I’ve been thinking a lot about this blog lately (I know that might be hard to tell since I haven’t posted in a few weeks!), and how it’s been such a great way to connect with people and to be able to share a little of myself with everyone. I’ve also been thinking about how much devotion it takes to continue baking and posting week to week–and admittedly, I am sometimes not very good at it. For those who follow already know, I don’t blog for a living, but I do this for fun, as a creative outlet from my full-time office job. Sadly, as things are picking up, I’ve decided that I can’t commit as much time to this blog as I would like. I will try to keep it up–and I’m shooting for new posts twice a month!–but I know I won’t be able to be as consistent, and I will always envy those who are so faithful to their own blogs to continue to post new recipes so much more frequently. Please know that while I won’t have new content all the time, I am so thankful for your readership.
So now on to what I’ve been up to which has kept me from posting lately… I took a little trip! For four days (maybe more like 3-3/4 days), a friend and I flew to NYC on a red-eye and squeezed in the MoMA, Rockefeller Center (Top of the Rock) Central Park, the Brooklyn Bridge, the 911 Memorial, 7 bakery stops(!), window shopping on Madison Ave., 5th Ave., and SoHo, and a showing of Romeo and Juliet (starring Orlando Bloom!). And that’s not even counting breakfast, lunch and dinner. It was all quite an adventure and so much fun–even when our feet could barely support us anymore after so much walking. To recount everything would take too long, but I thought I’d highlight some of our favorite desserts that we tried during the trip. There are so many great places to eat in NYC, it’s impossible to consume it all, but we certainly tried. In no particular order, here are our favorite New York City desserts:
1. The 5Borough Kookie from Momofuku Milk Bar: A Karlie’s Kookie, this was pleasantly tasty for something that’s supposed to be “healthy-ish” (or rather, dairy and gluten free). Named after the super model Karlie Kloss, I would never associate cookies with models, so I didn’t know want to expect. But these were delicious, didn’t taste like most “healthy” desserts, and it didn’t leave me feeling guilty either.
2. English muffins and scones from Sarabeth’s: I keep hearing that New Yorkers LOVE their brunch. And boy do they. Sarabeth’s (we went to the one in South Central Park) was pretty bustling for a weekday morning. Her English muffins were sky high, which added a little flare and were maybe more bread-like (though I did not mind), and they had a nice touch of corn meal for extra bite. Her scones were also soft and flakey without being too buttery, perfect with her famous preserves (which are also superb–flavorful without relying on sugar for taste).
3. Financiers from Maison Kayser: This import from Paris needs to come to California! Financiers can be a little dry and heavy, but these were certainly the exception. Slightly crispy on the edges, and light, moist, and delicate on the inside, Maison Kayser’s financiers were almost like madeleines–but with almond flour. Their bread is also pretty spectacular, and their menu for lunch provided one of the best meals I had during the trip. Oh, and I forgot about the yuzu tart we tried here! The filling was custardy and rich, with the right tartness level, balanced by the firm yet soft sweet pastry crust.
4. Lemon thyme donuts from Colicchio & Sons: Colicchio & Sons is not a bakery, but I have to write about their lemon-thyme donuts. Perfectly glazed like a confection, the lemon and thyme are a bit subtle but takes donuts out of the coffee shop and into fine dining. The texture on the inside might be similar to Krispy Kreme, but more substantial. And the little donut holes are simply adorable.
5. Crepe cake from Chickalicious: There are two Chickalicious shops, across the street from each other. One is a super fancy sit-down dessert restaurant (with a dessert prix fixe menu! Can you imagine multiple courses of dessert?) and the other is for the more average dessert lover who gets their sweets from bakeries and carries them away in cardboard boxes or paper bags. We went to the not so fancy place, and while the buzz was all around their Bun Chicka Bun Bun (yes, you read that correctly), their crepe cake really stole the show. The uniform layers of crepes sandwiched with vanilla whipped cream all melded together, I almost could have been eating the best vanilla ice cream ever.
6. Frozen s’mores from Dominique Ansel: Everyone is talking cronuts in NYC, and even when cronuts are out, the shop is packed. We didn’t get to try the real cronuts, but we did have their kouign amann and their frozen s’mores. The kouign amann was good but my mind was not blown (I read somewhere that they were mind-blowing; I think if you want mind-blowing kouign amanns, the place to go is B. Patisserie in San Francisco!)–it tips more toward the croissant family than the puff pastry family, but maybe Dominique Ansel prefers croissants himself (hence the cronut). The frozen s’more was pretty special though. Toasted and warm marshmallow on the outside, with ice cream and cookie crunch as the filling, the concoction is inventive and an experience to eat. At $7 a pop (and it’s not a large pop), it’s not cheap, but if you feel a little extravagant, it’s a fun treat.
Lastly, honorable mention goes to macarons from Laduree (Laduree will always be my favorite macaron shop, but they get “honorable” mention here only because I’ve had them before in Paris, so this wasn’t a “new” experience).
Phew, I can’t believe we ate all that in a matter of a few days! I think I will now spend the rest of this week detoxing. (And then it will be Thanksgiving!)