Month: March 2016 (page 1 of 2)

Salted Pretzel Ice Cream

Have you ever had something at a restaurant and couldn’t stop thinking about it? When we worked in Indianapolis, there was a frozen yogurt place maybe 3 minutes from our office that had tons of flavors on rotation. Sometimes my boss would let us have department meetings there. Most of the options were your basic fro-yo bar staples–red velvet, dark chocolate, cake batter–but one stuck out. Salted pretzel. From my first bite, I was hooked. It somehow had that dry, salty quality you get from a bag of pretzel sticks while still being smooth and utterly creamy. They didn’t stock it often, but when they did, it was always my go-to flavor. We haven’t lived in Indiana for almost 2 years, but that frozen yogurt has stuck with me, and I crave it on the regular. You’d be safe to say that this salted pretzel ice cream was born out of necessity.

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Eat Osaka Review (Japanese Cooking Class)

On our last night in Osaka, Ben showed me an email he’d just gotten from a woman with Eat Osaka. “This place does Japanese cooking classes, and they can make room for us tomorrow. Do you want to go?” He had been kicking around the idea of us taking a cooking class for almost a week, since some new friends from Finland mentioned one they took while traveling in Seoul. It felt like a dream, learning how to cook traditional Japanese dishes from a real Japanese chef. I hesitated for a second—cooking isn’t exactly Ben’s favorite thing in the world, and it was his honeymoon too, after all—before giving in. I spent the next few hours poring over their online menus and Trip Advisor reviews to see just what we were getting ourselves into. I couldn’t wait.

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Chocolate Banana Bread

When life is stressful and busy and I need a break from everything, I like to bake quick breads. You still get that magic feeling that comes from baking bread without all the waiting around for yeast to rise or worries about whether or not your kitchen is too cold (my kitchen is always too cold). Banana bread is an obvious choice, but I was looking for something a little different when I made this chocolate variety. It’s sweet, but not too sweet, with tons of banana flavor and a serious hit of cocoa. Chocolate banana bread was something I never knew I needed until it was right in front of me. Now it seems so obvious.

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French Silk Pie

My best friend Erin and I have officially declared Pi Day our holiday. Celebrating Pi Day with pie was one of the very first things we did when she moved to St. Louis last year, so the decision of which pie to make this year was a weighty one. Thankfully (or not?), we both suck at making decisions, so Ben stepped in and requested French silk pie. For some reason, I spent a lot of my life living with the idea that chocolate pie and French silk pie were one in the same. My family always has chocolate pie on Thanksgiving, and it’s delicious. Thick and creamy chocolate pudding in a pie shell? Sign me up. What I didn’t realize was the distinct difference French silk pie brings to the table. It’s so luscious and rich, with the most incredible texture–and it’s SO EASY to make. I may be a French silk convert for life.

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Sourdough Bread

There’s something inherently romantic about sourdough bread. It’s rustic and free-form, each loaf looking and tasting slightly different from the last. You create the starter from nothing more than flour and water, feeding and caring for it for days before you can even think about crafting a loaf of bread. Sourdough bread conjures up memories of warm bakeries and heady aromas that make my mouth water. It makes me think of San Francisco and the week I spent there with my best friend right after college, eating my way from one bakery to another. Once you have a sourdough starter, it can live in your fridge almost indefinitely, so long as you take the time to feed it regularly. Sourdough bread is a real miracle of baking science–you capture the wild yeast in your environment, making a St. Louis sourdough ever so slightly different from one baked in California or New York.

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