Royal icing is not something that came naturally to me (like, say, fondant). But for this being my third time making it, I think they came out fantastically! I got better and better with each cookie, with the final ones being very intricately detailed.
This is just a collection of nerdy foodporn cupcake images that Tracy and I made! Enjoy, and leave a comment to let me know how excited you are for the 50th! Is anyone else going to see it in 3D?
Also: Amazing thank you to Phillip Duquette of Premier Pastry, who patiently responded to all of my texts and offered me some great advice on working with fondant. He was a huge help!
Hi, Autumn! Let me officially welcome you. You are my favorite season, and I'm fairly certain that a good portion of New Englanders (especially food bloggers!) agree with me.
But we feel that way at the start of every season, don't we? At the beginning of spring, we're so excited to have fresh vegetables and fruit, and we are re-encouraged to brighten up meals that had become so dull in the winter months.
Summer comes, and we are just so freaking happy to roll out the grill and throw some big, bloody meat onto it. It's also the season of watermelon, lemonade, ice-cream, and homegrown veggies.
Autumn arrives with that delicious, home-cooked aroma that reminds you of curling up with a blanket, playing in the leaves, breaking out your Northface and scarves (the iconic NE signal that fall has officially arrived). It smells like cinnamon and allspice, roasted poultry and heavenly sauces. It smells like delicious, savory desserts that are made with some of our favorite autumn staples: maple, apples, pumpkins...
And then there's winter. Typically I get all depressed because, for cooking, it's the season that arrives with a big fat tuba player behind it going "Womp womp." By the end of winter, you might scream if you have to eat roast anything.
But back to Fall! Yay! (I am so not ready for winter) ...continue reading
When coming up with the menu that Simon would use to seduce Bree, halfway through Baking Bree, Crème Brûlée immediately came to mind. It's hard to imagine a sexier dessert than this restaurant staple, and it's the perfect finale to a romantic meal. Plus, spoon feeding to each other across the table? Totally hot.
The cool thing I learned is that it isn't all that difficult to make at home, assuming you have the right tools and ingredients for the job. The whole process does take awhile (especially the cooling stage) so it's best to make this ahead of time. ...continue reading
I got an ice cream maker for my birthday from my mom! And honestly, it was a gift unto herself, too, cuz who doesn't love fresh ice cream?
My first recipe was from the cuisinart cookbook that came with the ice cream maker, with a few adaptations. But I chose this flavor because not only do I love mint chocolate chip, but my mint in my herb garden was going crazy!
And the oreos? Do you even need to ask?
This is the second post in my four-part series of recipes from the seduction scene from my latest book, Baking Bree.
In the scene, Simon, the sexy Australian chef, blindfolds Brianna in his kitchen and torments her by feeding her bites of four delectable desserts he made just for her. As you can imagine, it gets pretty intense
Especially when he feeds her the final dessert, an amazing white chocolate brie cheesecake.
What? You've never thought about using brie in a cheesecake before? It is cheese, after all.
And if you get a milky, buttery brie, it blends amazingly well with the cream cheese and gives your just a tease of the delicious brie flavor. It's not overwhelming, but it's definitely different from plain old cheesecake.
To make two mini-cheesecake rounds (perfect for a romantic dessert), you will need: ...continue reading
Baking Bree has been available on Amazon for three weeks now, and while the reviews are slow to come in, the feedback has been wonderful. When I set out to write a book that centered around food, I knew that there must be a way to incorporate it into the blossoming romance between Bree and Simon, her cooking instructor.
For things to heat up outside of the classroom, I decided to use Simon's knowledge of baking and pastry making to whip up a delectable spread of desserts to tantalize Bree's tastebuds.
Each dish had to jump off the page (ok, screen) and into the reader's mouth, making them crave the next bite as much as Bree was. To do this, I picked textural, aromatic, and flavorful dishes that, when paired with the right wines, work together to completely seduce the senses.
Sound delicious? You can pick up a copy of the book on Amazon, and check out the scene for yourself (Chapter 15). And if you review the book (please please please!) and shoot me an email, I'll put you on a list to receive the sequel, Starting from Scratch, for free!
Of course I have to get around to actually starting that one, so in the meantime, let's start the seduction ...continue reading
I certainly do (even though I'm still a 10 fan at heart! <3 you DT!), and his quirky charm just gets even better as he grows into the role. One of my favorite scenes of Matt Smith's was his introduction to the show really, where he experiences the side effects of a brand new regeneration: new tastebuds.
Here's the youtube link to the clip, but you can watch the whole episode on Netflix, if you haven't already gotten into the show...which you should do...like, now.
Anyway, as you can see from the clip, the doctor's new tastebuds are very picky. Yogurt is just stuff with bits in it, beans are evil, and are you trying to poison him?
What he needs is...fish fingers and custard.
But, in honor of tomorrow night's season finale where we might actually learn his name (!!!), I whipped up some delicious boozy pudding with faux fish fingers for you to munch on while you watch. ...continue reading
Well, we tied for first place with the Charlottes web cake, which was so stinking cute I'm not even mad.
Wanna see what it looked like all stacked and pretty? ...continue reading
Not only have I not been eating healthy these first three months of 2013, but I'm eating downright terribly. It's not the lack of good food, it's probably the abundance of bad food that's going to kill me in the end.
One particular weakness of mine is Italian pastries. Kevin and I found the BEST Italian pastry shop in Schenectady, NY, called Villa Italia. We figure that since we only see each other once or twice a month, we have a right to indulge in as many cream puffs, cannolis, eclairs, and cookies as we can fit into our stomachs. It doesn't leave us feeling too great about ourselves, but oh my god are they delicious.
So since I had a three week period where I didn't drive to beautiful (ha!) Schenectady, I figured I had to get my fix the old-fashioned way: by making them from scratch. And you know what? It was not nearly as difficult as I had imagined. ...continue reading