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Oatmeal and Pecan Brittle Cookies

This year was a good year for baking books. I didn’t get to see them all, or bake from them, but one that I got a preview of before it was released was Dessert Person by Claire Saffitz. She may be familiar to you because of her tenure in the test kitchen at Bon Appétit and more recently, her very popular online videos, but reading…

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Wholegrain Soda Bread

When the lockdown started in March, a wave of people got to work mixing up sourdough starters and baking bread. I was frequently asked for my sourdough starter recipe and people were confounded, and a bit disappointed, that I didn’t have one. There are five very good bread bakeries within a few blocks of where I live (bakeries stayed open in France during the confinement,…

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Mesquite Chocolate Chip Cookies

A few weeks ago, I was talking to someone about chocolate chip cookies, which is one of my favorite subjects. The French like them, too. They just call them les cookies, as if they didn’t need further clarification. But every time I make a batch of chocolate chip cookies, I have zero trouble handing them off to people. Who can resist a chocolate chip cookie,…

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Shang Palace

Quite a while back, I worked at an Asian restaurant in San Francisco. The food was amazing. Fresh shrimp were cooked up, chopped, then smeared on bread, then deep-fried for shrimp toast. All the dumplings had freshly cooked ingredients in them – no canned peas or frozen shrimp. And each one was hand-rolled. All the meats were well-sourced and cooked daily, then shredded for fillings…

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Bircher Muesli

I have quite a few “issues”, including an aversion food that’s blue which wasn’t intended by nature to be so (I don’t understand what’s up with that ‘blue raspberry’ soda), I don’t like getting dressed first thing in the morning or talking to others for at least the first hour of the day, I get uneasy when being driven anywhere by a taxi or hired…

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Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

We seem to be going though an age of competitions and it’s interesting for me to see so much fascination with being a chef, and people acting out on television what goes on (or they perceive goes on) in restaurant kitchens. I spent most of my life behind the stoves and let me tell you, it’s often not pretty and I would not want anyone…

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Why Stealing is Wrong

Well, I wouldn’t say it was exactly stealing. But last time I was in the states, I was going through one of my frighteningly-full storage lockers (there’s your glimpse into the glamorous life of international living…) and while rifling through cookbooks, I came across my own personal book of handwritten recipes, a fat mess of pages, stained with butter, eggs, almond paste, and lord-knows what…

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