Tag Archives: baking

My Husband; My Personal Baker


It started with bread. Then it moved on to bagels. Now he wants to try pretzels as soon as we get some cream of tarter.

My mom got us the cookbook Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day last November. My husband skeptically decided to try it out. We haven’t bought bread since.



The thing is, it really is just about 5 minutes a day in active preparation. There is no kneading or anything. The rest of the time is letting it rise and bake. I don’t really understand how it works, but it does!

Why am I not as into it as he is? I’m not sure. I enjoy the process of measuring and mixing, and these recipes are so simple they lack that process. I also like baking sweets rather than breads. Baking bread doesn’t interest me as much as it does him, but I am hugely grateful that he took to it. Because eating delicious homemade bread interests me a lot.


Best Birthday Cake Ever


One thing I wanted for my birthday was a cake so cool that when it was presented, everyone would clap and cheer, just like they do for the Cake Boss. Simple enough, right? So my friend Andrea decided that instead of paying a ton of money to get an awesome cake for me, she’d do it herself!

The only thing I knew about it was that it was going to be lavender/lemon flavored and that I was going to really like it. She totally exceeded my expectations, and when she presented the cake, everyone cheered and clapped. No joke!

She made the base round cake, covered it in fondant she also made herself, used a stamping tool to look like basket weave, and intertwined the rolled fondant edge. She (I think) scooped other baked pieces into 3 round spheres and covered them with fondant and fondant spaghetti shaped stuff made from like a play-doh press.

The final, though inedible, touch was the knitting needles she stuck in the top.

I can’t decide if it tasted better or looked better.

But thanks to the photos I get to have my cake, and I ate it too.

Andrea- care to comment on your work?

Individual Figgy Apple Pies


My mom bought me Vegan Pie in the Sky for Christmas. The first recipe I tried out was the Cosmos Apple Pie. I really think Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero are mind readers, or at least, they know their audience. Their cookbook stated that this apple pie would be the first recipe tried. When I bought their cookbook the Veganomican, I first flipped to the dessert section, where I was surprised to read, “We figured you’d flip here first…”

So anyway, the second recipe I tried from the pie cookbook was the Figgy Apple Hand Pies, since I still had a couple of granny smiths leftover, not to mention a couple slices of apple pie still in the fridge.

I’m not going to reveal the recipe- you’ll have to get the cookbook yourself, but I will show you the outline.

First, you need to make the crust by combining flour with non-hydrogenated margarine and soy yogurt among a few other things.

When it’s all combined, you have to refrigerate it for a bit while you make the filling. The filling is basically apples, figs, maple syrup and cinnamon that gets cooked to perfection before being baked.

Then you roll out the dough, cut it into smaller rectangles, fill them up, fold them over, and bake.

Once that’s all done, let them cool, and enjoy!

As is everything developed by these cookbook authors, these hand pies are delicious. The crust is flaky and soft, but hold together perfectly. The filling is sweet, but not too sweet. They’re good enough to share, but you’ll probably end up keeping them.

Vegan Chocolate Coconut Cookies


This evening after work I made Lazy Samoas from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar by my favorite vegan cookbook authors, Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero. This was not the first time I made these cookies. The first time was in January of 2010 when I shared them with a good friend the evening before she left to Haiti on what was to be her Worst Trip, the one that included the earthquake. After that, I made them again for a raffle my husband and I put together that urged people to donate to established charities for Haiti. This time, I made them yet again for something related to Haiti- a bake sale this Saturday and Sunday. This bake sale is for the art center, Jakmel Ekspresyon, in Jacmel, Haiti, that the friend mentioned above co-directs.

There is something deeply comforting about baking, especially vegan baking. I love pressing brown sugar into the measuring cup, and releasing a perfect disk into the mixing bowl. I enjoy vegan baking because I don’t worry about consuming raw eggs when testing the batter. The transformation that is made from gooey batter to warm, solid cookies reminds me that transformation is easy and possible. I started making the cookies feeling stressed, overwhelmed, and grumpy, but ended calmly. When the baking timer rings, it is a call to focus and let trivial matters melt away like warmed coconut oil.

Here is to hoping the two bake sales this weekend and three next weekend are a success.