Homemade Gifts For the Holidays: Shortbread

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No matter how you’re celebrating this December, the holidays are a time for sharing, giving and receiving gifts to and from the people that are important to you. You may have your major gift –giving all figured out, but if you’re looking for small gifts, tokens of appreciation that you can share with your letter carrier, paperboy or girl, shopkeepers and fellow office workers, look no further than good the old fashioned shortbread cookie. Continue »



Muffins Meet Bacon & Cheddar

When it comes to breakfast, there are few things that are as attractive, convenient, and delicious as muffins. They are probably the quintessential morning food because they can be prepared by someone who is half asleep and they still turn out beautifully, in fact, the less you fuss with mixing and folding and stirring, the better your muffin will be; they always rise, they don’t flop once they come out of the oven, they’re ready to eat almost immediately and depending on what you put in them, they can satisfy any craving. Continue »



Marcella Hazan’s Carrot Gnocchi

 

Marcella and Victor Hazan

 

Marcella Hazan is largely credited with popularizing Italian cooking in North America, starting with the classes she held in her New York apartment in the sixties. Written in a warm, no-nonsense manner, her seven cookbooks, from 1973 to 2008, have become the indispensible authority for anyone who wants to learn the basic tips and techniques and user-friendly advanced methodology as well. Continue »



Reinventing Fruitcake

Fruitcake may be inextricably linked with Christmas, but it is not everyone’s cup of tea.  The common fruitcake (crustus fructus lacrimosa) has been in existence since time immemorial, literally, and legend has it that the original Gifts of The Magi were actually gold, frankincense and fruitcake. Luckily, Caspar, upon hearing that Melchior was trying to pawn off a fruitcake he had received at a going away party in the Orient, had some Myrrh in his pocket and said, “Hey Buddy, give the kid this instead.” And the rest is history. Continue »



Popcornaments & Gingerbread

Have you finished decorating your tannenbaum? Have you dusted off last year’s box of decorations only to find the tinsel is so old all the silver has worn off? Is that precious box of ornaments now a sad little box of broken colored glass?

How about cooking up your own Christmas decorations? Literally. Continue »