Menu For Hope

My other girlfriend Pim has organized a wonderful auction to raise money for victims in Pakistan and India of the recent natural disaster. As the chilly winter approaches, international aid is necessary and vital to the people of these regions.

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In case you’d like to read a first person account of my Holiday Chocolate Baking class in Seattle, Gluten-Free Girl came by to visit and posted about it at her site And Sam posted about my class (and proposal) at Becks & Posh in San Francisco as well. Seems like I’m leaving a few broken hearts in my wake!

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I have to admit that this is my “Little Black Dress” that many women…and perhaps a few men (since I’m from San Francisco), consider their multi-purpose, never-fail-to-impress sexy black number hanging in their closet. I’m normally wary of recipes that call themselves “The Best” since often you make them, and they ain’t all that. But of all the chocolate sauce recipes I’ve tasted over the…

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I love Chicago. Chicago is The Great American City. It’s a city that didn’t turn its back on it’s downtown, which is a modern, vibrant, and a beautiful metropolis marked by the great American invention: skyscrapers. My favorite place to eat in Chicago is the Big Bowl. It was started by Bruce Cost, who I worked with several years ago as his pastry chef and…

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-Does anyone really watch all the reruns of “Saved By The Bell” that run all morning on television? -Why is the air-conditioning turned on full-blast, everywhere…in December? -Why can’t they open a Rite Aid in Paris? I love a drugstore that sells yogurt, socks, and clocks with singing Bass. -What insane person first decided to manufacture yogurt with gelatin in it? -I am certain that…

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One of the greatest things about America is the cultural mix. Which often means that you can get great food in the unlikeliest of places. Like very good Mexican food in, um, Virginia! A previously satisfied customer? Arlington, Virginia, is best known for the cemetary and a large, five-sided building called the Pentagon. (There’s lots of military people lurking in the Metro and on the…

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Upon arrival at Paris’ Roissy airport, I notice that lots of people seem to be smiling and no one is trying to cut in front of me in line and many of the people are toting self-help bestsellers with semi-bald men grinning on the glossy front jackets. Yes, I’m on my way back to the United States of America. I got upgraded, which is like…

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The worst thing about the pâtisserie of Arnaud Larher is that it’s too dang far away from where I live. Located on the northern fringes of Montmarte, it takes me 3 different métros to get there, and even then, it’s a hike from the métro station (which is buried very, very deep underground, since that quartier of Paris is mostly soft limestone, aka plaster of…

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