Category Archives: Cooking advice

‘Tis the Season

I’ve been busy catering parties for the past couple of weeks, so I thought that instead of posting a recipe today I would simply share some of the photographs I’ve taken at different events. Continue reading

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10 Holiday Gift Ideas

Tuesday’s post about preserved lemons got me thinking about holiday gift ideas. Making presents for your friends and family members is a great way to share something of yourself and to give them something they’ll remember—much more so than a gift card or pre-made gift basket.

So, in no particular order, here are 10 ideas for holiday gifts from—or for—the kitchen:

1. If you have active friends who don’t always have time for breakfast, consider making them a batch of Energy Bars. To make it more festive, replace the walnuts with pecans, use cranberries instead of blueberries and add a 1-2 tablespoons of minced crystalized ginger. Wrap them in a gift bag or plastic container, and attach the recipe with a piece of ribbon. Continue reading

A November Wedding

I am not a pastry chef, but I occasionally make cakes for clients and friends for special occasions. When my friend Jessica–who I’ve known through rowing for the past 10 years–got married this November, that qualified as a special occasion.

Jessica and Simon were getting married in Hawaii, but they planned a reception for their friends and family in the Seattle area. For the party at Tulio, she wanted an elegant cake that served 75.

I suggested that Jessica choose a simple cake flavor (chocolate, vanilla or spice) and then select a more personal filling. Continue reading

Get Ready for Thanksgiving Now

Thanksgiving is not until Thursday, I know, but I thought it might be helpful to share some tips now on getting ready for the big day.

Don’t let a still-frozen turkey ruin your meal
If you purchased a frozen turkey, now may be the time to take it out of the freezer and put in the refrigerator to thaw. You should allow 1-3 days to defrost a 4-12 pound bird, 3-4 days for a 12-16 pound bird, and 5-6 days for a 20-24 pound bird. Continue reading