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!