Valentine’s day may be for lovers and being a singleton, it is easy to dismiss it as a regular day. However, Valentine’s day is also about love and I have loved ones around me so I try to make the day a little more special. To be precise, I do something special with food. In the past, I have made popsicles and cooked a meal.
This year, I planned to prepare breakfast, cook a meat dish, make a salad and bake a cake. However, I had to finish a report so I ended up doing everything in batches. It was a good thing because Valentine’s for us extended until the 15th.
I ‘multi-tasked’ our lunch on the 14th. I was still doing the report and it was already 10 a.m. I cooked the pork belly in the pressure cooker to soften the meat. After which, I marinated the meat in a korean barbecue sauce. I cooked the marinated meat in the turbo broiler afterwards. I picked this type of cooking because I do not have to look after what I am cooking. I just let the timer run and it rings when the food is done. Voila! Say hello to our Valentine lunch. This was a hit.
I was able to finish the report on the 14th so by February 15th, I was free! I woke up early to make breakfast. I planned to make ‘egg on a cloud’. I saw that Tasty video and it looked easy. Boy, was I wrong! These do not look like the one on the video.
Yes, you can start laughing. The egg white looked fluffy in this picture but it tasted like paper.
We tried to analyze what happened. It really looked like they were eggs on the cloud while they were in the oven. However, I left the eggs there when I turned off heat because I left the house to buy bread. I did not want to leave them outside for fear there might be flies and other insects landing on the eggs. Maybe that caused the egg whites to continue cooking. It is safe to say that was a fail.
After breakfast, I prepared the salad. Since Waldorf salad is best eaten cold. I made it first so I can chill it in the fridge. We love the Waldorf salad that a family friend makes and since we have walnuts sent to us by my aunt in Canada, we wanted to try to make Waldorf salad. The Waldorf salad is said to be invented by the maitre’d of Waldorf-Astoria Hotel. It is a simple salad made of apples, grapes, celery with lemon and mayonnaise for the dressing and topped with toasted walnuts. My version used cucumber instead of celery and calamansi instead of lemon. I also added yogurt and cashew nuts.
For me, it tasted good. For my aunts, they wanted to add cream and sugar. I guess they are used to the salad dressing we often make.
The highlight of day is the caramel cake. I wanted to bake a cake likes Estrel’s so I found Corinne’s blog. She shared a similar recipe from her aunt.
I love how my chiffon cake turned out. I used to burn my cakes because my old oven did not have temperature control.
This is what it looked like when I poured the caramel icing.
The Swiss buttercream frosting held up, too. I just need to practice the consistency of my swirls.
It is a pretty cake (if you look past the imperfections).
Beyond the aesthetics, the true measure of good food is the taste. My aunts liked it. One aunt said that the buttercream is too much to her liking. My cousin also said that a thinner layer of buttercream will do. But I secretly love the buttercream. Real butter (as opposed to margarine) is divine! The buttercream hardened in the fridge when we stored the leftover. When I wanted to eat the cake, what I did was I let the cake rest beside me while I work and eat it when the butter softens. Yum!
This is hit. But… I might not make this cake anytime soon. It took me 6 hours to finish from baking the cake to frosting it! But this will definitely be my go-to cake for special occasions.
By the way, belated happy Valentine’s day! Hope you all had a good one.