Tuesday, February 17, 2015


My Tante Christel kept packages of sweet tart shells stocked in her kitchen when I was a kid.  Tucked in the cupboard for safe keeping, she would grab a few to top with cream and fresh fruit for Kaffee und Kuchen in the late afternoon.  That is, she'd grab them if she could find any.  I had a nasty habit of pilfering anything vaguely sweet and leaving very little evidence of their existence behind.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015


I've dreamt of this recipe, of the textures and the taste.  It's a recipe that I've been rearranging in my head, the ratios and ingredients shifting and merging to spawn what I imagine is my perfect donut experience.

That I have a soft spot for donuts is not a secret.  That I make great donuts is well known.  But I've been hankering for a fried gustatorial experience that hasn't yet crossed paths with my fryer or my tastebuds.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Chocolate-Praline Napoleons: a study in puff pastry

The question I'm asked most often as a pastry chef:  "What's your favorite thing to bake?"  I hem and haw at the question, not wanting to choose a favorite in front of the other pastries because they're awfully sensitive.  My diplomatic response on these occasions:  "It depends on the season."

Monday, February 2, 2015

The Jackie-OH! Chocolate Cake with Caramel Buttercream

At my pastry shop, I'd roll out new pastries often.  One of my first offerings was a decadent, fudgy chocolate layer cake slathered in caramel buttercream.  We hadn't had the cake in the case more than 2 seconds when a customer remarked, "That's as beautiful and perky as one of Jackie O's pillbox hats."

Friday, January 23, 2015


Years ago, I created a cake called the "Because You're Mine Cake."  It ended up gracing the cover of my 2013 book Bake It Like You Mean It.  A few years before that, I put the first version of the on this blog after having worked on the recipe and design ideas since having my pastry shop.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015


I found a half case of canned cranberry sauce in the pantry.  Funny thing with those cans, once Thanksgiving is over they tend to linger, unloved and untouched.