Saturday, December 20, 2008

When life gives you lemons (2)

Steven here. So. Last week when I was doing a lot of baking for clients (big surprise), I made an Apple Spice cake which, for some reason, decided to stick to the pan (I have no idea how that happened). Well, not being one to toss a perfectly good, albeit ugly, cake in the garbage, I decided to try something new (also a big surprise. Not.) Hmmmmmmm,,,what could I do with this lovely cake, brimming with granny smith apples, brown sugar and spices? A-Hah! Granny Smith apples happen to be a favorite late-night snack of Joe and I, and we always slather the quarters with peanut butter. Sounds strange, I know, but try it - it's a great combination. This led me to the idea to make Apple Spice and Peanut Butter bread pudding!!! It sounded heavenly to me (of course). So I set about doctoring my Chocolate Toffee bread pudding recipe, and came up with a lovely, mildly peanut-flavored pudding to pour over the pieces of Apple Spice cake in their little aluminum cups (this is how I always make bread puddings - they hold probably 3/4 cup of yumminess and it seems just the right amount for a single serving). I thought to myself that no one would find these as interesting as I do - but was I ever wrong! Joe and I each took a handfull of the delightful cups to work the next day and people RAVED about them. I kid you not. And we got an order for 15 from a co-worker of Joe's for Christmas. So the next time a recipe turns out not quite the way you hoped, try thinking outside of the pie pan, and put your imagination to work. You won't believe what lovely little new-fangled item you might come up with!

In case I don't get a chance to blog again this week, we wish everyone of you a lovely, fun-filled Holiday (whichever one you choose to celebrate), and we send out many good thoughts and much positive energy in hopes that you will all have a fantastic New Year!

Ciao for now...

'Da boys

Monday, December 15, 2008

Just in time for Christmas

Thats the title of a favorite Nancy LaMott song (I highly recommend her Christmas album to anyone looking for a great holiday listen). Nancy, we wish you were still here to share your amazing talent with us all.

Now, back to business! This weekend I'm gonna make my famous Lemon Curd, and this year we've decided to package it and sell it as a great holiday gift. It will come in a 6 oz jar for $10.00, and we're even including a spoon - for those of you who can't wait to get home and open this little jar of citrus heaven. We're taking pre-orders for Christmas week, and will have it available for pick up in Hell's Kitchen.

Of course, we won't discourage you from ordering something ELSE holiday flavored (Eggnog cheesecake, anyone?). Our best-sellers so far this fall have been Pumpkin Cheesecake with Orange/Cranberry biscotti crust, Caramel Apple Cheesecake, Pumpkin pie with Cinnamon pecan struesel topping, and our cookies, of course. Please get those orders to us by friday the 19th, to gaurantee the freshest goods and pick up by the holiday.

We hope to hear from you all, and soon! And in case we don't get the chance to say it in person - Happy Holidays to you all, and thank you for your friendship and patronage this year - it has made a huge difference in our lives!

Ciao for now...

'Da boys

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

It's Sugar Time!!!

Once again, the Daring Bakers have challenged me to do something new... This month it was Caramel Cake... Shuna Fish Lydon's recipe for this month's challenge can be seen here... and this month's hosts were Dolores of Culinary Curiosity Alex (Brownie of the Blondie and Brownie duo: /), and Jenny of Foray into Food. And contributing the alternative recipe was Natalie of Gluten-a-Go-Go...

I had never made caramel or worked with sugar in this way before so I was a little frightened of possible burns while the sugar cooked, BUT i was fine... The only real issue I had was probably my own lack of experience with sugar, and I don't think that I cooked it long enough, but it didn't seem to affect falvor at all...

Anyway, our post is a few days late, what with the holiday but here are the photos of this most luscious and moist cake... We each had two slices before putting the cake to bed for the night... Then Steven took it in to work where, somehow, it disappeared as he crossed the threshold...

And now, a few photos...

Caramel Cake 1

Caramel Cake 4

Caramel Cake 5

Caramel Cake 6

By the way, I had promised this cake for Steven's birthday today... If two slices is any indication, he enjoyed it!

and now, on to the December Challenge... We'll keep you posted!!!