Today is National Pancake Day, which is pretty cool since I rather like pancakes. Then again I made waffles for breakfast, so maybe my breakfast love is more of a breakfast triangle, and don’t get me started on eggs and hash browns…mm…eggggs.
Ahem…anyway… One of the cool things going on for National Pancake Day is over at IHOP. You can visit your local IHOP and get a short stack of their pancakes, which aren’t bad, but the cool part is that they are also collecting monies for various charities around the country. Here in Utah all the proceeds go to Primary Children’s Hospital, which is a wonderful place. My sweet Bunneh’s second son was born with a lot of problems and left us early, but Primary Children’s was a crucial part of the little one’s care and we’ve tried to do all we can to encourage support of this lifesaving organization. Soo…go eat pancakes and take your pocket change. It’s good for the stomach and the heart.
It was Bunneh’s birthday a couple of weeks ago and my day was…how do i gently say…crazy!!! So I knew I needed a cake, but there just seemed to be no time. I couldn’t fail the bunneh though, so I went for simple, but ever so tasty. I’ve talked about Cheater Chocolate Cake before and this is a yummy adjustment on that recipe for a fresh but decadent cake.
Easy Chocolate Orange Cake
1 box devil’s food cake (I like Duncan Hines or Pillsbury)
1 9×13 sized dark brownie mix
zest of one orange
juice of one orange
Combing cake mix and brownie mix in a large bowl. Follow the recipe on the back of each box adding 1/2 cup Ultra Gel to the dry mix and substituting the fresh juice for some of the water. IE: If the total in the recipe is 1 1/2 cups water and you got 1/2 cup orange juice, add 1 cup water and 1/2 cup juice. Fold zest in last before pouring batter into a greased and floured 9×13 dripper pan. Bake until tests done. Serve with favorite chocolate frosting. In my case I made a Ultra Gel chocolate whipped cream and added more orange zest to that!
Decorate with candles only if husband is under forty….
So yesterday was Easter and also Bunneh’s birthday. It doesn’t happen often that the two happen on the same day, but this year was a happy circumstance. And no I’m not going to tell you how old Bunneh is. He’s just the right age for me. :)
Most of the time Bunneh’s birthday would be a day for me to eat, but he’d found a beautiful rib eye roast and he was dying to try something new, so for his birthday I let him do the cooking. I know it sounds weird, but it made him very happy. He coated the roast with garlic and herbs, then cooked it for about 30 minutes at 500 degrees. After that he turned it down to 240 and just let it low and slow its way to the right temp. Dinner was finished off with a bit of spaghetti squash and some lovely fried potatoes. It may not be other people’s idea of an Easter feast, but for us…holy yum.
So here’s our feast…and some random kitty pictures, cause she’s just so cute.
Today we spent much of the day down in Payson, Utah at Golden Onion Days. It was the first time back to my hometown in over a decade. It was fun and a little weird to see what was the same and what had changed. They still know how to put on a party. :)
We’re grateful today for a small but prospering company and good friends and family, including all our online friends. We don’t always hear from you, but we know you’re out there.
Happy holiday to those in the US, and happy Monday everyone else.
I hope everyone had a killer weekend. I know I did. :) Like many folks we celebrated Mother’s day, but for Bunneh and I that tends to be a little different. We send cards and such to our mama’s but we tend to stay home and celebrate together. We plan a meal and then execute it, sharing kitchen time. I know a lot of mom’s feel this is their time to flee the kitchen, but I really enjoy puttering about with my husband, particularly when we’re messing with a recipe that we’ve never tried before, so this was a good pressie. (Not to mention he also got me pretty sparklies and a new car phone charger!)
Our meal of choice for mother’s day was partially determined by getting a big herb bundle in our Bountiful Basket for the week and having a pork tenderloin in the freezer. So we went for a Pork Tenderloin with Tomato and Tuscan Herbs, a side of mashed red potatoes and fresh string beans quick sauteed with mushrooms and garlic. Hooooly yummy batman. The sauce on the tenderloin was particularly good based on deglazing a pan with some rich balsamic vinegar and adding cream to that. Not a completely low fat meal, but for Mother’s day the diet can be a little more flexible. :)
The original recipe we used came from here at Taste of Home, then we made adjustments with Ultra Gel to get the thickness we wanted and put the sides with it. It was very nice the second day too, and made plenty for four to six, or one dinner and some lunch munching.
Doesn’t it look good? And with using the Ultra Gel to thicken it’s a gluten free meal too! I love it when a plan comes together.
Every year for Bunneh’s Birthday I try to work up a geekcake for him. The cake has taken lots of shapes over the years with some of our favorites being Order of the Stick figures and the battlemap. This year I wanted to try something a little more vertical and I had mixed success. It was a Tardis cake in shape with the cake itself made from an adjusted version of the Alton Brown Devil’s Food Cake. Bunneh wanted a cake that was very rich and the Devil’s Food Cake fit the bill. I love the flavor of this cake, but if I did it again I think I would pour it into a jelly roll pan and use more thinner layers than I did. It’s not quite heavy enough to take it’s own weight otherwise, and my butter cream was a little too soft. So a Tardis that stood pretty well at first had some distinct slidage by the time it was presented. Everyone met it with humor as the crashed Tardis and hey…it tasted really good!