Monday, October 24, 2011

My 31st Birthday ... Again

Every year, I try to drag my birthday out as long as possible. I'm not one of those don't-tell-anyone-it's-my-birthday-and-hope-they'll-remember kinda girls. I let everybody know my special day is on the way a month in advance. And then I schedule as many celebrations as possible. This year, my "birthday forever" plan worked out especially well since my parents were out of town on my real birthday (Oct. 16th).

Tonight, we celebrated at their house in Arkansas, and I asked my mom to prepare me the ultimate Southern Dinner — Vegan Dumplins, Fried Okra, Fried Squash, Butter Beans and Cornbread, Slow-cooked Rape Greens, and Corn:


Now, just to be clear, this was our lunchtime meal. In the South, "dinner" means "lunch," and the evening meal is called "supper." Here's a close-up of my fave part of the meal, the Fried Okra and Squash:

My mama's vegan dumplins were also quite amazing. I don't know what that woman does to get her dumplins so tender, but they are out of this world. Instead of cooking mine in chicken broth, she uses veggie broth with a little added Earth Balance.

Here's the chef, my Mama:

She also made me a Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar:

Now, you can see that my mama's no pro cake decorator. But who cares? The homemade chocolate buttercream was amazing, and I thought she did a cute little job trying to fit my name onto the cake. Before I snapped this shot, she said, "Now, you better not put a picture of my decoratin' job on the internet." Oops. Too late!

Anyway, the day was fabulous. I hung out with my parents, my granny and pa, and my me-maw. We stuffed ourselves and then I opened my presents. Birthdays are the best!

19 comments:

JohnP said...

That entire meal is amazing!!!

Josh said...

That looks so good. Btw, I hope your cookbook has something to do with rape greens. I grew a bunch and now I can't figure out how to cook them.

foodfeud said...

Very sweet of them. Do they use Earth Balance just for you or do they use it themselves too?

Glo said...

Happy Birthday Bianca -- I'm from Memphis and grew up with fried everything for meals. That okra looks delish!

VeganLinda said...

Your parents rock! Everything looks soooo good, the perfect birthday meal!

VeggieGirl said...

Aww lovely celebration!

laceylovesfood said...

Dang, Mama Crunk is gorgeous!

I tend to drag out my b'day celebration for as long as possible as well. It's always during Thanksgiving week when everyone's off work...HEH.

Sophia said...

Happy Birthday! What a celebration, yummy food and family- can't be beat, your mother seems so sweet!

-Sophia
Happy Vegan MoFo!
http://whatyourmommadidntknow.blogspot.com/

panda with cookie said...

I'd like for your mom to make my birthday meal next year.

jessy said...

your mom rocks the most socks, Bianca! that's one ultimate southern dinner, fo 'sho (especially the okra 'n fried squash) - and the chocolate chip cookie cake. oooooh, it sounds fantastical and i think it looks awesome!

hayleylujah said...

Happy birthday! That looks like an amazing meal. Now I want to make myself some dumplings and fried okra.

bitt said...

Your mom's meal impressed me so much I will just pretend your little 5 year old sister decorated the cake for you. Awww, cute. I wish my mom could cook vegan. She can barely cook regular so there's not much hope for her. cherish what you got! And happy birthday!

Erin said...

BEST MEAL EVER. Your mom rules.

Echo said...

Your meal looks amazing! All of it! Happy Birthday! My dad has some okra in the kitchen he has yet to use...hmmm...maybe I will ask him to fry it :)

thejollyfox said...

Fried okra get in my mouth right now. Looks so good. Happy Late Birthday!

Scissors and Spice said...

So cute! I love your mom!

knittygrrl said...

I seriously hope that you'll have a recipe for your mom's dumpling in your cookbook or post very soon, they look amazing!

Tender B. said...

That plate looks delicious. With food like that floating around, I'd stretch my birthday out as long as possible too.

Ann said...

OMG! We have the same birthday, except I'm '83. What will make my 28th year smashing will be the release of your cookbook in the spring!
Thanks for writing,
~Ann from Atlanta