A Kitten at Heart

Happy Birthday to the man!!

The girl told us that the man’s birthday was coming up and we wanted her to make him something really yummy for his party.  M said that she’d heard him say that red velvet was his favorite cake, so we started searching Pinterest for a good recipe.  We finally found THIS recipe and asked the girl to make it.  We also asked that she bring us a piece (since we wern’t invited back to her house for the man’s party!  So rude!)

Megga-Yum!  One warning…. don’t eat red velvet cake and then try to clean your paws…. red paws!

– M&M

Red Velvet Cheesecake

INGREDIENTS:

CHEESECAKE:
Two (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
2/3 cup granulated white sugar
pinch of salt
2 large eggs
1/3 c sour cream
1/3 c heavy whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla extract

RED VELVET CAKE:
2 1/2 c all purpose flour
1 1/2 c granulated white sugar
3 TBS unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2 c vegetable or canola oil
1 c buttermilk
1/4 c (two 1-ounce bottles) red food coloring
2 tsp vanilla
2 tsp white vinegar

CREAM CHEESE FROSTING:
2 1/2 c powdered sugar, sifted
Two (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 c unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla

DIRECTIONS:

Cheesecake layer:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

Place a large roasting pan on the lower rack of the oven.  Spray a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick spray and line the bottom with a round of parchment paper. Wrap a double layer of foil around the bottom and up the sides of the pan (you want to seal it so the water from the water bath doesn’t seep into the pan).

In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to mix the cream cheese until it is and smooth and creamy. Mix sugar and salt and blend for 2 minutes, scraping down sides of the bowl as needed. Add eggs, one at a time, blending well after each addition. Finally, mix in sour cream, whipping cream and vanilla. Blend until smooth.

Pour batter into the prepared pan. Set the pan into the roasting pan in the pre-heated oven. Carefully pour hot water into the roasting pan so that there is about an inch of water coming up the foil along the sides of the cheesecake pan.

Bake the cheesecake for 45 minutes. It should be set to the touch and not jiggly. Remove the cheesecake from the roasting pan and let it cool on a wire rack for at least an hour. When it has cooled, place the pan into the freezer and let the cheesecake freeze completely. (several hours or overnight)

Cake layers:


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease and flour two 9-inch round metal baking pans.  Wrap Wilton – Bake Even Strips around pans.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.

Add eggs, oil, buttermilk, food coloring, vanilla and vinegar to the flour mixture. Using an electric mixer on medium-low speed, beat for 1 minute, until blended. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl with a rubber spatula. Beat on high speed for 2 minutes.

Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pans, dividing equally.

Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs attached. Let cool in pans on a wire rack for 10 minutes then remove cakes from pans and allow to cool completely.

Frosting:

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat powdered sugar, cream cheese, butter and vanilla until it is smooth and creamy.

Assemble the cake:

Stack the cake layers: Red Velvet, Cheesecake, Red Velvet… no need to put icing in between the layers.

Frost:

Frost the cake with the icing and decorate, as desired.

Spreading Holiday Cheer

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Today the girl was so excited.  One of our human friends brought a huge box into the office…. Now a box IS something to get excited about.  Boxes are lots of fun.  Especially when you hide in them and then jump out at people!  But it wasn’t the box that the girl was all excited about (even though she could have fit into this one…) it was what was inside the box that had her acting like a kitten on catnip.

It was a tree….. well, a fake tree.   We didn’t get it.  M & I kept trying to get her to dump the green thing out and let us have the box!

While the girl was messing around with her fake tree M & I started googling this whole “Christmas Tree” thing.  Turns out it’s a holiday tradition for some humans…. Tree Huggers, I think….

Anyway, the girl explained that we were going to put the tree up in the office…. and then decorate it.  Humans!  Well, it seemed important to her, so we decided to lend a paw.  M & I helped locate all the light plugs by climbing up and down limbs and shaking them loose.  We couldn’t get them all to light up…. The girl says the lighting of trees usually takes an advanced degree in electrical engineering  and we’d just be happy that any of them lit up.  So, now it just glows around the middle…. we kind of like it.  Next we helped arrange the ‘skirt’ (apparently trees wear clothes?).  The girl wasn’t too pleased with our arranging  but we think it will be much more comfortable with it all bunched up the way we have it….

The girl says we are going to wait to put the ornaments and and presents out…. something about us being too rambunctious…..

With that project on hold, M & I made ourselves comfortable on the girls desk and she explained to us about the Christmas Tree and presents.  Christmas presents sound even better than Halloween candy!

And even more pawesome…… we’re gonna collect presents to give to some human children!    Apparently there are groups of humans that help little humans when their family situation makes it unsafe for them to stay in their homes.  M & I understand the turmoil that these little humans are going through.  We were once Foster Kittens too.  When we were little our momma wasn’t able to take care of us.  M & I lived on the streets for a time until a very nice human let us come live with him and we worked in his office.  Sadly, our beloved human went to live with the angles much too soon.  Once again, M & I were without a home….. Fortunatly, our human’s friends heard about our plight and they invited us to come live with them.  That is when M & I came to live at the Festus Airport and became the FBO cats.  We feel so truly blessed to live and work with such a great group of humans.  Once we heard about the little humans, how could we not want to lend a paw?!

Anyone who wants to help should bring their unwrapped present to the FBO before November 30th.  The girl will take them to the Office of Little Human Helpers (that may not be the right name….. but it sounds good!) and they will get the presents to the little humans of Jefferson County.  The Office of Little Human Helpers says that they are looking for gifts for kids ages 1 month – 16 years.  ($15 – $25)  These little humans could use just about anything: clothes, pj’s, toys, books…. Help us to help them have a brighter holiday!