Devin’s 26th Birthday


Roasted Carrot Soup

Lightened-Up Sundried Tomato Basil Pesto Zoodles

Vegan Vanilla Cake with Chai Spice Icing

(all served with lots of love and hugs)


Roasted Carrot Soup

Original Recipe from Food52


  • 6 to 8 large carrots (about 1 3/4 pounds)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Salt
  • 3/4 box vegetable stock
  • 1 piece ginger, an inch long, peeled
  • 1 sprig thyme, plus more for garnish
  • 1/2 large sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  1. Peel and cut the carrots into 1/2-inch rounds.Toss the carrots with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and sprinkle generously with salt. Grill the carrots until equally roasted on all sides.
  2. Meanwhile, bring the stock to a boil, add the ginger and the sprig of thyme and simmer gently for 15 minutes.
  3. Put the onion in a medium stock pot with the remaining olive oil. Brown the onion over medium heat, stirring frequently. Add the garlic, and then add the carrots.
  4. Remove the ginger and thyme from the stock and add the stock to the pot with the onions and carrots. Bring to boil and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes, until the carrots are soft enough to puree.
  5. Use an immersion or a standard blender to puree the mixture until smooth. If the soup seems too thick, add more stock or water and reheat gently. Add salt and pepper to taste. To serve, garnish with chopped fresh thyme.

Victoria’s Notes: Original recipe had way too much liquid. Changed above to actual amount used. The recipe was tripled for the party.

Lightened-Up Sundried Tomato Basil Pesto Zoodles

Original recipe from Oh She Glows Every Day

For the Sun-dried Cashew Cream

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tbsp water
  • 2-3 medium cloves garlic
  • 1/3 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained
  • 2 tbsps fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • splash olive oil

For the pasta

  • Zucchini (1-2 per person), spiralized
  • 2/3 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped
  • 3/4 cup packed fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • Splash of olive oil
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1-2 tsp white wine vinegar, to taste
  • Fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Mushrooms
  • Sliced cherry tomatoes
  • Parmesan, shredded
  1. Put cashews in a bowl and add water to cover by a couple inches. Soak for 8-12 hours or overnight. Drain and rinse.
  2. In a high-speed blender, combine cashews, water, garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, lemon juice, and salt. Blend on high until smooth. Use olive oil to smooth out the mixture, if needed. Stir in chopped sun-dried tomatoes.
  3. Heat a splash of oil in a pan over medium heat. Add zucchini. Saute until tender but still hold shape, approx 5 mins. Drain excess liquid.
  4. Plate pasta and top with Cashew Cream, tomatoes, mushrooms. Add parmesan cheese to taste.

Victoria’s Notes: Forgot to add spinach. The recipe was tripled for the party.

Vegan Vanilla Cake with Chai Spice Icing

Original Recipe from The Almond Eater


  • 2½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1½ cups sugar (I used coconut sugar)
  • ½ cup dairy-free butter (I use Earth Balance)
  • 1½ cups coconut almond blend milk
  • ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

For the icing:

  • 2½ cups powdered sugar
  • ½ cup dairy-free butter
  • 2-4 tbsp coconut almond blend milk
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp ginger
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch of cloves, allspice, and cardamom
  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl and set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, cream butter and sugar together; add milk, applesauce, vinegar, and vanilla to that bowl and stir to combine.
  4. Combine wet and dry ingredients and stir until everything is mixed together, being careful not to over-stir.
  5. Grease three 7.5″ round cake pans with coconut oil and then pour batter evenly into pans. (Original recipe used 6″ pans)
  6. Bake cakes for 25-30 minutes (Original recipes asked for 35-40 minutes), or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  7. Once cakes are done, leave them in the pans for 10 minutes before carefully transferring them to a cooling rack. Flip upside down onto racks to help flatten tops.
  8. For the icing: cream powdered sugar and butter together; add first 2 tbsps of milk, vanilla, and spices to the bowl and mix with an electric mixer until everything is smooth. Add additional tbsps of milk as needed; icing should be thick but spreadable.
  9. To assemble: Once the cakes have cooled completely, flatten tops by removing the “dome” from each. Next, ice the top of one of those cakes using a generous amount of icing and then place the second cake on top, using the icing as glue to hold them together. Repeat this again for the third and final layer. Last, ice the top and sides of the cake. Top with cinnamon and cinnamon sticks.

Emma’s Notes: Only change made to the original recipe is the amount of milk added to icing. I doubled the amount to make it more spreadable.

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