I’ve never been a huge fan of sticky buns because I find many of them teeth-screamingly sweet. That said, these dial down the sweetness in favor of flavor, courtesy of two of my favorite things: pecans and maple syrup. And having the two swaddled in a butterscotch-like caramel seems to make each one taste even better than they do on their own. I was intrigued by…

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Pas de Loup

It wasn’t until recently that I became very in awe of bartenders. I used to just go in and order a beer when I was younger, not really aware that these people are the pastry chefs of the beverage world. Now that I’m older, and wiser, I realize what a specialized skill these bartenders possess. I’ve become a little obsessed watching a good bartender work while…

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I’ve been in San Francisco this week, doing some events – which is actually an excuse for eating my way around town. San Francisco is a city that seems to reinvent itself every few years. But what thing that keeps going in the same direction is the quality of the food and the ingredients that are available. I’ve spent time with a French artisan butcher, met…

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When a gas explosion that happened in the basement destroyed her shop, many couldn’t believe that one of their favorite chocolate shops in Paris was gone, including Denise Acabo herself. I visited her shortly afterward and she was in shock, missing her store – but most of all, missing meeting all the locals and out-of-towners that came in to visit. I posted an update a few months later from…

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I don’t like cliques (unless I’m part of it, of course…) and I have to say, one that I’m happy to be a part of is the brotherhood, and sisterhood, of ice cream makers. I wasn’t the first person to write a book, The Perfect Scoop, about making ice cream. But it landed on the cusp of something that was happening: People were rediscovering ice…

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I’ve had a long love affair with Chartreuse liqueur, even before I visited the monastery back in the 1990’s. We were led through a somewhat terrifying display of hooded monks (not real ones, fortunately, but long-face replicas), the kind you see in historical or agricultural museums in France that are meant to depict a historical representation of something, even drying prunes – likely for educational purposes, but always…

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Next week, I’ll be doing two events in San Francisco… Booksigning at Omnivore Books The event is from 2 to 3pm at Omnivore Books in San Francisco (3885B Cesar Chavez Street). Super-duper chocolate treats will be provided by the fine folks at Charles Chocolates of San Francisco. There will be a short talk at the beginning followed by a booksigning. Due to the size of the shop,…

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When I was in high school, our principal came up on stage during assembly one morning and stood there for a moment, until he got our attention. After a long pause, he inhaled deeply, and said, “We have a very sick person in our midst.” Nobody moved, and we were all kind of stunned for a minute, hearing such a grave pronouncement. Finally, we learned the…

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French Keys

I was never afraid of keys until I moved to Paris. People have all sorts of phobias, many that seem curious to others who don’t share them, such as auroraphobia, a fear of Northern lights and euphobia, which is a fear of good news. Papyrophobia is a fear of paper, and macrophobia is a fear of long waits. But I’ve never heard of a fear of keys,…

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