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Archive for April, 2013

When MP was a girl, she loved visiting her neighborhood bakery in suburban New Jersey. Her family stopped in on Sundays for cinnamon coffee cake with generous crumb topping, oversized black and white cookies, or decadent cheese Danish topped with swirls of royal icing. The staff packed the goodies in a white pastry box, which was neatly tied with red and white baker’s twine.

Given these delicious memories, you can imagine MP’s delight when Ice It! Bakery opened in Yarmouth a year ago. The bright and inviting bakery, which made DownEast Magazine’s Best of Maine list, is owned by Chef Alan Fried and his wife Sharon Kurht. As the name implies, visitors are encouraged to decorate their own cupcakes or mini-cakes. Ice It! offers a variety of tempting choices. On the day we visited, CP#2 chose a red velvet cupcake. MP, who is a chocolate lover, decided to switch things up and try coconut for a change.

 

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MP was at a play date with the kids, and one of the parents brought a tray of beautiful hot pretzels and mustard. Adults and kids alike were delighted by this unexpected treat. There’s nothing like a salted soft pretzel right out of the oven.

That being said, MP was intimidated to try pretzel making on her own. She has never been a patient baker when it comes to working with bread dough. But after trying and succeeding with this simple artisan boule recipe over the winter, she decided to give pretzel making a go. Ironically, MP found this pretzel recipe on the back of a store brand pretzel bag.

Like all bread making projects, this recipe requires just a few basic ingredients from the pantry and a little patience. Make your dough a day ahead and plan to have your family shape the pretzel dough the next day. After forming your pretzels, plan for 45 minutes rising time on the baking sheet before placing them in the oven.

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