Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Over the Hill (work) and Birthday Cake... (Chocolate Stout Cake with raspberry frosting)

Saturday's awesome hill...
The tip of the arrow touches the top of the hill where I start my decline.

My sweet husband drove me to the top of this hill with the goal to meet me at the bottom and drive me to the top again for a total of 5 miles of running down a 14% grade hill.  I'm training for Hood To Coast's first leg starting at Timberline Lodge.  It's a doozer of a leg... quite the incline (err, decline!).... but lucky for me I found a great hill!  Steeper than the popular Terwilliger Hill in Portland...

And this hill I found is quite the run.  I ran one mile down it and was incredibly sore in my calves.  Yikes!  This is a great workout!  

When I got to the bottom of the hill, one mile complete, my run plans were dashed when I found my husband with his head under the hood of our broken down car.  It was running, but would not disengage from park.  Something was up with the transmission?  Well, after ditching the car and going home to do some research, he found that the solution was a 10 minute trip to the autopart store for new fuses.  I'll have to tackle this amazing, steep hill some other time.  

In the meantime, while hubstud worked on the car (at my hill), I analysed my amazing hill's decline to that of Hood To Coast's first leg.  Huh.

My one mile descent was 400 feet.

Leg one at HTC covers an average of 500 feet in a mile... (unless I'm reading the graph wrong...)  One hundred more feet per mile, I'm venturing to guess, is going to be quite a difference.  Oh boy.  Feeling nervous.

Well, when I was done fretting over the hill work and hubstud finished working on the car, it was time to celebrate his birthday.  Last year's cake was the "Mario and Princess Peach" Toasted Pecan Cake (and a blog post about how supportive and amazing he is to help me with my training... I'd like to also state that he isn't really a runner.  [Not yet anyway... ;) ]).

So, I suppose to stay consistent, here's the recipe for this year's cake.  As you can see, he is still amazing, super supportive and helpful with my running.  :)  

I'm a lucky girl. 

Chocolate Stout Cake with Raspberry Buttercream frosting

2 C flour
1/2 C unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
2 sticks of unsalted butter
1 1/2 C light brown sugar
2 large eggs
~ 2 cups (or less) of Rogue Chocolate Stout  (save the rest to drink with the completed cake, or just drink it while the cake bakes and enjoy the Voodoo Doughnut Pretzel, Raspberry & Chocolate Ale with the cake!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Butter/grease a 9 inch cake pan.
Mix together flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt. 

In a separate bowl, beat together sugar and butter until fluffy.  Beat in eggs and then stir in half the flour mixture until well incorporated.  Then stir in half the beer, mix and the rest of the flour and mix.  Then the rest of the beer.  

Pour into cake pan and bake about 35 min or until center of cake is cooked.  (Insert a "cake tester" or toothpick and if it comes out clean, cake is fully cooked.)

1/2 C salted butter (to go with the pretzel theme of the ale... unsalted is fine also)
3 to 4 C powdered sugar
1/4 C raspberry jam
splash of milk if frosting is too thick...

In a mixing bowl, cream together (with electric mixer) jam and butter until incorporated.
Add powdered sugar (one cup at a time) until desired consistency is achieved.
If it's too thick, add a little milk.
Spread on cooled cake!

We enjoyed the cake.  Here's to loving life... and loving some hill work in my future.

Do you think my hill is good enough?  

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