Adam's birthday is on Valentine's Day. We could spend some time talking about that, but I have another thing to say. My sister's birthday is also on Valentine's Day and growing up she always got a homemade heart-shaped Red Velvet Cake. I don't think I was ever jealous of this b/c I looked forward to this cake and I loved it. So, naturally when Adam and I started dating I made him one for his birthday (homemade & heart-shaped). Come to find out, he doesn't want that for his birthday cake. Instead he wants a strawberry cake. (ps...I've never been a fan of fruit cakes) We had a delicious one at a friend's birthday in August and since then Adam has been talking about this strawberry cake. I get the recipe from my friend and prepare for the big day!!! I got up early to bake this thing that had fresh strawberries in it, along with Strawberry Gelatin which should have been a red flag (no pun intended) for me. The icing was mostly sugar...with fresh strawberries. Let's just say it started out bad and never got better. It was BRIGHT red (think Strawberry Shortcake the doll) and was sweeter than anything I've ever encountered. The sugary icing was oozing over the top, dense layer of cake. I thought if I put it on my cool antique cake pan with fresh strawberries it would be better. Nope not even that worked. I took some with us to Asheville and we ate some. Adam was a great husband and tried it and even said it was good. But we both knew the truth. I am really embarrassed about this, but I feel like you all should see what I mean. Here is a picture of the poor thing. (there was even an error in uploading it)
So, where is the redeeming part you ask? TIRAMISU. We both absolutely love tiramisu and are self-proclaimed experts on this Italian delicacy. I made it once when we lived in Louisiana and it was awful (too much brandy). So, this was my chance at redemption. Redemption from that alcohol soaked dessert and redemption from the sad strawberry birthday cake. I found the recipe in a Cooks Illustrated Magazine that I bought for 8 bucks at Earthfare. (realized it later and was annoyed) I made sure I had all the right ingredients and on Thursday I embarked on a fabulous journey of making this homemade tiramisu. The excitement built as I tasted the cream and it was delightful. I assembled various sizes of the tiramisu and put it safely in the refrigerator to set. Oh, I just knew it was going to be amazing. Friday night was the big night...the unveiling of this wonderfulness. After the first bite I was swept away to a happy place; maybe even an Italian Cafe in a small village. It was absolutely amazing!! And it only got better!!!
Adam loved it. We both needed this after the birthday cake incident. I will spend the next year perfecting Strawberry Cake, so that next year for his birthday, it will be as perfect as the Tiramisu. (if you have a recipe, share it!!)