Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Tuesday Evening

It has been a very wet summer here along the Front Range, and many of the creeks and rivers are raging. Than and I took a walk along Clear Creek in Golden last night to enjoy the roaring rapids and people of Golden. You never know what you are going to see...
Kayakers in the rapids. This guy kept doing front flips as if it were nothing. I can't imagine flipping on a trampoline, much less from a sitting position when your legs are trapped, you're holding a paddle, and the river is raging.
This is the best photo I could get without looking too obvious. We parked next to this woman and when I got out I noticed she was reading in her car. Not too weird, save for the fact she was in her trunk reading with her cat. Yes, her trunk. She had folded down the back seats, climbed in, and snuggled up with her cat and pillow. Than tried to give her the benefit of the doubt by suggesting maybe she was waiting for someone, but no, she was alone. I don't really have an explanation for the trunk-reader...or her 50 stuffed animals in the back window (you can just make out some of them).
South Table Mountain. It's more of a butte, really...
Flooded amphitheater behind the police station. Water has covered the stage area, which you can just make out the edge of in the middle of the photo. On the left-side of the police station is the Golden History Museum. For some time now there has been a running joke with the curator about when they are going to start sand-bagging behind the Museum. A couple more heavy rains and it might not be that funny anymore.
Flooded play area near the Washington Street bridge. The normal waterline is about 4 feet forward from the fish.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Pretty Pretty Princess Cake

Every year my dad asks for a cake on his birthday, and again on Father's Day. He likes one very specific type of cake, no substitutions. I like to call it his "Pretty Pretty Princess" cake because it happens to be the cherry chip boxed cake mix with the cherry chip store-made frosting. The entire cake and frosting are bright pink (thank-you red #40) and not terribly good for you. While I appreciate my dad's love of (artificial) cherry flavoring, I wanted to make him a healthy alternative this year. Here's what I did and how it turned out...

I bought cherries, which I pitted and cooked on the stove with aguave syrup. Some ended up in the cake, some in the filling, and some in the frosting.

I pureed the cherries to make a filling for the middle of the cake.

I then sliced one of the layers in half, making three layers total. I spread frosting and filling on each layer.
Lastly I frosted all of the layers and placed one cherry on top.

And voila! One homemade cherry-chip cake for Father's Day. :) Well, actually, it was a total bomb. The cherry flavor was subtle and absolutely nothing like the boxed mix. Turns out Dad doesn't give a crap about how healthy the cake was...he wanted his Pretty Pretty Princess Cake! The cake was also dry - the recipe called for egg whites and I discovered (yet again), that egg whites and altitude don't mix. Than said the cake was tasty, but I noticed he didn't eat too much of it either. I'm not sure what the lesson here is - I plan to practice a few more times and hopefully someday wean Dad off of his princess cake. Happy Baking!