I realized not long ago that the end of this month marks the 8-year anniversary of my little space on the Web. What?!? That’s a pretty long time…certainly longer than I ever thought I’d keep this up. To celebrate not throwing in the towel years ago, I decided to treat this blog to a new header and I got in touch with Alyson, who helped me the last time. Do you like it? I think she incorporated the best parts of my much-loved old one in with the new.
I have something for you, too….because where would a whisk and a spoon be without you? Actually, I have two somethings to share– two bib aprons in red and oatmeal striped linen from NYC-based Birdkage to giveaway to two readers. Let’s bake clean and cute!
Just leave a comment (one per person, please) on this post before 5:00 pm EST on Monday, March 2 and I’ll randomly choose two winners from the list. Be sure your e-mail address is correct so I can contact you. xoxo
***Giveaway Winner Update: I used random.org to generate random comment numbers to find the winners. Congratulations to chickie brewer and Melissa E. Your aprons are on their way!***
Be a good cookie. That’s a real motto for life, don’t you think? It was also the message behind an event for Cookies for Kids’ Cancer that the good folks at OXO, their strong partner and supporter of good cookies, and the lovely Dorie Greenspan invited me to last Tuesday night. I was thrilled to chat with Dorie (she also gave a baking demo), to flip through her amazing new book, Baking Chez Moi (which is coming out next month– get it!), to drool over OXO’s awesome Chelsea test kitchen and to fiddle with some of their latest baking gadgets (I went out the very next day and got myself a spiffy baker’s dusting wand). Most importantly I got to learn more about Cookies for Kids’ Cancer, which provides research grants to some of the nation’s leading pediatric cancer centers to advance the development of less toxic, more effective treatments for children battling cancer.
I want to do at least a small part to help spread the word about Cookies for Kids’ Cancer and Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month (that’s this month), so I’m going to give two lucky winners both an OXO Good Cookie Spatula and a copy of Gretchen Holt-Witt’s book Cookies for Kids’ Cancer: All the Good Cookies! The sale of both these items helps raise money for pediatric cancer research.
Just leave a comment (one per person, please) on this post before 5:00 pm EST on Wednesday, September 10 and I’ll randomly choose two winners from the list. Be sure your e-mail address is correct so I can contact you if you win! **I’m really sorry, but I can only make this giveaway open to U.S. residents.**
You can see heaps of photos from Tuesday’s event here. Visit the Cookies for Kids’ Cancer site to learn more about the organization and to get involved. Also, if you’re looking for some new kitchen toys (like a baker’s dusting wand, perhaps?), OXO will make a donation to the initiative from the sales of select baking items.
***Giveaway Winner Update: I used random.org to generate random comment numbers to find the winners. Congratulations to Becky and Stephanie. I’ll be in touch and sending your items soon!***
Every Thursday at the shop, I make ginormous batches of all our cookie doughs. And I totally eat ginormous amounts of cookie dough, too! I’d like to say that I do it in the name of quality control, but really it’s a lack of self control. Cookies-in-the-raw just may be better than baked ones. I clearly have no problem snacking on raw eggs (although now that I put it that way…), but if you so deprive yourself, then you’ll be happy to see The Cookie Dough Lover’s Cookbook by Lindsay Landis, who also writes the gorgeous food blog Love and Olive Oil. She has ingeniously concocted an eggless cookie dough that isn’t meant to be baked, but used raw, as an ingredient or an out-of-the-bowl snack. Now I normally take my dough straight up, but I’m amazed by the diversity of recipes in this book…candy made from cookie dough, cakes, pies, puddings, breakfast stuff (what?!). And, of course, there is ice cream…ice cream that is calling–no, screaming–my name. All of this is gorgeously photographed…proof that these things are real and not just in my dreams!
The very kind folks from Quirk Books gave me a copy of this cookbook, and now I want to give one of you a copy, too. Maybe we can make Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream together next weekend?? What do you say? Just leave me a comment (one per person, please) on this post before 5:00 pm EST on Thursday, June 7 and I’ll randomly choose a winner from the list. Be sure your e-mail address is correct so I can contact you!
***Giveaway Winner Update: I used random.org to generate a random comment number to find the winner. It selected comment 11, so congratulations to Tina. I’ll be sending your book soon!***
Next month, Tuesdays with Dorie is diving full-force into Baking with Julia by Dorie Greenspan. Have you signed up? If not having the book is keeping you from getting onboard, then I want to help. I’m giving away one brand-new copy of Baking with Julia before the group gets going with the first two recipes.
Just leave me a comment (one per person, please) on this post before 5:00 pm EST on Monday, January 23 and I’ll randomly choose a winner from the list. Be sure your e-mail address is correct so I can contact you!
***Giveaway Winner Update: I used random.org to generate a random comment number to find the winner. It selected comment 32, so congratulations to Emily. I’ll be sending your book soon!***
Today is a special day for one of my favorite cookbook authors…it’s Dorie Greenspan’s birthday! Happy birthday, Dorie! A few TWDers and FFWDers have put together a sort of virtual progressive dinner party, all made from Dorie’s new book, Around my French Table, to celebrate.
I chose to take on a soup course, and made her Spiced Squash, Fennel and Pear Soup. I’m no stranger to squash soup, and usually I’ll use a butternut, but a crazy lumpy, bumpy golden hubbard caught my eye at the market and wound up coming home with me. I’ve never made squash soup with the additions of pear and fennel before…they brought a delicious sweetness to the pot. Don’t forget to toast up your squash seeds as garnish. This is a great, warming soup that gets even more flavorful the next day.
For the recipe for this delicious soup, see page 80 of Around my French Table by Dorie Greenspan. Holly from Phe.MOM.enon worked hard to coordinate this party, and will have the whole round-up on her site!
…my husband and I had the most wonderful dinner, part of a series of coast-to-coast outdoor events put on by Outstanding in the Field. They stretch their long, white-clothed tables through some of the most dramatic landscapes around North America. This one being in the middle of New York City, they set up camp in a community garden on the Lower Eastside. Even though it lacks the wide-open spaces of some of their other dinners, they still managed to make it look so magical that I forgot it was 90-somethingº outside!
Or maybe it was really all the Long Island wine that made me forget the heat!
The locally-sourced food was cooked by Chef Bill Telepan, and we shared it family-style. I’m sorry I didn’t get any pictures of the food, but I was too busy, eating drinking and making new friends!
Did you notice my new header? I felt like a change…I hope you like it! Alyson from seventy and sunny did the work for me. I think she did a wonderful job coming up with something perfectly cute and eyecatching…and while it’s totally different from what I had before, it still works with my existing blog design. I love it!
Also, I’ve decided to shorten my URL (typing “awhiskandaspoon” is long enough on its own, right?) and get my own domain name. You can now find me at www.awhiskandaspoon.com
I’m so sorry that I don’t have time to go through many of the TWD and The Cake Slice posts this week. Why does moving have to turn so chaotic, no matter how organized you try to be? The organization thing flew out the window when we lost the folder with all of the moving details…somehow it was absorbed into the vortex of crap that has become our apartment, and has not reappeared.
When I packed up my sweaters and coats for the trip home, it completely sank in that I’m getting jipped out a summer here! Oh well, those raspberries and nectarines will taste that much sweeter when I finally see them again. It will be good to home, though. I’ve missed my friends, I’m looking forward to a proper Thanksgiving and a chilly Christmas, and I’m so excited to VOTE!! It will be awhile before we are really settled, unfortunately…we’ll be in temporary housing for a month or two while we look for our own place. I’m not sure what to expect as far as the kitchen situation there goes. I’m bringing a bare minimum of cooking equipment in my luggage to hopefully get by on more than just takeout.
I’ll really miss Sydney. I’ll miss the beaches, the (generally, although not at this moment) sunny weather, the wonderful food, the Aussie sense of humor. I’ll also miss the everyday excitement of living abroad. It’s been fun to pick up on the cultural differences (some subtle, some not), to get used to a vocabulary that’s quite a bit different, and to find all kinds of wonderfully unexpected things around every corner! I think for most people a trip to Australia is a dream vacation–once in a lifetime, if that. It’s pretty neat that I got to live here for almost two years…
We get on the plane, bound first for my parent’s house in Seattle for a few days, tomorrow. So I’ll try and check back next week. In the meantime, I’ve put up a small set of Sydney photos on my Flickr page— check them out if you’re interested.
Dear readers, there is something I have known about for a couple months now, and have neglected to share with most of you. And that’s not right. You need to know.
Seems R and I will be leaving Sydney and moving back to New York at the end of this month. I have mixed feelings about it, and I guess that’s to be expected. Of course I’ve missed my good friends, my neighborhood of eleven years, and the city itself. But being here, especially over the past few months, has been like living in some sort of suspended reality. We have had a fine time traveling recently, and are now doing our best to enjoy the last of our days here in Sydney. It’s not to say that we haven’t been affected by what’s going on, economically-speaking, in the States–in fact that’s the reason we’re leaving. Reality will certainly hit us in the face when we get back home. Where will we live? That will be a scramble. Will be both find jobs? I’m not so sure.
There’s little we can do about either of these things from half a world away, so I’ve been trying to concentrate on what’s right in front of me, and not stress too much about November. One important task at hand is to use up the food in the house (including my huge dried herb and spice collection). So forgive me if I come up with some wacky combos over the next few weeks, or if I do some weird ingredient substitutions for TWD. I’m just trying to empty out the cupboards.
Did I mention the saddest thing about leaving? It’s Sydney itself. I like it here, and although I knew we wouldn’t stay forever, I’m not ready to leave just yet.