Two years ago, Caitlin and I designed the Grim Peeper, our submission for the Washington Post’s annual Peep Contest. Unfortunately, we haven’t had the time to collaborate on any recent peep project.
And yet, I still had a bag or two of those yellow marshmallows sitting around the kitchen, chirping to be used. Around Easter, I noticed a few food blogs featuring bird’s nests, combining chow mein noodles with some of the ubiquitous bagged candy.
Though I liked the concept, the idea of chow mein noodles and chocolate did not sound appealing. Continue reading
As I’ve noted before, it’s important to have a food gameplan when picking Caitlin up from the airport. That means having a restaurant and itinerary picked out in advance of pick-up.
In addition, I also like to have a snack waiting for Caitlin when she arrives – a little something to tide her over during the drive back into the city. Often, the snack is home-made, something sweet that I’ve made either that day, or the day before. Occasionally, though, time gets ahead of me, and I have to settle on something from the store.
But whether it was store-bought or home-made, I had, apparently, developed a steady habit of having a snack in the car on those airport trips. To the point where I had created a nearly Pavlovian connection between the airport and baked goods.
Sure enough, Continue reading
A few months ago, in one of my nightly phone dates with Charles, the topic of Valentine’s Day came up. Since we live in Memphis and Cincinnati this year, we were planning to spend the holiday apart, a reality that left me somewhat bummed.
Now, I’m not wedded (pun intended) to the February 14 greeting card extravaganza, but the prospect of spending the night alone was still unappealing. So, after agreeing to acknowledge the occasion on our next visit, Mr. Romance reminded me Continue reading
For me, chocolate is a lot like Ben Affleck – it’s best in a supporting role.
Chocolate-chip cookies, chocolate croissants, and chocolate-chip blondies are definite draws. Think Good Will Hunting, School Ties, and Mallrats. But put chocolate in a starring role – chocolate cake, chocolate truffles, or chocolate pudding – and you have a Gigli or Daredevil in the making.
By my standards, these pancakes are well cast. The chocolate chips meld into the oatmeal-buttermilk batter, giving a subtle performance, but one that adds to the overall production. They don’t steal the scene, but rather, focus it.
We all know chocolate as a dessert, but it’s a role it often plays, and usually overplays. But after making these pancakes, Continue reading
To create the perfect soufflé, it helps to understand the science behind it.
Egg whites are made entirely of protein, while egg yolks contain a mixture of both protein and fat. When you beat egg whites, you are mixing air into the mixture, and the protein from the egg whites forms a skin around the air bubbles. As the soufflé bakes, the heat causes the air captured in the egg whites to expand, creating the puff. When the soufflé comes out of the oven and begins to cool, the air contracts and the soufflé begins to deflate.
Simply put, the rise and fall of your soufflé comes down to the egg whites.
With this in mind, Continue reading
Last night I had a Halloween party, and in keeping with spirit of the party, I decided to try a themed dessert: Graveyard Brownies. I thought about laying some Lego men around the tombstones for added effect, but ultimately decided to stick with an all-edible item. Then I thought about trying to make marshmallow spider webs or adding gummy worms, but there’s something to be said for simplicity – especially with a first effort.
Next year I might try Continue reading