HAPPY BIRTHDAY PAPA!
Today is my dad's birthday- and I just wanted to give a nice, big shout out. Out of anyone, I'd have to say he's been my biggest cooking inspiration and influence. He always cooked dinner on weeknights since he would come home earlier than my mom, and whether it was tuna casserole or chicken with cashews, it was always delicious. His lobster bisque is a Christmas tradition, and the one time he tried to swap it out for a different kind of soup, all of our guests were crushed that they didn't get their yearly lobster bisque fix! So thanks, Papa, for being such a culinary mentor!
I did manage to make him a cake, but it was more of a breakfast item than a birthday cake. Once I saw a photo of this Lemon Upside Down Cake in the LA Times, I knew I had to make it- it was so beautiful. It was a cinch to make but next time I will put more lemons at the bottom of the pan to create a prettier top. Since my parents loaded me up with blood oranges from their tree, I think I will try an orange version as well. You probably have all of the ingredients to make this cake in your pantry (you can certainly substitute vanilla extract for vanilla bean) so it's a great cake to whip together at the last minute.
I don't know how it tasted since I didn't try it, but hopefully it was good.
You can find the recipe here.