Shamleless Plug

I'm embarking on a new part of my life that is happier and going in a direction! It's really refreshing.

I was married May 19th, 2012 to a great guy I met at the C.I.A and we're go excited to embark on a life together. He has as culinary degree to match my baking and pastry degree. It's going to be a Good life.

I hope you enjoy my thoughts on food and cooking. I am but a humble baker, who happens to love cooking and embraces the joy of food.

Sunday, December 20, 2009


"I do yoga in the bathroom sometimes" My friend commented, out of nowhere.
"I do Yoga in the bathroom sometimes, at work." she clarified.
"How would you even do that? Wouldn't it be awkward if someone walked in?" I asked
"No, it's just a one person bathroom, for customers."
"And why would you be doing yoga in the bathroom?" I wondered
"Cause hiding out behind the vanilla cakes in the freezer isn't doing it anymore." Sam said.
I didn't say anything, as I was digesting this information
"My boss yelled at me today for a stupid birthday cake. The order didn't specify a color for the writing. It literally said "Any color. For Girl" so I just ask Tammy which color was already in a tube for a girl, you know, rather than dirtying a bag AND saving time. She turns on me and huffs "What does the FORM say!!!?" I tell her, and I know I caught her, and she tries to back peddle and make me look stupid. This is the third time this week." Sam says
"Oy vay." I commiserate, thinking on my Extern days, and icing cakes. I shuddered, thinking of my extern bosses.
"So she gives me this whole speech about forms and customers and stuff, and I'm pretty annoyed at this point, so I'm like 'Look Tammy, I'm sorry I asked that question, but it said the color didn't matter, as long as it was for a girl.' And she tells me I'm giving HER attitude. UGH!! It was just ICING, goddamnit."
"How big is the freezer?" I ask. The freezer at my extern was gigantic. Like a maze of speed racks.
"Pretty damn big. About half the size of the back of the bakery. We only bake cakes once a week and freeze them all. And brownies, cupcakes, cannolis, eclairs, that kind of stuff. Bagels."
"So, you just stand there and cool off?" I asked
"Pretty much. It helps. It saves me the trouble from walking out. It's usually minus 20. The Yoga helps more. Deep breathing, or whatever. My yoga teacher'd be pleased." She said
"I'm really glad I'm not a decorator. The ones on my extern were awful."
"I mean, she's really uptight for a vegan. Most them are kinda like hippies." Sam said
"Vegan." I said, with a snort. "How does she run a bakery that isn't all vegan? Is vegan even big in Oregon?"
"I don't know. It's just a rumor. Maybe she's just uptight in general. Really intense"
"New job isn't going so well, then?" I ask
"You have no idea. Tammy is uptight and crazy, the other decorators are just as crazy or as fed up as I am, the back baking manager is bitter in general, I get sexually harassed daily by the oven guys. I swear..." she said, finishing the sentence saying something that sounded dark in French.
"Oy vay." I said again.
"But you have to admit, this sounds pretty funny. I want to put it on my blog" I say, clicking open a new window to post.
"Wait, what?" She said
"This is too good. I can write a book out of complaints my friends have in the food industry. I need to write this down. I'll change your name and everything. Make you my cousin, or something. I need to get back into writing, and my friends tell me such good stories" I said
"Always writing, aren't you?" Sam said
"In my head, yeah." I said.
There was a pause.
"I hate her." Sam said, quietly.
"I know." I said. I knew she was chewing it over
"Okay, go ahead."

Disclaimer: Names, locations, and personalities have been changed to protect my good friend. This not a reflection of herself, or myself, as she was just telling me about a bad week, and I was too amused by "Yoga in the bathroom" to resist. Disclaimer. 

Monday, December 7, 2009

Going to the City like a normal person

I haven't written in months, and it bugs the hell out of me that I seem to start every post with that very same sentence.
I don't know why I'm feeling so unmotivated. I need a fresh perspective. A trip to somewhere warm with good food. I'm not even going to talk about Thanksgiving. I don't feel like revisiting. I never know what to write about anymore. Sometimes I feel like I have a conspiracy going on against me. Big Brother is Watching, or something. Really, really puts a damper on anything interesting I might want to say. But maybe I'm just being crazy. Delusions of Grandeur or something. My life is pretty boring at the moment.
Or maybe I just don't have the heart anymore.

I visited my sister in the city yesterday. It made me feel incredibly normal. I know it's simple and silly for me to be excited about being so normal, but you know me. Normal for me is most certainly not normal for other people.

I saw her new apartment, which was cozy and cute, and checked out her neighborhood, which was overwhelmingly stuffed with restaurants, a meat market, and bakeries. A food lover's dream. If I lived near a meat market I'd never buy meat from Stop and Shop ever again.

We had lunch at Gina La Fornarina, a typically cramped place in the Upper East Side. It was jammed packed with people and servers in bright pink shirts. We managed to get seated quickly enough, I felt in the way and bulky as servers tried to bustle around customers waiting to be seated, their hands laden with delicious looking thin crust pizza, wine, and pressed sandwiches. Of course, everyone knows when a place is packed, it means the food is great. It was worth the bustle. Kelli and I shared a half of each of our pressed sandwiches. Kelli had a very tasty roasted veg and brie, and I had chicken salad. Both were light and crisp, but I preferred the veggie one over the chicken. The chicken was flavorful, but I like the flavor of roasted veggies and cheese. If I could get both kinds on one sandwich, that would have been perfection.

After we ate, we walked down to Two Little Red Hens, an especially adorable bakery. The front was tiny, but any NYC Realtor would call it "quaint." And it was. They sold mostly cupcakes and various cake sizes, along with a few cookies sold by the each. They also had a few pies. Everyone seemed nice and it looked like it would be so much fun to work at a bakery like that. But I'm not a city girl. Kelli and I shared a chocolate cupcake with white icing. It was moist and tender, and the ratio of buttercream to cake was just right. The white buttercream was smooth and fluffy.

The cakes were beautiful. The sizes ranged form 4 inches to about 8 inches. All kinds of flavors and combination. Even the pies looked nice. Even though I work in another bakery, I am not the kind of insecure person to bash every bakery I come across in attempts to make myself feel better. I'm sorry, I'm just not that kind of person. Also, I happen to try and appreciate every bakery in its own way. If someone is THAT insecure, they have serious issues.
It was a very cozy place to sit and eat. I would have loved to stay and buy several of the bite sized cupcakes so I would be able to sample them all, but when I'm with family, I tend to show a bit of restraint when I eat. If I were by myself or my boyfriend, I know I'd have sampled about half a dozen of the tiny cupcakes and sat there stuffing my face with every item I could.
The prices were that of what I would have expected at a bitty Bakery in the Upper East Side that was not only tiny, but delectable. Everything looked reasonable for what you were getting and how nicely it was decorated. I really am envious of people who have that skill. I lack it so badly I worry if I even belong in any bakery at all. I guess I ought to make that a Resolution of sorts, maybe take a class in the winter.

After the bakery, we hopped a subway into Midtown, where the contrast of Kelli's area and the center of the city was most obvious. You could barely turn around in the city, where as in Kelli's area you were pretty much free to walk around the streets without being run over by tourists with three diaper bags and a stroller.

Somehow we managed to get to Rockefeller Center, and to the Saks Windows. We perused the store, I was laughing at the handbags going for 2 grand, and the furs going for 5 grand,  as well as a simple sweater going for $450. We hurried towards Grand Central ,where I hopped the train as close to the front as I could, and I was off for home.

I'm really looking forward to heading back to Kelli's apartment sometime soon, because every restaurant looked as good as the last and there were so many different types of cuisines I'd never get bored. And seeing my sister would be nice, too. :p