Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Ahh. Finally...Catch up time is happening.

We are all busy. I get it. But making sweets when I'm also trying not to get TOO fat while I'm trying to learn to bake thanks to Dorie? All too often, TWD is the item I cross off the list.

So it's been since those apple turnovers that I baked. I haven't been idle in the kitchen--mucho testing for Florida Table's spring issue has been in the works. Plans for the FLX CRUISE where I will talk about food writing is in the works. I am hoping to squeeze a photo shoot (or two) into the next seven days..and another one between now and the end of November. Whew. Life is busy. Oh, and in the middle of it all? I'll make a second home in North Carolina (Charlotte, to be exact. If you know anyone who needs to hire a brilliant, funny, hard-working writer/editor/recipe developer/cooking teacher/photographer/web writer/videographer...ETCETERA? Let me know. And write me a recco while you're at it._

I digress. How very shocking.

Okay. So. Around 5 p.m., I was determined: determined to bake off whatever TWD had to toss out. And lucky for me, it's the delicious allspice muffins. What a treat. Everything is in the cupboard (umm, I had a nervous moment when I saw only whole allspice and was eyeing the coffee grinder/spice grinder...then my fingers lit on the ground allspice bottle). And streusel topping. Mmm.

The flavor of allspice is a treat. That combination of warm spices I love so much without anything just jumping out (who else thinks Americans have a heavy hand with cinnamon?)...the perfect blend without being a blend at all. Some supreme being knew what she was about when she created allspice.

The treat is also in the streusel. MmmMMMMMMM...I love me some streusel. The ratio is often 1: 1:1 (1 part flour, 1 part butter, 1 part sugar), but Dorie cuts down ever so slightly on the butter and adds 1/2 teaspoon allspice. Mmm. Did I say that already?

I scooped maybe too big of muffins (only got 10...said the chef to my hips) and I think I pressed the topping into the muffin a titch too much. I've baked before where the topping falls off...but I pressed a bit too much and, as you can see by the photo, the topping become too much one with the muffin.

Of course, that had no effect whatsoever on the taste. And that taste would be fabulous. Go check out the recipe at Grandma's Kitchen Table, a fearless TWD-er if ever there was one. Thanks for the pick, Kayte! Then check out the Blog roll at Tuesdays with Dorie and read about all the other bakers.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Scenes from Recent Meals

Writing about food is a lot of fun. No, really.  Food people are happy. I get to eat, drink and talk about why it's important to take time over a meal.

I've been wrapped up in a lot of "other stuff" lately and last week got hit with the classic summer cold (yeah, I hear ya, but in Florida? Temperature is still hitting the stinking hot mark every day) and lost the week. Caught up over this week and finally am testing recipes today for a job...but I haven't gotten to cook for ME lately. So this weekend I'll do some TWD catching up...and for now I want to share some beauty shots.

First one is compliments of House of Caviar in Fort Lauderdale (appearing in Florida Table pages right now under Word of Mouth). I had to conduct a taste test. Results? I liked them all.

The second one is Dean and Deluca's version of bruschetta. I enjoyed this at the Charlotte location this past August. Dean and Deluca is on of my happy places.
The last one is just the lovely interior of Solea in South Beach a beautiful restaurant under the guidance of Michael Gilligan with plenty of additions from Arthur Artiles.