Thursday, February 24, 2011

Ryan's tanjoubi

This week was Ryan's birthday (or "tanjoubi" in Japanese). Without much planning, I decided to go home a little early from work and bake him a cake before he got home from his lessons. You may recall I only have one tiny pan, so decided to make it a square layer cake by making one square at a time. I guess I rushed it a bit trying to remove the first square. This pile of bits comprising the first layer didn't leave me very optimistic about the rest of the cake, but I decided to push forward anyway.

While the second layer was cooking, I looked online for a frosting recipe. I found one for bourbon cream cheese. I figured a little Jack would do the trick just as well. I made a big batch of it and used it to fill in some of the holes and cracks in the first layer. I added some chopped roasted almonds for texture and because the bourbon reminded me of New Orleans and pecans. But I didn't have any pecans. or bourbon.
The second layer came out much much better. More frosting. Oh shoot, that part about waiting until the cake cools to frost it was rather important. The frosting on the top started to melt and droop precariously off the sides. I quickly put it all in the fridge until Ryan got home.
Then I threw on a whole bunch of nuts on the top and sides to hide the misshapen, melty mess and set it out with a candle and all of his presents that had been coming in the mail during the week.  Yay!
But before we ate cake, we went down to our local Italian/Japanese restaurant. Our favorite waitress greeted us at the door and even knew it was Ryan's birthday since we had filled out our info on a previous visit.  First course was an appetizer of, from left to right, ham and cheese blintz, wagyu beef, thin sliced white fish with a pesto sauce and foie gras creme brulee. 
For mains, we each had incredibly tender Japanese beef. Ryan's was grilled and served with a croquette and a pile of herbs...
...and mine was slow roasted and served with mashed potatoes. Oh my, it was just melt-in-your mouth goodness! We also had pastas with mushrooms and a scoop of fois gras cream, but I was so full by that time that I forgot to take pictures.
And actually, we were so stuffed from dinner that we didn't even break into the cake until the next day. Despite my winging almost the whole thing and not having much faith in it, the cake was pretty darn yummy, so I am going to link to the recipes. For the cake itself, I used this funny one that called for a cup of coffee. The only change I made was to replace about 1/4c of flour with almond flour because I had some left over that I wanted to use. Oh and I added some cinnamon. And here is the recipe for the frosting. Jack Daniel's works just fine too.

No comments:

Post a Comment