Archive for November, 2012

A Single Scoop

Posted: November 6, 2012 in cooking, treat

When I was a little kid my favourite flavour of ice cream was French Vanilla, no questions asked. Someone could take me to the pink palace in Vancouver so I could scrutinize all 218 flavours but all I would want was French Vanilla. So I guess -even with all the other flavours in the world- if the world were to end and I could have one more perfect scoop, French Vanilla would be the one. Now I love ice cream beyond belief and all flavours of ice cream but French Vanilla has this elegance to it that makes it perfect for toping virtually anything yet also amazing on it’s own. Don’t get me wrong though, some of the best Vanillas I have tasted have been variations of the classic. Such as this honey French Vanilla, give it a try… to die for.

To start take 2 cups of heavy cream, 2 cups whole milk, 1/2 a cup of honey, one vanilla bean (scrape the seeds then add both the seeds and the pod) and a pinch of salt to a boil in a heavy bottomed saucepan. Meanwhile, start beating 3 egg yolks in a large bowl. Once the cream mixture comes to a boil remove it from the heat and cover it for five minutes. After the five minutes take out the pod and pour the hot cream -in a thin stream- into the egg yolks, beating constantly. Once it is fully incorporated Pour it back into the pan and stir over low heat with a wooden spoon until it registers 175˚F on an instant read thermometer and coats the back of a wooden spoon roughly 5-10min. Don’t ever raise the heat, keep it low also, don’t let it boil… ever! If it does take it and try to work out imperfections. Once it’s done, strain it using a fine mesh sieve into a bowl and let cool to room temperature. Then you can take roughly one cup and pop it into the freezer and put the rest into the fridge for at least four hours (for best results). After that time mix the frozen section with the chilled section, add a tbls. of vanilla extract pour into your ice-cream machine and freeze as directed.

One of my friends has a birthday on Halloween. His party was a few days later, on the third. My gift to him was to make him his birthday cake. I chose to make him a six layer chocolate cake with a pecan praline buttercream; each layer spread with a thin layer of chocolate frosting (for moistness and flavour) and every other layer spread with the buttercream then the outside spread with the praline goodness.

Ahhh, 3:30 A.M

It ended up being one of the most aesthetically beautiful things to leave my kitchen. I could not be more proud of my cake; the edges were beautifully smooth, the top was flat and the buttercream had the most perfect speaking of praline. The irony is that I stayed up until three thirty, making a cake that I couldn’t even try (gluten and sugar free, yall’) so I had no idea what it tasted like! -Luckily though I had my parental units so I trusted them with the judging of the flavour.- Everyone at the party loved the cake and it continued to get rave reviews when I made it to school after the weekend.

Along with the main cake I made a separate mini cake (the recipe I used makes four cakes, I only needed three so I had one to play around with), unfortunately no pictures were obtained because I left it to go get my camera and when I got back all that remained of the cake were a few lone crumbs. There is no evidence so far but I have a feeling I know who it was.

Anyway, this cake is obviously perfect and should be made for anyone who likes chocolate, caramel and pecans. So yeah, pretty much and body on this planet!

The Commercial Street Cafe

Posted: November 1, 2012 in reviews

Ok, so as you may know is that I was in Vancouver. What you don’t know is that while I was in the big city I was there doing first hand research on what it takes to open a small business. Now, I am proud to announce that the business I was researching is opening tomorrow, November the first! So let’s hear a big round of applause for the Commercial Street Cafe! Run by a power trio of my close friends: Nadine Rhnby, Pete Tuepah, and Chris Richmond the residents of Cedar Cottage could not be in better hands. These masterminds have just created Vancouver’s new coffee hotspot! You can find this godsend at 3599 Commercial Street (Vancouver B.C). I used to actually live in the apartments above it! Also, back in the day (were talking ling time here) it was a bank and the location of some of the first bank robberies to happen in Vancouver. Pretty cool stuff! So yeah, you get amazing coffee and a hunk of history in the same sitting! Take it from me, I can tell you first hand that these guys know what they are doing. With coffee connoisseur Margot Lynn making all your favourites, using beautifully roasted beans, delectable pastries and astounding atmosphere, you would be harming your mortal well being not to add the Commercial Street Cafe to your morning routine. Wake up 20 minutes for all I care! Because I know my stuff and this is it. So I if you want some good eats and great times the Commercial Street Cafe is the place to be. Once you’ve had a taste you’ll need to go back for more!