Pineapple carpaccio with lemon sorbet, cilantro granité, pineapple chips, and crystallized cilantro from Souvenirs.
Isabelle is two months old! I can’t believe how much she has changed in eight short weeks. It’s like the saying, “The days are long, but the years are short.” I’ve always been a nostalgic person. Even though I know there are years and years of joy ahead in discovering my daughter, I’m already feeling the passage of days. She can do so many things now she didn’t do before: the little coos she makes when she’s curious. Her smiles at me (she’s smiling!). The mini push-ups she does when she’s on her tummy and trying to lift her head. The way she looks around for me and focuses right on my face – who would have thought that being recognized would evoke such a palpable sense of joy?
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I’m excited to announce the release of Pieography: Where Pie Meets Biography by WWC Press. As the title implies, it’s a collection of pie recipes both sweet and savory from 39 women who love food – myself included! I was approached by WWC to contribute a pie recipe and an essay that explored how this pie speaks to our life experiences and our goals.
I was happy to participate in such a heartwarming project, and my contribution to Pieography is my “I Heart Summer” Strawberry and Lemon Verbena Pie. Although it’s already a blog post on this site, submitting it for the book and having to write an accompanying piece encouraged me to re-examine the pie and articulate how it represented me and my philosophy. Also, although you can get the recipe here, there are 41 other wonderful pie recipes in the book covering an impressive range of styles – from pot pies to quiches to ice cream pies to galettes. It was also lovely to read the biographies of everyone who created all these pies – such a diverse collection of talented and creative women, and a group I’m honored to be in.
Here’s a shot of the back cover featuring yours truly along with some other fantastically accomplished women! I’m truly proud to be part of this project with WWC. And I’m pleased to have a chance to share it with you! I am giving away two copies of Pieography to Dessert First readers!
To enter: Leave a comment below about your favorite type of pie and why. It can be sweet or savory, a fruit pie, quiche, tart – whatever holds first place in your heart. The contest will run until next Wednesday, March 6 and I’ll select two winners at random and announce them on Thursday March 7. Good luck, and I hope to read some mouth-watering descriptions in the comments!
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Thank you to all of you for your well-wishes and e-mails. It means a great deal to me to know there’s so much support coming from all over the web. I go between excited and nervous, often within the space of minutes, and oftentimes simultaneously, so it’s definitely never dull here. I also didn’t mention that while I haven’t been able to report any outlandish food cravings, my sweet tooth has really diminished! Which is weird and disconcerting, and of course not the best news for a dessert-themed blog. I still want to bake, but many times I just don’t know what I want to make. Maybe it’s nature’s way of telling me I’ve already accumulated enough sugar in my system over the years and I need to put some other foods in it?
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When a great deal of your personal and professional life revolves around baking, you forget how much of the vernacular you’ve absorbed over time. When I taught a few enthusiast classes at Tante Marie’s, it was a reminder of how easy it is to take all I’d learned in pastry school and over the years for granted. That you need to have butter at room temperature before attempting to cream it. That you use the beater attachment for creaming and the whisk attachment for whipping (doesn’t sound quite as obvious when spelled out that way, does it?)
Although I try to gear most of the material on my site towards home bakers with at least some baking experience, it’s always good to have a reminder to look at the craft through a neophyte’s eyes, and refresh my perspective. Sometimes I get asked how I come up with the recipes for my site. Well, of course, when I started, I made recipes straight out of cookbooks I admired. It wasn’t until I became more confident in my baking skills that I became brave and curious enough to experiment. To me, if a recipe is tricky or difficult, it doesn’t necessarily turn me off. It means it’s a challenge to see if I have the skill to execute it. But I realized for many people who aren’t perhaps as baking-obsessed as me, that baking can seem like a stressful, dry venture where if you don’t have your ingredients in exactly the right amounts or the oven at the right temperature, you’ll end up with a flat cake, tough crust, burned custard – or worse. Being creative? Who knows if you add that extra ingredient to a cake, that it won’t deflate? or explode?
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Tags:alice medrich·balsamic·cherries·cookbook·review·sinfully easy desserts