Four Year Anniversary


This year (October 17) was our four year wedding anniversary. We decided to celebrate with one of our favorite musicians Ryan Adams. He came to town to play the Moody Theater October 22 (he did an ACL taping) and we saw him the next night on the 23rd.



The show was perfect and amazing–it far surpassed any expectations I could have had. I saw DRA perform twice in support of Gold (the first album I bought of his–yes, even before Whiskeytown and Heartbreaker) in the early 00’s in San Francisco.

Those shows were great, but he was in a different place back then. (weren’t we all?) It was nice to get to share the experience with my husband–we’ve been listening to his records together for years and Ryan was in top form. He was warm and funny and goofy and the songs were performed flawlessly.

He didn’t play my favorite song from the new album (Feels like Fire) but he played so many of my other long-time favorites that it didn’t really matter.


Hummingbird High: Meyer Lemon Pudding Cake


I have several Meyer lemons leftover from my yummy Easter Lemon Drop Cake. I’ve been wondering what I should do with them…lemon ice cream? Cupcakes? But as luck would have it, I stumbled upon this fortuitous recipe on one of my (new) favorite food blogs.

It seems completely meant to be right? Pudding…cake–my two favorite things on the planet coming together to help me not waste these beautiful, fragrant, thin-skinned lemons.

My boys are bugging me to make a Piñata Cake like I have been promising, but given the sensitive time constraints of the ripe lemons I think this might have to come first.

I promise, boys: Piñata Cake is next!!

Weekend Baking


I was looking forward to my day off with my sweetie all week. I decided that I would surprise him by baking a batch of yummy cinnamon rolls for us to share during our lazy Sunday. I started the process Saturday night. After the dough log firmed up in the freezer I sliced it up and put 10 pieces in a greased 13×9 pan, covered it with a towel, crossed my fingers and went to bed.


It’s still weird for me that such an easy dough works so perfectly, especially since I was using the Milk Bar Mother Dough with the Brioche Cinnamon Roll recipe from the Craft of Baking book. I was worried that I would wake up to small little slices, but was greeted instead to a full pan of fluffy dough-love. I used the leftover filling that oozed out during the rolling/wrapping process by spooning it on top of each roll.


While the rolls baked I made the glaze and set up a handy little drizzle station with a plastic tray and a cooling rack. After about 30 minutes they were all set. I was so happy that my romantic brunch turned out so well. What did NOT go quite as planned, however was the fact that my husband was called into work bright and early on our ONE day off together. He got dressed and left, leaving a sad husband-shaped empty spot in our bed.


Baby G was still asleep so I got up to see if I had totally wrecked my cinnamon rolls or not. The funny thing was, since my honey wasn’t around to enjoy them with me I didn’t really care they turned out or not. But my bakers’ ego was definitely thrilled to see how puffy and beautiful the rolls had become overnight.


I decided to make the best of eating breakfast alone by putting on The Smiths and making a good strong pot of coffee.


Even though I was really disappointed that my honey would have to come home to cold cinnamon rolls, I was pretty happy with the way they turned out….and so was Baby G. 🙂



Tools of the Trade

Having the proper tools goes a long way when cooking or baking. I leave the savory stuff to my sweet husband for the most part but I really find a lot of joy in expanding my skills in the baking arena.

I have been baking my whole life, but it wasn’t until I met my chef husband and he insisted that I use professional equipment in our kitchen that I truly felt like I was getting consistent results when baking.

Here are some of latest tools to join the family:

Decorating comb I noticed cool, wavy details in some of the icing in the Bouchon cook book so when I noticed this tool at the restaurant supply store I snatched it up. It was super cheap and I think it will be fun to use. It turns out that at Bouchon they use a tile comb: literally, a tool used to smooth glue for tile floors. I’m most interested in the wavy part of the tool, I feel like if I need smoothing I will use the bench scraper (see below) or an offset spatula.


Chinois, great for all straining. It is narrow enough to fit in the mouth of even smaller jars and pitchers.


#16 Scoop
, essential for making huge, perfectly round cookies.


Bench scraper, great for crushing, chopping and cleaning. (this picture is from Williams-Sonoma. Mine looks slightly different)


Ok, these aren’t from the restaurant supply store, they’re from Target but I love a good solid wooden spoon.


Sheet pans. We already had a few, but after my husband used them one too many times to roast pigs feet and other assorted bones I insisted that we get ‘baking only’ pans.


Aluminum bowls. I have a jillion of these, but they were all larger sizes so I needed a few smaller ones.


I use disposable gloves a lot as an esthetician but I had never used them for baking. I have to say…it’s kind of nice to not dig cookie dough or pie crust out of my wedding rings.


I really wanted bowl scrapers but didn’t get them. I wish I had have because I would use them every time I baked. Next time.


I do have a few other things on my wish list, I’ll get them later as my budget allows. In the meantime I have lots of other fun things to play with in our new kitchen. I’m sure I’ll be writing soon about my latest baking adventure.

What have you been up to in your kitchen?

Homemade Ice Cream Part 1


So I mentioned that I received the KitchenAid ice cream attachment for Christmas. Well, now that we are finally settled somewhere with a badass kitchen/prep area I decided to give it a shot.

I love homemade ice cream. Love, love, love it. But I’ve never really made it at home myself. My dad had one of those old school wooden ice cream makers that required salt and what felt like (as a kid) unreasonable amounts of time. So I was a little intimidated and kind of dreading my first batch.

Well…I was worried for nothing, it was great! Last night I found a recipe that looked good (a basic vanilla base) and got to work creating the batter. Basically it involves using milk, cream and sugar along with egg yolks. Whisking, heating, stirring…and then refrigerating over night. I did that last night before bed.


The batter is supposed to cool down before it gets refrigerated so I used an ice bath to expedite the process so I could get my beauty rest. When I woke up this morning I was ready for phase 2.