Cake Cutting Tip

Let me start by saying I did not have my usual SLR camera for these photos, so forgive the bad lighting and weird colors. Sometimes a girl just doesn’t want to be weighed down by a big camera at a party, ya know!

I went to a graduation party where there was a beautifully made cake to celebrate my step-niece’s high school graduation.  I was handed this plate with a perfectly cut piece of cake on it that looked like it was from a wedding reception.  I walked into the kitchen and this is what I found on the table.

It took me a while to understand what I was seeing.  I then realized that my step-brother who brought the cake, cut it the professional way.  This is the way to cut a large round cake and he mentioned that is how wedding cakes are cut too.

So you first cut a smaller circle in the middle and then the slices are a a manageable size.  This also helps with the falling cake issue when you are cutting a multi-layered cake…………..genius!!

Now, I just want to bake a 4-layered cake just so I can cut it this way.

Here is the perfectly cut piece of cake.  Now you can go to any wedding and be confident you’ll be able to cut a beautiful slice of cake!!

Cilantro Parsley Pesto Chicken

I know this bowl of green stuff looks very unassuming and maybe even a little scary.  Let me put you at ease by saying that this may be my favorite new condiment/sauce/dip/very yummy stuff!  It is really easy to make and packs a lot of flavor in one spoonful.  I’ve used it on chicken (as I’ll show below), mixed it into pasta and even spread it on a sandwich.  It just gives anything bland a punch of flavor.

This is not a traditional pesto as there is no basil or pine nuts, or any nuts at all.

The easiest part of this pesto is it’s all made in a blender, without cutting or chopping anything else.  First add in olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper.

Wash one bunch each of cilantro and flat leaf parsley.  I know this looks like a lot, but it all gets blended into only about one cup of pesto.

With your bare hands just rip off the tops, stems included.

Poor herbs, they had no idea was was comin’ to ’em!

Stuff the herbs down into the blender.  Now here’s the hard part, if you have a cheap blender like mine.  Once you start the blender it will blend the bottom half pretty easily, but the herbs toward the top would be blended.  Intermittently stop the blender and push all the leaves down toward the blades.  You can also drizzle more olive oil in slowly as the blender is running.

Here’s the lovely green concoction!

Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.

My favorite way to use the pesto is on chicken breasts.  I use chicken with bone and skin on.  Lift the skin and with your fingers and rub the pesto onto the meat, and then some more over the skin too.

Roast the chicken in the oven and savor the beautiful herbal flavors of cilantro and parsley in the juicy chicken dish.

Cilantro-Parsley Pesto Chicken

2 cups loosely packed fresh cilantro

2 cups loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley

2 large garlic clove, minced

3/4 teaspoon coarse salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/4 cup olive oil

6 chicken breasts, bone and skin on

 

Add in oil, garlic, herbs and seasoning to blender.  Pulse blender until blended well. With machine running, add in more oil in a slow, steady stream if needed.

Lift the skin of the chicken and with your fingers and rub the pesto onto the meat, and then some more over the skin too.

Bake at 425 degrees for about 45 minutes or until done.