September 3, 2012

Easy As Pie

This past summer I was surprised to see my sons take on a new interest.... Baking.
Huh???  What's this about?
Well, turns out, Ryan, my 18 year old, didn't suddenly fall in love with pastry. He was on a mission.  For the last 3 years, he has spent his summers as a lifeguard.  Actually, three of my kids are big idea...sort of the "give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day" "pay for lifeguard training, they will work every summer" proverbial wisdom....Anyway, back to the baking...
In order to get a shift covered in the event one of them needed a day off, the lifeguards started bribing one another with cookies and banana bread.
Well, what we discovered is that Ryan is a fantastic cookie baker!  What really amazed me was how fast he got at it.  He could whip up a batch, mixed, baked, and packed in less than an hour.  His clean up left a little to be desired but not too shabby for a teenager about to head off to college.

Then there's Daniel our youngest son.  He's 10 years old and has always had an interest in cooking.  But this summer he didn't wait around for me to help him or give him lessons.  He just got right to it, dug out a recipe, gathered his ingredients and before I knew it, he was half way to done.  
So these past few months he became quite proficient making omelets, snickerdoodles, peach cobbler, and yesterday...CHERRY PIE!!!
Yep! He made the crust from my Grandmother's recipe, Never Fail Pie Crust and we used some canned cherry and blueberry pie filling I had on hand.  By the way, it took 3 cans to make one pie! He made the crust all by himself, then with a little help from Mom, he insisted we 'weave' the top.
He cut the strips with a pie cutting wheel and I helped him place them on top and pinch the edges.
It came out beautiful!!
I am really proud of both of these boys!  I have learned so much from my kids, mostly that if I simply say 'yes' they can do just about anything and a lot of it with very little help.
New Wisdom...Don't worry about the mess, and just say yes!

July 30, 2012

New Market in Town!!

I am so excited! I will be selling my scones, galettes, and pecan pie bars at our new Farmers Market!
I'll be back on 4th Street! Right up the street from my old cafe!
Come visit 4th Street Farmers Market in Downtown Manhattan!

Apricot Almond Scones!
The house favorite!

Apple Galette!
Simple but delicious! 

May 29, 2012

Old Fashioned Goodness

Fried Squash!
There are lots of things that remind me of my childhood, and a crunchy batch of fried zucchini or yellow squash is a great way to conjure up some summer memories of the garden my mom grew each year.
I'm beginning to think I had a unique palate as a child because none of my kids have found the same joy in these garden goodies that I did at their age.  I loved foods such as zucchini and yellow squash, not to mention brussel sprouts and radishes. I was beginning to think I raised them this way, but their friends are hard to sway as well.
I will just continue pushing my garden agenda on them and hope that eventually they will 'taste the summer' the same way I do now.

Check out this quick and easy recipe for cooking up your own yummy batch of Fried Squash!

1-2 medium sized homegrown or local zucchini or yellow squash (A medium squash will made about 3-4 servings...unless you have trouble sharing )
1/2 cup milk or buttermilk
1 cup cornmeal
1/4 cup flour
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp fresh ground pepper
**You can add any herb or spice you might like such as cayenne for a little heat.
2-3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil


  • Slice squash into small discs or "french fry" sticks.
  • Mix dry ingredients in small pan for dredging
  • Pour milk into another small dish
  • Dip each piece into milk then dredge in cornmeal mix
  • Heat sauté pan on medium and add oil to just cover the bottom
  • Let oil heat up then add the breaded squash
  • Cook until a nice light brown crust forms. Turn over and repeat
  • Place in a dish lined with a paper towel
  • Serve with a fresh salad or alone with a creamy dill dressing

Dip and Dredge!
Fry in Extra Virgin Olive Oil...I had a little too much oil in this picture and removed some of it.
Remove from pan onto a paper towel lined dish
Serve it up!!! Yummy.