Last night Kevin and I tried out a few new recipes. First, we made a baked penne pasta from the EverydayFood magazine by Martha Stewart. After finding the recipe and reading some of the comments, I decided to add sautéed artichoke hearts to the mix. The great thing about this recipe is that it serves 8, but it is designed to be made in two casserole dishes, so you can freeze one of them if you're not serving a big group. We did this and it will be a great for an easy meal sometime in the future. Below are the pictures I took while baking and after it was done. Here's the recipe:
It was so good! I really loved how the sun-dried tomatoes added a sweetness and a richness to the sauce. The artichokes were also a great addition and are definitely worth including again.
Then, later in the night, I baked a cake while we were watching the Bachelorette Finale. I made a yellow cake with chocolate frosting, that I found on Smitten Kitchen's Blog. Instead of the Sour Cream Chocolate Frosting, I decided to use the sweeter Instant Fudge Frosting. Also, I couldn't find cake flour at the grocery store, so I had to use all purpose flour, which probably changed the cake a little.
I'm not a pro cake decorator, obviously, but I managed to make the cake look half-decent, lol. Here are some pictures from the process.
It was pretty good, although I don't know if it was as good as some of the cakes I've made. The cake wasn't dry, but it was pretty thick. If anything, i think the thickness was probably attributed to the fact that I used all purpose flour instead of the lower protein cake flour. Also, the cake batter has buttermilk, which definitely adds a unique flavor that you don't get in most cake recipes.
It was fun evening of cooking and baking and overall everything turned out pretty well!