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Category Archives: Food

Adventures in recipes, restaurants and other food topics.

Gluten-free flour mixes

Need a substitute for wheat or gluten-based flours? Look no further! Shauna the Gluten-Free Girl provides an excellent tutorial: Just weight out the ingredients, then toss to mix. These are just a collection of gluten-free flour mixes that I’ve liked using in baking and thickening sauces. Recipes can be completely gluten-free, including brownies, financiers, and […]

Mint lassi

It started with an avocado lassi: smooth, minty, and refreshing on a hot day with spicy food. The problem with avocados is that their season is limited—they peak in winter here in CA—and dishes made with them quickly go brown, also muddying the flavor. Slightly brown avocado lassi tastes icky. But I learned it was […]

Roasted hazelnut liqueur

For the longest time, the only hazelnut liqueur I had access to was Frangelico’s. It’s okay, but the almond and herbal components interfered with the toasty, rich hazelnuttiness I desire. There are others, but I hadn’t been able to find them in stores. With a large bag of skinned hazelnuts in the freezer, and some […]

Satsuma liqueur

The satsumas were late this year, with fruit ripening through March. The sad thing is that now as winter approaches, there are hardly any fruit for the upcoming winter season. Perhaps the rains will help with next year’s harvest. In any case, earlier in the year I experimented with making satsuma liqueur, and found that […]

Hazelnut financiers (also good with cashews)

Financiers (sometimes called friands) are a good way to use up egg whites, especially after a summer’s accumulation of making ice cream. Typically made with almond meal, I made these with a meal from roasted hazelnuts. Delicious. I also made another version with cashew meal, which were milder, but still tasty. In the future I […]

Mexican chocolate brownies topped with pine nuts

I first encountered this brownie while perusing Sunset Magazine many years ago. Alice Medrich’s brownie recipes from Seriously Bitter Sweet (2013) also provided helpful measurement tips. Furthermore, I added a nice, warming kick of chile powder—i.e., ground dried red chile peppers, not the spice mix containing additions of cumin and oregano.

Bing cherry wishniak

It’s cherry season! This recipe is a slight variation from Homemade Liqueurs, by Dona and Mel Meilach (1979). The trick is to find sweet, flavorful cherries in the prime of their season—which for me are Bing cherries. Note that this particular liqueur might take a while to mature. I made a batch in 2013, and […]

Dark gingerbread cake with rum and citrus

This recipe has been sitting in my files for years, and while we’re on the cusp of summer, gingerbread cake is a comforting reminder of what is behind us—and something to look forward to. This cake uses a lot of ginger, both fresh and powdered, and you could use either oranges or lemons for the […]

Yorkshire pudding with poultry sausages, or toad in the hole

After many years of trying to encourage volume and height in our Yorkshire pudding attempts, I finally found a dependable recipe via Jamie Oliver. This is yet another variation on popovers, where an eggy batter needs rest (if containing gluten), a hot oven, and a well-greased pan. With sausages, this becomes the comforting dish, toad […]

Even better orange chocolate chip cookies

Or, version 2.0 of chocolate chip cookies. Over the years, I’ve found version 1.0 a bit too flat (in texture), a bit too hard-chewy, and even a bit too bitter. I’ve found a better source of chocolate chips (Guittard’s baking wafers), and a great resource for hacking the recipe.