Food

Cherries, Chocolate Cake and Chimps

Technically there are no chimps involved with this post but it did do something for my alliteration.  In any case, some random thoughts and fun links from a sleep-deprived mind to kick off your Friday in gluttony-filled style:

Cherries are in season here in Chengdu and aren’t they just gorgeous?

So plump and red and juicy, totally worth the cherry-stains all over my fingers.  Look out for a cherry pie post coming soon…

Last night I stayed up far too late working on this cake.  So far, so delicious, Deb over at Smitten Kitchen never steers me wrong.  I highly recommend you run out right now, buy some chocolate, and make this thing for any of your friends/acquaintances celebrating birthdays this week.  Maybe you can check Facebook to see whose birthday it is…if your friends are still on Facebook.  Ohh snap.  (as for moi? I’m just not cool enough to quit yet)

By the way, this is what the awesome Ding Dong cake was supposed to look like…

And this is what the cake actually looked like…

(Out-of-this-world chocolate cake goodness wrapped up in a very unfortunately fugly decorating job.  Coincidentally, this photo is also a poster child for why one should never (ok, rarely) resort to using the built-in flash on one’s camera…)

Last night we also helped a few friends make some home-brewed beer.  By “help,” I mean we sat on the couch and watched the beer-making instructional video while they hovered over a giant 5 gallon pot of hops and malt extract for several hours.  Beer making is fun guys!  If you want to try it yourself, here’s the supplier our friends have been using for the past few years.

Have you ever visited Chris Niemann’s blog on the NYT?  Go there now.  One visit and you will find yourself with a delightful new blog-obsession, I promise.  It makes me happy everyday as I drink my morning coffee.

Bouldering + swimming = totally over the top–but in a very awesome way.  This is my new absolutely ridiculous desire should we ever live somewhere with a swimming pool…which likely means this will remain a total fantasy for a long, long time.

This weekend Chris and I are celebrating Memorial Day in China by climbing a mountain-China style (i.e. with plenty of steps, temples, snacks, souvenirs, scary-agressive primates, and tour buses along the way).  Our first China hike recap will hit Hot Pot next week-look out for pictures of a misty mountain and mischievous monkeys.

By the way, we are tentatively planning a December trip to New Zealand at the moment, any thoughts on the best places to visit for backpacking, or tramping as they call it down under?

Finally last but not least, after you make the delicious cake above or eat a bushel of cherries, or drink a few good homebrews, remember to brush your teeth.  Your heart may thank you someday.  Happy Friday.

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2 thoughts on “Cherries, Chocolate Cake and Chimps

  1. Hi there,

    Here is a little information you might find useful for your trip to NZ:

    Queenstown is well known as New Zealand’s premier adventure playground, offering a whole host of snow sports and adventure activities as well as many of the greatest treks on the planet. This site offers a few examples of some of the great commercial walks you can do in Queenstown: http://experiencequeenstown.com/walks/

    The Hollyford track – http://www.hollyfordtrack.com/about-us-history – is great if you’re are after a slightly lower altitude track in this area.

    Queenstown’s official tourism website provides a pretty comprehensive list of the many other activities that are on offer during winter: http://www.queenstown-nz.co.nz/information/winter/

    In the North Island be sure to check out the Tongariro Crossing in Tongariro National Park – the first recognised national park in New Zealand, the fourth in the world, and also recognised as a world heritage park: http://www.thetongarirocrossing.co.nz/tongariro.htm

    Hopefully these sites provide a bit of inspiration for your journey to NZ, and please feel free to ask if you have any other questions regarding travel to NZ.

  2. Hi there,
    Here is a little information you might find useful for your trip to NZ:

    Queenstown is well known as New Zealand’s premier adventure playground, offering a whole host of snow sports and adventure activities as well as many of the greatest treks on the planet. This site offers a few examples of some of the great commercial walks you can do in Queenstown: http://experiencequeenstown.com/walks/

    The Hollyford track – http://www.hollyfordtrack.com/about-us-history – is great if you’re are after a slightly lower altitude track in this area.

    Queenstown’s official tourism website provides a pretty comprehensive list of the many other activities that are on offer during winter: http://www.queenstown-nz.co.nz/information/winter/

    In the North Island be sure to check out the Tongariro Crossing in Tongariro National Park – the first recognised national park in New Zealand, the fourth in the world, and also recognised as a world heritage park: http://www.thetongarirocrossing.co.nz/tongariro.htm

    Hopefully these sites provide a bit of inspiration for your journey to NZ, and please feel free to ask if you have any other questions regarding travel to NZ.

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