What a party we had this morning to celebrate two birthday girls! Su Lin’s 4th birthday was yesterday, August 2, and her little sister Zhen Zhen turned two today. As is tradition, each birthday panda received a tiered ice caked filled with their favorite treats (apples, carrots, and bamboo) and drizzled with tempting honey!
Zhen Zhen received her cake first at 9:10 a.m. She tentatively licked and chewed at the three-tiered cake with a big pink “2” on the top before turning to her “presents,” blue-green boxes filled with special panda biscuits. Su Lin entered her exhibit a few minutes later to enjoy her cake; it had a larger, sturdier base and two tiers. Sweet Su went quickly for the big “4” on top while eager visitors and staff took photos of the happy occasion.
Many of you have already sent your compliments to the staff that created these iced treats for our special gals. Although the entire Forage Warehouse crew played a part, I’d like to give special recognition to Kelly Lee and Debbie Lowe. After planning the cakes’ designs, Kelly and Debbie began pouring, molding, and freezing the stars, hearts, and other shapes, then slowly adding the treats as the water chilled, a process that took about two weeks! Many of the frozen pieces contained food coloring, which made for some very festive cakes indeed. I think the results were well worth the effort. And it seemed like Su and Zhen thought so, too!
Debbie Andreen is an associate editor for the San Diego Zoo.