Tuesday, March 19, 2019

My 10 Favorite Baking Books of 2019


Good morning! I hope that you had a nice weekend and that your week is off to a great start. 

As you now I love to bake so today I thought I would share my 10 favorite baking books of 2019. A few of these books have already been released and a some are being released later in the year. The one I am most excited about is Poilane from the world famous bakery in Paris. Although I enjoy the bread I love their puniton cookies. 






Get ready for a new, fresh take on baking the ultimate feel-good dessert: pie! In The New Pie, Chris Taylor and Paul Arguin--winners of more than 500 awards for baking (including the 2017 Best of Show Award at the National Pie Championships)--re-examine the wholesome world of pie. Through traditional time-honored techniques, modern cooking methods (like sous vide), innovative flavors (birthday cake; Tahitian pineapple; and mocha "mystery"), and a love for kitchen gadgets (like immersion circulators and silicone texture mats), these legendary competition circuit pie experts reinvent the traditional pastime of pie-making. With step-by-step instructions and playful photography, you'll learn to make groundbreaking creations, including a magnificent Blueberry-Maple Pie with wood-grain lattice, the King Fluffernutter Pie, and a striped chocolate Pie of the Tiger. Whether you are a pie voyeur, new baker, or baking enthusiast you will find inspiration at every turn and pies to satisfy every craving.







Ready to rise from baking newbie to MVP? Tasty gives you the low-down on basics, from building a fuss-free pantry to mastering 70+ easy-as-pie desserts—both new hits and old favorites. You’ll stuff, layer, frost, and meringue your way to the cherry on top of pretty much every meal. If Confetti Birthday Soufflé, No-Bake 16-Layer S’mores Cake, and Sour Cherry Fritters don’t float your boat (are you feeling ok?), here are 75 recipes for any hankering, mood, or occasion, whether you’re jonesing for a sugar adventure with friends or having a late-night dessert emergency. Just don’t forget to save a piece of it for yourself.







Everyone has a favorite style of cake, whether it's citrusy and fresh or chocolatey and indulgent. All of these recipes and more are within your reach in Simple Cake, a love letter from Brooklyn apron and bakeware designer Odette Williams to her favorite treat. With easy recipes and inventive decorating ideas, Williams gives you recipes for 10 base cakes, 15 toppings, and endless decorating ideas to yield a treat--such as Milk & Honey Cake, Coconut Cake, Summer Berry Pavlova, and Chocolatey Chocolate Cake--for any occasion. Williams also addresses the fundamentals for getting cakes just right, with foolproof recipes that can be cranked out whenever the urge strikes. Gorgeous photography, along with Williams's warm and heartfelt writing, elevate this book into something truly special.








There's always something to celebrate in life, and there's no better way to celebrate than with some decadent, mouthwatering cake! No matter your confidence in baking, Mandy Merriman--the Blondie of the popular blog Baking with Blondie--is here to help you think outside the cakebox and create easy, delicious, beautiful cakes that you'll definitely want to show off. Dust off your apron and get ready to create some buttercream joy.






Bake from Scratch is back in a new volume and it's huge! The 400+ pages are packed with delicious recipes that are sure to bring out the baker in all of us! This collection of recipes encompasses everything from the art of the Southern biscuit to a birthday cake blowout. Inside this hardcover volume featuring every baked good from the third year of Bake from Scratch magazine, you will find pages upon pages of quick breads and yeast breads, Bundt cakes and layer cakes, pastries, cookies, and more. With step-by-step technique tutorials and professional tips from our test kitchen, it’s the home baker’s ultimate resource and the essential guide to bringing artisan baking to your kitchen. Stunning full-color photography accompanies every recipe. Recipes are fall all baking skill levels.





As a follow-up to Layered, Tessa Huff returns with Icing on the Cake to dive deeper into dessert decoration and the presentation of layer cakes and other showstopping treats. Providing the confidence home bakers need to get creative, Icing on the Cake guides readers from cake pan to presentation to dessert plate. Organized by style, each dessert showcases a different decorative element, artistic pastry technique, or presentation idea. With hundreds of beautiful photos, including lots of step-by-steps, Icing on the Cake is a richly illustrated guide for creating delicious, beautiful desserts that will be the grand finale of any gathering.






To food lovers the world over, a trip to Paris is not complete without a visit to Poilâne. Ina Garten raves about the bread’s “extraordinary quality.” Martha Stewart says the P in Poilâne stands for “perfect.” For the first time, Poilâne provides detailed instructions so bakers can reproduce its unique “hug-sized” sourdough loaves at home, as well as the bakery’s other much-loved breads and pastries. It tells the story of how Apollonia Poilâne, the third-generation baker and owner, took over the global business at age eighteen and steered it into the future as a Harvard University freshman after her parents were killed in a helicopter crash.
Beyond bread, Apollonia includes recipes for pastries such as the bakery’s exquisite but unfussy tarts and butter cookies. In recipes that use bread as an ingredient, she shows how to make the most from a loaf, from crust to crumb. In still other dishes, she explores the world of grains: rice, corn, barley, oats, and millet. From sunup to sundown, Poilâne traces the hours in a baker’s day, blending narrative, recipes, and Apollonia’s philosophy of bread.






James Beard award–winning baker Joanne Chang is best known around the country for her eight acclaimed Flour bakeries in Boston. Chang has published two books based on the offerings at Flour, such as her famous sticky buns, but Pastry Love is her most personal and comprehensive book yet. It includes 125 dessert recipes for many things she could never serve in the setting of a bakery--for example, items that are best served warm or with whipped cream on top. Nothing makes Chang happier than baking and sharing treats with others, and that passion comes through in every recipe, such as Strawberry Slab Pie, Mocha Chip Cookies, and Malted Chocolate Cake. The recipes start off easy such as Lemon Sugar Cookies and build up to showstoppers like Passion Fruit Crepe Cake. The book also includes master lessons and essential techniques for making pastry cream, lemon curd, puff pastry, and more, all of which make this book a must-have for beginners and expert home bakers alike.






"Happiness is baking cookies. Happiness is giving them away. And serving them, and eating them, talking about them, reading and writing about them, thinking about them, and sharing them with you."

Maida Heatter is one of the most iconic and fondly-remembered cookbook authors of all time. Her recipes, each a modern classic, are must-haves in every home baker's bag of tricks: her cookies, cakes, muffins, tarts, pies, and sweets of all kinds range from extravagantly special to the comforting and everyday. Her brown-sugary Budapest Coffee Cake, her minty Palm Beach Brownies, her sophisticated East 62nd Street Lemon Cake, and many other desserts have inspired legions of devotees.

Happiness is Baking reproduces Maida's best-loved recipes in a fully illustrated new edition with a foreword by Dorie Greenspan. Developed for foolproof baking by experienced cooks and novices alice, these recipes bear Maida's trademark warmth, no-nonsense style, and her promise that they will work every time.

Happiness is Baking is the perfect gift for anyone who loves baking--or who knows the happiness that comes from a delicious dessert.






Baking is as much about feeding someone’s heart and soul as it is about nourishing their body. It’s also about kindness and generosity: whether it’s a pie or a tray of cookies, baking is always meant to be shared. 

The Little Island Bake Shop by Jana Roerick features a collection of 80 easy recipes designed to satisfy almost any craving. Freshly baked muffins are a perfect start to the morning, while grab-and-go cookies make delectable treats throughout the day. Looking to make celebratory occasions even more special? Jana’s signature pies and cakes are as simple to make as they are delicious. The cookbook also includes a savoury dishes designed to nourish: comforting pot pies, satisfying quiches, lamb patties, and even homemade pickles.

Lastly, a section devoted to the essentials―basic pastry doughs, frostings, glazes, crumbles, and custards―will have you mastering the basics in no time. The Little Island Bake Shop is a wonderful collection of everyday bakes designed for cooks of every skill level. From a Perfect Pound Cake to irresistible Chocolate Chip Cookies to a crowd-pleasing Sour Cherry Apricot Pie, this is simple comfort food at its best.


Are you a fan of baking? Do you have a favorite baking cookbook that you think I need to know about? If so please share. 

Have a great day!


NOTE: This post contains affiliate links. 



Sunday, March 17, 2019

Silent Sunday 3-17-2019




Happy St. Patrick's Day! Have a great day!





Saturday, March 16, 2019

Saturday Finds: Spring Green


Good morning! In honor of St.Patrick's Day I thought I would share some of my favorite green finds this week.




Clover Bracelet





Earrings-TJMaxx




Green Dress Old Navy



Green Stripped Shirt Old Navy


Green Pleated Top Ann Taylor



Green Slingback Sandals Ann Taylor


Green Sunglasses 



Salad Plate


Green Candle Target




Green Leaf Pillow



I hope that you enjoy your weekend! 



Note: This post contains affiliate links. 








Friday, March 15, 2019

Friday Favorites from Simply Recipes, Saving Room for Dessert, Whole Food Bellies, A Spicy Perspective and More


Good morning! How was your week? Are you ready for the weekend? I hope that you were not in the path of "snowmageden", it looked crazy and cold. As I said yesterday we have finally had a few days of sun and it has been so nice. Although I love winter this year the incessant rain and grey days were really starting to get me down. I was beginning to think I might need one of those lights for people that suffer from SAD. 


Interesting Food


In honor of St.Patrick's day I thought I would share a few Irish recipes that I enjoy.




Image Simply Recipes

Hearty Irish Beef Stew from Simply Recipes.



Image from Whole Food Bellies

Have you ever eaten Colcannon? If not you should try it, the potatoes and cabbage are so comforting. This recipe from Whole Food Bellies look delicious. 




Beer Cheese Soup

Beer Cheese Soup from A Spicy Perspective, yum!




Irish Apple Cake

Irish Apple Cake from Saving Room For Dessert, easy and delicious!



Bailey's Hot Chocolate 

If you would like some something chocolate to celebrate St.Patrick's day I posted my 10 favorite recipes HERE


Interesting Articles





Just discovered The Pineapple and Cherry Bombe, blogs, podcasts and more about women and food. 



Interesting Movies


Interesting Books




If you do not know who Ruth Gruber is than take a minute to learn more about her. I promise that you will not be disappointed as she was an extraordinary woman. 






When Singer sewing machine tycoon Edward Clark built a luxury apartment building on Manhattan’s Upper West Side in the late 1800s, it was derisively dubbed “the Dakota” for being as far from the center of the downtown action as its namesake territory on the nation’s western frontier. Despite its remote location, the quirky German Renaissance–style castle, with its intricate façade, peculiar interior design, and gargoyle guardians peering down on Central Park, was an immediate hit, particularly among the city’s well-heeled intellectuals and artists.

Over the next century it would become home to an eclectic cast of celebrity residents—including Boris Karloff, Lauren Bacall, Leonard Bernstein, singer Roberta Flack (the Dakota’s first African-American resident), and John Lennon and Yoko Ono—who were charmed by its labyrinthine interior and secret passageways, its mysterious past, and its ghosts. Stephen Birmingham, author of the New York society classic “Our Crowd”, has written an engrossing history of the first hundred years of one of the most storied residential addresses in Manhattan and the legendary lives lived within its walls.

By the way if you have Kindle Unlimited you can read this book for free. 







In 1975, twenty-three-year-old Englishman Tom Michell follows his wanderlust to Argentina, where he becomes assistant master at a prestigious boarding school. But Michell’s adventures really begin when, on a weekend in Uruguay, he rescues a penguin covered in oil from an ocean spill, cleans the bird up, and attempts to return him to the sea. The penguin refuses to leave his rescuer’s side. “That was the moment at which he became my penguin, and whatever the future held, we’d face it together,” says Michell in this charming memoir.

Michell names the penguin Juan Salvador (“John Saved”), but Juan Salvador, as it turns out, is the one who saves Michell.

After Michell smuggles the bird back to Argentina and into his campus apartment, word spreads about the young Englishman’s unusual roommate. Juan Salvador is suddenly the center of attention—as mascot of the rugby team, confidant to the dorm housekeeper, co-host of Michell’s parties, and an unprecedented swimming coach to a shy boy. Even through the collapse of the Perónist government and amid the country’s economic and political strife, Juan Salvador brings joy to everyone around him—especially Michell, who considers the affectionate animal a compadre and kindred spirit.

Witty and heartwarming, The Penguin Lessons is a classic in the making, a story that is both absurd and wonderful, exactly like Juan Salvador.




Down to Earth  by one of my favorite bloggers and designers. 


Down to Earth picks up right where Lauren Liess’s critically acclaimed Habitat left off. While Habitat walked readers through the decorating process step-by-step, Liess’s latest title takes a step beyond the basics and invites readers to incorporate the main components of her familiar design aesthetic: nature, easy living, and approachability. With evocative photos and substantive design advice, Down to Earthfocuses on creating a lifestyle that inspires creativity and functionality. 

Throughout the book, Liess shows readers how to incorporate six guiding principles in six unique homes: a new farmhouse, a classic American historical home, a lakeside contemporary house, a modern villa, a turn- of-the-century American Foursquare, and a cedar and glass house on a bluff. While each home has a different architectural style, fingerprints of Liess’s down-to-earth style are evident throughout.


Interesting Finds

I love the color green so I thought I would share a few green finds in honor os St. Patrick's day.






I think these sandals would be great this summer!




Green Tote Marks and Graham

I have purse this color for summer. 
What are your plans this weekend? Will you be out enjoying a little spring weather or huddled inside escaping a late winter storm? Whatever you do I hope that you slow down, enjoy a good book, maybe a movie but most especially time with family and friends. 

As always, please share your recipes, movies, books and finds in the comments. I love to explore the comments and discover new things. 

Have a great weekend. 




Thursday, March 14, 2019

My 10 Favorite St.Patrick's Day Desserts


Good morning! This Sunday is St.Patrick's day and although many like to celebrate with beer, bourbon and corned beef and cabbage I prefer to celebrate with dessert. 

I put together 10 of my favorite desserts that have Irish cream, Stout, chocolate and even some hints of green. 


Double Chocolate Bourbon Brownies


Irish Cream Tarts

Irish Cream Coffee Mud Pie


Black Bourbon Walnut Brownies with Candied Bacon


Bailey's Rice Pudding


Creme de Menthe Brownies


Pistachio Bars from BHG


Bailey's Chocolate Caramel Brownie Terrine


Baileys Butter Cream Frosting on Guiness Chocolate Stout Cupcakes


Nigella Lawson's Stout Cake


Will you be celebrating St.Patricks day? If you do, how do you celebrate? What do you eat and drink? 


Have a great day!








Wednesday, March 13, 2019

10 Books for Book Lovers


Good morning! I hope that your week is off to a great start. I have been reading a lot of books lately about bookshops, books and bookstores and I really enjoyed them so I decided to search for a few more.

Here are 10 Books for Book Lovers that you might enjoy!





We're not talking about rooms that are just full of books.
We're talking about bookshops in barns, disused factories, converted churches and underground car parks. Bookshops on boats, on buses, and in old run-down train stations. Fold-out bookshops, undercover bookshops, this-is-the-best-place-I've-ever-been-to-bookshops.
Meet Sarah and her Book Barge sailing across the sea to France; meet Sebastien, in Mongolia, who sells books to herders of the Altai mountains; meet the bookshop in Canada that's invented the world's first antiquarian book vending machine.
And that's just the beginning.
From the oldest bookshop in the world, to the smallest you could imagine, The Bookshop Book examines the history of books, talks to authors about their favourite places, and looks at over three hundred weirdly wonderful bookshops across six continents (sadly, we've yet to build a bookshop down in the South Pole).
The Bookshop Book is a love letter to bookshops all around the world.




For so many people, reading isn't just a hobby or a way to pass the time--it's a lifestyle. Our books shape us, define us, enchant us, and even sometimes infuriate us. Our books are a part of who we are as people, and we can't imagine life without them.

I'd Rather Be Reading is the perfect literary companion for everyone who feels that way. In this collection of charming and relatable reflections on the reading life, beloved blogger and author Anne Bogel leads readers to remember the book that first hooked them, the place where they first fell in love with reading, and all of the moments afterward that helped make them the reader they are today. Known as a reading tastemaker through her popular podcast What Should I Read Next?, Bogel invites book lovers into a community of like-minded people to discover new ways to approach literature, learn fascinating new things about books and publishing, and reflect on the role reading plays in their lives.

The perfect gift for the bibliophile in everyone's life, I'd Rather Be Reading will command an honored place on the overstuffed bookshelves of any book lover.







From Hay-on-Wye in Wales to Ureña in Spain, Fjaerland in Norway to Jimbochu in Japan, around 40 semi-official book towns now exist around the world. But until now, there has been no complete directory of their location, history and charm. Book Towns takes readers on a richly illustrated tour of these captivating, dedicated havens of literature, outlining the origins and development of each community, and offering practical travel advice. Explore bustling book markets in Calcutta and Buenos Aires, and pop-up shops in old churches, ferry waiting rooms and stables. A stylish and original guide, it is the perfect gift for both book lovers and travel enthusiasts.






Books: reading, collecting, and the physical housing of them has brought the book-lover joy and stress for centuries. Fascinated writers have tried to capture the particular relationships we form with our library, and the desperate troubles we will undergo to preserve it. With Alex Johnson as your guide, immerse yourself in this eclectic anthology and hear from an iconic Prime Minister musing over the best way to store your books and an illustrious US President explaining the best works to read outdoors. Enjoy serious speculations on the psychological implications of reading from a 19th-century philosopher, and less serious ones concerning the predicament of dispensing with unwanted volumes or the danger of letting children (the enemies of books) near your collection. The many facets of book-mania are pondered and celebrated with both sincerity and irreverence in this lively selection of essays, poems, lectures, and commentaries ranging from the 16th to the 20th century.




Shaun Bythell owns The Bookshop, Wigtown - Scotland's largest second-hand bookshop. It contains 100,000 books, spread over a mile of shelving, with twisting corridors and roaring fires, and all set in a beautiful, rural town by the edge of the sea. A book-lover's paradise? Well, almost ... In these wry and hilarious diaries, Shaun provides an inside look at the trials and tribulations of life in the book trade, from struggles with eccentric customers to wrangles with his own staff, who include the ski-suit-wearing, bin-foraging Nicky. He takes us with him on buying trips to old estates and auction houses, recommends books (both lost classics and new discoveries), introduces us to the thrill of the unexpected find, and evokes the rhythms and charms of small-town life, always with a sharp and sympathetic eye.




When Lucy Mangan was little, stories were everything. They opened up different worlds and cast new light on this one.


She was whisked away to Narnia – and Kirrin Island – and Wonderland. She ventured down rabbit holes and womble burrows into midnight gardens and chocolate factories. No wonder she only left the house for her weekly trip to the library.

In Bookworm, Lucy brings the favourite characters of our collective childhoods back to life and disinters a few forgotten treasures poignantly, wittily using them to tell her own story, that of a born, and unrepentant, bookworm.






Desperate to escape from London, single mother Lottie wants to build a new life for herself and her son Raffie. She can barely afford the crammed studio apartment on a busy street where honking horns and shouting football fans keep them awake all night. If she doesn’t find a way out soon, Lottie knows it’s just a matter of time before she has a complete meltdown. On a whim, she answers an ad for a nanny job in the Scottish Highlands, which is about as far away from the urban crush of London as possible. It sounds heavenly!
The job description asks for someone capable of caring for two…well, the advertisement says “gifted children”; the reality is more like “feral wolverines.” The children’s widowed father is a wreck, and the kids run wild in a huge tumbledown castle on the heather-strewn banks of Loch Ness. Still, the peaceful, picturesque location is everything London is not—and Lottie rises to the challenges of the job.
With the help of Nina, the friendly local bookseller, Lottie begins to put down roots in the community. Are books, fresh air, and kindness enough to heal this broken family—and her own…?







Chris works as a librarian in a small-town library in the south of England. This is the story of the library, its staff, and the fascinating group of people who use the library on a regular basis. We'll meet characters like the street sleepers Brewer, Wolf and Spencer, who are always the first through the doors. The Mad Hatter, an elderly man who scurries around manically, searching for books. Sons of Anarchy Alan, a young Down's syndrome man addicted to the American TV drama series. Startled Stewart, a gay man with a spray-on tan who pops in most days for a nice chat, sharking for good-looking foreign language students. And Trish, who is relentlessly cheerful and always dressed in pink - she has never married, but the marital status of everybody she meets is of huge interest to her.
Some of the characters' stories are tragic, some are amusing, some are genuinely surreal, but together they will paint a bigger picture of the world we live in today and of a library's hugely important place within it. Yes, of course, people come in to borrow books, but the library is also the equivalent of the village pump. It's one of the few places left where anyone, regardless of age or income or background, can wander in and find somebody to listen to their concerns, to share the time of day. Reading Allowed will provide us with a fascinating portrait of a place that we all value and cherish but which few of us truly know very much about.


Book: My Autobiography


Books are one of humankind’s greatest forms of expression, and now Book, in a witty, idiosyncratic voice, tells us the inside story. A wonderfully eccentric character with strong opinions and a poetic turn of phrase, Book tells of a journey from papyrus scrolls to medieval manuscripts to printed paper and beyond—pondering, along the way, many bookish things, including the evolution of the alphabet, the library (known to Egyptians as "the healing place of the soul"), and even book burning. With bold, black-and-white illustrations by Neil Packer, Book is a captivating work of nonfiction by one of England's leading poets.








Once out of school, most of us read for pleasure. Yet there is another equally important, though often overlooked, reason that we read: to learn how to live. Though books have always been understood as life-teachers, the exact way in which they instruct, cajole, and convince remains a subject of some mystery. Drawing on sources as diverse as Dr. Seuss and Simone Weil, P. G. Wodehouse and Isaiah Berlin, Pulitzer prize-winning critic Michael Dirda shows how the wit, wisdom, and enchantment of the written word can inform and enrich nearly every aspect of life, from education and work to love and death.
Organized by significant life events and abounding with quotations from great writers and thinkers, Book by Book showcases Dirda's considerable knowledge, which he wears lightly. Favoring showing rather than telling, Dirda draws the reader deeper into the classics, as well as lesser-known works of literature, history, and philosophy, always with an eye to what is relevant to how we might better understand our lives.

What have you been reading lately? If you have a favorite book about books, bookshops, libraries or anything related to books please share. 

Have a great day!