Eye on the Prize: A Practice Maple-Walnut Pie

Maple-Walnut Pie is similar to the classic pecan pie but this recipe captures the flavor of maple syrup without the shocking sweetness of the holiday favorite. There’s something magical about a pie contest.  Some of the most humble, least competitive people get mixed up in the anxiety that only a serious challenge can incite.  It’s…

State Desserts: Carolina Killer Coconut Cupcakes

These coconut cupcakes are my take on the Ultimate Coconut Cake from Charleston’s Peninsula Grill. The original recipe is made up of 12 layers of cake between sheaths of custard; this recipe takes all of the same elements and shrinks them down to single servings.  South Carolina is full of surprises, not least of which…

Bucking Tradition: Sunbutter Buckeyes

Sunbutter Buckeyes are a nut-free version of the traditional candy revered by Ohioans and those who don the Scarlett and Gray every fall. If you don’t know what a buckeye is, you’re probably not from Ohio. Buckeye trees are found throughout the Midwest, but Ohio appropriated the buckeye tree as its own and The Ohio…

The State Dessert That Never Was: Peach Galette

The peach galette is a free-form pie. It takes all the usual elements of a regular pie to create a rustic pastry that celebrates the Peach State’s finest asset.  I’ve been thinking about working my way through all of the state desserts — you know, with my own twist. I was going to  start with…

Making Memories: Maple Rhubarb Tarts

One of the things I love about food is that it has the power to take us to times and places that might otherwise be forgotten.  It’s an all-sensory experience. You see its shapes and shades, feel its textures, hear its crunch and sizzle, smell the warm aromas and, of course, taste its layers of…

Marathon Brownies

There aren’t many ways to elevate a brownie; it’s a nearly perfect confection as it is. It’s portable, easy to make and a little too easy on the palate. You can’t make it more delicious or more chocolatey… but you can make it healthier. I’ve experienced many iterations of the brownie and the healthy brownie…

Meyer Lemon Buttermilk Cake

Here’s another great thing about living in California: Coworkers who have an overabundance of fruit from their Meyer lemon trees bring the excess to the office to get rid of them. And when work hands me Meyer lemons, I make Meyer lemon cake. BUT…  if you don’t know what a Meyer lemon is, you’re not…

Reinventing Rugelach

Rugelach (not to be mistaken for arugula — but they’re pronounced very similarly) is a pastry with a murky history, but it is known as a Jewish pastry and among the most popular pastries (if not the most popular) in American-Jewish communities in Israel. It’s also a New York City bakery staple (though Zabar’s allegedly…

Autumn Indulgence: Pumpkin Babka

Fall in Northern California… is not quite fall. In San Francisco, there are no leaves crunching under foot and the temperature is more or less the same on October 15th as it is on July 15th. In the Midwest it’s an all-sensory experience that makes death pretty appealing: you can see the leaves transforming from…