• Location: Minnesota
  • Favorite foods: Sushi
    My mother's pancakes
    Have I mentioned sushi?
    Popcorn (just not kettle-popped)
    Chocolate cake
  • Last bite on earth: Sushi, followed by pancakes and then chocolate late. Washed down with a nice red wine.

Latest Comments

Win a Copy of 'Marcus Off Duty'

Oddly enough, it's a salsa / peanut butter hybrid that my vegan friend turned me onto years ago - it goes perfectly with pita chips!

Win a Copy of 'Baked Occasions'

Nut Goodie Bundt Cake - A recipe that I created that turned the Pearson's Nut Goodie candy bar into a bundt cake. It's the top request from everyone!

Win a Copy of 'Ovenly'

Soft pretzels covered in cinnamon and sugar!

Win a Copy of 'Eat: The Little Book of Fast Food'

Spag bol. That's spaghetti bolognese (and yes, I use the jarred stuff when I need it really quick - but I get it from one of the best Italian markets in the area, so I justify it to myself that way).

Win a Copy of 'A Boat, a Whale, & a Walrus'

Italian - everyone loves it and you can easily adjust for dietary restrictions. Ideally, I like a nice Caprese salad, followed by one vegetarian and one meat-friendly lasagna and some lovely peasant bread to sop up the juices. Finally, a nice espresso and tiramisu!

Win a Copy of 'Huckleberry'

Anything involving pumpkin - I am think especially of a nice, yeasted pumpkin bread with lots of cinnamon!

Win a Copy of 'Jamie Oliver's Comfort Food'

My mother's pancakes. Hands-down. I have the same recipe, but I cannot replicate them.

Win a Copy of 'Paris Pastry Club'

Nothing beats a good bundt cake here in the Midwest!

Win a Copy of 'Sweet and Vicious: Baking With Attitude'

Decadent raspberry chocolate torte. So decadent no one has yet to finish a whole slice!

Win a Copy of 'Mother Daughter Dishes: Reinventing Loved Classics'

Chicken Dinner Bars - it's a tradition that every time a family member has been gone for a long time, like my brother when he is stationed overseas, we make them for that person on their return. They are so addictive!

The Best Sweets We Ate in May

Growing up in the Upper Midwest, I have very fond memories (and a few pounds) of Dairy Queen. Driving up north toward the Canadian border to visit my grandparents and other family in the summers, every small town featured a Dairy Queen (or if they couldn't afford that, a Dairy King, a Dairy Whirl, etc). I blame them for at least part of my 100 extra pounds that I was sporting by my senior year of high school, or at least I blame the M&M Blizzards. I heartily agree with @ajax62 that Dairy Queen is worth mentioning, both in this string and also on a site like SE. No judging here; everyone has their own thing.

An Open Letter to Serious Eaters

I have to agree with everyone regarding the removal of Talk. I don't use Facebook or Twitter or other social media much, because of privacy concerns and part of the appeal of having Talk on this site, is that it is directly tied to it, and not to every other site that we are on. I love the idea of refreshing Serious Eats, but Talk is one aspect that I would really like to have maintain its current state.

Bake the Book: Teeny's Tour of Pies

Chokecherry pie; it's hard to find, and really a full slice is just too big. But A "teeny" one would be perfect!

How often do you price compare when you shop?

My mother thinks that I am insane, because not only do I price compare, but when I shop, I know exactly what I want to buy and which store has it at the best price, on sale and off. Thus, a simple excursion to "the store" normally takes me about three hours start to finish, going to about four to five stores. I even know that certain stores in the same chain have different sales, depending on the day / week, so I plan to shop around when I will be in the vicinity of those stores, so that I can make sure to get the best prices on everything that I possibly can. There are some store clerks that think that all that I ever buy are cold cuts and lettuce, while I am sure that there are at least two clerks at my local Byerly's (a local, high-end chain) that think that I subsist on their artisan french bread alone.

Simple Pleasures

@Tipsy: Oh, I love that contrast of temperatures. I love heating up the meat to put in a sandwich. Even if it's just a turkey or ham sandwich, I love that difference!

Also, I miss Maltese bread spread with creamy Laughing Cow cheese wedges, served with plain black tea in the mornings in Malta. Such a treat!

Suggestions for dessert tasting menus

Cookies are a great idea. You can make them ages ahead and they are so varied that you can make some that will suit anyone's tastes. I would suggest something like a biscotti for the coffee-loving crowd (chocolate almond?), then maybe a nice sugar cookie (you don't have to make the rolled kind, there was a post for a great recipe on this site a little while back that I love and uses sprinkles to brighten them up a bit) and then maybe a nice spicy one, like a molasses cookie for those that love something like that. Plus, whatever you don't eat on the day can easily be frozen (baked or raw) and you have them for later!

what are your favorite DIY kitchen hacks?

Does it count that I use my dishwasher as a storage unit for my weird baking and cooking pieces that don't really fit in to other places? I prefer washing by hand, so it was just sitting there, unused and feeling lonely, so I finally shoved some of my bundt pans and other goodies in it. Works a trick!

When Breakfast Gets "Weird"

I do that all the time, actually (that is, when my breakfast isn't a coffee). I like turkey and cheese or ham and cheese sandwiches, soup, leftovers (lasagna being a recent one). And, as @JoeAC noted accurately, pizza is always a good breakfast option!

What will you make for Easter?

Reservations. No one in my family (and there are only three of us here right now) can agree on a menu. My mother grew up with ham, which my father refuses to eat. I love it, but nothing else that my mother serves, except the rolls, which she never gives to you until after dinner, so that you can make sandwiches with them and the leftovers. My mother can't have salt, spicy or acidic foods, and my father is diabetic and can't have what my mother can. It's pathetic. I made reservations. Bonus: No dishes!