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We hosted a family birthday party for my father-in-law yesterday. We made Mexican food and poured margaritas and served frosty-cold beer. And we had cake. Extra-special birthday cake.

First, bake a chocolate cake….any cake. I cheated and used a dark chocolate mix for the cake. Then defrost a bag of frozen raspberries and mix with a spoonful of sugar. Scoop out the berries and cover the bottom layer with them. Then coat the bottom of the top layer with choc. buttercream frosting (homemade and left over from brownies earlier in the week). Put layers together:
cake11.jpg

Now, here’s the extra-special part – the frosting. Chop up 9 ounces of good chocolate. I used some lindt bittersweet, callabaut white chocolate (to balance the bitterness….my kids aren’t crazy about bittersweet choc.) and some ghiradelli choc. chips — a real crazy mix.
cake2.jpg

Bring a cup of heavy cream to a boil and then whisk in the chocolate until it’s smooth and chocolately and smells so good it drives you crazy.
cake3.jpg

Cool the mixture for a few hours and then whip it until fluffy. Frost the cake.
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And serve:
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Even better than the cake (which was delicious) was having everyone together to celebrate the man who anchors this family. Happy Birthday Pop-pop. We all love you.

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