Yesterday, my husband celebrated his birthday. While he had a crummy day at work, I made certain that he had an nice evening with a great dinner, along with his favorite movie, The Big Lebowski, playing in the background. I started planning his birthday dinner when we got back from our honeymoon. He wanted a dish with meat and a birthday cake. Check for both of these.
I settled on a menu of pork chops and cornbread stuffing. His birthday cake was going to be a Key Lime Pound Cake with a Key Lime Glaze. Of course, I thought it would be a menu that I could accomplish during an afternoon away from the office. However, after dealing with the DMV for most of the afternoon, I was left wondering whether this would be too time intensive. I decided to woman-up, because I knew he would be surprised by the effort and love.
The cornbread stuffing is a recipe that is so simple. In a saute pan, I melted 2 tablespoons butter with four cloves of garlic over medium heat. After the butter was melted, I threw in one onion that french cut, and one red bell pepper that was roughly diced. After the onion began to caramelize and the pepper softened, I placed cubes of cornbread in the pan with a cup of chicken broth and 1/4 cup of apple cider for an added level of sweetness. (Note: I fudged and bought a large cornbread square from our local Whole Foods Market.) The stuffing was seasoned with salt, pepper, thyme, and sage. It was delicious and paired well with the pork chop.
Next, I proceeded to season the pork chops with a mixture of salt, pepper, tarragon, garlic powder, sage, and thyme. Creating a rub, I patted the pork chops with the seasoning mixture. After heating a cast iron skillet with some oil, I seared the pork chops on high to give them a good crust, then I reduced the heat to allow them time to finish cooking. The pork chop was juicy and moist…success!
The star of the dinner was dessert. Of course, this took a while to bake. Pound cakes have always been the least favorite of desserts, and it was probably because they come across as being dry and crumbly, not very moist. When I came across this recipe in Southern Living, I knew it was going to be a winner. My husband is a huge fan of Key Lime pie, so I knew he would love this Key Lime Pound Cake. It was time intensive, but the cake was moist and better than pound cakes of the past. I did make some slight revisions to the recipe by adding an additional teaspoon of lime zest. The flavor profile was unbelievable, and this is something I will make again in the future.
So tell me, what’s your favorite birthday dinner? Also, what’s your favorite birthday cake? Happy Birthday to my wonderful husband!