Category — Holiday + Special Occasion Recipes
Today I will be making my fourth non-traditional gingerbread house – I will keep it a surprise for the moment – so I found myself looking back on the last three years of crazy gingerbreading for ideas and inspiration. Since I (and the small group of friends on Team Gingerbread) only do it once a year, I find I sometimes forget crucial technical matters, like: never use Pirouette cookies as structural support (they break down and sag within 24 hours!) and an elaborate gingerbread backdrop is more trouble than it’s worth (too heavy, so there is far too much support needed.) On this eve of another explosive gingerbread creation, I wanted to share a little roundup of the past 3 years’ efforts.
Important note: I am a stickler for everything being edible in these – even structural supports. The only thing you can’t eat is the base, which is usually cardboard covered in foil or wrapping paper.
2009: The Gingerbread Casbah
December 14, 2012 4 Comments
I’ve always liked snickerdoodles well enough, but they have never really knocked my socks off. It turns out what they are missing is some brown butter to put them over the top. This recipe from Ambitious Kitchen does the trick – you get soft, chewy, cinnamon-y cookies that pair perfectly with ice cream or a big glass of milk.
December 13, 2012 2 Comments
December 11, 2012 No Comments
I haven’t blogged in awhile because I’ve been working on another project – having a baby! Yesterday he was three weeks old and things are normalizing pretty quickly, so I was able to find time to make this toffee for a Passover Seder we were invited to last night… and baby even slept well enough for me to write up the recipe and share it.
April 7, 2012 12 Comments
February 15, 2012 44 Comments
I have been on the hunt for a chocolate cookie that’s crispy on the outside and chewy-gooey-fudgy on the inside. I’ve tried quite a few recipes, but this one is the best I’ve found – I love the crisp, crackly outside that yields to a soft center. All you need is a tall glass of milk.
What’s extra great is that there is no flour nor butter in them, just egg whites for binding, so they are practically health food. (OK technically it would be more accurate to say they are practically candy, since the bulk is made up of sugar and chocolate.)
January 5, 2012 2 Comments
This is one of my favorite holiday snacks – crunchy sugar-coated nuts with balancing hits of salt and spice.
December 22, 2011 2 Comments
And now I am going to tell you what to make for breakfast on Christmas morning. With a mere 5 ingredients, 5 minutes of prep, and 25 minutes in the oven, you can have a rich, custardy, puffy, wonderful breakfast on the table.
December 20, 2011 23 Comments
Every year a small group of dedicated friends gets together to make an epic gingerbread project that takes a cue from whatever this year’s Christmas party theme happens to be. Two years ago, for a Casbah Christmas, the tradition was born with a Middle Eastern-style courtyard house of gingerbread. Last year, we celebrated Christmas in Summer and put Santa in the pool, surrounded by a beachy scene. This year’s party theme was Christmas in the Future, so we took a few hints from The Jetsons and put Santa on the moon.
December 18, 2011 7 Comments
(Note: This happened several months ago, but I couldn’t find the recipes I wrote down, so I hadn’t posted about it. I found them wadded up in the bottom of a drawer recently, so here goes.)
My Dad and I have birthdays a week apart, and often do things together to celebrate. When I turned 6 and he turned 40, I asked my parents if we could eat at Windows on the World, the restaurant at the top of the World Trade Center. (We lived in New York at that time.) I guess at that point my parents realized they had a strangely fancy food-obsessed kid on their hands. I don’t remember much about the food, but I do recall going to the bathroom with my sister, who was 10, and being thoroughly confused by the presence of a restroom attendant. When I turned 16 and he 50, we donned our tuxes and prom dresses and got the best seat at Julius’ Castle, a venerated old dining institution with views of San Francisco Bay. Of course neither of those places is still in business, sadly, but we still try to do food-related birthdays together.
December 14, 2011 No Comments