Happy Birthday Elsa!

Our little baby turns 1 today, so this text is to her. Maybe in a couple of years, she can go back and read this (if our blog still is online). But until then, don’t be a stranger, read it, leave her a comment, and dig in on some pancake cake!

Dear Elsa, if one word would define your first year, it must be Change. During this year, you have learned how to breath, nurse, point at, laugh, sit up, eat, crawl, play, grab, kiss, hug and walk. Every skill learned was soon replaced with a new one. It has been a constant evolvement. A constant change. And as we went on this trip around the world with you, change got a whole new meaning.

You have been flying 15 times during your first year. You have been on 3 different continents. You have been moving from 80°F heat one day, to 5°F and snow two days later, and then on to 100°F one week after that. During this trip you have slept in 47 different locations. 47! Imagine being 9 months old and being put in a new bed, in a new room, in a new city, twice every week. And we haven’t even counted how many time zones that you have crossed. When we think about it, we realize that you could have been seriously messed up by know. But how have you instead reacted to all this change?

Like a total angel. It’s unbelievable. You hit the high score in The-Most-Perfect-Baby-With-A-Backpack-Contest. On the airplanes you always put on a show; you stand up in your seat, wave your hand like a princess, and smile at everyone. And every single person on the airplane always waves back at you. It’s hilarious to watch. You have made new friends everywhere, and at the age of one, you have also become a global food enthusiast. You have been playing in the snow, in the ocean and on the beach. You are not fond of playing alone, but as long as we are close, you are happy. And you have been sleeping for 12 hours each night, no matter where you were. You adapt to change like a chameleon. If you would have been different in any way, this trip would have been much more complicated, or even impossible.

Thank you Elsa for putting up with all these changes, and for changing our world. Happy birthday, we love you more than anything.
/Mom & Dad

Now, let’s eat birthday cake!

We can go on and on about how you should not give small children sugar, sweets or even anything that is sweetened with refined sugar. They don’t need it and they don’t have any natural craving for it. Come to think about it, we will actually go and on about it, but not today. We will save that for another post.

Since we didn’t want to give Elsa a traditional sugar-flour-jam kind of cake, but we did want to give her a treat that she loves, this pancake cake was perfect. It was also perfect since it was the only cake that we could make without an oven or a blender. It is gluten free and sugar free. It is topped with a lovely thai-inspired coconut cream, and served with lots of fresh fruit. You might remember that we also did a pancake cake for Luise’s birthday, you could use that almond & date filling in this cake too.

 

Coconut & Banana Pancake Cake
10-12 pancakes (6 inch)

4 bananas
6 eggs
1/2 cup (1,2 dl) coconut milk
2/3 cup (2 dl) dried coconut flakes (unsweetened)
coconut oil
fresh fruit

Mash the bananas in a bowl, using a fork. Then whisk in the eggs, add the coconut milk and shredded coconut and stir to combine. Heat coconut oil in a pan and fry the small pancakes a couple of minutes on each side. Let the pancake cool off, one by one, on a big plate. To arrange the stack of pancakes, you start with one pancake, then a layer of mashed fruit, nut butter or jam of choice and continue with the rest of the pancakes. We varied mashed papaya and mashed mango between the layers. Pour over the Coconut Cream (recipe below) just before serving. Garnish with flowers, Happy Birthday!

Coconut Vanilla Cream (inspired by a recipe on Honest Fare)

2 cups (5 dl) coconut milk
1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped
1 cinnamon stick
1 thin slice fresh ginger
2 large soft dates, pitted
2 tbsp corn starch, tapioca starch or arrowroot

Place coconut milk, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger and dates in a small pot on medium heat. Bring to a simmer while stirring, then lower the heat to a bare simmer. Mix starch with 2 tbsp water in a small bowl, add to the pot and let simmer for another 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the cinnamon stick, vanilla pod, ginger and dates. Transfer the cream to a bowl and place in the fridge for about 30 minutes. It will become a little thicker when it’s cold. Serve.

65 Comments

  • Its really lovely and I believed Elsa will be very blessed to have your as her parents! Down the road as she grew older and she reads this blog, she will be really grateful and appreciative towards your!
  • Happy Birthday Elsa! What a beautiful pancake cake! Children are such a joy! :-)
  • Bronwyn
    Wow! So cool! Going to make this for a birthday next time! Or maybe just breakfast! 💛
  • i love to eat sweet - so having your app/s i found this recipe and just tried it ... amazingly easy, fast and delicious - will come on my most favorite recipe list !
  • Catarina
    I added coconut flour and they were much better. Before the coconut flour they were like omelets with coconut.
  • Having followed your blog for some time now, I have only just found this (beautiful) post. Your posts are so full of light and love. Your lives are carved from a place of authenticity and joy, it is lovely to witness and thank you for sharing. x
  • Sandeepa
    Hi guys! Just love, live, love your blog!! Have been following it for a while and have never been disappointed with any recipe that I have tried. Would love to make a pancake cake for my daughters first but looking for an eggless version. Any suggestions?? Many thanks Sandeepa
  • Gina
    So the cake did not have any kind of flour? Did it just rise like that from the eggs?
  • Pistol
    Elsa, how long will the cream keep for? Can it be put in the fridge?
  • tilda
    hittade receptet i arkivet och gjorde det till frukost igår (gjorde en tredjedels sats, hade på blåbär och hemgjord nutella). det var nog det godaste jag ätit. tack!!
  • A beautiful pancake cake for a beautiful baby girl! Happy birthday Elsa!
  • lisa
    I am planning to make this recipe for my daughter's first b-day. How many people does this recipe serve? We're having ~20 people total. Just wondering if I should double the recipe/not. Thank you!
  • oh - such a nice letter to elsa! happy birthday :-) it feels good to hear that all that traveling and the changes actually seemed to be good for her - in oppose to what everyone always tells you: babys need routine... blablabla...
  • สุขสันต์วันเกิดค่่า Elsa Wish you all the best :) We glad that you love the cat! & Hope to see you again someday!
  • What a gorgeous, clever, and tasty idea. You had me at the papaya-and-mango filling.
  • Happy birthday Elsa - aren't you just the most gorgeous little lady! Those pancakes look like a real treat - YUM!
  • Grattis Elsa! Many happy moments and dreams for your sweet little one!
  • I am behind in all my blog reading and was saving yours for a special moment when I could really focus and enjoy (rare these days). First, what a gorgeous baby you have. Really precious - no wonder everyone smiles at her! 12-18 months is my favorite age so you are really in for a treat. It is nice that you appreciate how special and adaptable she is and you are giving her a gift - the desire to travel. What an amazing little person she will grow up to be. Congrats to all three of you for an exciting and successful first year.
  • Happy Birthday, little Elsa! And thank you, David and Luise for sharing your world with us. My daughter is just a month younger than Elsa and our family also travels a lot (though unfortunately not to the same extent as you do at the moment) and it is so nice to see how Elsa is not only coping with but as it seems also enjoying all the new impressions! It is a great gift to be able to show a child the world in such a direct way! Keep doing!! Look forward to every new post!
  • Happy Birthday to Elsa! this is an amazing letter to your daughter. You made me misty-eyed! I'm a sap. :) She is so beautiful, and looks so vibrant. What a wonderful experience you are giving her traveling. And what a beautiful pancake cake! I love how you used the ingredients from the things around you. I hope the rest of your travels go well - I love living vicariously!
  • Sorry it took me a while to leave a comment, I was having to technical difficulties but I hope this time it works out. Elsa you are beautiful. You are lucky to have the parents that you do. They adore you more than you will ever ever know. Happy birthday little girl. May your life always be nothing but pure blessings. xoxo Da, Enzo, Maria and Christian
  • Happy birthday, sweet precious Elsa! What a gift you are to your parents, and what incredible parents you have. If only all parents could be as dedicated to their children about teaching them love, tolerance and nutrition. Luise & David, you are awesome models. The pancakes look amazing, and I'm sure they were delicious ... if only I ate eggs. Take great care in your journey and keep safe. -Grace
  • What a sweet sweet post for little Elsa, Happy Birthday! You are indeed so very fortunate to have a little one who sleeps 12 hours each night! And how fortunate SHE is to have traveled the world and to have parents who are intentional and responsible about the foods she eats. May she continue to grow healthy and strong!
  • The pancakes sound lovely. Great flavors. Happy Birthday, Elsa! This post was so sweet and a wonderful ode to Elsa.
  • Aliah
    Many many glorious returns of the day Elsa, A very happy Birthday, and may all your wondrous adventures continue..... Btw your parents have the best imaginations!
  • Your daughter is adorable! I love the pancakes too - a very memorable birthday cake :D

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