I woke up this morning to clouds and the potential chance of rain. I heard the other day we’re like 18″ behind in rain for our area this time of year. I don’t know if that’s true or not, I haven’t verified that, but I can tell you we’re in a huge drought. We need rain. This last week has been hot, but not humid like it was. I know, people find it hard to believe humid in Missouri, but I’m telling you… You walk outside and you feel like you’re either in a sauna or you just took a shower.
Last month I talked to a guy from Southern Oklahoma about a trip he once took to Columbia, Missouri. He said he had relatives that live in Kansas and this time of year, Kansas is just hot. He figured that’s how Missouri was. He said boy was he sorely mistaken. I love when people from coastal areas talk about humidity like we don’t know what it is… and we’re landlocked so where the humidity comes from I have no idea. (Oh and he was from Southern Oklahoma… I know that’s not a coastal state, just saying.)
But, it’s summer none-the-less in the Midwest. That makes it hot and dry. Especially since we’re at the end of July quickly approaching August. August is a hot dry month anyway for us… but dang, we need rain. Come on 80% chance! But they said on the tv last night that we have this hot climate without the humidity right now which feels nice but is making the rain coming from Witchita, Kansas area dissipate before it gets to us. Eventually, enough rain chances will come and break through that and we’ll get rain plus our humidity back, but until then… less humid weather (even though it’s hot) is what we’ll have. By the way, today’s high is 81˚. I think it’s time to break out that Parka!
Anyway… Summer = birthdays! Well, some anyway. My youngest daughters birthday is in June, mine is in July, my grandmas is the same day as mine (or is mine the same day as hers??)… And a friend of mine has a summer birthday also! Oh, I know there are way more, but today, we’re focusing on Jody’s birthday. Hello! :).
Strawberry Champagne Birthday Cake
So Jody’s birthday is July 4th. She gets fireworks for her birthday, how friggin cool is that? But… the butthead spends the whole week of her birthday at the lake in Oklahoma. Yes, I called her a butthead. Hi, Jody :).
So I made her a birthday cake a week later. Actually, I think it wound up 2 weeks later, but at this point, who’s counting? Seriously!
I’ve been on this cake kick here lately if you can’t tell… So I went on the hunt for the kind of birthday cake I was going to make her. I figured, if I was a little late in presenting it to her, it had to be extraordinary! Am I right?!?! So being Summer, Strawberries were a must! And a Champagne cake… sure, why not? While we were in Kansas City a couple weekends ago, I went to one of my favorite stores, Trader Joe’s.
Have I ever told you I go on vacation and have to try and visit at least one grocery store? #truth! Pretty much all we have around close is Walmart… I like REAL Grocery stores. Hello… Grocery store heads… Please move into our neck of the woods!
oh and p.s. the picture below… doesn’t everyone cook in the kitchen with a highlighter present?
So while at Trader Joe’s, I bought my Strawberry Wine to use in this cake. Hubby tried a sip of it, said it was a very dry white wine. I’m not big into the dry wines, neither is he, so I didn’t try it.
I’ve also probably mentioned so many times you’re sick of me saying it… I’m learning how to bake flat cakes with cake research. But here’s the problem with that… I’ve never made this cake and look how flat those layers are… There was NO dom to cut off to try even a little piece of the cake… #fail.
This uses homemade strawberry purée as well as mashed up strawberries in it. Strawberries galore. Screams summer, right? Oh and that mashing tool? The coolest thing since sliced bread… Well… but it’s Pampered Chef. Once upon a time, I sold Pampered Chef. Anyone remember that? No probably not… it was like 2012 or something like that. But this tool, it’s a potato masher. Ooober cool! (No not the car service über.)
So this happens to be another of Tatyana’s Everyday Food recipe. My problem with it… most decorated cakes… you put a barrier of icing around the edge and then fill the middle with your filling, aka in this case strawberries. This was different. She had you put a layer of strawberries, then the icing over the top. Well, that pushed my strawberries all the way to the edge and sadly, they showed up in my finished cake. While that was okay, that bothered me a little bit too. My cake wasn’t smooth on the outside… every so often, I had a strawberry poke through.
I didn’t try this. I have no idea if it was any good. Oh wait, I do have a couple of texts…
Text Number 1 – Jody
Jody: Cake is amazing
Me: You’re not lying, right? because I can handle the truth
Jody: No OMG it’s amazing
Me: It was supposed to be topped with chocolate covered strawberries, but that didn’t happen today
Jody: It is Yummy!
Me: Yey 🙂
Text Number 2 – Jody via a friend
Jody: So my neighbor and I will make stuff and have each other try it so I took some of my cake over there for them to tray and this is what I got back:
Hey, now whoever made that cake did a great job, dang that was good really liked it thank you.
Text number 3 – Jody via another friend
Jody: I gave another person a piece bc she’s Prego and said it looked good and she loved it also
Me: Today I’m making a Strawberry Margarita Keylime Pie
I’m kind of just winging it…
Me: We’ll see…
And there you have it… testimonies of sorts.