Category Archives: baking

a Few Recipes to Celebrate Bastille Day

a Few Recipes to Celebrate Bastille Day

ShareTweet When I was a little girl, the Bastille Day fireworks were so close to my birthday that I always thought they were in my honor. Three years ago, we were in Paris on Bastille Day, feet dangling over the Seine near the Ile de la Cite, fireworks exploding high above our heads. Tonight ParisContinue Reading

Cherry Clafoutis: a Summer Treat for Breakfast or Dessert

Cherry Clafoutis: a Summer Treat for Breakfast or Dessert

ShareTweet I don’t think I fully appreciated cherries until I moved to Chicago. Cherries always looked more fun than they tasted until I moved here. Now I count the days until Michigan starts delivering its cherries to our farmer’s market: sour, rainier and deep crimson. Each type of cherry has its charms and each demands attention.Continue Reading

Carrot Souffle: a Family Favorite Worth Sharing

Carrot Souffle: a Family Favorite Worth Sharing

ShareTweet Vegetable side dishes are rarely the star of the show, but my carrot souffle is the exception. This sweet and fluffy casserole is like eating dessert with dinner. If I didn’t make it for Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Passover, there might be a riot involving both kids and adults at the table. Like all greatContinue Reading

Summertime Lunches: La Brea Bakery #BreakingBread Tour

Summertime Lunches: La Brea Bakery #BreakingBread Tour

ShareTweet When the school year begins, school lunches are always a hot topic. Healthy school lunches. Fun school lunches. Easy school lunches. From bento boxes to regular paper bags, at back to school time everyone is looking for new ideas. But in many ways, the school lunch is infinitely easier than the summer lunch. OnContinue Reading

Hamilton Beach Stand Mixer Giveaway

ShareTweet I promised you another Hamilton Beach giveaway, for a 6-Speed Stand Mixer, and I’m here to deliver, delayed a few days by a very hectic weekend. The Hamilton Beach 6-Speed Stand Mixer would be a great addition to a start up kitchen cooking small batches. It retails for $129.99. a Rafflecopter giveaway UPDATE –Continue Reading

Chocolate Meringue Cookies and a Hamilton Beach Giveaway

Chocolate Meringue Cookies and a Hamilton Beach Giveaway

ShareTweet Some kitchen appliances get no glory. In my case, the least appreciated appliance in my kitchen closet is my hand mixer. Until recently, mine dated back to my college days. To put things into perspective and make a painful confession, next spring will be my 20 year reunion. High time for a hand mixerContinue Reading

Le Pain Quotidien Hits Chicago #LPQCHI

Le Pain Quotidien Hits Chicago #LPQCHI

ShareTweet One of my favorite casual places to go to brunch when I lived in New York City was Le Pain Quotidien. I’d spend hours at their rustic farm tables, dipping butter tartines in steaming bowls of cafe au lait and perfectly cooked soft boiled eggs. A morning at Le Pain Quotidien on Columbus Avenue would transport meContinue Reading

Homemade Bread Machine Pretzel Rolls

Homemade Bread Machine Pretzel Rolls

ShareTweet What are the little items you splurge on at Whole Foods or Trader Joes? The things you throw in your cart that you absolutely didn’t need? For us, it’s soft pretzel rolls. If my kids spot their beautiful dark brown crust, forget it. The rolls have to come home with us. There’s something about the saltyContinue Reading

Dauntless Chocolate Cake

Dauntless Chocolate Cake

ShareTweet For the last year or so, Bella and I have been in an informal book club, passing books back and forth, sitting down on a Friday night to watch the movie. For me, it’s a great excuse to read some really fun young adult novels. For her, it’s a chance to be welcomed toContinue Reading

Strawberry Souffles: a Very Pink Valentine’s Dessert

Strawberry Souffles: a Very Pink Valentine’s Dessert

ShareTweet How will you celebrate Valentine’s Day? Will you brave the crowds and the cutesy expensive menus? Or will you snuggle at home? If you’re staying in, I have a great dessert suggestion for you: Strawberry Souffles. For years now, we’ve gone dark and light with a chocolate souffle. But this year, we’re going pink.Continue Reading

Chocolate Meringue Rocky Road Cookies

Chocolate Meringue Rocky Road Cookies

ShareTweet For our book club meeting last night, I made these incredibly rich chocolate meringue cookies. By adding marshmallows, the cookies became Rocky Road Chocolate Meringue Cookies, a nod to the rough life of the main character in The Goldfinch. I modified a recipe I found on Eva’s Daily Doses of Sugar blog. Eva’s recipeContinue Reading

Perfect Meringues Bring Generations Together

Perfect Meringues Bring Generations Together

ShareTweet When I was a child, my mother reigned in the kitchen. I was her willing sous chef for the main course, but dessert was my gig. Baking didn’t interest her very much and I was (and still am) a chocoholic. It was a mutually beneficial arrangement. Fast forward to my adulthood and the rolesContinue Reading

Banana Yogurt Muffins: Homemade Breakfast for Endless Snow Days

Banana Yogurt Muffins: Homemade Breakfast for Endless Snow Days

ShareTweet Because my oldest hated fruit as a child, and still does as a tween, any child that reaches for fruit with a smile brings me joy and gratefulness. Although Bella didn’t communicate her no-Fruititarian policy to any of her younger siblings, every time Baby Sophie asks for a “Nana” I’m slightly amazed. Could thereContinue Reading

Bacon Infused Macaroni and Cheese To Please the Pickiest Eaters

Bacon Infused Macaroni and Cheese To Please the Pickiest Eaters

ShareTweet Macaroni and cheese. What color comes to mind when I say that phrase? For me, it’s a bowl of creamy colored shell noodles bathed in an equally creamy sauce made from artisan cheeses. For my kids? A day-glo orange sauce coating tiny elbow noodles. A few years ago, I decided to show my kidsContinue Reading

Holiday Baking: No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls

Holiday Baking: No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls

ShareTweet Long before the snow starts falling, when my toes are brightly manicured and my legs are still tanned, I start clipping recipes for holiday cookie inspiration. They sit neatly organized in red and green files on my desk, and that’s where they usually remain, untouched and unloved. Once the holiday madness hits, who’s gotContinue Reading

Mini Puff Pastry Chocolate Pecan Pies

Mini Puff Pastry Chocolate Pecan Pies

ShareTweet Pecan pies are definitely the highlight of the holiday dessert table as far as I’m concerned. A few years ago, I started throwing in chocolate into the mix, and made them even better. This year, instead of using pie crust, I propose puff pastry as the base. Individual puff pastry nests filled with pecansContinue Reading

Marble Cheesecake Brownie Bites

Marble Cheesecake Brownie Bites

ShareTweet When it comes to dessert, I’m definitely a chocolate kind of girl. Marrying cheesecake with chocolate makes me weak in the knees. Marbled cheesecake brownies are a combo I’m powerless to resist: rich chocolate, creamy cheesecake, and pretty to boot. I hope to host a mother-daughter cookie exchange soon (if such an event isContinue Reading

Nutella Madeleine Volcanoes

Nutella Madeleine Volcanoes

ShareTweet It’s been a while since I’ve shared a Nutella recipe, a mysterious omission considering that we always have two jars of Nutella in our cabinet. One jar would just be too close to possibly running out. We fold Nutella in hot chocolate, roll it up in hot Nutella sponge cake, and hide it awayContinue Reading