This was a special month for our You & Julia Challenge — it’s Julia’s birthday month! We asked fans to show us their most epic birthday treats, and they delivered. We saw all kinds of delicious cookies and cakes. Our celebrity chef Joshua Livsey, Executive Pastry Chef at Harvard Restaurant, was impressed by the creativity and flair of the creations. Here are our favorites, with Joshua’s thoughts:

Best Presented: Priscilla C.
Priscilla says: “I made an octopus cake for a best friend's birthday. The octopus was made from modeling chocolate. The cake was lemon with a raspberry filling. The frosting was swiss meringue buttercream.”
Joshua says: “The detail in the chocolate octopus is stunning.”

priscilla you and julia

Best Effort: Gwyn H.
Gwyn says: “This is only epic because I turned 70 during a 3-day blizzard and had to make myself a cake using what I had in my cabinets.”
Joshua says: “Anyone who makes their own birthday cake deserves an award.”

gwyn you and julia

One We Wanted To Try: Devin D.
Devin says: “This is Caribbean Treasure Cheesecake. I make this every year for my wife’s birthday, and my wife just had her birthday last week. She and Julia, 2 Leos, could have shared this one! Caramelized pineapple and spiced rum cheesecake encrusted with toasted coconut and macadamia nuts. Happy Birthday, Julia!”
Joshua says: “Those tropical flavors in a cheesecake sound delicious, I've got a weakness for caramelized pineapple and a husband who can bake.”

devin you and julia

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Happy birthday, Julia! In this video, local luminaries talk about her enduring legacy: