Archives for posts with tag: breakfast

If you’ve been following my blog for any length of time, or are a friend on Facebook, you know how much I love espresso.  I start every day with a couple of shots on my lovely, but quirky Italian Francis Francis machine…

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I wax poetic about the crema, the intense aroma, the gutsy flavor of each powerful sip…

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But I did not know that there is a National Espresso Day, and as luck would have it, I am getting married on that very day in a few short weeks…November 24th!  That’s my kind of day!  Thanks to Foodimentary for pointing this fact out to me!  I am forever in your debt.

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So apparently I am the eSpresso drinker, not to be confused with the eXpresso drinker at the bottom (whew!).  Which one are you, and do you agree or disagree with their observations.  I have to agree with what they say about the Frappuccino drinkers!

More than 4 years ago, I was in Amsterdam on a business trip (yes, shopping for apparel samples) and we stopped for dinner at this little ‘boite’ called Van Kerkwijk on a street named Nes 41, right behind Dam Square (we had lots of jokes about that location…time to go to the Dam Square, etc).  I have no idea how to pronounce the name of the restaurant, not even close.  Anyway, the place had no menus, they just told us what the kitchen had that evening.  I don’t remember exactly what I had to eat, EXCEPT for dessert.  There was a huge round dense cake that everyone was ordering.  The waiter called it a pear cake, and it was served with a dollop of sour cream.  Strange, but surprisingly good.  So good, that I can not get it out of my head.  I am desperate to recreate it at home, and I have scoured the Internet repeatedly to find a similar recipe but so far, have been unsuccessful.

I have written to Bon Appetit begging them to try and persuade the elderly sisters who own the place to spill the beans.  We’ll see.  In the meantime, I made this over the weekend…

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The recipe is from the lovely blog, Manger.  Hers is called ‘Italian Pear Cake’ and was light and delicious, but not remotely similar to the cake I had in Amsterdam.  I used white peaches instead of pears (since they’re not in season now) and the recipe called for corn starch, which I thought a bit odd, but it made for a delicate texture.  I cooked it wrapped in parchment, which is the same way the cake was baked in Amsterdam.  This would make a wonderful breakfast ‘coffee’ cake of sorts as its not dreadfully sweet.

If anyone out there knows of a very dense, rich Dutch ‘perentaart’ recipe, I would be forever grateful!!  Until then, I’ll keep trying…

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Starbucks is adding to its refresher menu with a new orange flavor, replete with orange slices…I don’t have the launch date, but the barista’s were just informed (helps to have someone on the inside…).  In addition, they are getting a peach syrup, so you will be able to have peach flavored tea this summer…mmmm.

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I’m not sure I get this next one, but they will be launching a new coffee drink; orange spice.  I guess someone in R & D really loves oranges!  I question the summer timeframe for this particular flavor, but whatever, they didn’t ask me.  I would have chosen a winter launch.  When I think of oranges, I immediately think of Laura Ingalls Wilder, and the Christmas where each girl received a candy cane and an orange.  Mary savored her gifts for weeks, while Laura couldn’t help herself and gobbled hers up right away.  The  unctuous description of the single orange was so powerful it sticks with me today, decades later…but I digress.  My point is that when I think of oranges, I think of winter, plus I lived in Florida for years and that’s when they ripen, so there.

Starbucks is pretty savvy, so I’m sure they’ve done market research…blah, blah that says people will like it in summer.  Maybe it only comes iced…we shall see.  Just remember where you heard it first!

 

Spring took its good sweet time getting here, but in the end, it is always worth the wait for things like this…

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Rhododendron in my front yard, right near the azaleas…

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Refreshing homemade flavored water with cucumber, orange (or tangerine) and fresh mint cut from the garden…

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A perfectly cooked omelet for breakfast with fresh herbs from the garden (I used chives and parsley for this one), a bit of cheese and some ham or turkey if you like…heaven on a plate!

What do you love most about springtime?

My morning ritual involves not just your run-of-the-mill cuppa joe, but a couple of shots of wonderfully strong espresso.  I’d take it intravenously if I could.  It looks like this…

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Yes, here it comes, first black, then a wonderful caramel color, streaming out of my lovely Francis Francis machine…

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She’s a beauty, isn’t she?  Love waking up to see her every morning…

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The finished product…come to mamma…

What’s your favorite morning ritual?

Oh my, a woman after my own heart…what is not to love about an almond croissant?? This will be a definite stop on my next NYC trip…