Joy the Baker

New Orleans: ManhattanJack

August 15, 2014

Manhattan Jack New Orleans

I’m taking my time getting to know New Orleans.  There’s so much to learn about the food culture here.  Things like where you get your beignets, where your po’boy bread comes from, and who makes your King Cake all make a difference when it comes to New Orleans food staples.  So much pride and so much nuance.  It’s a really exciting place to explore food.

I talk about a few of my favorite New Orleans spots here, but I’d love to get down to the nitty-gritty of my experience of this glorious city.  First up:  ManhattanJack, a bakery that has quickly become my happy place.

I hope you come visit New Orleans, and I hope you eat all the things.

Best New Orleans Bakeries - ManhattanJack

I’ve made my way in and out of a hearty amount of New Orleans bakeries lately.  There’s the bakery I go to for a really good baguette, the bakery for the perfect croissant, the bakery for the best doughnut.  ManhattanJack is the go-to bakery for extra decadent, over-sized, home-style sweet treats.

Maybe the cookies are a tad too big (never a problem).  Maybe the brownies have a little too much caramel (not even possible).  Maybe the Black and White Cookies are the size of your face (and sooo!?).  Essentially it’s the bakery I want to call home sweet home.

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Roasted Tomato and Feta Guacamole

August 13, 2014

roasted tomato and feta guacamole

I wish there was some sort of Willy Wonka-style candy factory that produced savory avocado delights instead of candy.  In addition to that statement making me sound stone-cold craaaazy, the reality of that sort of factory would be absolutely AMAZING!  Don’t lie.  You want in.

I’d totally Veruca Salt my way all up in there.  No shame.

Since there is no fantasy-land avocado factory I’ve settled for roasting a big ol’ bunch of cherry tomatoes, and tossing them (along with just a little too much feta) into a batch of creamy do-no-wrong guacamole.

Roasted Tomato and Feta Guacamole

Don’t roasted cherry tomatoes look a little bit like candy?  If candy were vegetable.

Related and rhetorical:  why won’t I shut up about candy!?

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41 Comments

Weeknight Cobbler For Two

August 11, 2014

weeknight cobbler for two

This is a safe place.  This is the place you can openly admit to watching Bachelor In Paradise and eating chocolate chips for dinner.

It’s Monday and the sheer fact that we’re making it through the day means that anything goes including chocolate for dinner and super easy crumble cobblers for dessert.  It’s as simple as that, really.

Peach and Strawberry Weeknight Cobbler for two

Hopefully you have a peach and a few strawberries.  Maybe you have a plum and a few cherries.  Maybe there are a few blackberries and raspberries in your fridge.  Noooo banana… save that for smoothie tomorrow morning.

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52 Comments

Let It Be Sunday

August 10, 2014

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Hello my friends!  We’re in it, aren’t we?  Are these the dog days of summer?

I hope you’re taking it easy this weekend.  I hope you’re lying low, drinking lemonade, and dangling your feet in a cool swimming pool.

Here’s what’s on my mind and on the Internet this week:

 Turn On, Retweet, Tune Out – on our fleeting #empathy.

•  Jonathan the 182 year old tortoise.  Slow and steady forever and ever.

•  So there’s this company called Personal Audio that claims to have the legit patent on aaaallll podcasts.  They’ve demanded cash-money from podcasts large and small according to their patent.  Essentially they’re going after popular podcasts in an effort to make some quick money and essentially it’s a really crappy thing to do.  They got more than they bargained for when they went after Adam Carolla.  Adam Carolla Won’t Let Company Drop Podcast Patent Infringement Case Against Him.

•  I love these dreamy pictures of Old California.  

•  Watch this full screen because The World’s Most Extraordinary Waves deserve at least that much respect.  The thought of these kinds of waves coming at me gives me a half-panie (aka half panic attack).

•  A very accurate list of Ten Things Not To Do As A New Yorker Visiting LA.  

 Raspberry Peach Sorbet Kombucha Floats!  I’m all the way into it.

•  An important documentary about a teenager sentenced to life in prison without parole.  15 to Life: Kenneth’s Story.

•  It’s going to take me years to fully appreciate the nuance of New Orleans cuisine.  The book Eat Dat New Orleans is a very helpful guide.

•  “I don’t need feminism because women *already* make up an equal number of CEOs, if you include Chicks Eating Oreos.”  No To Feminism.  Thank you Twitter.

•  Tracy shared this gem with me and it’s just toooooo real:  17 Things Women Without Children Are Tired Of Hearing.  “It must be nice to have so much free time.”  Oh my gosh shhuuutttt uuupppp.

Happy Sunday!  I love you bye-bye!

xo

26 Comments

The August GIVEAWAY

August 8, 2014

the august giveaway

 

OUR WINNER is CHRISTINE of The Belletrist

“you seem like someone who makes ordinary things seem extra ordinary”.  

Happy Friday, my friends!

It’s August and I’ve never been so hot.  I think my brain might be boiling. Is that normal for New Orleans?  Today we’re backing away from our stovetop and shunning the oven.  It’s time for an August Getaway… GIVEAWAY style!!

Here are a few of my recent favorites for you to pack up, snack on, primp up, doodle down, and read through.  I want you to have them!

GIVEAWAY! Booyakah!

1.  I’m the first person to tell you that you don’t need a dang blanket in the middle of August!  It is not chilly!  I can’t even remember the last time I was cold!  But I can remember the last time I needed a blanket to sit out for a Summer picnic! This West Elm Perfect Throw makes for a lovely picnic situation and transitions very well into the more cozy winter months.

2.  Meet the Everlane Weekender Bag!  It’s the perfect carry-on bag.  It’s the perfect bag to toss in the back seat of the car for a weekend road trip. Classic  stylings.  No frills.  Just right.  I love this bag!

3.  I want you to have my very favorite nail polish!  Super easy to apply, long wear, modern colors, lots of gloss and extra sass.  These Revlon Colorstay Gels are Summer weekend colors!

4.  Beach reading.  Mountain cabin reading.  Air-conditioned hotel reading.  I hope you get away, put down the Instagram, and read a good book on this Kindle Reader.  I’m reading The Invention of Wings.

5.  I’m an avid doodler.  Swirls, blocks, faces, flowers, and eyes are my go-to doodles.  Doodling helps us pay attention!  Doodle in style in this classic Moleskine.

6.  Lips to match our nails. I mean… why not get-away with a little flair?  Revlon Colorstay Moisture Stain.

7.  Pens for our doodle!  I love these colorful felt tip pens!  They’re like grown-up markers.  Totally acceptable for scribbles, doodles, notes, and writing boss-lady checks.

8.  Snacks!  Forever with the snacks!  These barkTHINS satisfy all cravings.  They’re thin chocolate bites packed with almond, coconut, pretzels, or little bits of peppermint.  Chocolate, sweet, crunch, and salt!  I’m sooooo into these!  Of course you’ll have to eat them fast enough so they don’t melt, but that shouldn’t be a problem.

9.  ALOHA!!!  These super supreme green juice powder packs are an amazing way to jumpstart a drowsy morning.  I mix mine into a glass of orange juice and I’ve got some pep in my step!

10.  There’s nothing wrong with being prepared just in case getaways go awry.  These UrgentRx medicine packs are incredible because they’re flat packs of fruit flavored powder medicine.  No water required.  I have a few of these in my purse for emergencies.  Super helpful!

11.  Always be ready for wine.  Always!  This Bottle Stock painted corkscrew and leather pouch is perfect to throw in your new weekend bag.  Open your wine in style!  If you can’t wait for your pretty corkscrew and pouch, snag it now for 15% off!  Discount code: WINEJOY.  Offer good until Sunday August 10th.

To Enter:

This is an old-school blog giveaway.  I’m not trying to trick you into following me on Twitter or liking me on Facebook.  You can if you’d like… but it’s no biggie.  I simply want you to have these rad things because it’s August and if I melt before September, I want you to think of me fondly.

Leave a comment on this post sharing the best compliment you have ever received.  Then… think about how great that compliment made you feel and go out into the world and compliment a stranger!  “I like your hair today!”  “You have a really pretty smile!” “I feel like you really went the extra mile for me and I appreciate it!”  Pass the good onward and outward.  It feels great!

>> One comment per person.  Be cool.

>> Contest open to one and all, wherever you may live.

>> Comments close Sunday August 10, 2014 at 8pm cst.

>> Winner will be chosen randomly and announced above on Monday August 11th.

I love you, byeeeee!

3,279 Comments

The Single Pancake

August 7, 2014

The Single Pancake with blueberries and lots of chocolate

One of life’s small pleasures:  sharing breakfast with someone.

I mean… if you can find someone who will order the savory breakfast, but then let you pick at their hash browns… I’m pretty sure that’s a love for life.  The ultimate breakfast situation involves sharing an eggy-hash and then sharing a totally over-the-top pancake.  If you can find the human that wants to embark on this sort of breakfast endeavor with you, marry them or give them one of those BFF friendship necklaces.  Either way.  Shared breakfast is a big deal.

Breakfast isn’t always about a pair.  Heeeeck no!  The solo pancake expedition is just as important as the coupled pursuit.  This pancake recipe makes one giant pancake filled with fresh blueberries and chocolate pieces.  Just one!  Just one mega pancake with way too many fresh blueberries and a little too much chocolate.  It’s perfect for one hungry belly, or two bellies to serve after eggs as something I like to call… breakfast dessert.

The Single Pancake with blueberries and chocolate

This recipe comes together in little bits.

Little bits of flour and oats.  A little bit of sugar, cinnamon, and soda, powder.  A little bit of butter.  A lotta bit of fresh blueberries and chocolate.  Too many blueberries and too much chocolate… that’s really what we’re going for.

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65 Comments

Peach and Cardamom Lemonade

August 6, 2014

Peach and Cardamom Lemonade

It would seem as though I’m trying to drink my way through the rainbow, lemonade style.  First there was bright red with Beet Lemonade.  Here we have a  pretty peachy-orange color with Peach Cardamom Lemonade.  We also worked in the deep purple with Fresh Blueberry Mint Lemonade.

I’ve missed green lemonade but I figure we can work some sort of cucumber jalapeño situation into our future.

I’ll tell you now, I’m showing no signs of stopping this drinkable rainbow.  Hop on the lemonade train now!  I know you’re thirsty.

Peach and Cardamom Lemonade

This Summer is brought to you by lemons, over-ripe fruit, and a dose of sugar.  Cheers to us!

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36 Comments

Apricot Buttermilk Pie

August 4, 2014

Apricot and Buttermilk Pie

It would probably be best to enjoy this sweet Apricot Buttermilk Pie with a big floppy hat, a Scarlett O’Hara inspired dress, some sort of lavish front porch, a glass of iced tea, and a slow-drawl Southern accent.  If you don’t have those things… not to worry.  This pie, with all of its charm and Southern roots, will welcome you all the same.  Iced tea is encouraged… a hat, too.

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Buttermilk Pie is a simple custard pie made of eggs, melted butter and buttermilk.  In this variation we’re adding dried apricots and bourbon for a bit of summer sweetness and boozy appeal.  I like this pie served chilled to really set the custard base, and served with a tart apricot sour cream spread to balance the sweetness of the pie.  It’s a beauty!

Apricot Buttermilk Pie

A buttermilk pie is so much more than buttermilk.

Buttermilk gets all of the credit, but really… eggs, brown butter, and sugar do the heavy lifting.  Bourbon, lemon, and vanilla play important supporting rolls.  Flour for thickening.  Buttermilk to stop the show and take all of the glory.

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44 Comments

Let It Be Friday!

August 1, 2014

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We’ve made it to Friday which means that hopefully there’s some sort of kicking off of our shoes in the very near future.  I’ve taken a quick trip back to Los Angeles this week where everyone is complaining about the humidity.  Really?  You ain’t got nothin’ on the Bayou, Los Angeles… nothin’.  In my travels from New Orleans to Los Angeles, I seem to have forgotten to pack the tiny little camera card that houses Friday’s recipe post photos.  Turns out I’m forgetful, and even a well thought out list can’t help me during packing.  Truth is, this week has been all sorts of enough and I’m feeling a little frayed at the edges.  There’s been so much madness happening in the world, I can feel some of the chaos trembling in my guts.  Does that happen to you, too?

This week’s Sunday list comes in a Friday edition.  The Internet, as it were:

 Come Out Of Your Shell.  Let’s all just stop being so dang shy.

 A Negroni is always appropriate!

•  Hopeful Perspectives 1 Year After My Son’s Birth/Death.  How is it that we’re all just stuff?  

 How often are you flying alone and find yourself bullied out of prime armrest positioning?  I think my armrest relinquishing is part subconscious and part polite.  Now I’ll think twice.  How to Maintain Control of the Shared Armrest.  Number 6 is ill-advised though probably very effective.

 We are all just Elaine Benes at heart.  Geeetttt ooouuutttt!

•  How A Mother Weaned Her Girl From Fairy Tales is one of the most surprising, bizarre, and beautiful books I’ve read this year.

•  Kapitalism with Kim Kardashian will freak you out.  Like totally freak you out.  On: celebrity, perplexing shades of nude, and the monetization of self.  It’s totally crazy!  Where are we going?  Is this a cry for help?

•  7 Things You Need To Stop Doing To Be More Productive… not including reading this blog.  Please keep reading this blog.

 What a refreshing (and terrifying) list:  Summer Must-Not Haves.  No one likes a relentless spooner.  SPACE, PLEASE!

•  I sometimes wonder how the best and the busiest have time to just THINK.  You know… think with new ideas, think of how to delegate, think of how to be as awesome as they appear to be.  Turns out they’re probably just avoiding introspection.  Aaahhh… now I get it.  No Time To Think from The New York Times.  Louis CK is not wrong, in fact he is too right.

•  It’s nice to remember that we’re still at the beginning of the Internet and that we have a lot of years ahead of us that will include things better than Pinterest and Twitter… but we might have to wear those fancy Google glasses and look silly for a minute.  You Are Not Too Late

•  I love the spirit behind the blog Yes and Yes.  Here’s How To Do 10 Things (at least slightly) Better!  Because why not be better!?  DANG!

I love you, bye bye!

xo

28 Comments

My Favorite Summer Cookbooks

July 30, 2014
The Lemonade Cookbook Bread Cake Doughnut Pudding Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream Desserts
A Change of Appetite The Bar Book Ceviche
Plenty More The Grilling Book The Nourished Kitchen
A Mouthful of Stars Let's Do Brunch Sweet and Vicious

I collect two things, nail polish and cookbooks.  Ironically, I don’t always have my nails done and I certainly don’t cook every recipe from this massive collection.  I have more cookbooks that any reasonable home cook should have.  They’re wonderful inspiration.  I love experiencing food through different perspectives. These are the most lovely of the summer books that I’ve collected so far.  Judging by this list, I have a lot of recipes to get in the kitchen and bake!  I’m starting with doughnuts and french toast.  Yes!

•  I love the California stylings of The Lemonade Cookbook.  It’s perfect for summertime.  Filled with lovely salads like this Watermelon and Snap Pea number, and a mega amount of lemonade inspiration.  Well, wouldn’t you expect that from The Lemonade Cookbook?  I made this Blueberry Mint Lemonade and swooned for days.

 I like to think that I have a fool-proof and super-supreme doughnut dough base, but I’d really love to experiment with different doughnut recipes.  I mean… someone’s got to try all of the doughnuts, might as well be me.  Bread, Cake, Doughnut, Pudding is a gorgeous book and the doughnut recipe is on deck in my kitchen.

•  The new cookbook from Jeni’s is absolutely beautiful!  She has a way of combining wonderfully unusual ingredients into decadent and comforting desserts.  I’ve got my eye on the Extra-Strength Root Beer Ice Cream.  Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream Desserts!

•  I love the way Diana Henry writes about food.  Elegant and inviting.  This piece make me want to sit down at a table and share a plate of radishes.  Radishes!  A Change of Appetite is her latest and most vegetable-centered book.  It’s thoughtful and rooted in the seasons.  Blackberry and Apple Rye Galette?  Done.

•  The Bar Book is all about technique!  A good cocktail comes from good technique.  This book is all about juicing, measuring, shaking, stirring, and garnishing with some awesome classic cocktail recipes.

•  I’ll be honest, I bought the Ceviche: Peruvian Kitchen cookbook because I loved the font and lived on a diet of banana y leche smoothies and ceviche while in Costa Rica this year.  This is a lovely book with lots of texture and place.

•  Do you have the Plenty cookbook?  Beyond.  I’m looking forward to Plenty, More out this Fall!  Yotam Ottolenghi is a beast when it comes to perfect cookbooks.

•  I’m learning how to grill.  Coals, starters, temperatures, smoke, and char!  I’m learning.  There is so much nuance.  The Grilling Book is my grill bible this summer.  So far I’ve grilled a ton of chicken, I’m working on my steak, and hoping to nail a pizza sometime soon.  Along with grilling here in New Orleans I have lots of white wine and mosquito repellant.  It’s perfect.

•  The Nourished Kitchen is such a mindful way to approach food and cooking.  It’s inspiring for any season.  There’s a tutorial on how to make raw milk yogurt, real buttermilk, and a recipe for Sourdough Blueberry Pancakes that look just dreamy!

•  This book of food and travel feeds my wanderlust like no other.  A Mouthful of Stars.  I now want to go to Seoul with Kim Sunee and eat everything ever.

•  Let’s Do Brunch!  No seriously, let’s!  This book is loaded with all sorts of breakfast-y / lunch-y inspirations.  It’s a sweet and simple book with a recipe for Almond-Crusted French Toast that I suddenly can’t live without.

 I think I need to ask Libbie Summers to be my best friend.  The cover for her book Sweet and Vicious is a sign.  Any woman with a frosting-laden knife and cute dress is a soul sister.  The book is beautifully photographed and full of deliciously irreverent recipes.  Coconut Fluff Cake please and thank you.

31 Comments

Extra-Special Deviled Eggs

July 28, 2014

Extra-Special Deviled Eggs

I’m the most dangerous person at your dinner party.

I’m the one that lingers near the Deviled Eggs at a party.  (If not Deviled Eggs, I can also be found lingering near the homemade guacamole or cheese plate.)

You’ll never ever know how many Deviled Eggs I’ve eaten because I pop the entire bite in my mouth while you’re looking down at your wine glass…. and I chew quickly.  I go back for seconds (which you think are my firsts).  I go back for thirds and fourths (which you think are my seconds).  I will clear you out of nearly every Deviled Egg on your appetizer table.

The worst part is (my breath?) that I have no remorse.  I eat all of your eggs then I casually move along (…probably to the table with wine).  I’m the worst.  I really am.  At least I won’t mess with your music selection, unless I do.  Again… I’m the worst.

Extra-Special Deviled Eggs

These eggs are extra-special because they’re dill-y and radish-y, and I was feeling extra-special when I made them.  Just let it happen.

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45 Comments

Let It Be Sunday

July 27, 2014

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Hello and Happy Sunday!

This week has been loads of work, recipe testing, standing in front of the pantry eating chocolate chips out of the bag, and scrolling through everyone’s Summer vacations on Instagram.  I spent some quality time exploring New Orleans in search of my favorite bakeries.  It was the best (but I drank waaayyy too much coffee)!  The Black and White Cookie above is exactly why ManhattanJack might just be my favorite New Orleans bakery.  They honor the sweet tooth.  Mad respect.

Here’s what’s on my mind and on the Internet this week:

•  I know I talk about nail polish perhaps more often that I should, but this is the kind of lady-talk that really matters.  I Don’t Care If You Like It: Women are tired of being judged by the Esquire metric.  Yay-thanks…

•  My favorite show in the world is Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee and this recent episode with Sarah Jessica Parker is one of the best.  Also, it’s really nice to know that  Jerry Seinfeld with get down with some food.  He’s so great.

•  Can Full-Time Bloggers Live Off Rainbows and Hugs?  An interesting perspective about blog monetization that also briefly touches on the idea that female bloggers are often chastised for profiting from their blogs where successful male bloggers are celebrated.  A little too real, right?  Ladies and their GOMI culture can be such a sad state, really.  

•  I love this quick question and answer situation with Yes Way Rose.  Clever, forever.

•  Sometimes I run out of food thoughts… often related to standing in front of the pantry eating chocolate chips and searching for inspiration.  This beautiful Summer Cherry and Amaranth Panzanella Salad is more inspiration than the blank stare / chocolate chip eating.  

•  I’m a month into working out with the Nike Training Club app.  It’s SO GREAT!

•  Let’s not forget Our Summer Reading List.  I’m on The Invention of Wings right now… so good!

•  I want to drink all of the Peach and White Wine Slushies.  Can we make a strawberry version with pink wine?  Yes way!

•  Fashion:  In the Fray.  I like the frayed demin!

•  This week a new West Elm store opened here in New Orleans.  In all of the hubbub I met Vanessa Holden, Creative Director of West Elm.  Her creative path and super down to earth vibes are really inspiring.  There’s a GREAT interview with  Vanessa Holden on The Everygirl!   Check out all of The Everygirl’s Career Features.  They’re business lady inspiring!

Have a lovely day!

Turn down for what?

xo Joy

 

 

 

 

25 Comments

One-Pot French Onion Pasta

July 24, 2014

one pot french onion pasta

I’m already anticipating Sunday.

Talk about putting the cart before the horse.  We haven’t even hopped around the weekend enough to make it to Sunday.

Sundays, I would argue, are the worst.  Actually… they’re the BEST but only between the hours of 8am and noon when we’re sleeping in, churching, brunching, or napping after pancakes.  After noon on a Sunday I find myself in the unfortunate task of pretending to be relaxed while stressing about the week to come.  We’ve talked about this before.  It’s called The Sunday Stresses, and it’s more real that we deserve.

Luckily there’s PASTA.  All healing, all comforting, all filling PASTA.  Thank you, Lord.  For real.

I have pasta every Sunday night.  I spoon myself an embarrassingly large bowl, sit cross-legged on the couch, watch Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee and just tear through a bowl.  I’m trying to fill the pit of Sunday Stresses and pasta usually works, until it doesn’t… but even still.

One Pot French Onion Pasta

This One-Pot pasta comes together easily and makes the house smell like an onion dream.  There’s just something so right about the smell of cooking onions.

While the onions, thyme, and chicken broth flavors have more of a Fall feel to them… well, The Sunday Stresses know no season.   Let’s just get some quality couch time in.  Let’s make out with pasta, just a little.

NOT WEIRD AT ALL!

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89 Comments

Raspberry and Pomegranate Smoothie with Green Tea Ice Cubes

July 23, 2014

raspberry pomegranate smoothie with green tea ice cubes

Don’t look at me with those sad-clown eyes (wait… is that a thing?).  It can’t be all Peach Cobbler Cinnamon Rolls around here.  That’s unrealistic (though delicious) and downright daunting (though delicious).

When the day’s diet turns a bit too indulgent, I reach for a blender and try to coax whatever fresh ingredients I have into a healthy smoothie.  It’s not rocket science… it’s mostly just fruit and almond milk.  You know the old song and dance.

If you take away any little gem of inspiration from this smoothie concoction, please let it be the Green Tea Ice Cubes.  Though so so simple, these little blocks kinda thrill me.  All the antioxidants and good vibes of green tea, frozen into a smoothie friendly cube and ready for blending.  It’s a clever way to add more nutrients to our smoothie meal!  I’m into it.

Raspberry Pomegranate Smoothie

My favorite smoothie boosters include:

•  Chia seeds for their omega powers

•  Maca powder for energy

•  Aloha Green Juice Powder for a major boost of green and minerals

•  Raw Meal Protein Powder for a vegan, gluten, and dairy free protein bang

•  Big handfuls of kale, cucumber chunks, and not bacon.  Whatever you do, don’t add bacon.

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36 Comments

Oh Hey, Homefries!

July 22, 2014

Joy the Baker Podcast

What is HomeFries?

Not potatoes.  Not this time.

HomeFries is the podcasting site and all around fun space that I created a few years back with my partners Michael and Tracy.

A podcast, for those of you that may not be familiar, is like an independent Internet radio show.  If you work from home, or from an overly air-conditioned cubicle you can use podcasts to help you get through an otherwise quiet and/or chilly day.  They’re like watching your ‘stories’ but with your ears only.  You can find a few of my favorite podcasts here.

HomeFries has been around the block and back again and is now updated with a jaunty new design!  We made a new pretty home for one of the silliest projects I persist in: The Joy the Baker Podcast hosted by me (Joy the Baker, duh) and Tracy Shutterbean.  We’re notorious for discussing “totally important, unimportant things” which means we talk a lot about Instagram, hot dogs, girlfriend problems, and celebrity crushes.  We also occasionally talk about food and baking.  It’s a sorry/not sorry situation.  For always.  You can subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and be updated to all of the madness automatically.

HomeFries is also home to The Art of Simple Podcast about intentional living, family travel and many good things in between.  Aaaanndd The Table Set a podcast about entertaining… like, really cool entertaining from three dudes that really know how to throw and enjoy a party.

We’ve been making podcasts on Homefries for three years.  Three!  That’s a lot of recording of a lot of words.  In three years I’ve learned that recording a podcast with my best friend produces my truest (and probably silliest) self.  It’s impossible to censor myself when I just feel like I’m talking to a friend… that is both liberating and terrifying.  I’m eternally thankful for the many many of you who have embraced our podcasts!  You take us on road trips, take us on your morning walks, and clean the house to our conversations.  We’ve created a little community at HomeFries and we really love you.  Big time.  If you’re not in on this… come on over!

Some of my favorite episodes on HomeFries include:

Joy the Baker Podcast :  I AM The RA   

The Art of Simple Podcast :  Freedom From Stuff

The Table Set : Men vs. Food

23 Comments

The Way We Summer

July 21, 2014

The Best of Summertime from joythebaker

I hope you have a cute new Summer haircut.  I hope you’re wearing bright pink lipstick (if you’re into that sort of thing).  I hope you’re on a vacation and sitting on some sort of dock in some sort of bay.  I want laughs for you, extra casual Fridays, and super lazy Sundays.

If you’re home (like me), and if you’re in the kitchen (also, like me), I wish for us wine spritzers and simple recipes, and super delicious Summer flavor.

Here is a hard-earned compilation of some of my favorite Summer-inspired recipes.  Everything from Tomato Cobbler to Watermelon Sangria.

I love you!  Let’s be freesshh.

Tomato Cobbler with Blue Cheese Biscuits

Here’s what we get to do!  We get to bake together sweet cherry tomatoes, caramelized onions, thyme and spices.  We get to top those tomatoes with buttery blue cheese biscuits… then we get to rub the whole thing all over our bodies.  Or we can eat it.  Either way.  HEAVEN!   Tomato Cobbler with Blue Cheese Biscuits for our hearts and souls.

I’m working on another Tomato Cobbler recipe for our summer living.  It’s somewhere between quiche and pie.  I dunno.  I’ll nail it eventually.

Cheddar Bacon BLTs

There’s bacon and waffles so it’s breakfast, right?  There’s sandwiched lettuce and tomato so it’s lunch, right?  Cheddar and mayonnaise?  Oh geez.  It’s everything.  At least my cat and I think so… Cheddar Buttermilk Waffle BLTs.

The Ultimate Club Sandwich

Put all of the things between two slices of bread.  All of the things… especially if those things are brie, avocado, bacon, and turkey.  The Ultimate Club Sandwich

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Peach Cobbler Cinnamon Rolls

July 18, 2014

peach cobbler cinnamon rolls

I’ve come to infiltrate your weekend.

You may have had plans to sit on the couch, go to the beach, do some sort of house work, eat a hot dog… NO!   Scratch all of that.  Forget it.  No good.  There are cinnamon rolls in the mix!

Seriously… can I elbow my way into your free time?  Can I persuade you with doughy rolls, cinnamon and almond crumbles, and fresh peach filling?  Let the answer be YES because we’re about to smash-bang peach cobbler and cinnamon rolls.  Let’s be geniuses!  Loose interpretation of the word ‘genius’…

Peach Cobbler Cinnamon Rolls

Here’s how this madness goes:  yeasted dough is topped with melted butter, oat crumble, and warm peach filling. Cobbler all up in a doughy roll,  topped with more almond crumble!

Can this be everyday?  (no.)

Peach Cobbler Cinnamon Rolls

This recipe is adapted from The Pioneer Woman’s famous (infamous?) cinnamon roll.  I’ve experimented with her recipe before.  Remember the Pistachio, Orange and Dark Chocolate Cinnamon Rolls?  I like to think of those as our Winter Cinnamon Rolls, this peach madness is our Summer Roll.  Of course every good baker has their Summer Cinnamon Roll, right?

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Spicy Vegetarian Tortilla Soup

July 16, 2014

Spicy Vegetarian Tortilla Soup

Let’s just all admit that it’s weird that I made soup.  Hot soup.  I didn’t even have the decency to make cold soup.  It’s heat hot, it’s spicy hot, it’s just all up in your face hot… smack-dab in the middle of summer.

Some nerve, really.

I need to openly admit that I really miss (I mean… really miss) California Mexican food.  I’ve made so many obscure tacos in my kitchen I might as well buy a taco truck and call it a career.

This soup is SO GOOD! It’s like eating the soup version of a vegetarian enchilada… in a bowl, with a mega amount of fresh toppings!  If you’re looking to beat the heat, may I suggest enjoying this soup while sitting in front of your open refrigerator?

No?

Well.. fine then.

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The Chocolate-Dipped Potato Chip

July 14, 2014

The Chocolate Dipped Potato Chip

Here’s the difference between you and me.  You’re armed with reason, and willpower, and common sense, and common decency.  Me?  Less so.

Perhaps it’s this lack of common decency that would lead me to dip perfectly good savory potato chips into perfectly good dark chocolate.  The result seems to be a perfectly sinister meeting of savory / sweet / and chocolate.  It’s trouble.  Nothing but trouble.

Remember that time I made Peanut Butter and Pickle Sandwiches and everyone was like, UM… Joy the Baker has LOST IT!  This is that!  Except there’s chocolate involved, so maybe you’ll let this one slide.

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Let It Be Sunday

July 13, 2014

Let It Be Sunday

There’s a bag of potato chips in my pantry that I’m trying to ignore because I have no willpower whatsoever.  That’s my update.  What’s going on with you?

Here’s what’s on my Internet mind:

•  A new friend sent me a link to this TED Talk about how  Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are.  I promptly put the method to the test by standing like a super boss lady in my bathroom for two minutes, then going to a car dealership to buy a car.  Yea…. talk about intimidation.  I feel like arms akimbo worked!  At the very least I was conscious of my own body language, I kept my shoulders strong and confident, and I negotiated financing rates like I know what a finance rate is….   Fake it until you become it!  Repeat x infinity.

Follow-up:  being a grown lady is like… really?  Me?  Now?  How?

•  Because I can never watch just one TED Talk, I followed body language up with A Kinder Gentler Philosophy of Success.  Alain de Botton first addresses the Sunday Stresses and talks about the merits of a meritocracy.

•  I can never go too long without talking about nail polish.  My absolute favorite polish is Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy nail polish.  If you’re a polish-y kind of person you must try this stuff!  The colors are bold and modern, and the polish is thick (without being gross thick) making it easy to coat your nails in saturated color in two coats.  No gel heaters needed.  No fight getting the polish off.  I’m really into it!

•  These Free People Platform Shoes are calling my name.  I’ll have to start putting dollar bills in ye old piggy bank.

•  Boy oh boy,  sometimes the Internet just blows me away.  Remember, a few years back, before Instagram existed?  What were our cellphones even for back then if not constantly flipping through picture updates?  Fortune has a fascinating look inside Instagram’s rise to popularity and how corporations are desperately trying to monetize everything everywhere:  Instagram Is Ready To Take Its Shot.

•  I’ve been revisiting Michael Jackson’s Off The Wall aaallll week long!  Few things are better.

•  I’m completely enamored with these beeswax cloth food storage wraps.  I use them to wrap loaves of bread I’ve sliced into.  They’re cloth coated in a thin layer of beeswax, jojoba oil, and tree resin creating a really cool re-usable storage option.  I like very much.

•  Let’s throw a S’mores Party for real!

•  Are people still paying for Twitter followers?  Fake Friends With Real Benefits. Wait… is this because we care about our Klout scores?  Can’t be.  Social media is the weirdest thing.

•  I’m very serious about my caramel and these Sea Salt Caramels with Dark Chocolate are absolutely the best chocolate and caramel combination I’ve ever had.  I mean whoa!  It’s a good thing I ate them all or I’d still be eating them… all.

Happy Sunday!  Let’s chill on the Sunday Stresses.  Wine helps, as do french fries.

Floral design above my Kiana Underwood of Tulipina who popped over to my house in New Orleans with this beautiful bouquet!

Photograph by the gracious and talented N.R. Underwood.

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