Today is Mike's 30th birthday.
My birthday isn't until April, so for the next…*counts*…7 months, I get to relish the fact that he is in an entirely different age bracket than me. He is unamused by that, too.
However, being the doting and loving wife I am, I made his favorite cake today- pineapple upside down cake.
(The counter isn't dirty, that's the wax paper I set underneath to catch the drips when I turned it out)
Now, when I make this (which is rare), if I have made caramels recently, I just use that instead of the topping recipe- they're quite similar. This time I used the topping.
- 1 cup of firmly packed dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 Tbsp of vanilla
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 1 can (20 oz) of pineapple slices and 1 jar of maraschino cherries.
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 6 Tbsp cake flour
- 6 Tbsp of almond meal
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 3/4 cups of sugar
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
- 4 large eggs
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup sour cream
1. Start by making the caramel topping. Take brown
sugar and butter and combine and melt in a saucepan on medium heat until
sugar dissolves and the mixture is bubbly, this should take several
minutes. (After sugar melts, don't stir.) Pour mixture into a bundt pan. Arrange pineapple
slices in a single layer on top of the caramel mixture. Place a cherry into the center of each pineapple slice.
2. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Whisk the flours, almonds,
baking powder, and salt in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, use
an electric mixer to beat the sugar and butter together until light.
Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Beat in the
vanilla. Add dry ingredients alternately with sour cream in 2
additions each, beating well after each addition. Pour cake batter over
caramel and pineapple in pan.
3. Bake cake until tester inserted into the center comes out
clean, about 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes. Cool cake in pan on a rack
for 10 minutes. Turn cake out onto a platter. Serve warm or at room
Since Mike is working tonight, I doubled the recipe and made cupcake versions for him to take to the guys at work.
After that, I made beef stew.
Now this is MAN Beef Stew. We're talking carrots, potatoes, onion, and lots and lots of ANGUS beef. You are more than welcome to 1/2 this recipe. I make a ton at once because (1) I own a pot big enough for it and (2) it's one of those dishes that gets better as it gets older.
- 3 lbs Angus stew meat (also works fine with the cheaper stuff, I just used the fancier stuff because it was on sale and it was Mike's birthday)
- 2 lbs baby carrots
- 4 lbs red potatoes, peeled (and if they're large, you may want to cut them in half or quarters)
- 1 large red onion, peeled and the ends cut off
- 1 jar of Grey Poupon (yes, the whole damn jar)- I like the course ground country style.
Instructions (PAY CLOSE ATTENTION- THIS IS INCREDIBLY COMPLICATED AND YOU WILL CRY IF YOU MESS UP):
- Brown the meat, dump the rest of the stuff in the pot, cover with water, put a lid on it, turn it on low, go knit or watch TV or play Halo or something for 4 or 5 hours. Stir it once in a while (or not, it's not going to blow up if you don't). If you have a Crock Pot, it works fine, too. You're welcome.
- And, just between you and me, I have just dumped everything in a pot before (no browning of the meat or anything), covered it with water, and let it do it's thing. It turned out fine.
And to go with it, I made Baybell cheese pocket rolls.
- One bag (6) of mini Baybell cheese (I like the red ones, if you like the blue ones, more power to you), unwrapped and un-waxxed?
- One roll of seamless crescent roll dough
- Roll out the crescent roll dough
- Place the Baybells evenly along the dough
- Cut squares out around the Baybells
- Fold the corners in towards the cheese and pinch seams shut, creating a square.
- Bake at 375 for 12-14 minutes (if your oven cooks unevenly, turn them around halfway through)
Serve, impress people.
So, what did Mike get? A new Xbox 360, a bunch of games for it, some new fluffy towels (sounds dumb, but my man loves his fine linens- ask him about what sheets you should buy next time you see him), and a kilt from me.
Yes, a kilt.
And I think he looks dead sexy in it. 😀
Happy birthday, hubtard. ❤ you.