Sunday, January 13, 2008

Kevin's Birthday

The fantastic Mr. Fisher enjoyed his birthday on January 5th. I surprised him with one of his favorite cakes on Friday the 4th. His favorites, now that all of you are wondering, are Red Velvet, Carrot, and German Chocolate. I think he favors the frosting more than the actual cake in all of those, but then who doesn't love cream cheese frosting and the gooey sticky sweet nutty yumminess of the coconut pecan frosting?

I confess that I wasn't planning to make a cake for K, but I was talking to my Mother that Friday afternoon and she said so plainly that he ought to have a birthday cake, that I followed her instruction. I would not describe my mother as particularly opinionated, certainly not bossy or pushy (I know, then where did I get it?). When she puts her foot down, you sit up and take notice. For example, a few months ago we made the cheesecake from the CB and didn't like it. My mother commented to us, and I am quoting her "a cheesecake must have at least 2 1/2 pounds of cream cheese, and sour cream belongs on top, not in it." She would know, having made hundreds of cheesecakes in her time. Really, hundreds. I won't be fooling around with cheesecake recipes that do not meet her criteria. You notice such a strong pronouncement from a woman who is usually pretty laid back. So, when she said in her matter of fact voice that I should make K a birthday cake, I listened.

I ran through the list of K's favorites and took inventory to see what was possible. No cream cheese in the house so I turned to the chocolate. Coconut? Check. Pecans? Check. Sweet Chocolate? No, but why not bittersweet? I made the substitution figuring that this is one cake where less sweetness would probably not be noticed and hoped that the bittersweet wouldn't overpower.

That was a slightly risky move since the intended recipient of this cake likes sweet, but it turned out just fine. He thought the chocolate flavor of the cake was just right and liked the soft and light texture of the cake. The frosting was delicious, plenty!!! sweet and so easy: evaporated milk, egg yolks, coconut, nuts. There's hardly an excuse to use the canned stuff with all the unpronounceable ingredients, it's that easy. (I have been reading one of Michael Pollen's latest books and the ingredients in the food we eat are a little bit more on my mind than normal. Not sure how far I will go in terms of being "green", but I will be able to avoid canned frosting if nothing else.)

Kevin had a happy birthday, and a relaxing birthday weekend. What more can you ask for?



Deborah said...

Your cake looks wonderful! I was thinking of making a German Chocolate cake for a birthday this week!

Bellini Valli said...

I haven't made a German Chocolate Cake in a few years....thanks for reminding me of all that pecan/coconut goodness!