Strawberry Balsamic Millefeuille

IMG_9904 2-2.jpgI have a thing I guess for reading pastry books in a slow, analytic way, savouring the possibilities, rolling imagery around behind my eyeballs, and organizing imaginary sensations.  All too often, multi-dimensional pieces attach themselves neatly to other idea-pieces and I set the joinings aside in the Great Pile of soon-to-be-realized dessert-things-that-are.  More often than not, when I bring them to breathing life, everything goes as planned.  Sometimes there are facets that melt out of place, however, which is fine; it’s all a part of the logistics of pastry and I like learning experiences.  In this case, my carefully layered spring strawberries and tart balsamic syrup with fresh lightened pastry cream and crispy buttery pastry layers all decided they would like mostly rather become a big shmeary delicious mess.  Because I added too much cream, basically.  But cream is delicious and I regret nothing.  Notheeeeeeeng.  Mmmmmmmm creamy.  I know for next time. Continue reading

Coffee Fudge

IMG_0239-2.jpgSo my first two weeks back at work have been clarifying, gratifying, and good for shaking off the last traces of lethargy that had settled in my body after a year off in babyland.  The pace can feel sometimes like air traffic control, the shifts can run from noon to midnight, there’s always something that can be better organized… and it feels like a beloved old boot that fits just right and I’m hitting the ground running.  There are also some new additions to the menu that I can’t help but want to test variations of at home. Continue reading

Raspberry Lavender Macarons

I used to make hundreds of macarons every day.  It was my first real pastry job and to my utter delight, making macarons was a useful thing I could do to ease the workload of the dessert station.  They showed me once and off I went, filling big half-sheet plaques with glossy circles of mocha, mint and mandarin.  There was a tiny learning curve with a few lopsiders that ended up my belly, but besides that, I remember them being uniform and picturesque, and countless.  The sky was the limit, and I marvelled at how such simple ingredients and really not that much work could turn into such marvellous little sculptures with so much texture.  My fave cookie, pretty much. Continue reading

Green Almond Pickle for the Food In Jars Mastery Challenge and a Blogger Recognition Award!

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Hi y’all, it’s been a busy week as I gear up for my first day back at work after a full 14 months of maternity leave (yes, being Canadian has it’s perks, it can be perky).  Deep washing my chef’s blacks.  Organizing recipes I’ve tested over the break.  Gathering a fresh set of razor-sharp cheap-O Thai knives.  Anticipating the springy feel of my black plastic kitchen slippers (you know the kind).  Really, REALLY wanting to shave all my hair off.  Like, almost every hair (the better to air-condition one’s head with in the heat of the Food Dungeon). Continue reading

Bitters Blood Orange Marmalade

IMG_7937Full disclosure: I wanted real bad to be a goth in high school.  It never really happened, for reasons almost entirely based in my lazy approach to fashion; I am hopelessly lo-fi when it comes to clothes.  I mean, I still wear a lot of black…

And 80’s goth music is part of the scaffolding of my heart. 🖤

Continue reading