J’adore radishes with butter and salt. It’s simple in concept yet deliciously complex, comforting and oh so French in flavor. The classic way is to grab a fresh radish by it’s stem, dunk it in softened butter and then roll it in a bit of sea salt. It really doesn’t get any better. Or does it? While dining at Chef Daniel Humm’s Nomad Hotel restaurant, in New York a few weeks ago, I was served up a wooden block of vibrant red radishes partially coated in a shell of creamy butter and with an accompaniment of fleur de sel for dipping. Butter and radishes were so preciously presented in one easy, glorious bite. Brilliant. So obviously my inner Francophile was just dying to try it for myself. And I must say, my entertaining game has been stepped with that extra bit of . . . I dunno, je ne sais quoi.
The absolute devotion and overwhelming love that comes along with motherhood is immeasurable. And never did I expect to have this newfound perspective ground me, especially in the most hectic and seemingly important of times. Although our little guy is yet too young to realize what Mother’s Day is all about, I just feel so lucky that he simply loves me as mom. With that, I’ll leave you with some of our favorite brunch inspired recipes . . . in case you’re looking for something to spoil your mom with this Sunday. In bed. Because we all know that extra hour of sleep is like gold. Happy Mother’s Day to all you mamas!
I can’t tell you how excited I was when the opportunity presented itself to visit Miette’s kitchen in Oakland where they make all their sweet treats. I’ve been a fan of Miette for a long time and anytime I visit the Ferry Building in San Francisco, I always pick up a couple macarons. Okay, more than a couple. I got a behind-the-scenes peak of their kitchen where they make everything from cakes to caramels. Meg, owner and founder of Miette, whipped us up a batch of fleur de sel caramels (recipe below!). Meg is such a professional in the kitchen and all her desserts are so perfect, in both form and flavor, which is why it came as a surprise to find out that she has no formal training. After a long stint in the corporate world, Meg decided to pursue her passion of making cakes and gave herself 6 months to get her business up and going. What started as a booth at the Ferry Building farmer’s market turned into a successful business with four locations just in the Bay Area alone! If you don’t live in the Bay Area, don’t worry you can buy the Miette cookbook online and make some treats for yourself or order some of Miette’s amazing cookies online.
There’s something inherently celebratory in the way authentic Mexican food is enjoyed. I mean, happiness just exudes from fish tacos, chili rellenos, mole enchiladas, guacamole and tequila – am I right?! Last week, Todd and I threw an intimate dinner party, for some of our favorite peers, at our beloved Oakland haunt, Doña Tomás. There’s nothing like being transported to Mexico via Doña Tomás’ seasonally changing menu – with each wonderfully regional dish derived from organic, local and sustainable produce and ingredients by owners Tom Schnetz and Dona Savitsky. It was a perfect venue for a gathering of friends, old and new, on a warm spring night.
Marshmallows are just magical. They’re transformed into soft pillow-y and chewy sweets from a simple list of ingredients: sugar, gelatin and egg whites. There’s also a world of difference between homemade and store-bought marshmallows and if you haven’t had homemade marshmallows, I’d get to making these immediately! However, marshmallows are deceptive in their simplicity as working with egg whites and hot sugary syrup can get tricky. I can attest to this as I’ve attempted to make marshmallows at home a couple times only to have the whole thing end in a sticky mess. So who better to walk me through all the detailed steps than Meg Ray, owner of Miette — one of my favorite bakeries to visit in San Francisco (Tip: Meg makes the best macarons in my opinion). Now with the weather warming up, I’m going to be giving these a go for s’mores!
I went up the street to the local produce market yesterday to pickup a little fresh mint. And by a little I mean, my hand-basket was overflowing. In fact, a woman tapped me on my shoulder and boasted, “You should have come to my house this morning – I must’ve thrown out at least that much mint. Maybe more. Mind if I ask what you’re doing with it all? Are you making iced tea?” I told her it was the Kentucky Derby, and that I was making mint juleps. Her face froze, as she suddenly realized just what a precious resource she had wasted. “Mind if I grab some of those from you?” I thought you’d never ask . . .
There aren’t many cocktails that hit the spot quite like the julep. A frosty, silver cup full of refreshingly sweet bourbon . . . it’s what dreams are made of. That is, if you’re like me and your dreams regularly involve whiskey in some way, shape, or form.