Sunday, June 27, 2010

Pam & Julia

WholeFoods Market
3495 US Route 1 South
Princeton, NJ 08540 USA
Tel: 609.799.2919

A month back, Andy and I attended a wonderful french cooking class presented by Chef Anne-Renee; it was a fun class with delicious recipes taken directly from the food connoisseur herself, Miss Julia Child (the book: Mastering the Art of French Cooking). The class is conveniently located right inside your organic supermarket - WholeFoods! That being said, everything supplied by the chef were organic and fresh. Being the amateur gourmet, I certainly learned a lot from this entire experience and would love to try out my newly learned skills and dishes in the near future (perhaps the next dinner party?).

In total, we made three dishes (Gougeres; puffs with gruyere cheese, Navarin d'Agneau & Couronne de Riz; lamb stew with spring vegetables and rice pilaf in ring mold, and Tarte aux Fraises; fresh strawberry tarts) Below is the Gougeres recipe for all to enjoy - I will post up the rest once I have more time. If you happen to go through with the recipe, do leave a comment! I would love to hear feedback on the dishes. Bon Appetit!!

Gougeres (cheese puffs)
Yield - roughly 20 puffs
1 cup water
6 tbsp butter cut into cubes
1 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
a pinch of nutmeg
1 cup sifted all purpose flour
4 whole large eggs
2 ounces grated Gruyere or good Swiss cheese (yum!)
  1. Bring water to boil with the butter and salt and boil slowly until the butter has melted
  2. Meanwhile, sift and measure the flour
  3. Remove the water mix from heat and immediately pour in all the flour at once. Beat vigorously with a wooden spatula or spoon for 10 seconds to blend thoroughly. Then beat over moderately high heat for 1-2 minutes until mixture leaves the sides of the pan and the spoon, forms a mass, and begins to film the bottom of the pan.
  4. Remove saucepan from heat and mae a well in the center of the paste with your spoon. Immediately break and egg in to the center of the well. Beat it into the paste for several seconds until it has absorbed. Continue with the rest of the eggs, beating them in one by one. The last two eggs will be more difficult to absorb. Beat for a moment more to be sure that all is well blended and smooth. You can do this part with hand held beaters if you would like!
  5. Mix in grated cheese
  6. Fill a pastry bag with the paste and "pipe" the puffs, or you may do it with a spoon (it'll be easier with the pastry bag since the puffs will be sticky from the cheese). Use a baking sheet lined with parchment paper
  7. Brush the tops lightly with a beaten whole egg (this dish is high in cholestral!)
  8. Bake at 400F for 20 minutes or more

...dun dun dun dun....the final product!!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Lady M Cake Boutique

Lady M
41 E 78th St
New York, NY 10021
(212) 452-2222

I love Lady M, but be prepared to walk out with a thinner wallet - this place is pricey! $7.50 for a slice of cake, $6.00 for an iced-tea PLUS 18% gratuity fee? Ouch. Furthermore, no photos were allowed to be taken anywhere in the shop...but that didn't stop me. Upon entering, I strategically hid my camera in my bag so that I could snatch a few shots; and as you can see from the pictures, the place is absolutely adorable. The small round tables and limited seats placed around the tiny boutique shop are great for small gatherings, preferrably two-three people. The store's white theme also gives the place a clean, elegant and modern feel.
The cakes were not mind-blowing, but delicious nonetheless. The strawberry shortcake was great as it had a very asian taste to it - not too sweet and made with very fresh ingredients. The only difference was that I could've probably bought something very similar for a quarter of the price in Chinatown. On the other hand, their famous Mille Crepe cake looked super rich with all the creme, but it's surprisingly light and fluffy. I wouldn't recommend the drinks from Lady M though, just the cakes.

Overall: 4/5
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