Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Autumn Lunch

The other weekend I caught up with a friend who was back in town! We grabbed lunch at this great local market that had all kinds of culinary selections, and other miscellaneous trinkets. I chowed down on a delicious "thanksgiving" panini, it consisted of multigrain bread, roast turkey, stuffing and cranberry sauce with honey mustard. Can't wait to try to make one at home after Thanksgiving! The market also had adorable felt Halloween masks and Einstein Energy Bars, also Alice in Wonderland Energy Bars! The place had a local vibe that you just cannot get from any commercial lunch spots! I loved every minute of it, not too mention that I was also with one of my best friends who I had not seen in almost three months!
The packaging included some fantastic puns! 
I have a pathetic sense of humor and for some reason found this really funny. 

After lunch we walked around town for a bit, checking out shops and even a cupcake bakery! We visited the town's food co-op, a vintage store and an antique shop among others. We chatted and enjoyed basking in the autumn sun, I had hoped to take some pictures of the foliage, but I did not see any breathtaking trees. I will try for some foliage pictures soon!
We peeked in a ceramics shop, which had this biscotti jar that I would love!
Loved this! So creative!
Getting in on the Halloween spirit! 

I had a tough time deciding which cupcake I wanted, among the selections were red velvet,
 coconut, hummingbird, chocolate peanut butter, and chocolate chip cookie dough! 
My friend decided on a salted caramel cupcake!
The mountain of frosting on top was really tempting....
But I decided to try the chocolate chip cookie dough
 cupcake after seeing the idea on pinterest numerous times!
While I did enjoy my cupcake, I was disappointed when I bit in and there was no dense cookie dough center. The frosting had an amazing texture, but was a little bland, maybe a chocolate swiss meringue would have paired better? The cupcake had a nice vanilla flavor and I was glad they used mini chocolate chips, but I did not get the essence of cookie dough as I had expected. I will probably go back anyways because who doesn't love cupcakes? And she had only opened about a month before, so maybe she is still finding her groove? Well, I will just have to return and check up on her progress!
Anyways I loved our romp, and cannot wait to see my friend again soon so we can do it all over!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Halloween Spooky Cakes

Happy Halloween! I love Halloween, the costumes, the candy and the spooks! I definitely scare easily and cry like a little girl! In the spirit of Halloween I wanted to concoct an elaborate treat to post about, but that did not happen. Instead ahead of the hurricane I quickly whipped together some trusty good ol' funfetti!
I thought the icing dribbles looked like spider webs, no? 

I added some purple, orange, black and white non-pareil sprinkles to the batter, which ended up turning the batter an eery brainy purple color! Then I whipped up an orange buttercream frosting, melted it in the microwave, then drizzled over the cakes and topped them with even more sprinkles!

The perfect treat for when the power goes out! 

If you are in the way of Hurricane Sandy, is there anything you baked beforehand to enjoy when the power goes out?

Enjoy and be safe!
Here is a shot from instagram! The colors are a little different than my camera.
 Do you like it better than the regular camera ones? or no? 

I just joined instagram, so please follow! Maybe I will join the twitter soon! :)

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Rock Me Like A Hurricane!

As you may know, Frankenstorm is barreling towards the East Coast! As I am on the East Coast, I made my supplies trip to BJs to get water, peanut butter, jelly and batteries, about 450 dollars later I finally exited the building! Ahead of the storm I am just warning you that I may not be able to bake or post for the next week (cry), we almost always lose power during storms. One time it was just us and our neighbors across the street who lost power in our town, INSANITY! During Irene we lost power for seven days...fun.

Anyways enough of my pity party, here are some pictures from earlier today ahead of the storm. I went for a walk at a nearby state park and part of the road was already washed out and Sandy has not even arrived!
As we batten down the hatches, I will share some beautiful, but alarming "calm-before-the-storm" pictures! Hope to be back on soon!

Another shot of the washed out road. 

Storm's abrewin'! 
The dark clouds were beginning to roll in.
White caps were beginning to appear, and the surf was getting pretty rough! Not a boating day! 

Although there were white caps in the open water, the marshy areas remained relatively calm. 

Enjoy and be safe if you are in the path of the storm!

Oh and Happy Fall! Finally got a pumpkin! 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

"Tate's" Chocolate Cookies

Most everyone knows and loves Tate's Chocolate Chip cookies, while I enjoy Tate's I am not as enthralled with them as some people.  Don't get me wrong, they have yummy taste but to me they lack  an authentic homemade taste, rather they possess an artificial essence of butter. So, I sought to make a truly homemade version of the infamous Tate's cookies! The recipe I found is delectable and definitely has a homemade taste!

These are some spectacular chocolate chip cookies, but they were lacking Tate's signature crunchy crispiness. When baked up, this recipe did not spread as much I had anticipated them to. This spreading of the dough during baking is what gives Tates their crunch. For what they lack in crunch, these cookies make up for in taste! Tastes found in these cookies include smooth mini chocolate bits and warm notes of vanilla.

These cookies make a great addition to your ice cream, I may or may not be enjoying that very treat as I write this! I even made an ice cream sandwich with them and it was to die for!

So, are you a Tates fan? or are you like me and enjoy them, but would prefer a more authentic version? Have you developed a homemade version of Tates? If so I would love to try it!


"Tate's" Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 C all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1 C  (2 sticks) butter, one salted the other unsalted, softened
3/4 C granulated sugar
3/4 C packed brown sugar
1 tsp water
2 tsp vanilla
2 eggs, beaten
2 C (12oz) mini chocolate chips


  1. Preheat oven to 350F, and line baking sheets with parchment. 
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. 
  3. WIth a handheld or electric mixer, beat together the butter and both sugars. 
  4. Add to the butter-sugar mixture, the water vanilla and eggs. 
  5. On low mix in the flour mixture. Gently mix or fold in the chocolate chips.
  6. Drop the dough by about 1 tsp onto baking sheets. 
  7. Bake for 10 minutes, rotate sheets half way through. 
  8. Cool for a minute or two on baking sheets, then transfer to wire racks. 

Original Recipe Source GOOP

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Blueberry Boy Bait

The story goes that a young girl once entered a recipe similar to this into the Pillsbury Baking Competition! Although she only took second place, her lovely story has lived on! She named her confection Blueberry Boy Bait because of its ability to have boys swooning over her! Now if only my baked goods had boys swooning for me...I have had two off-the-cuff marriage proposals after sharing my cookies! I guess that counts as swooning? Right? Only these have so far not panned out, but anyways on with the food!

This recipe makes a delightful complement to your breakfast or brunch, and will not have you stressing about whether or not it is too difficult to pull off! It is "easy peasy lemon squeezy"!

One of my favorite aspects of this recipe is subtle crunch and hint of flavor given by the cinnamon-sugar mixture that is sprinkled over the top of batter! I would have never thought of putting cinnamon and blueberries together! The next time that I make this recipe I plan to add a touch of vanilla extract. I could not believe the recipe did not call for vanilla, but I decided to try it without. While it was delicious without the vanilla, I think the vanilla would really push this over the edge and make it superb!

Do you have any go-to ingredients that you seem to put in EVERYTHING? For my mom it is cinnamon, she puts it in all sorts of things. I really like to use vanilla!

Blueberry Boy Bait 
Ingredients For Cake:

  • 1 Cup plus one TBS all-purpose flour
  • 1 Cup plus two TBS cake flour
  • 1 TBS baking powder
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 Cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 3/4 Cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 Cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 Cup skim milk
  • 2/3 Cup Chobani Vanilla Greek Yogurt
  • 1 Cup Fresh of Frozen Blueberries
Ingredients for Topping:

  • 1/2 Cup Fresh or Frozen Blueberries
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon 
  • 3 TBS sugar

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Butter and flour a 13x9 baking dish. 
  2. In a medium sized bowl whisk together the cake flour, 1 cup of the all-purpose flour, baking powder and salt. Set this aside. 
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer beat together the butter and sugars until light and airy. Beat in the eggs, make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl to ensure everything is incorporated. In a separate bowl mix together the yogurt and milk. 
  4. Reduce speed and alternate mixing in the milk/yogurt mixture and the flour mixture until evenly incorporated. 
  5. In a separate bowl stir the blueberries with the remaining tablespoon of flour. Then gently mix the blueberries into the batter. 
  6. Spread the batter into the prepare pan. Then sprinkle the blueberries and cinnamon-sugar mixture over the top of the batter.
  7. Bake 45-60 minutes, or until cake bounce back when poked, and/or a cake tester comes out clean. Cool for 20 minutes in the pan, then transfer with the topping side up to a serving dish (I just left it in the pan overnight until picture time!). 
  8. Wait for your bait to lure the boys! Or you can eat half before you can even take pictures...

Recipe Adapted From Smitten Kitchen