Strawberry-Frangipane Tart

  As early/mid April to late June is the peak harvest time for strawberries here in northern California, the fruits–which are actually a member of the rose family–abound.  Strawberries belong to the Rosaceae family, as do apples, pears, quinces, peaches, plums, cherries, apricots, blackberries and raspberries.  I’m not certain how accurate this is but the […]

Bosc Pears with Rum, Mascarpone and Ginger Syrup

  It’s almost time to bid adieu to pear season.  It’s a shame because they are one my favorite fruits.  When I was a child, my favorite was the crisp and extremely juicy apple pear, An Asian variety.  These days I tend to pick up the Bartlett or Bosc varieties but really, I love them […]

Grapefruit Upside-Down Cakes with Quince Syrup

  Don’t you find it sometimes curious the seemingly ordinary things that spark inspiration in the kitchen?  I picked up a couple of jars of flavored syrup at the Asian market last week–one was quince syrup and the other, ginger syrup.  I found them in an aisle I don’t normally frequent.  They’re Japanese products marketed […]

One Year Later…

Last week a good friend celebrated a birthday.  Another friend brought a video camera along to capture the best wishes of her loved ones and friends.  Anticipating that my turn would come and knowing that I’d not know what to say, I whispered to the birthday girl that I had already written on her birthday […]

Pineapple Tea Cakes

  Spring has sprung! Well, in my kitchen at least–and in some parts of my yard.  I found a small patch of daffodils blooming outside, Mother Nature’s promise that warmer, more colorful days are ahead of us. I certainly don’t mind the rainy season and I enjoyed last week’s playtime in the snow.  However, I’m […]

I’m a Giveaway Winner!

Shortly after announcing my own giveaway here a couple of weeks ago, I found out that I won one myself–I couldn’t believe it. Have a look at Tastespotting’s Scharffen Berger Chocoholic Overdose Giveaway which took place in December.  See all that chocolate? I won it all!

Observations on Love (and Homemade Chocolate Cups)

When I volunteered at Stanford Hospital, one of my responsibilities was not only to ensure the swift transfer of information between the medical staff and the family members of surgery patients but I also did my best to make sure that the latter were as comfortable as possible in light of the unfortunate circumstances that […]

Key Lime Blueberry Ginger Tart (and a Giveaway!)

  Whew! The name is a mouthful but it belies how truly easy this tart was to make.  I spent the early part of the last weekend preparing for a much-anticipated dinner with a couple of blogger friends you might know (more on this in upcoming post) and by Sunday morning, I realized that I […]