Saturday, November 29, 2008
Spent a wonderful Thanksgiving with our friends, Patty & Rich, and various members of their family. It was a great day and for us an honour to be included in a traditional family gathering. They took pity on us 4 years ago when we were first included. The joke is that we were only invited as the use of my oven was required to cook for so many people, however the joke was on them, they were then stuck with us. Now we live 90 miles away and there is no chance of my oven being brought into the equation but still we are there on Thanksgiving Day joining in all the fun. We are really grateful to them for reaching out to us and for being such good friends.
My offering is now a dessert and I start months before going through books and magazines trying to find the perfect one. This year I decided early on a chocolate cake covered in a white chocolate and cream cheese frosting and covered in candied fruits. I had fully intended to do a trial run but somehow never quite got around to it. So two days before I started preparing the fruits. Fingers crossed that it would all turn out okay. I was not disappointed with the result and everyone seemed impressed with my offering. The biggest problem was actually transporting it as I did not have a box big enough, so the cake, on the cake stand sat on my lap during the 1 1/2 hour journey. My husband was told to drive very carefully with no sudden braking and to take corners very slowly! Luckily the cake arrived in one piece.
16 oz cream cheese
12 oz white chocolate
2 tbs lemon juice
Mix cream cheese in a bowl until soft. Add the melted, cooled chocolate, beat until smooth.Now beat in the butter & lemon juice.
This can be prepared a day ahead.
2 cups water
1 cup sugar
Heat together until sugar dissolves.
1 orange sliced into 1/4" slices
1 cup fresh pineapple chunks
3/4 cup dried cranberries
1 cup dried apricots
3/4 cup dried cherries
1 cup walnuts
Divide sugar water mixture into two med saucepans
Place orange slices in one pan and the rest of the fruits into the other pan. Simmer oranges for 45 mins then turn them over and simmer for further 30 mins.
Simmer remaining fruits for 35 mins. Do not overheat.
Remove fruits from pans onto wax paper to cool.
I used my usual chocolate cake recipe, I'm sure everyone has their favourite. I made 3x9" layers and sandwiched them with a cherry conserve before frosting and decorating.
I was really pleased with the end result. It looked quite professional, but was actually not difficult to execute.
My only problem now is that I have now to come up with something for next year and this years offering may be hard to beat. Better start researching the possibilities soon. Oh the pressure! but what a wonderful pressure deciding on a delicious dessert. If this is pressure I think I can cope with it.