Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Food Network made me do it

Sucked in....that is the only way I can describe what happened to me. I was sucked in by Alton Brown. He is a powerful, powerful man. His knowledge of food and how to prepare it is nothing short of amazing. Behind his wire rimmed spectacles is a brain, so full of information that I cannot even fathom it.

The other night, Matthew and I were sitting on the couch watching t.v. It was after 10pm, so we were in the hunched down position, eyes glazed over, trying to get up enough energy to go get ready for bed. While we are mustering our energy, "Good Eats" comes on t.v. Well, I should have hit the power button immediately and turned the t.v. off. But, I kept watching, wondering what food he would be analyzing that night.

I detest coconuts. Anything coconut. I can't stand the texture, but it doesn't end there. I don't like the flavor, the smell, or the feel of coconut. I would be a horrible "Survivor" contestant!

My better half, however, LOVES all things coconut. He can eat shredded coconut from the bag as a late night treat. Gross.

Alton goes on to talk about how coconut cakes these days are dry and tasteless. He complains for a few minutes before going to the store and purchasing FRESH COCONUTS.

At this point, I'm hooked. I'm suddenly not tired anymore, just curious as to how Alton is going to pull this one off.

Oh, he pulls it off. He pulls it off beautifully! And he does such a fantastic job explaining and demonstrating that I think to myself, "Self, you could totally do that!". I know, it was late, I should have abandoned the whole idea and chalked it up to sheer exhaustion. I guess I thought I didn't have anything else to do...yeah, right!

But, it was in my head, and as we are learning in our home Bible study, once something is stuck in a woman's head, it is nearly impossible for it to vanish.

So, off to the store I went to purchase my FRESH COCONUTS.

I tried to document each step that I took, but by the end, honestly, I was tired of the cake and forgot all about my camera. Also, this cake was made around 11pm, so I was doing good to remember the ingredients.Needless to say, it was an experience and I will probably attempt this again in the future. But, when I do, I will make sure we are having a lot of people over who like coconut. I ate zero pieces of the cake and Matthew ate the majority of what was eaten. Sadly, I threw away the rest last night. I thought about maybe preserving it somehow and putting it on display for all to see, but that just seemed silly. Almost as silly as making a cake with FRESH COCONUTS.
The beginning...look at those sad eyes, begging me to not turn them into cake.
Drilling the eyes to get out the coconut water
Draining the water

You have to bake the coconuts to get the shells off easier. I baked them, but it was NOT easy getting the shells off!
With half a shell
Peeling the coconuts (I had a lot of help from Matthew on the front end of the project!)
Shredding the coconut
Homemade coconut extract. It had to sit in this jar for 5 days.
Making the coconut milk and cream...I know, I am CRAZY! I still cannot believe I did this!
Baking the cakes
Yummy frosting!
One of my layers
Ta da! Finished project
I'm thinking, "Why in the world did I do this? I'm not even going to eat any of it!"
Oh, here is why I did it!!!! For my sweet husband...and the challenge.

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Whitney said...

Wow- you really love your husband! No way I'd go to all of that trouble for one cake- and I love cake AND coconuts!

Chandra said...

Oh. My. Gosh. First of all, it is hilarious that you made this that late at night, on a whim! Second of all, I agree, coconut is disgusting, but it almost looks good enough to eat in your pictures, I think I would've had to try it anyway! (Even though I would've been disgustedly pulling coconut out of my teeth afterwards!) Still, I am beyond impressed.

Marty Rhea Hill said...

YOU ARE AMAZING!!!!!! I can't believe you are so talented. (Well, yes I can.) Great job and you look great. Mom just got through telling me how great you looked this weekend. I love you and congrats on the cake.

Marshall Brown said...

You know, they have coconut cake at Sam's.

Summer said...

I am so impressed!

April said...

Wow. That pretty well sums it up. Wow. That really is impressive...and I still have not figured out where you get your time (even late time) and energy for all the cute, creative things you do, Dallas! That cake looked great & yummy, too.

Julie said...

were you drilling coconuts at 11pm? you are CRAZY! i am sure matthew appreciated it though. i also hate coconut & only make 1 coconut item...a coconut cream pie once a year for jarod's bday.

Jenn said...

YUMMMM! I'm with Matthew...I LOVE it so much and I do keep a bag of the stuff in my fridge for a little snack every once in a while. Aaron is like you, Dallas. He so does not like it and even if it is hidden in something, he can find it! Congrats! Thanks for the great I know to just go and buy another bag!! :)

~aj~ said...

I'm not a coconut fan either, but that looks delicious! Great job!!!

Jamie Chitty said...

Nice Job!! I too am addicted to the Food Network. I love Ace of Cakes and Throwdown with Bobby Flay. I am trying his cookie recipie next week. I will let you know how it goes.

Julie Walker said...

I can't believe you did that so late!I, too, am addicted to the Food Network. They can do the most amazing things with a few simple ingredients. Matthew is a lucky guy to have you!!

Nicola said...

You're nuts... coconuts!

Amy said...

I too hate coconut. But what I found more astounding is you prepared a cake that required using a drill. Isn't it insane how easy things look on TV?

Amy S. said...

So let me get this straight. You went to the store at ten o'clock at night. THEN made a coconut cake from SCRATCH?? That is hilarious. And I agree with everyone that the cake looks pretty good (and I detest coconut).

Sandi said...

You are hilarious, Dallas. I love coconut, and the cake looks beautiful!!

All I have to say is, I hope those are Mattthew's arms in the drilling picture... :)

Mary Jo said...

OK, Dallas, that is an awesome story! It sounds like something we would do in college! So carefree about the time, the fact you hate what you are making, it didn't matter because it was an adventure! I love that!!

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