I’m not big on desserts but make me something with meringue and I will gobble it up. We tend to serve lots of meringue based desserts at our dinner parties. It’s easy to make and you can find all the ingredients in your pantry – egg whites, sugar, vanilla, heavy cream and confectioner’s sugar. Sometimes we also add in cornstarch and vinegar depending on the recipe.
Growing up, I only knew meringues to be used in two desserts – lemon meringue pie and baked alaskas, which we almost never had. In my house, we were served fresh fruit after meals. Then I met Kevin. Let’s just say he has a separate stomach for desserts! 😉 I thank him for introducing me to all sorts of delicious sweets and treats that I otherwise would not have tried like Christmas trifle, pavlova, vanilla slice napoleons, stewed apple with victoria sponge drizzled with creme anglaise, eton mess and meringue roulade. Ah meringue roulade, how delicious you are! (more…)
People usually go to Federal Hill at night for the bars, but I like to go there in the day for lunch or a hot cup of coffee and a big plate full of beignets. What? Coffee and beignets in Fed Hill? Oh you didn’t know?!?! To be fair, neither did I until a few weeks ago 😛
We happened to be in Fed Hill one morning and we were looking for a coffee shop. Spoons Cafe was just the place. It’s a charming breakfast/lunch spot on 24 E. Cross St., between Pub Dog and The Stalking Horse. I’ve passed by Spoons many times, but its usually after they are closed for the day. So I was happy to be in the neighborhood while they were still open.
We weren’t particularly hungry that morning, but after a quick look down the menu, one item caught our attention. “O-NUTS baltimore-style cinnamon beignets topped with powdered sugar.” Let’s see – I love Baltimore. I love beignets. I love powdered sugar. One order of O-NUTS please! 😀
Kevin makes a gorgeous strawberry rhubarb pie. I wonder if he’ll make one again for me this summer. Last year we went to Larriland a few times during the strawberry season and loaded up on so many strawberries we didn’t know what to do with them all. Kevin is the baker in the family, so he’s in charge of making desserts. (He says I’m a two trick pony when it comes to desserts – cherry clafoutis and tres leches – but hey buddy my clafoutis and tres leches are super delicious!) The entire month of June 2013, he was churning out all sorts of strawberry creations – strawberry rhubarb pie, strawberry soup, cheesecake topped with strawberries, eton mess, strawberry pavlovas, strawberry meringue roulade…it was strawberry madness. Unfortunately this year, strawberry season was too short and we only made it out to the farm on the last remaining days of the season. We knew we wouldn’t be back again for the strawberries and I really wanted to get 20lbs – but that’s me being greedy again. Greedy greedy lisbeth! We ended up with about 5lbs and ate them fresh throughout the day. Supermarket strawberries just aren’t the same…but I suppose they’ll have to do.
I love to cook for my friends and family. It’s kind of like my love language. And if you’ve ever had our clafoutis, well that my friend is a big fat I LOVE YOU! <3
I remember the first time I had clafoutis was in Milan. I was hosting a potluck in my apartment and my friend Laura brought over a clafoutis she made with seeded grapes. It was a gorgeous buttery baked custard with warm juicy grapes. I didn’t care for the seeds so much and spit them out. But there were so many, after a while I gave up and just ate them. Mmm, grape clafoutis. I really should’ve asked her for the recipe.
The first clafoutis I made was awful. I don’t know what I did wrong but it was bland and thin and wasn’t buttery at all. Well I suppose I know what I did wrong – I didn’t put enough sugar and butter! And really, I think the recipe I found was useless.
Then one day last summer, we found a video recipe on youtube from Alain and Michel Roux Jr. We were in Ireland visiting Kevin’s family and we decided to give it another try. Merci Beaucoup Monsieur Alain et Monsieur Michel! It was quite possibly the best clafoutis I’ve ever had. Here is their recipe.