy It’s a Boy Baby Shower…
This post details the food–my favorite part! (Part One: The Decor can be viewed here).  
First, the cake:
The cake was a team effort and was the product of our fourth attempt to make the perfect-tasting lemon buttercream cake.  I baked the first attempt, which turned out Death-Valley-dry. I tried it out about a week before the shower and sent it to Jake’s work, asking the other lawyers and staff there to give me honest feedback. The nearly unanimous opinion was that the frosting was yummy, but the actual cake needed work. 
Back to the drawing board.
For attempt #2, my mom was fortunately here and researched a bunch of ways to make the cake more moist. We again sent the test cake to Jake’s work and, while this attempt received more positive feedback, it still needed some work. The cake still wasn’t moist enough and definitely not lemon-y enough was the consensus. 
Our third attempt was the charm! My mom tried using a boxed lemon cake mix, and added lemon pudding mix, fresh lemon juice and sour cream to make it more moist. The cake, combined with her homemade lemon curd and my lemon buttercream frosting was divine!
We ended up eating half the cake ourselves before sending it off to Jake’s work for more opinions. Jake said people were stampeding to the break room to try a taste after word got out. Tons of people asked for the recipe, so we knew we had a keeper!
Our fourth attempt was the cake for the actual shower. My mom baked the cake and made the lemon curd the day before. I made the lemon buttercream frosting and dyed it four different times, inserting the frosting into piping bags to sit overnight. Jake did the actual piping after I showed him a YouTube tutorial on what I wanted because my hands ached after squeezing the piping bags for that long. I then placed some brown sugar “sand” on top, and placed some white chocolate “seashells” I had made using a chocolate mold. 
This delicious lemon cake contained four layers, each separated by some very tart homemade lemon curd, and iced with lemon buttercream. My mouth starts to water just thinking about how amazingly delectable it was. 
Cookies! For the Nutter Butter Flip-Flops, I just piped some frosting onto the cookies for the “straps” and placed a white or green candy pearl in the middle. Super easy and super cute! 
I baked the whale and starfish sugar cookies a few days in advance and made homemade royal icing the day before. Jake helped me pipe the icing onto the cookies and my mom and Jake added the adorable edible googly eyes. 
Starfish sugar cookies. 
My favorite treat of the event! These Clam Cookies were a huge hit and were both cute and tasty. We bought the madeline cookies at Costco and my mom and Jake iced them. We used yogurt-covered raisins for the “pearl” as well as edible googly eyes. I then arranged them on brown sugar “sand.” These were so easy to do and the cutest of all the desserts. 
Cake Pops are more of a decoration than a dessert in my opinion, but I had fun baking them anyway with my BabyCakes Cake Pop Maker (if you are reading this, Jake, I TOLD you I’d get some use out of it!) 
After being inspired from a photo of these I saw on Pinterest, I decided to include these chocolate-covered marshmallow pops, which  were easy to make. I melted down some blue chocolate melts, dipped a lollipop stick in the chocolate, stuck them in the marshmallows and placed them in the fridge to set. 
After the chocolate had set, I dipped the marshmallows into the melted chocolate, swirled them around a bit to get rid of excess chocolate, dipped the bottoms in brown sugar and then stuck a goldfish cracker onto the front and miniature candy pearls for bubbles. I made them the day before and then arranged them on a platter with brown sugar (sensing a theme yet?) for the “sand.” 

We made some chocolate seahorses and shells using a chocolate mold. 
The chocolate cupcakes ended up looking not so pretty because the white chocolate frosting I made was too soft while I was piping it. To make matters worse, the frosting started melting completely after sitting out at the party for too long by the hot window. You win some, you lose some. 
I ended up taking out the seahorses and placing a white chocolate seashell on top of each cupcake, which looked a lot cuter, but I didn’t get a picture of the final product. 
I didn’t get a close-up of it, but I also made a layered blueberry parfait inside a trifle dish that was, sadly, the most healthy thing there.

Thankfully, Aunt Lynn (Allison’s mom) offered to take care of the luncheon. That helped out SO much since it allowed me to focus on the games, desserts and decorations.

She told me what she had planned and we came up with some cute beach-themed names for the food that I printed out on little signs. The chicken salad sandwiches became “Chicken of the Sea Sandwiches,” the pasta salad became “Shell Pasta,” and the pita chips became “Sea Salt Chips.” 

She also put together some appetizers, fruit salad and cranberry spinach salad to complete the luncheon. 

The food and desserts worked out great and I don’t think anyone left hungry. If anything, they all left in a sugar coma!

And now, a little behind-the-scenes action!

Me placing the brown sugar “sand” over the top of the cake before arranging the seashells and cake topper. 
My slaves helpers worked diligently on cookie duty. For the most part, Jake and my mom were happy to help out with everything from tying tiny bows onto the cake pop sticks to decorating cookies late into the night. 
A couple nights in, however, they started getting a little cranky and unionized against me, demanding meal breaks and rest periods. We ended up negotiating a compromise wherein I agreed that they would work no later than 9 p.m. It’s so hard to find good (free) help these days 🙂
In all seriousness, Jake and my mom were amazing and I couldn’t have pulled off the shower without them. Case in point: Here, my mom is using tweezers to place each tiny edible pearl onto the starfish. Now THAT’S dedication. 
Jake kept claiming that the arms of the starfish cookies were breaking, thereby giving him an excuse to eat them. When I started getting mad after the sixth or seventh missing arm, Jake suggested that we could just serve the cookies, but tell people the starfish would grow the arm back or that the arm had attached to another starfish. I think we were all a little delirious at that point in the night and couldn’t stop laughing. 
It was a lot of work, but we had FUN. 

In the next post, I’ll detail how the actual shower went down, including pictures of actual people!

Lots of love,

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  1. So incredible! I think I need the recipe for that lemon cake too!