Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Birthday Cake!

Amidst all of this May busy-ness I had a birthday! Brett woke up early and baked the cake so it would be nice and cool when we returned from our day out on the town. My least favorite part of cake decorating is trying to get the icing perfectly smooth so Brett did that part while I piped pink roses. Then I did my trademark basketweave around the sides of the cake and piped the words. It's a little weird writing "Happy Birthday" to yourself, but I'm a firm believer that the birthday cake should have a name on it.

For the finishing touches, Brett added tiny purple flowers made by a special tip that I just can't figure out how to use. He's just got the magic touch I guess.

And after a short stint in the freezer, I placed the roses all over.

The cake turned out beautifully and tasted great too!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sweet and Spicy Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Wow! I cannot believe that it has been a full month since I last posted! Between a new, full-time job, two sets of visitors, and the always busy month of May, I just didn't have a spare moment to blog. But enough excuses, I will try to do better!

One of our new favorite recipes was adapted from an Elie Krieger recipe called Sweet and Spicy Grilled Cheese Sandwiches. Her recipe calls for tomatoes, which we immediately eliminated.

What her recipe doesn't call for (and I decided to add on a crazy whim) is a thin layer of apricot jelly. Sounds weird but it is so good.

So first I thinly sliced half of a red onion and sauteed it in a teeny tiny bit of canola oil.

While that was going I spread butter on one side of each slice of bread, sliced up A LOT of pepper jack cheese, and spread some apricot jelly on the inside of half of the bread slices. Then I put the sandwiches together.

I wiped out the onion pan and used it to grill my sandwiches. There's no sense in dirtying a new pan! Since there is not melting cheese holding one side of bread on, you have to be very careful when flipping the sandwiches. I pretty much just hold it on with my hand until it's almost all the way flipped.

Then slice and eat!

The pepper jack cheese is pretty spicy (if it's too spicy just substitute a couple slices of cheddar but you have to leave a little bit of pepper jack otherwise there's no spicy in sweet and spicy!) And the apricot jelly and red onions add a wonderful sweetness that I just love! Sweet and spicy and very easy to make!