Monthly Archives: June 2005

Spicy Olive Bread

It had sure been a long time since I last made a real yeasted bread. I finally did last weekend. I used the recipe for olive bread from Beth Hensperger’s Bread Bible. Here in Hyde Park we have an excellent produce shop just a few blocks from my house called, fittingly, Hyde Park Produce. This […]

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Sweetnicks - The bread looks fabulous, and combining two of my son’s favorite things (green olives and bread!), he’d be in heaven. Those cheddar Gougères look awesome too.

keiko - Gemma, I love olives and this bread looks irresistible! I think your roommates are very lucky…

gemma - Thanks Sweetnicks and Keiko. I think my roommates enjoy the final products, but I am pretty sure they could do without my firing up the oven on hot summer days when we don’t have air conditioning!

Cheddar Gougères

One afternoon this past weekend I decided to make Gougères.  These airy, eggy, crusty puffs of pâte à choux are delicious right out of the oven.  Traditionally they are made with Gruyère, yet I used this recipe from Leite’s Culinaria (and omitted the chives because I did not have them on hand).  This is such […]

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Zarah Maria - They serve something like these as an appetizer at one of me and my boyfriend’s favourite restaurants – I’m not sure I’d like to try making them myself, ’cause that would just take the adventure out of eating them there! But, you know, I’ve bookmarked the recipe just in case!;-) They look so pretty!

kevin - Gemma,
Gougeres are a favorite of mine. I made some once with shrimp and tarragon that were really good, and I’ve considered cheddar but haven’t tried them yet. I think now I’ll have to.

gemma - Thanks Zarah, they are so easy too! I don’t know if I would want to learn how to make something simple that has always been part of a special occasion for me, it might take the fun out of it. You can use many different kinds of ingredients and spices with them though, so perhaps you could change it enough so they wouldn’t be as similar.
Kevin, shrimp and tarragon sounds quite good. I will have to try making those as an appetizer next time we have a party at my house. I thought the cheddar worked very well and with the addition of some dill it would be superb. Let me know how they turn out!

Molly - Gemma, I absolutely love gougeres! I have very fond memories of traveling around Burgundy in a tiny green rental car with my mom, eating gougeres from local boulangeries…ahhhh. I have yet to try making them myself, though. Your post is a good reminder for me to get started…

gemma - Mmm. That sounds like a lovely memory. They are so easy! You should give them a try.

Lyn - Man those look good!

gemma - Thanks Lyn! Thank you also for hosting the event!

farmgirl - Hi Gemma,
Your gorgeous photo of gougeres tempted me right over here from the DMBLGIT photo contest on Lex Culinaria. Yum! I haven’t made them in years. And you’re right–they are so easy. Neat blog. Can’t wait to read more of your delicious posts!

gemma - Thanks farmgirl. There are so delicious. Having this picture up for DMBLGIT reminds me that I need to experiment more with different ingredients.
I like your site! I will peruse it more over the next few days. (Finding more blogs is the best part about food blogging events in my opinion)

Bizu Philippines - Wow! this bread looks a delicious knowing that there’s a lot of cheddar inside yummy!

gemma - Hi Bizu,
These are so delicious and decadent – but much simpler to make than I previously imagined. The cheese is spread throughout and they have a great flavor. Enjoy!

SHF #9: Pear and Almond Frangipane Tart

The topic for the ninth edition of Sugar High Fridays, one of the many excellent food blogging events, was Tantalizing Titillating Tempting Tarts.  I am quite the tart fan and I decided to take this opportunity to learn to make something new.  I decided on a pear and almond frangipane tart.  I based the recipe […]

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Mindy - Damn Gemma.
Those are just beautiful.

Melissa - Oh my, that looks gorgeous! I made that second pear tart recipe a while back, but I thought that either canned pears don’t have enough flavor or else the ones I bought weren’t that good because they ended up being kind of mushy and flavorless… Guess I should poach my own next time! But I love the combination of pear and almond, yum!

keiko - Gemma, this looks so yummy, I wish I could take a bite…

Zarah Maria - LOVELY! Oh so LOVELY!

Nosheteria - Beautiful! I never have the patience to slide pears into a tart making them look quite as lovely

Oliver - Hi Gemma,
What a great entry for SHF, your pear and almond frangipane tart looks truly delish! It actually reminds me of my favourite sweet apple tart I used to make waaay back in highschool (yep – we really had official baking lessons at the time, can you believe that?!). Thanks for sharing!

Jennifer - Gemma that is one gorgeous tart. You’ve inspired me to make something like that tonight when I get home from work…thanks!
And thank you for joining in on SHF – long time no see!

gemma - Awww, thanks everyone. The attractiveness-to-work ratio on this tart is truly excellent.
Melissa, I was fairly happy with the canned pears, but I am positive fresh poached pears would be much better. Using a crisp white wine for poaching would be lovely, I bet.
Nosheteria, I thought it would take quite a bit of concentration, but I only dropped one attempt and the rest worked fairly smoothly. Having plenty of extra pear halves just in case made the whole process less stressful.
Oliver, thanks! I’d love to hear more about your sweet apple tart. I had a lot of fun with this one. I’d be a much better cook if I had official school baking lessons, but in the end I am glad it isn’t a requirement!
Thanks Jennifer, I was so sad for last months SHF. I completely missed the topic (I thought I had checked the IMBB website. . .). When I suddenly saw all the excellent entries I became determined not to let this one pass me by.

sarah - wow – that looks incredible. i love the design :)

gemma - Thanks Sarah!

Brick Oven

Last Saturday I had the opportunity to meet Lauren Bushnell and to see her partially completed brick oven. There was a small reception and an informal talk given. Lauren has worked at the Red Hen and the Medici Bakery. Most recently she has been baking at home and delivering to people in the Hyde Park/Woodlawn […]

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New York City

I will be visiting New York with my mother and some of her friends from June 25 to June 29.  Clotide has compiled some excellent recommendations for the city, but if anyone has any other advice (we did all the museums, etc. a few years back) I would love to hear it. More to the […]

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Laura - The Grand Cafe at the intersection of Bedford and Grand in Williamsburg has the most amazing hummus I’ve ever tasted.

Anonymous - I could spend a whole day in zabar’s, or eli’s vinegar factory. there’s a cute little bakery on the upper east side called two little hens (I think) with really good cheesecake. and I think you can’t beat the rolls and croissants at hot ‘n’ crusty (open 24 hours).

gemma - Laura, is this possibly Laura from Cornell? What a small world if so. I do love me some hummus, I will check that out, thanks for the advice. Do you live in NYC now? (my apologies if this is an entirely different person).
Ooh. . 24 hour access to good rolls and croissants, that is divine! I definitely will be going to Zabar’s, a vinegar factory sounds great too! Thanks for the great suggestions.

happpy - I don’t know if this is in the Clotilde round-up, but Sullivan Street bakery on street of same name in Soho has fantastic breads. Tom Cat (owned by an ex-Evanstonian) is also wonderful but he might only supply restaurants now. And the Blackhound Bakery in the East Village does great cookies (but no bread.) The Union Square farmer’s market has some interesting vendors but I can’t help you out with who is there on what days. Have fun!

gemma - Awesome, thanks happpy. I am excited to be taking my bread reviews (or at least consumption) on the road.

Laura - Gemma — yes, I am Laura from Cornell :) I didn’t think you’d remember me! I live in Brooklyn. If you have some free time while you are in the city it would be fun to get together.
P.S. Your website makes me hungry every time I look at it.

gemma - Laura, I do remember you. I don’t know how much time I will have, but I think that in the evenings I will be free when all of the lovely women my mother’s age will go to bed. I am staying in Manhattan. Perhaps some evening we could get a drink? I will email you in the next day or two and we can exchange numbers perhaps.
I’m glad to see you are reading my site and enjoying it! Such a small world.