Saturday, May 8, 2010

Cuatro de Mayo! Happy 26th Birthday Mrs. Walnofer!

So the Mrs. thought that her birthday celebration was over but little did she know that I had a birthday dinner planned for Cuatro de Mayo! Last year was Mexican, this year would be California Cuisine!
The Mrs. had taken a severe liking to Parmesan Gnocchi so I whipped up a homemade batch, seared off a couple Duck Breasts, sauteed some King Trumpet Mushrooms and Spinach in duck fat, reduced some Cuvaison Pinot Noir to make a Red Wine Jus, and topped it all off with some Bouchon trained perfectly cut Chives and some Blood Micro Greens.  By far the most expensive and the tastiest meal I have prepared in our 72sq.ft kitchen.
Half bottles are the new thing and the Mrs. and I love em!  Just the other day, we did a food/model shoot for Kenzo Estate Winery down in Napa and we were gifted a bottle of their 2007 Rindo. Rindo stands for Japanese Bell Flower which blooms during the same time as grape harvest. Perfect, saves me from needing to buy any flowers for the Mrs.! This red wine is a blend of Cab, Merlot, Cab Franc, and Petit Verdot.  Pairs perfectly with Duck!
Next up on the surprise list was a homemade birthday cake. White cake with Strawberry Filling and Chocolate Meringue Icing. Key to remember next time you are baking a cake in a 72sq.ft kitchen with the oven on full blast and every burner your cake standing in the refrigerator............or else it gets a little melty. 
The next day, I had the priviledge of bringing some b-day cake to Growth Group and went with the 4-Layer 8" cake. Learning from the night before's melting meringue, I made a fresh batch of Itailian Meringue for the long journey down to Napa.  I got a little bit carried away with the strawberry "garnish", but the Mrs. had made a trip to Costco a week ago and they needed to be used. Product Utiliization at its finest! Anyone want to buy us a cake carrier? About 10 minutes later, this cake started to resemble the leaning tower of Pisa and about 5 minutes after that, well........the birthday girl wasn't too happy with her lap cake. Anywho, after a little roadside repair and a roll of napkins for the Mrs., we celebrated Happy 26th for the 3rd day in a row. It is exhausting to be this sweet...........not me.............the cake that is! 

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