Yesterday was a good friend at work's birthday. Instead of letting us get him a crappy cake from the grocery store he decided he wanted a friend of his to make his birthday cake (she does this for a living). I wasn't expecting much, just you know, a better than grocery store cake. But after having two pieces of it in the space of two hours I have realized that I've happened upon the best chocolate cake I will have ever had in my life. (She left us her business card and I definitely saved her info in my phone because if I ever need a cake made and you can bet I'll find any excuse possible because my wedding is too far away to have to wait for this cake again).
Anyway, it was the best cake of my life. It was fairly rich, but not too rich (I did have two pieces fairly close together this afternoon) and I even remarked to a few colleagues that if I could make that cake I would probably be the fattest person my age, because I'd make it once a week and I would offer one piece to boyf but since he doesn't like sweets too much he wouldn't take it (in offering it I know he wouldn't take it so it looks like I'm trying to be nice and share but really I'm not). Anyway, I took a picture of it (because apparently I'm becoming more and more obsessed with food and soon my phone will have more pictures of food in it than lolcats).
I know this picture doesn't do it justice but the frosting was amazing, the cake itself was the best chocolate cake I've ever tasted. AND I'm pretty sure this cake and I were meant to be life long friends because I packed along some strawberries to eat as a snack at work and low and behold the perfect pairing for this cake is strawberries. I was going to take a picture of my piece with strawberries but only sort of thought of this more than halfway through eating my piece and then decided that I'd rather keep eating than take a break for a picture.
Also, when I got home I tried a hand at whipping up a stir fry from scratch. It was actually really easy (I've never done it before, and tonight was my first real time ever cooking and cutting meat on my own and I'd say it was successful). I made a beef and broccoli stir-fry. It was actually really easy and I'll give you my recipe now (I originally got it from my cooking light magazine but made it even simpler by omitting a few ingredients).
Beef and Broccoli Stir-fry:
1 lb of top sirloin beef, thinly sliced
4 cups of broccoli florets
1/2 cup of beef broth
garlic, minced (I think it called for 2 tsp, but I did two little cloves because I like garlic, whether or not this is the right amount, I didn't even measure this but it looks like more than 2 tsp.
1/3 cup of green onions
1tsp sugar (maybe 1 T, I'm doing this from memory if you couldn't tell, but I'm not sure this is imperative)
1/4 cup water
1T hoisin sauce (everyone should get this, at least you should if you plan on ever making any kind of asiany type of food, it's amazing and you can add it to about anything and I have no idea if it ever even goes bad. It probably does but I am not aware)
2 T soy sauce
1 tsp or T (can't remember, but again, I'm not sure it's imperative, I'd probably just go with the tsp) of cornstarch
In a bowl combine 1 T of soy sauce, sugar and beef. In another bowl combine cornstarch, hoisin sauce soy sauce and broth.
In a skillet heat 1 T oil med/high heat and add beef mixture, cook 3 mintuesish or until beef is browned. Remove beef.
In skillet add 1 T of oil (if needed) and add garlic stirring constantly for 30 seconds. Add broccoli and water stirring constantly for 1 minute. Add onions still stirring for another whole minute. Then add broth mixture and beef mixture stirring until sauce has thickened (about 2 minutes maybe a bit longer). Enjoy over rice!
Omitted: Sherry- but only, like 2 T and when I read online about non-alcoholic sherry everyone said it sucked so I figured that 2 T wouldn't matter that much. However, I may buy some so that I can make this all the freaking time because apparently Sherry has a very long shelf life. Sirachi (sp?) and bottled minced ginger (I couldn't find it at the grocery store, but if you do add it when you add the garlic, I can't remember what you do with the sirachi sauce)
you might not be able to tell from my picture but it's freaking amazing. The broccoli is still pretty crisp but I actually liked it this way.
Side note: I need to get better at taking pictures of food with my phone, if not to get a better picture of the food but so you'll at least believe me when I say that something is dang good. If I just had a new Iphone 4 because they have a flash. yeah...that'll happen, someday.