I didn't feel old when I turned 30, but now I feel old that I have a sister who's 30! I think that age is entirely over-rated - we know lots of people who have really been knocked by moving out of their 20s but it didn't seem to bother us. Easy to say when you're happy with where you are in life, I suppose. Anyway, I think that Kiwi Sis can feel justly pleased with what she's achieved in 30 years - a big handful of academic qualifications, a happy home, lots of intrepid travels, a move half way round the world - and two little munchkins. Not bad at all :)
The cake I made to mark her birthday is called 'The Easiest Cake in the World' by the Guardian, which is where I found it. I don't know if it's literally the easiest ever but it certainly only needed one bowl, one spoon, one mixer and a cake tin and so it was pretty easy to clean up at least. I was inspired to make it by a stupendous cake I made for Vet Dad's birthday before New Year. Vet Mum said it was the best cake I'd ever made for them but all my photos of it were rubbish so I will have to reprise it at a later date. It had sour cream in it and so I went looking for others that used it too in case it was the key magic ingredient for top tasty cake. The recipe had several variations and I went for a cinnamon swirl version for a bit of extra fancy-schmanyness (it's not every day one's sister turns 30 after all, even if one is as liberally endowed with sisters as I am). I also went with the suggestion of using a lemon water icing so that you could still see the marbled patterns. I took the cake with me to an editorial board meeting and so I haven't got any photos of it cut, or indeed drizzled with icing, but the slices were very pleasingly swirled in cinnamon-chocolate and vanilla. I was worried it was a bit undercooked as it looked rather dense, but the other board members liked it very much. I would perhaps leave it to cook for slightly longer next time although it had its full hour and the skewer came out clean. Perhaps it's just what sour cream does to cakes. The lemon icing was a really nice topping and gave a fresh tang to the whole thing. I also made the leftover batter into two little cupcakes so that The Scientist could try it and he gave it the thumbs up with best birthday wishes to Kiwi Sis. After all, you are NEVER too old for cake.
I won't copy out the recipe since I didn't make any changes to it as printed. The Guardian's Easiest Cake in the World, recipe here