Archive for December, 2007
You’re not officially a bon vivant until you can make a perfectly flaky, golden brown pie crust. Avoiding burnt edges takes plenty of practice, or simply a handy Pie Crust Shield. This one sits around any 9- or 10-inch pie and helps the edges to cook evenly without cracking or breaking. We’re hooked on them, and hell bent on eating our own homemade pecan, pumpkin and mince pies this season.
Spruce restaurant, brainchild of Bacchus Management Group, recently threw open its doors in San Francisco and the space (a converted 1930s garage) is totally unexpected. The bar is a bustling scene while simple n’ scrumptious, subtly French-influenced food runs the gamut from a classic burger and Caesar salad to buttered Maine lobster. Stop by after dark to mingle amidst handsome Ivy Leaguers in suits, canoodling couples feeding each other bites, and large groups of loud single women who aren’t shy about expressing their adoration for the former and disgust with the latter.
Part one of our “eat, drink and be unabashedly merry” holiday regimen: Dig into Sticky Ginger Pudding. It’s moist and fragrant, made with fresh apple, fresh ginger, candied ginger and organic ground ginger with toffee sauce. Difficulty sourcing the authentic ingredients initially delayed the production, but with perseverance, the special elements finally came together (this includes English treacle and Stone’s Green Ginger Wine). Serve it with vanilla ice-cream, hand-whipped cream, or custard for maximum enjoy-ability.
These glass tumblers have been blown, cooled, cut and polished for 12 hours, and each piece is required to pass through at least 17 pairs of hands from start to finish. The glass is then passed along to Stjepan Kosanski in Slovenia, where it is cut and polished in detail using a high quality Japanese compound that’s usually reserved for the lenses of spectacles. Frozen soapstone cubes function like ice without diluting your drink. Rinse ‘em and and pop them back in the freezer for re-use.
We consider ourselves cheesecake connoisseurs and while you may never run into us at the Cheesecake Factory, well, that’s because we’re busy devouring the best stuff online. This heavenly cheesecake is bursting with plump blueberries that have been swirled by hand with blueberry Danish filling. When topped with whipped cream and paired with coffee, it’s a fabulously fruity after dinner pick-me-up.
Bone China is coveted for its strength, translucency, and brilliant white hue. These delicate, durable mugs are handcrafted for everyday us and come with pure wool felt coasters. In the event that your dishwasher doesn’t clean them properly, coffee or tea stains can be removed with toothpaste and a soft toothbrush. Note the handle, which has been reconfigured nine times until deemed perfect. Teroforma has a lot more in store for 2008. Click here for info about up-coming pop-up stores and packaging design.
When you want to reach for something comforting and warm, break off a piece of Mariposa Bakery’s crumbly cranberry orange nut bread and pop it in the microwave for 30 seconds. It’s filled with make-you-pucker cranberries, chunky walnuts and sweet chocolate chips. Suffice it to say, these ingredients put mom’s traditional holiday fruit cake to shame.
Start your holiday indulgence plan with a helping of Tequila Abby cheese from Haute Goat Creamery. The farmhouse raw milk pressed cheese has an earthy, rustic flavor that pairs well with wine (any wine, really). It’s aged a minimum of 60 days and washed twice weekly with tequila and chipotle to give the rind a reddish mottled look.
Fabulous-Cookies are just that. The chewy, moist and spicy oatmeal raisin variety is particularly tasty, made with 100% natural, whole grain rolled oat, sun-dried California raisins and a dash of cinnamon. Sounds almost healthy, doesn’t it? Grandma will certainly approve (that is, if she hadn’t already been run over by a reindeer, tee hee).
Craving a romantic dinner for two? Enlist the help of the Fondude, who will show up at your door 20 minutes ahead of your dining hour with everything you need for a fondue dinner, from the frommage to the forks to the fire. He sets the table, then melts, stirs, and preps the cheese while you relax with a glass of wine (and explain to your dining partner why there’s a man stirring cheese in your kitchen). Before you are served, he gives a quick tutorial, explains how to keep the pot simmering, and makes for the door. Since you saved so much energy hiring him to do the prep work, so-called “dessert” is bound to be sizzling.