Wish Upon A Dish: Korean Short Ribs, Chicken Thighs, Chicken Legs and a Lemonade Layer Cake ♥ Excellent Day!

September 5, 2014

Korean Short Ribs, Chicken Thighs, Chicken Legs and a Lemonade Layer Cake ♥ Excellent Day!

I hope your last long holiday weekend of the summer was as nice as ours was. With the weather in the northeast as temperamental as my cats, we decided Saturday was the best day for our get together (plus Monday was a travel day for The Nudge, the Swedes don't have a Labor Day).

I wanted to share a few of the recipes for the foods I prepared. Everyone had their assignments and the vegetables and appetizers were my SIL's, the meat and dessert were mine and the salads and condiments were my BIL's. It all worked out well and there was more than enough food so everyone got leftovers for the rest of the weekend. I rarely take back my own contributions but I insisted on at least a 2piece slice of the cake (recipe at the end).

On my Wish Dish List was Kalbi (Korean Ribs) and since my BIL does not eat red meat, I also cooked chicken legs and thighs with the same marinade/sauce. We started with an old fashioned cheese ball (remember them?) It was a nice change.

We also had a German and American Potato Salad, a Swedish Cucumber Salad, Baked Beans, Corn on the Cob, a Zucchini and Red Pepper Bake, Korean Short Ribs, Chicken Thighs & Legs, Hot Dogs, and for dessert, Rugelach and a Lemonade Cake.

Think we had enough food???

OMG, these short ribs were gone in two minutes. I had my butcher cut 2 pounds of beef short ribs flaken-style (crosswise across the bones) at no more than a 1/2-inch thickness. The key is to grill these on a screaming hot grill for barely 4 minutes a side. Trust me, they will be tender, flavorful and super easy and I was skeptical myself.

The edges caramelize and the meat practically falls off the bones. I know that these will make an appearance a few more times till the snow comes and the grill is accessible.

Since there was no heat in the marinade (my family is made up of wussies) I split the marinade in half and filled one large zip bag with the ribs (there were 8 of them for 4 carnivores) and 8 each, chicken thighs and legs (for the wussies, lol). Since the chicken would take longer than the beef, I grilled them first, cleaned off the grill and right before the corn was done, cranked up the heat and blasted those ribs.....yum!!

These were one of the easiest chicken parts I grilled. The marinade provides enough moisture so no basting is required. I have to say, the beef marinade was just as good on the chicken and this will also be making a few grilled dinners the next couple of months. I am even thinking Giants tailgating in two weeks. So easy and portable.

Now for the cake.

I love lemon anything and a lemon layer cake with cream cheese frosting? did not go unnoticed on Pinterest a few weeks ago. I had to bake this cake.

Now I am not a baker but I planned the making of the cake as if I was planning D-day. It had to be perfect and there was no time for do-overs.

First problem...I could not find my round cake pans. Luckily I always have aluminum ones in my pantry that I use for my 3 part breading stations.

Road Block #1 - taken care of

Then disaster struck. I needed two whole large eggs and two egg whites. I had four eggs. So far, so good. As I grabbed the eggs out of the fridge, one-by-one, Humpty Dumpty showed up and made a mess on the floor. Geez.
Luckily I freeze whites I don't use and had three of them, so all I needed was one whole egg + those three yolks. I did know that one less holk would effect the texture of the cake but I compensated by adding an additional tablespoon of butter.

Road Block #2 - hurdled

Last minor problem occored when I did not prepare the pans with butter and flour and the bottoms were sticky, making it difficult to move around. I was afraid they would tear up while icing. I used two pre-cut  9" parchment paper rounds and problem solved.

Road Block #3 : diverted

Once I spread the lemon curd between the layers, I wrapped additional strips of parchment around the outside and slide the unadorned cake into a snug carrier to wait it's final appearance.

BBQ, here we come!!

I will say one thing before I type in all the recipes. If you love lemon you should seriously think about making this cake. I could have, and would have, eaten the whole cake if it was in this house.

I think that the next time I make this (and I will next week), I am going to bake layers in my mini cheesecake pans, wrap them and freeze them. This way I can pull two out when the craving hits me and we will each have a very nice, affordable half of a very cute lemonade cake.

Kalbi (Korean Grilled Beef Ribs) & Chicken Legs and Thighs
adapted from Saveur.com
serves 8

* 2 lbs. bone-in beef short ribs, flaken cut, 1/2" thick
* 8 chicken thighs
* 8 chicken legs
* ½ cup fresh pineapple juice
* ¼ cup soy sauce
* ¼ cup sugar
* 2 tbsp. rice wine vinegar
* 2 tbsp. sesame oil
* 2 tbsp. sesame seeds, lightly toasted, plus more for garnish
* 2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
* 5 cloves garlic, mashed into a paste
* 1 small white onion, grated

Split the beef and chicken into two gallon zip bags and pour half the marinade into each. Marinade for up to 2 hours.
Light a large, hot fire and grill the chicken for about 5 minutes each side and the beef ribs for 3 minutes on each side.

Lemonade Layer Cake
adapted from myrecipes.com
makes 16 servings

* 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
* 6 tablespoons butte, softened
* 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
* 3 tablespoons thawed lemonade concentrate
* 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
* 2 large eggs
* 2 large egg whites
* 2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
* 1 1/4 cups fat-free buttermilk

* 2 tablespoons butter, softened
* 2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
* 2 teaspoon thawed lemonade concentrate
* 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 8 ounces 1/3 less fat cream cheese
* 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
* 1 jar lemon curd

1. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. To prepare cake, place first 5 ingredients in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 5 minutes). Add eggs and egg whites, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda; stir well with a whisk. Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately to sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture; beat well after each addition.
3. Pour batter into 2 (9-inch) round cake pans coated with cooking spray; sharply tap pans once on counter to remove air bubbles. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pans. Cool completely on wire rack.
4. To prepare frosting, place 2 tablespoons butter and the next 4 ingredients (2 tablespoons butter through cream cheese) in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at high speed until fluffy. Add powdered sugar, and beat at low speed just until blended (do not overbeat). Chill 1 hour.
5. Place 1 cake layer on a plate; spread with lemon curd. Top with remaining cake layer. Spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake. Store cake loosely covered in the refrigerator.

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