Thursday, January 27, 2011

Baker Death Match

Any bakery hunter is sure to love Office Depot's new commercial.  The ad features a disorganized baker and business woman who aspires to go on a faux TV show "Baker Battles" to compete in the "Baker Death Match."  With the help of some organizational supplies from Office Depot, Beth ends up rediscovering a secret recipe, winning the battle, and achieving great success.   With my love for office supplies rivaling that of my love for small bakery businesses, I wonder if I was the target demographic their marketing folks were hoping to reach.  Office Depot, are you listening?  It worked.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Kitchen comforts of 2011

Kitchen comforts of 2011: Taking the time to light some candles.  Late night chocolate chip cookie baking.  Receiving FCK soccer fan paraphernalia sent from Denmark to California, with love from my host mom (see wristband above that also doubles as a napkin ring!)  

My semester abroad in Denmark opened up a world of pastries, but it also introduced me to European soccer culture.  Almost as soon as I stepped off the plane, my host sister convinced me that her favorite team FCK had to be my team as well, especially since her brothers were fans of FCK's rival team.  Years later, I'm still nostalgic for our fan club of two and the memories of my second home.

Editor's note:  If you're in the mood for a little Scandinavian culture, check out the Swedish film "Simple Simon."  It's not only a great Scandinavian film, but one of the best films I have seen in a long time and an Oscar entry for Sweden!  Thanks to the annual Scandinavian film festival in LA for giving me the opportunity to watch this incredible film.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Year of the pie? Make some room for tart.

You may have heard all the discussion out there recently about how 2011 is going to be "the year of the pie."  While I see no reason the cupcake and the pie can't exist harmoniously, I am glad to hear pie is getting some well-deserved time in the spotlight.

But let's not forget pie's delicious cousin, the tart.  Tarts may not be as widespread or accessible as the all American pie slice, but tarts are every bit as artful and delicious.  My 2011 kickoff tart was a fresh cranberry tart with a crumble topping from a recipe found in Sur La Table's The Art and Soul of Baking.  You will want to keep in mind that this particular tart falls into the category of quite tart tarts.  I prefer enjoying the bold bite of the cranberries on their own, but you can also top a slice of this tart with some ice cream.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

What does your ideal cookbook bookshelf look like?

Jane Mount's "Ideal Bookshelf"series features a print for cookbook lovers based on favorites often included in home cook collections.  If you're a cookbook addict like myself, you will really appreciate this print.  

Top photo: Jane Mount's ideal bookshelf 102: Cooking (mounted on a bulletin board for viewing purposes)
Bottom photos: Some of my actual bookshelves (confession: many more cookbooks are in my possession but not featured in this post)