Monday, 9 December 2013

Seattle/Bellevue Community: Fun, family-friend, and foodie Event this Saturday 14th at Bellevue Whole Foods Market!

'Tis the season. The chilly weather is here! Lights are up! Peppermint mochas are everywhere! What is a very sweet way to start the holiday season: decorate your very own gingerbread house! Whole Foods Bellevue Bakery Team is hosting a gingerbread decorating event this Saturday 14th.
Perfect event for families, little ones, and die hard foodies.

The Details…

TIME AND DATE: Sat. Dec. 14th at Bellevue Whole Foods Market (888 116th AVE NE Bellevue WA), 10:00 AM – 1:00PM. Feel free to arrive at any time to start decorating!

WHERE: Front and center of Bellevue Whole Foods Market. There will be tables set up when you arrive on Dec. 14. Still can’t find the event day of? Ask a helpful Whole Foods Team Member who can assist you in the right direction. (Free parking in our spacious lot right off of 405, by the hospital. Minutes from downtown Bellevue.)

HOW MUCH DOES IT COST: $19.99 gets you one gingerbread house to decorate, all the frosting and candy décor, your entire parties admission (no matter how people you bring), and fun drinks and snacks to munch on. Plus, Bakery Team Members will assist you on decorating your house!

HOW DO I RSVP? Easy! You can 1) Pre-pay  inside Bellevue Whole Foods Market at the Bakery Counter  (Recommended! This event is popular) or  2) Call Bellevue Whole Foods Market  (425-462-1400), connect to the Bakery Team, reserve a spot, and pay on December 14th when you arrive.

WHAT HAPPENS ON December 14th: Come on inside with your party, decorate your beautiful gingerbread house (everything will be ready for you), eat snacks, check out the sales happening at Whole Foods, and take your house home with you! Don’t worry, we will deal with the clean- up and mess.

MORE QUESTIONS?Call Bellevue Whole Foods and ask to be connected to the Bakery Team. We will happily answer any questions or concerns you have.
See you Saturday!

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Seattle Happy Hour with dishcrawl: This Wednesday (9/18) at Capitol Cider!

What is best part about having a food blog? Meeting fellow foodies and going to tasty events around my beautiful home city, Seattle. Dishcrawl is a nation-wide company that host fun, foodie events around big cities, like Seattle. I, luckily, met Julia and Melissa, two local dishcrawl ambassadors through social media and I am pairing up with them to help promote their fabulous events.

The next dishcrawl event? It is happening this Wednesday the 18th, from 6:00-8:00pm, at Capitol Cider ( in Capitol Hill. Tickets are only $5 and you get to try and assortment of their new menu as well as be eligible for killer drink specials.

Buy tickets here -->


Come meet new foodie friends and hang out with me and the local dishcrawl team for a relaxing evening at Seattle's newest cider shop, Capitol Cider.


See you Wednesday,

Saturday, 3 August 2013

A letter to the young, aspiring baker/pastry chef.


First off, in life you should do you what love, and love what you do. If it is baking bread, teaching third graders, creating websites, or fixing computers that you love doing then do it. We spend numerous hours and time AT WORK...... unsure what to do? Great, I love it when people say this. Why? Because you get to TRY NEW THINGS IN LIFE. Try a new hobby, sport, or activity. Met new people, go out to a new restaurant/bar/coffee shop, and find out about new industries, companies, and positions in your community.

Now, you have settled it: you want to cook/bake for a living. Good news: WE NEED FOOD TO LIVE, thus there will ALWAYS be positions/jobs for you. Bad news: The food industry can, well, be crazy and hectic. Most restaurants/cafes/bakeries are open 24/7 and require hard work and long hours.

My advice?  My top 5 tips…..

- First off, find a company/business that you truly like and care for. Note: most food small businesses are so small, they cannot offer health benefits, paid time off, or 401(k) plans, keep this in mind when searching for jobs. Note: some cooperate food businesses, can get very cooperate and less artistry is required for the job.

- Second, find a position that you like doing and can expand. Doing anything over and over again can get monotonous and boring. Can you learn new skills? Move up? Possibly learn something besides cooking and baking delicious food? On a better note, ask your brand new co-workers if they like working there. They will be honest.

-Third, get used to wearing a chef uniform: chef pants, non-slip clogs, hat, and chef jackets.  Oh yes, and working on weekends and major holidays. (Boo.)

-Fourth, to all the young women: From a girl’s girl point of view, working in professional kitchens is a very masculine industry, but I never let that change me. I am who I am, and still enjoy the color pink, 4 inch high heels, and lip gloss after working nearly 8 years in the industry. Your hands and nails will become very dry, you will have oily skin, and your feet will ache after work.  This just means you have to take extra special care of yourself , don’t let the job GET YOU. You are better than that.

-Finally, find an outside hobby outside of cooking/baking. Why? This will keep you sane, I promise.

 Don’t limit yourself to just restaurants for food jobs. There are numerous outlets for us: cafes, bakeries, gourmet grocery stores, cooperate dining, catering,  wineries, coffee shops, etc.  Find what fits YOU, not the person sitting next to you.

I find it very rare that a person cooks/bakes their ENTIRE career. Most of us move on: management, admin, sales, etc. We are still dedicated to food, but our lives, dreams, and goals change. We desire softer schedules and lifestyles. Keep this in mind while you are young: don’t be afraid to learn a new skill set beyond culinary and pastry.

Don’t let anyone get to you because that is their problem, not yours. Keep your chin up, positive attitude, and everything will come in place.



Tuesday, 16 July 2013

MY LATEST SWEET INTERVIEW: With Lesly, co-founder of WOW Chocolates in Seattle.

On one of my recent visits to my yoga studio, Bikram Yoga Redmond (, I met a lovely young woman named Lesly. Quickly, I found out we had something in common: Not only are we dedicated Bikram yogis, we both loved creating and making delicious sweet treats. Lesly informed me about her local (Seattle-area) chocolate business, called WOW chocolates (

After seeing, AND tasting, WOW Chocolates, I was highly impressed by the decorating details, quality of chocolate, and unique flavors. Lesly, and her sister (co-owner) Maire, use tropical and exotic flavors not normally founds in typical chocolates. Banana-ginger, jalapeno-mango, and raspberry-cabernet (my personal favorite!) are a few fun selections you can choose to buy from their website.

Check out my sweet interview with Lesly:

Lesly, on right, with her sister/co-owner, Maire.

A brief bio on WOW chocolates:

After completed a degree as an interior designer and gained experience in the field for several years before discovering chocolate was not only passion but my calling.  I began making bonbons as a gifts for friends and soon word spread.  It then became something else entirely...a business WOW! Thus I pursued my passion for food, combining my background in design and a knack for creativity, and the result can be seen every chocolate creation.

Maire (sister) learned about the art of making truffles and bonbons from her sister.  She is an accomplished artist who works with many different materials - from acrylic paints to clay and wood.  Maire has always shared a passion with her family for food and now she strives to combine the worlds of art and edible every day.


WOW Chocolates will captivate your senses and take you on an extraordinary journey through our world of delightful, exotic and colorful bonbons.  Our passion for these delectable delicacies is infectious and is reflected in every bite.
WOW Chocolates.


1) Describe WOW CHOCOLATES for people who are unfamiliar.

WOW Chocolates is a new and local company  run by two sisters.  WOW Chocolates crafted bonbons with unique flavors. 

2) What made you want to start WOW?

What really made us to start WOW was our passion for the amazing cocoa that Venezuela produced.  WOW Chocolates was created in Margarita Island - Venezuela and brought our confectionary art to the United State in 2012.  

3) What's the most popular chocolate you make?

Our most popular flavors right now are:  Mango-Jalapeño,  Tamarind and Chile de árbol,  Passion fruit and Strawberry-Basil.

4) What's your personal favorite sweet treat?

My favorite sweet treat is my mom's squash cake with strawberry jelly on top ,Yumm! 

5) Where can people go to purchase your delicious chocolates?

You can purchase our chocolates online through our web site.  You can find all the services that we offer,  like weddings, corporate and more.

WOW Chocolates for Valentine's Day.
For more information on WOW Chocolates, check out:
Main website -->
"Like" 'em -->
"Follow" 'em -->

I look forward to seeing WOW Chocolates growing in Seattle's chocolate world! Best of luck to Lesly and Maire.

Happy Baking,

Monday, 24 June 2013

Cooking a new recipe? My top 3 tips for foodie success!

I love, love,  cooking and baking new food and recipes. Gathering ideas from Pinterest, fellow foodies, bloggers, and tv shows, I enjoying creating a new dish that I can blog and tell my friends about.

From a new Sunday Supper meal, to a sweet breakfast treat, or a easy breezy lunch, there are helpful rules I easily follow before I start my chopping, dicing, and slicing. With my 3 easy tips, I know I can have a successfully happy tummy and meal.

Tip #1: Check your pantry!
-Find the ingredient list in your new recipe and check your fridge and pantry. This will avoid any last minute trips to the grocery store. If there is a special or hard to find ingredient, check your local specialty shops for their inventory. Avoid the miles on your car, and call the store to see if they carry it.

Tip #2: Check your cookware/bakeware!
-If you are baking spiced banana bread, you will need a loaf pan. Cupcakes require a muffin tin and paella needs a special paella-pan. Making a large batch of chili? Make sure you have a large pot or dutch oven for the job. You don't want to be in the middle of your tasty brownies and realize you don't have a rectangle cake pan...

Tip #3: Check your heat/oven!
-This is key. Double check what the recipe suggestions for the baking/cooking temperature and, well, use your common sense. If a chocolate chip cookie recipe says to bake 'em at 450 degrees F, I know better to turn down the heat to a nice 350 degree F.

All in all, go into a new recipe with confidence and ease. Double read your new recipe and don't b e afraid to ask a fellow friend, family member, or co-worker for help or advice.

Happy cooking!

Monday, 10 June 2013

Why you should toss away your pure aluminum cookware!

Just like cell phones, technology, and care, the cookware industry is rapidly growing and changing....for the better. Cookware manufactures WANT you to have success with their products and cook delicious meals in them.

Back in the day, people used pure aluminum cookware. Why? It is: Abdundant, conducts heat pretty evenly, and is soft to mold into a variety of shapes and sizes.
Now, aluminum goes through a process called "anodizing." What is it exactly? Think: electro-chemical process to make aluminum STRONGER and conduct heat better. It turns into a dark gray, porus material versus the light, super shinny apperance.

It is rare that you will see pure aluminum cookware, for sale, in the domestic field today. It is either: hard anodized with a protective non-stick coating over it or combined with stainless steel.

Here are my top 3 reasons why it is great time to toss out your used aluminum cookware and upgrade your set:

1) Pure aluminum over time, it "worps." The pans "titer-toter" and become uneven on the bottom over time. It will not "sit flat" on your cooking range.

2) Aluminum reacts with acidic and citrus foods, causing a discolor in the pans. Watch out for food like tomato sauce and lemond curd to stain aluminum cookware.

3) Aluminum cookware is just...unattractive. Cookware is getting "cosmetic" and there are a variety of colored and bronze-toned cookware on the market. Not only should cooking and baking be fun, your pans should be, too!

Happy cooking,

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Cooling your baked goods: 3 key tips!

I often remind people that "cooling" your freshly baked goods is part of the baking process. (Cooling = your treats are cold when consuming, not at room temp or warm.) Yes, it is important to stir, portion, and bake your delicious goodies, but cooling them properly will ensure its full flavor.

Not matter what you are baking: cupcakes, cookies, quick breads, brownies, they all need to be cooled before consuming or storage. Why? If you eat one before it is properly cooled, excess steam will release, causing any excess moisture to escape. In all baked goods, steam is necessary to make the sweet treat nice and moist.

If you decide to freeze your baked good, and it is still warm, it will causes excess condensation within the packaging (ex: plastic bag, plastic container, etc) and make the outside super soft and soggy. No beuno!

Follow these 3 key and easy tips for properly cooled back goods:

1) Always cool in the pan you baked your delicious baked good in.
-Why: This, one, avoids any extra pans you have to clean and, especially with loaf pans, holds the shape. With cookies, I always cool the cookies on the sheet pan versus removing the cookies from the sheet pan and putting them on a cooling grid. Slowing cooling down the baked good with also, ensure a nice, soft crust on the bottom.

2) Place the pan on a cooling grid.
-Why: When you evaluate the delicious treat on to a higher surface, the bottom cools down just as fast as the sides and tops. Thus overall, it will cool down faster than on a non-elevauated surface.

3) Make sure it is 110% cooled before consuming/cutting/enjoying!
-Why: This is hard. Really hard. Your place smells like sweetness and all you want to do is stuff your face with sugar-buttery goodness. One: when you cut into a baked good that it is cooled, it will retain its shape versus collapsing. Two: There is no excess steam and moisture, thus your treat is super-duper soft and moist. Trust me on this one, patience is key.
I like to completly cool any large treats, like my loaves and cakes, overnight to ensure it is 100% cool before storing.

Please remember bakers:
-If you do decide to freeze your baked goods, make sure it is in an air tight container and wrapped tightly with plastic wrap. You don't want freezer burn killing your treat.
-Always avoid aersol sprays when greasing your bakeware. It leaves a gross brown film that stains and ruins your gorgeous pans.
-Use good old fashion butter and parchment paper when greasing!

Happy Baking,

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Seattle Foodies: Feral Feast is happening TOMORROW!

Greeting fellow blog readers. I have been on a foodie heaven vacation: It started with the celebration of my "last-year-of-my-20's" birthday swaray at the very classy Rob Roy in downtown Seattle ( There are far too many delicious cocktails to pick a favorite one...
Then, the annual Seattle Restaurant Week ( started mid April and you can purchase a 3-course meal for $28. (Hey, that is less than what it cost to fill my gas tank!) It is a killer deal to go out and try new restaurants and foods you would not normally attend or consume.
On top of that, more birthday meals with friends and happy hour cocktail dates have me out and about verus cooking in for one.

Another tempting and delicious event, this month, for anyone and everyone in the Seattle food scene: Feral Feast! What is it? (Be sure to check out my previous blog post for my review!) A secret "pop-up" dinner hosted at GRUB restaurant (  in upper Queen Anne. Every month a new and inspiring menu is created for your tasting pleasure.

What is in store for tomorrow's feast?

Check  out the Span-Asian menu:

Course 1
Duck 'salad' served ban chan style;

Turnip greens, pine nuts, pickled currants, sherry vinaigrette, Quacklins'
Tortilla Espagnola; Duck ham, yukon potatoes, sambal alioil
Duck confit, blood orange, rhubarb
Fennel kimchi, pickled cucumber

Course 2
Zaru soba;

Cold soba noodles served with rich meat broth mentsuyu dipping sauce, pickled shiitake, nori

Course 3

House made chorizo, morcilla, braised pork belly
chickpeas w/ baby turnips, baby carrots and mint, roasted fennel, fennel pistou, sambal alioli

Course 4

Pineapple coconut milk ice cream, carrot cake w/ cardamom cream cheese frosting, lime zest, molasses

You can purchase tickets here:
Please remember gratuity and alcohol are NOT included.
Follow Feral on twitter: @FeralSeattle

See you tomorrow!
Happy Baking,

Monday, 8 April 2013

Beautiful Baby Shower Cupcakes!

This past Saturday, the typical Seattle spring rain suddenly stopped and sunshine beamed through the blue skies. It was a perfect and gorgeous day to celebrate Kristina's soon-to-be-born daughter! Close friends and family gathered in her very warm house.

Green and purple colors decorated everything from the balloons, to plates, candy, and table runners. I loved it! We all munched on light appetizers and saved room for my extra special cupcakes.

Peanut butter ganache
I created 4 delicious flavors: Peanut butter Ganache, Peppermint-Chocolate, Strawberry Swirl, and German chocolate.
Kristina's favorite?
 Peppermint-chocolate! (So was mine!)


I always loved German chocolate cake, thus made a mini version!

I truly enjoyed baking cupcakes for Kristina and wishes her and her family the very best with the new baby girl.
Happy Baking,

Thursday, 4 April 2013

dishcrawl Seattle presents: NeighborFOOD in Capital Hill on April 28th!

One of my ways to find out new foodie events in the Seattle community is through social media. Recently, I met Melissa, a kind, young, foodie diehard woman who repesents dishcrawl.
We met at pintxo (, a Spanish tapas restaurant in the heart of Belltown, for a small bite and sangaria.

“We started Neighborfood to rejoice and share in the things we love most: food, family, and our neighborhood,” says Dishcrawl Founder, Tracy Lee.

She explained to me what dishcrawl was all about: Creating fun and unique foodie events for the Seattle community. There are dishcrawl ambassadors through the country, thus no matter where you travel to, there will be a delicious dishcrawl event in the city! Melissa, being a new Seattleite, loves her job because it gets her a chance to explore the fresh Seattle food scene.

What is the next dishcrawl Seattle event? "NeighborFOOD' in Capital Hill. On Sunday April 28, from 2pm-5pm, they will merge with the Seattle Humane Society to give the community a tasty, easy-walkable food festival. Particapting restaurants will offer drink specials, so don't worry!

Checked out some featured items and restaurants that will be participating:

Manhattan - Pork belly mac and cheese

Marination Station - Best Taco Ever

Ayutthaya Thai Restaurant- Drunken Noodles with Tofu

95 Slider - Chicken and Waffles

Sam's Tavern - 50/50 Sliders

Plum Bistro - Spicy Cajun Mac ‘n’ Yease (vegan)

Capitol Club - Champiñones Al Ajillo

Cupcake Royale - Cupcake Surprise

Tickets are $40 ($45/day off)  and they can be purchased here -->

Be sure to tweet to dishcrawl: @dishcrawlSEA

For more information, contact Melissa:
Happy Cooking,

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

LATEST FOODIE INTERVIEW: With Lee Johnson, Kitchen Manager of the famous Cirque de Soleil show!

At my Bikram yoga classes, in downtown Redmond, ( I always meet great, unique, and happy people. Many are foodies, health freaks, and Seahawk fans. I recently met Lee Johnson, the kitchen manager of Cirque De Soleil show. We quickly bonded over a love of Korean food, hatha yoga, and kitchen life.

What is Cirque de Soleil? ( It is a dramatic, ariel-feasted, and visually stunning show that will leave you amazed and breathless! Cirque de Soleil comes, annually, to Redmond and shows sell

Before Lee left good old Redmond for his hometown, Toronto, I managed to ask him a few questions about his experience and work with Cirque de Soleil.

Check it out:

1) How did you get started with Cirque de Soleil?

I started with the Cirque du Soleil in July 2005. I was living in Toronto at the time and working in a small 50 seat bistro. I happened to see the job description in the Toronto Star classifieds. I applied but did not expect to hear anything. Two weeks later, I was interviewed. Four weeks after the interview, I was working on tour in New Jersey.

2) What is the best part about your job?
The best part of the job has been the opportunity to travel through the world while working. I have traveled through parts of North America, South America, Australia, Europe, and Asia. It has been a great experience to try the food and meet the local people from these destinations.

3) What is thw worst part of your job?
The worst part is being away from friends and family.

4) What is your favorite restaurant you have ever been to? Why?
The best restaurant I have ever been to is a difficult question. One of my favorites would be the Country House Pecora Nera in Teramo, Italy. In 2008, I drove with two other cooks from Berlin to Teramo. We stayed at this inn set in rolling farmer's fields. The Country House Pecora Nera had a restaurant which served the cuisine of Abruzzo and sourced everything locally. All the vegetables were grown by the chef's family and the pasta made by hand as well. I was never disappointed with what they served. They were good memories.

5) What do you hope to gain from your Cirque de Soleil experience?
In many ways, I have gained a renewed appreciation for home. I am looking forward to getting back to Toronto. I have also gained a bigger perspective of the many cultures around the world. Travel is good education. I have been really lucky to have had this experience.

From this interview, it keeps on reminding me there are many outlets and adventures in the food industry. See what is out there and what you truly like and want to do!

Happy Cooking,

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Review of Monday's Feral Feast: a delicious secret dinner in Queen Anne!

One of Seattle's newest restaurants is GRUB (, located in the heart of upper Queen Anne. Open 7 days a week, and serving delicious breakfast, lunch, and dinner entrees, it has a warm and simple menu that is sure to delight anyone's palette.

GRUB has been opened 6 months.
FERAL FEAST: Third Monday of every month.
GRUB has a delectable foodie "secret:"The third Monday of every month, 'Feral Feast," takes over with a new menu. The food and selected entrees are inspired by the season and Pacific Northwest cuisine.

Last Monday, the menu was dedicated to my two personal favorites: Spanish cuisine and spring weather.  The rain poured and the sun shined while I munched on seafood, braised chicken, and sipped a bold red.

With 8 dishes to choose from, you can purchase 3,4, or 5 dishes that look the most appealing to you. I , of course, attempted to eat as much as possible. Done and done.

Peas and Carrots.

"Peas and carrots" was one of my favorites dishes, why? It is effortless, light, and made me dream of spring weather. The cured sockeye salmon complimented the spicy pickled carrots nicely.

Pork Belly.
The super cripsy pork belly made me lick the plate clean. Well, before I devoured the mustard greens, clams, and potatoes. Portion size was nearly perfect, I knew I was going to consume more delightful dishes.
Seafood "Pa'ella."

My appetite was slowly being satisified...I pat myself on the back for wearing my soft jeggings and forgetting my belt.

Pa'amb Tomoquet.
Pa'amb Tomoquet was a nice appetizer. The crunchy bread with the sweetness of the tomato jam seem to "butter the Jamon Iberico.
Even the couple sitting next to my was eyeing this dish, too bad I ate it all. Not even leaving a cumb.

I have a confession: I am not a HUGE cold soup person. I like it hot. Pipping hot, during a cold Seattle rainstorm, while watching reruns of some corny high school drama show. But, THIS, white gazpacho, I like. The toasted almonds gave it a crunch, while the grapes and apple added a soft sweet taste.

I ended Feral's feast with a warm, raisin rice pudding. I hope I see more sweet puddings on Seattle's dessert menus...they are soothing, comforting, and a perfect getaway from a sudden burst of rain.
Sherry braised Chicken.
All in all: I was pleased and happy that I tried new and contempary food without spending a fortune. 'Pop-up' restaurants are the latest Seattle trend in food, and I can't wait to see ths success in Feral's Feast at GRUB.
Want more information?
Follow Feral Feast on twitter: @FeralSeattle
Email with any questions:
Save the date for the next feast: Monday April 15th!
Happy Baking,

Monday, 11 March 2013

Super secret Seattle pop-up dinners: Check out Feral Feasts!

Not only am I a die hard foodie, I am a die hard foodie event attendee. From the major (like Seattle's Food & Wine Festival and Kirkland Uncorked) to minor (blogger meet-ups and Cupcake Camp), attending food events is a (cheap) way to see what fun and fresh dishes are being served in Seattle. I love the variety of vendors, talkative foodies, and seeing the up-and-coming restaurants.
What is the latest, and soon to be greatest, event? It is called "Feral Feast," hosted at Grub in Queen Anne ( I found out about it through word-of-mouth in the foodie event community. It is held on the third Monday of every month (the next dinner is this coming Monday 18th) and is sure to a success. Tip and adult beverages are not included, but will be available for purchase for your delight.
Yellowtail Belly from a previous feast.
Here is a brief description on next week's "Feral Feast" from the host/Chef:
Sherry braised Chicken from a previous feast
We are trying a new format for this month's pop up. From the menu below, guests can choose either 3, 4 or 5 dishes for a fixed price of $28, $35 or $44 per person (gratuity and alcohol not included.)
This month's menu is inspired by Spanish cuisine, locally available ingredients and that hope that Spring is just around the corner!
Tickets can be purchased at
To make reservations, guests can email (include name, party size, desired reservation time and contact phone)

The menu for Monday 18th 2013:
Arugula salad, radish, blood orange, green garlic vinaigrette
Pa’amb tomoquet; grilled bread, tomato relish, jamon
White gazpacho, almonds, apples, grapes, olive oil
‘Paella’, mussels, shrimp, saffron, peppers, crispy puffed rice, green onion
Sherry braised chicken thighs, rich tomato sauce over chick peas, roasted cauli, crispy chicken cracklins'
Pork belly confit, clams, kale, potato
King oyster mushrooms, potato, fiddleheads, pimenton alioli, parsley      
Espresso flan

Menu subject to change due to availability and pure whim
Location; Grub, 7 Boston st, Seattle 98109 (Upper Queen Anne)
Dinner served from 5 - 9
Pan Seared Rock Fish from a previous feast.
Yes, I already plan on attending and put in my RSVP, you should, too! Come hang with me and let's chat about food, restaurants, and cocktails.
Happy Cooking!

Monday, 25 February 2013

What is "icing on the cake?"

"Your work ethic is like icing on the cake, my dear!"
 "That last piece of chocolate was really icing on the cake."
 "Enjoying a cold margarita after a long day is icing on the cake."
 "Meeting new people is like icing on the cake, especially if they help you out professionally!"

First off: What is icing? It is a thick confection made of sugar, fat (like butter), flavor additives (like vanilla extract, fruit, liquor, etc), and eggs to top and decorate cake. Can you eat cake without any frosting? YES. Is it better with some sort of frosting? YES. It adds moisture, more flavor, and a smooth texture in conjuction with the delicious cake. Cake and frosting go together like freshly squeezed moijiots and Seattle's first sunny summer day.

Since I was a little girl, surrounding myself with my E-Z bake oven, cookies, cake, and brownies....the expression "icing on the cake" was tossed and turned around within the everyday conversation between people. Bosses used it to compliment their employees; People said it when a positive gesture passed through their day; Teachers said it to well-behaved students.

After seeing how people loosely use the expression, "icing on the cake," it is meant to compliment a genuine, absolute, and clear act that positively adds to your life. Is it necessary? No. Is it needed on a hourly basis? No, and you won't come across it every day of your life. Does it make you smile and look at life from a different view? Yes. Small gestures from total strangers will bring the best in you. It will make you want to do "icing on the cake" acts to every single person you meet.

Moral of the story? Just like icing, petite and humble acts, give us more to our day-to-days.  We may not need an extra chocolate chip cookie, a scoop of pistachio gelato, or a glass of a strong Malbec, but unneccessary modest moves are pure sweetness.

Now: go forth and put "icing on the cake" to someone's day.

Happy Baking,

Sunday, 27 January 2013

First foodie interview of 2013: Get to know Whitney Heinrich of CRAFTED.

Welcome to my first interview on 2013, peeps: Whitney Heinrich is a smart young woman who is also a fellow Girl Power Hour ( blogger. She started and created "CRAFTED" to bring unique and one-of-a-kind treats to the Seattle and Eastside community. When she is not baking up a storm, Whitney is very like me: loves new cocktails, trying new restaurants in Seattle, and simply being sweet.

Whitney, in action, at an event with her treats.

Get to know Whitney, read my interview below:

1) What 'sparked' your love of baking and creating sweet things?
What sparked my love for baking was when I was working at a local coffee shop in high school and I would bring in cupcakes, and people would rave about them and tell me I should be selling them. I hadn't thought about that as a profession before, but at that moment I was like hey...I could totally do this and be happy forever

2) Describe your experience at the French Culinary Institute.
Going into the FCI I had totally pictured myself becoming a wedding cake designer, it wasn't till I started school and saw how much more was out there. I got really excited when menu planning came along, I knew I had to be the one to come up with my own ideas and not follow others.

3) Why did you start Crafted? What do you hope to do with Crafted?
Delicious breads are made with love and nice ingredients.
I started Crafted because I truly feel I can offer unique and special dessert concepts to clients. I love to break the rules in pastry and come up with flavor combo's and dessert offerings that are off the "norm" - I strive for that whimsical factor. Right now I am going with the flow with Crafted and letting it become what the community wants and needs, but long term I would love to have a small shop with crafted cocktails, house brewed beer, small plates, and those whimsical dessert concepts I love to come up with! I have a true passion for everything culinary, not just pastry.

4) You are a big foodie! What's your favorite restaurant in the Seattle area?
There are so many amazing restaurants, but I think my all time favorite "foodie" restaurant is Crush. I love what Jason Wilson and his team do, I love their service staff, and their pastry chef Lori always keeps me on my toes - I mean come on.. she came up with a Douglas Fir sorbet!

5) What is your favorite sweet treat to eat?
My favorite sweet treat has to be anything that involves the s'mores concept. You can't beat a good s'mores and I think that's why one of the first set of recipes I nailed down were for Crafted's s'mores kit.

Perfect Valentines Day treats!

To buy these delicious treats, check out CRAFTED's Etsy Shop:

Plus she is social media friendly:

Happy Baking,

Sunday, 6 January 2013

My top predictions for the Seattle foodie community in 2013!

Happy New Year everyone! I hope everyone had a very kind, exciting, and of course, SWEET New Year celebration. I know most people like to go on a health kick in the beginning of the year, but just remember a nice cookie won't hurt your diet.

2013 will be a fantastic year for food! Not only do I enjoying cooking and baking for my friends and family, I like see what is new and improved out in the community. Luckily, Seattle is a HUGE foodie city filled with fresh sushi, local wines, baked goods, and distilleries.

Here are my top 3 foodie predictions for the Seattle community:

1) More distilleries will open: Wine bars and local breweries are already a HUGE success in Seattle. We love good food AND good drinks. Those who forgo wine or beer (don't ask me why!) enjoy a delicious cold hard cider or hard liquor on the rocks. (Look out: "Capital Cider," a strictly hard cider house due to open in this year in Capital Hill.)

2) Dessert Buffets for private/special events: Wedding cakes are a curse and blessing. The time, labor, and skill it takes to create a one-of-a-kind cake is hard and long. Yet, the tradition cake adds flair and "oohs-ahhs" at your reception. More brides and grooms are opting for dessert buffets filled with mini cupcakes, cookies, and candies. Plus, this is MUCH easier to serve a large crowd!

3) Cheese added to desserts: If it is mascrapone, cream cheese, goat cheese, or even a mild cheddar, I've been seeing more cheeses being incorporated in desserts. Move over cheese platter, the dessert needs room!

Now I know with every trend, another one must leave. Thus here is my list for my top 3 Seattle foodie trends that must take a quiet exit.

1) Truffle oil: First off, I love the stuff. Over grilled chicken, homemade popcorn, or sourdough bread. But putting it over Please stop, thank you.

2) Making every item on a restaurant's menu gluten-free: Yes, I do enjoy eating naturally gluten-free foods like fruits, veggies, rice, and quinoa. Yet, when you make your super juicy bacon burger "GF," just to please a couple customers, it makes the rest of us crave that sesame seed bun. A nice alternative? Just have a small seperate menu with items that are gluten-free or can be specially prepped to be gluten-free.

3) Over-dosing on Asian sauces: Trust me, I love sriricha, soy sauce, and hoisin sauce when I cook. But, when gobs of it are all over my sushi, fish, or salad, it gets out of control. I like to order it on the side and add as much as I please. I have never been a "extra mayo" kinda girl, always "sauce on the side," please.

I hope everyone goes out in 2013 and:
-Trys a new restaurant or bar.
-Enjoy a fancy cocktail.
-Order something different at a "regular" restaurant.
-Cook and bake something delicious!

Happy Baking!