Tag Archives: dessert

Holiday Gift Idea Confirmed by New York Magazine

ny times macaron pic

Last week I blogged about a wonderful Thanksgiving gift that my sister presented to me. This week, she sent me a New York Magazine article outlining just how great of a gift macarons can be. (you don’t have to convince me of that!)

Check out the article below, and if you want to give your friends and family something special, go with French pastries. You will be loved.

NY Mag Article link

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J’ Chanceux Macaron

Look at this beauty of a gift my sister got for me:

box full of love


perfect pastry post meal

She showed up at Thanksgiving dinner with a neat, little box of tasty macarons. For those of you who have not been introduced to the hamburger-shaped French pastries, they are “a traditional French pastry, made of egg whites, almond powder, icing sugar and sugar”. (wiki)

As told by Darby,” a new bakery opened with the cutest little lady owner – and she makes macarons’. That bakery is called J’ Chanceux Macaron and has only been opened for a few weeks.

info, held up by Darby

We did a taste testing in her apartment the next day. We got through them all, but since we were stuffed, never declared a winner. Looking back, the flavor that left a lasting impression on me was the coffee. It was sweet, but had a tinge of bitterness that added another dimension to the dessert.

Macarons are one of my all-time favorite treats – small enough to taste a few, crunchy with a melt-in-your-mouth outer layer, and a touch of cream.

If you live in New York City, go try out J’ Chanceux and give the little lady a chance.

Thanksgiving: Recap

Gather 'round

I’m sure most of you are Thanksgiving-ed out, so I will keep my recap brief.

Like most families, the food at my table is a combination of traditional turkey-day grub as well as cultural edibles.

For us, that means we must start with matzoh ball soup:

hot balls


my portion

My grandma makes this soup for every holiday occasion. Her version of matzoh balls are light and fluffy; they are the cornerstone of our meal.

Next, we move onto chicken fricassee:

my portion


Made with turkey meatballs, carrots,raisins, and various chicken parts (necks, gizzards, hearts), the gravy of this dish is to die for. We mix it with mushroom barley to soak up the rich, meat-flavored sauce.

And here is my uncle giving us a closer look at his chicken heart:

After the opening ceremony of Jewish courses, the Thanksgiving fare starts rolling out of the kitchen:

gobble gobble


cornbake


chunky cranberry molded (in a good way) sauce

And we throw in some vegetables for good measure:

Everyone’s favorite plate is the glazed corned beef. This is spoken about all year long and is completely devoured by night’s end.

Here is my plate:

(that’s only plate number 1 – I had turkey and cranberry sauce to close out the meal)

As always, the food was excellent but the company was better. We relaxed for awhile to digest before attacking dessert:

proud of her accomplishments


Chocolate, chocolate chip cakes, banana chocolate chip cake, thumbprint cookies, fruit bars, tollhouse chocolate chip cookies, cheesecake AND:

you won't regret eating me 🙂

Much thanks to my wonderful grandmother for putting together another over-the-top meal filled with savory and sweet delicacies. Hope you all had an awesome holiday. I’m ready to go eat some post Thanksgiving breakfast (that may or may not include leftover cheesecake)

Oh, and there was an addition to our table this year; and he was very well behaved:

I tasted turkey - wahoooo!

Ice cream social

I bring happiness to the people

You know you work at a cool company when this dude shows up on a Friday afternoon. Time for a ice cream sundae social at work!

We even had a choice of flavors:

who got the sherbert?

and a table full of sugary toppings:

I went with Moose Tracks (vanilla with peanut butter cups and chocolate fudge) topped with rainbow sprinkles and a drop of chocolate syrup. I really wanted to take a picture for y’all, but you know the ice cream rule – eat quickly, before it melts.

Vikings Cooking School: cook your dinner and then eat it

Last night, I was lucky enough to be invited to participate in a cooking class at the Viking Cooking School, located inside the Viking store in midtown. This event was a perk that’s associated with my daytime job and happened to tie into my nighttime job (hobby) quite perfectly.

*Updated*
Here’s the menu for the night labeled “Dinner Around the World”:
Tuscan Grilled Vegetable Platter
Thai Spring Rolls with sweet & sour sauce
Roasted Chicken (5 different varieties)
Cuban-style Rice Pilaf with black beans
Chocolate-covered strawberries stuffed with Amaretto cream cheese
And now it’s time for another story by photo segment:

we arrived to some snacks


and drinks


the clean kitchen prior to cooking


our chef gets the lesson started with a raw chicken


Chang and Kenny dove into the poultry preparation


stuffed with an onion, among other things


Brad gets excited by chicken (or knives?)


ready for roasting


Eli gets comfy in his chef whites


and with his knife


the crew preps the ingredients


while some of the guys drink and stand around


Josh gets veggies ready for the grill


and Kim mans the grill


and she grills


and grills


a post-grill rainbow


Don't forget us! Eli and I also grilled


Eli and Josh focus: they learn to make a spring roll


plop in some filling


Kenny demonstrates the roll


ready for the fryer


Kim shows the hollowed strawberries for dessert


tip of the day: use a glass to fill a piping bag


tip of the day demonstrated


berries filled with cream cheese, amaretto, confectioners sugar


chocolate to be melted


Kim and Jenna dip the berries, but the chocolate remains on their hands


taste trumps looks


Brad likes the spread of food


and shows off his personalized plate


spring rolls ready to eat!


chopped chicken


grilled veggies topped with parmigiano cheese


mmmmmmmm


extra desserts that we had nothing to do with

This event was super fun and I highly recommend it for a team-building outing, a girls'(guys’) night out, or just a change of pace activity shared among friends. We ate well, drank plenty, learned a few things, and most importantly – we didn’t clean up a thing!

Full menu will be updated shortly for those who are interested.

The Viking Store
1745 Peachtree Road, NE
Atlanta, GA 30309-2404
404.745.9064
http://www.thevikingstore.net

Dreaming About: Shaved Ice

The craving has hit again!
Whether it’s the bean and tapioca variety:

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massive

the mixed fruit variety:

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more manageable

OR both (if you can’t decide and you want a little bit of both and you are not willing to sacrifice one for the other and you are counting on your dining companions to help out):

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get ready to climb Mount Everest

Cafe 101 does not allow customization in their shaved ice creations, but they make sure you leave full……of ice.

Café 101 on Urbanspoon

Café 101
5412 Buford Hwy
Doraville, GA 30340
770-458-8883
http://www.cafe101atlanta.com/

Antico Pizza Napoletana: Meet Giovanni di Palma

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front of the house


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back of the house


Oh, what a night – I spent the evening with Atlanta’s #1 pizza maker, Giovanni di Palma. He is quite a guy: gregarious, proud, generous, welcoming, but above all, utterly humbled by the mass amounts of positive buzz his small pizza joint has created. He mentioned interviews, photo shoots, magazines, and blogs, that have bombarded and overwhelmed the down to earth crew. Giovanni has but one word to say to the city of Atlanta, “Grazie.”

Giovanni happened to remember my anchovy-loving ways so he invited me to the back room to check out the scene.

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Then the fun began:

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don't drop it!


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the master is watching


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help me out, man!


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handing over the reigns

It was heavy!

Kind-hearted Giovanni also let me touch his beloved dough. Soft stuff.

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career change?


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wearing the opposite of the correct color for this activity


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trying to smuggle flour out on my pants

The boys were more than happy to oblige to my demands:

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blue + red = purple

As if it could get any better, we were treated to an espresso and cannolis while we read the framed Vince Lombardi quote on the wall:

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espresso


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side view cannolis


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frontal cannolis


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words from Mr. Lombardi

At this point, we all know that Antico serves up the best pizza Atlanta has to offer. In fact, for all I know they’ve got the best pizza in the south. We also know that when you go to Antico, you stuff yourself with the aforementioned pizza until you can barely breathe. Fair enough. But I urge you – try the cannoli, biscotti, and especially the sfogliatelle. You will not regret it; and you can do it! See how well I did:

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all gone


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it's not a struggle to get this down

Antico Pizza Napoletana on Urbanspoon