Sunday, October 21, 2007

ode to a new kitchenaid mixer

registering for a kitchenaid stand mixer was the only preconceived notion i had about my wedding prior to getting engaged. post-wedding, things have settled down and this weekend i finally unpacked and put away my new kitchenaid artisan 5 qt stand mixer. so cool! for its inaugural spin i decided to make my signature treat: cranberry oatmeal pecan cookies.

cranberry oatmeal pecan cookies

1 c softened butter
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 c brown sugar
2/3 c white sugar
2 1/4 c flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 c rolled oats
1 c dried cranberries
1 c white chocolate chips
1 c chopped pecans

preheat oven to 350 degrees. take out kitchenaid mixer. marvel at its beauty. beat butter, eggs, vanilla & sugars until fluffy. add remaining ingredients and mix until incorporated. batter is thick and should look like this:
using one of those fancy cookie scoops (that works like an ice cream scoop), drop onto a parchment lined cookie sheet. bake about 10 minutes or until edges begin to brown.

i think these cookies are the total package. sweet, chewy and rich with a hint of salt. if you can think of a more inspirational name than "cranberry oatmeal pecan cookies", please let me know.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

banana bean cafe

calle ocho: cuban roast pork tenderloin, latin olive, caper and cachucha pepper salad, pressed on pan cubano with shaved manchego cheese.

i'm certainly not the first blogger to talk about banana bean cafe, and i won't be the last. but that won't stop me from singing the praises of this teeny tiny floribbean paradise in german village. this is the type of restaurant you leave so full and happy that you know the rest of your day is going to hurt, just trying to stay awake at your desk.

here are just a few more items i've enjoyed at banana bean cafe:
bananas foster french toast (sans banana, i hate banana!)

potato pancakes with caramelized apples and sour cream

cuban pork spring rolls with sugarcane chili sauce

one request for banana bean cafe, -please start serving cafe con leche! i love this cuban coffee drink and i don't think anyone in columbus serves it.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

the worst way to eat columbus' best dessert

i have enthusiastically loved pistachio for a long while and today i finally stopped in to their new location, pistacia vera. i think their mille feuille is as close to heaven on earth as one can get, their staff is lovely, and the space is beautiful and elegant. but today i've been sulking because my beloved pistachio has evolved in a way i just don't appreciate. apparently the boutique concept no longer accommodates patrons enjoying their desserts inside the shop. it's certainly not for a lack of space that there aren't cafe tables present, as the new location has more room than the short north location did.
here's the truth: i don't pretend to know what's best for pistacia vera's business model, i'm not an expert on how they carry out their vision, and i am certain i couldn't come close to replicating even a tenth of the items on their menu. but, i do know that those lovely, delicate, decadent desserts are best enjoyed in that beautiful, tranquil, elegant space. they are not meant to be eaten in the back seat of a friend's car, out of a cardboard box, with a plastic fork!
i'm actually pissed about this. and it doesn't help that the clerk today delivered the "no, we're a boutique, not a cafe" message with a bit too much edge to her voice.
i'm pouting. and until my craving for mille feuille grows unbearably intense enough to drown out my bitterness over their unwise choice not to offer seating, i'm not going back.