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…)
Kevin and I just got back this morning from our long weekend in Portland, OR. Have you guys been? It’s a lovely city – lots of good food, coffee, beer, cocktails, bridges (so many bridges!!!) and great weather! I didn’t know much about Portland before our trip and planned out our days and more importantly our meals each morning by ear, asking people along the way for recommendations. All I knew was everyone was telling us to go to Voodoo Doughnut and Pok Pok. Ever the good listener, as soon as we checked-in we headed straight for doughnuts and coffee then walked over a bridge for some delicious Thai cuisine. By the way, why are there so many Thai restaurants in Portland? I don’t remember seeing a single Chinese takeaway over there, everything was Thai!
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! 😀
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.