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  1. I've been at Lark almost every month for the past two years, and on Sunday, I had the best dessert there ever. It was a brown sugar persimmon cake, with vanilla custard. The cake was slightly caramel-ly, a little nutty, and very, very luscious - and I don't like nuts in cake, or fruity cakes, even. I'm going back again this weekend in hopes to see it again. If you haven't been to Lark in a while, go. It's worth the visit to eat this cake.
  2. skyflyer3

    Freezing Preserves

    Strangely enough, I was wondering the very same thing this week, and ended up making freezer peach jam last night with the Ball freezer pectin and containers. It was very fast - took me about an hour from fruit prep to finish, and I love how easy it is. We don't eat much jam at home, but I do like to preserve peaches and nectarines to mix with my yogurt throughout the year. I love the freezer jars - they look like they can be reused for a variety of things. But I didn't like the pectin at all. It tastes a little funny, and didn't set well. I think I'll try SureJell next.
  3. I've made the Mom's Chocolate Cake lots of times, and it's wonderful. Easy to whip up, moist and great chocolate flavor. I've wanted to do other items, like the monkey bread, but haven't had the time.
  4. Stopped in for the first time on Sunday - and was so impressed I came back the next day. Actually, that's not true - my son ate my chocolate layer cake that I brought home, and I had to go back and get another slice. Man, is that cake good - while the layers are dark, they are perfectly moist and have a very well-balanced chocolate flavor. But hands-down, I love the Phoenix dessert. Pear mousse, 70% mousse, hazelnut layer, and chocolate genoise, covered by caramel mousse. Texture is light, yet rich, and the flavors really meld together well. This is an amazing dessert. Croissants were ok, baguettes were fine. I'll have to come back next week for coffee and macarons.
  5. I'm going to be at Stanford this Thursday afternoon until Sunday morning, and essentially I'm going to cut out of the stuff I'm supposed to do on campus and go into San Francisco because I've never been. That's right. So please help me plan my trip. Here's the facts about me - Lifelong Seattle-ite, MBA-student in my early thirties, I'm coming by myself, I looove pastry/baked goods but really I'll eat just about anything. And I can walk everywhere. My tentative schedule: Thursday - walk around Stanford and eat something snacky (dinner is covered for me that night). Friday - Go to Downtown SF, Chinatown and Fisherman's Wharf. Saturday - Venture to Berkeley. Sunday - Brunch in Palo Alto, then fly home. I'll be taking public transportation, although I have no idea how long it takes to get anywhere from Stanford, so advice is much appreciated. I want to eat fairly inexpensively, since I'm a grad student, and I have to hit at least two bakeries (Acme? Bouchon?). I've been told to go to Cha Cha, and get cocktail buns somewhere in Chinatown. And I want to get some great coffee. I know you've got places in mind for me already - thank you.
  6. Where's the best peanut butter chocolate eggs? I want the creamiest, dreamiest....
  7. I'm wondering what these other uses might be for a frother. Smoothing ganache or soups, like with an immersion blender?
  8. Forgot to mention that one time I went, they had this tasty looking danish stuff called "nazook". People were grabbing boxes of it like crazy. I didn't feel like pastry that day (what was wrong with me, i didn't know) but now I regret not trying it. Anyone seen this nazook?
  9. Everywhere I travel with my parents, they have to go to Costco. I don't know - maybe it's an Asian thing. But we've hit quite a few. In Hawaii, I've seen logs of sushi available for sale, and it always looks quite good. My mom loves the seaweed salad you can get there in bulk. In Canada, they carry the best parchment paper. And the food selection in their food court is waay better than the Seattle-area Costcos - you can get chicken teriyaki, french fries (with gravy/poutine), montreal smoked meat sandwiches and italian calzones.
  10. I made the Cake Raven recipe, with a few tweaks as well. I doubled the cocoa, used .5 oz maraschino cherry syrup and .5 oz red food coloring, doubled the vanilla, and used full-fat sour cream instead of buttermilk. The batter was a crazy, fake blood red. I probably only needed to use .25 oz. And then today I happened to stop by Whole Foods, which carried all natural red food coloring. But of course, day before Valentine's day, they were out. Bummer By the way, the cake batter tastes totally different than it cooked. Batter tasted awful - no flavor whatsoever. Cooked, the cake's not bad. But I do taste the food coloring. Even my fingers had a scent. Gives me the heebee jeebees.
  11. Andi, did you soak the Romertopf first? ← When I tried it in my Romertopf, I soaked mine.
  12. ← I've been going to Nielsen's since they were in the space that used to be the Benaroya Hall - for those Sarah Bernhardts. They're almond macaroons topped with chocolate mousse, then dipped in ganache. Devastatingly good, especially the day they're first made as the combination of textures (chewy, creamy) and tastes are at their peak. Anything they make with almond paste is truly fantastic - especially those cookies that are shaped like hats, or little chocolate dipped horns. I haven't been in a while, since Queen Anne is out of the way for me, but I will try and make a trek soon. By the way, I hear their cakes are amazing.
  13. I agree; I love sushi hasn't been great since Nakano left to do Kisaku. Love Kisaku, by the way. I went to Daimonji a few weeks ago because it was close by, and was really saddened that the quality of their sushi has dropped. I'll be sticking to Maruta from now on.
  14. Is this just for pivot head machines, or is there a similar fix for bowl-lift machines? I remember working in a pastry kitchen, and being taught to hold the bowl up to the whisk in order to get it to whip a stick up butter properly.
  15. I hear Chefshop has some good almond paste, in a tub. Chefshop almond paste
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