Category Archives: Cakes/Cupcakes

{gluten-free} Pistachio Layer Cake – Milk Bar Mondays!

The cake out of the freezer, before it's smoothed and presentable!

The cake out of the freezer, before it’s smoothed and presentable!

Milk Bar Mondays are back, folks!

Well… sort of. A long, long time ago, now, I joined with a group of lady bakers and bloggers to bake our way through Christina Tosi’s Milk Bar cookbook, headed up by Audra at The Baker Chick. But then, as often happens, our lives eventually got in the way of the sometimes lengthy, complicated recipes in the book; we changed schools, jobs and cities, some of us had babies (!), and our recipe priorities shifted. I’m sure we all value our blogs still for the many aspects of joy they bring to our lives, but I can’t say I’m surprised at our slow fizzle.

I wish, though, that I could have shared this cake with the other MBM ladies. Because it’s weird. Good weird, but weird. I made it for my dad’s 64th birthday, as the man adores pistachios and for many years bags of them have been stocking stuffers, random tokens of love and birthday gift toppers. So, despite the questionable potential of the cake’s general likeability, the copious amount of not-cheap pistachio nuts and pastes that went into it, and the somewhat lengthy procedure (that doesn’t feel that long, now, if I admit it to myself), this cake would be made.

And, damn, is it good. Weird good, but good.

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{gluten free} Pumpkin Bread

Gluten-free pumpkin bread

Gluten-free pumpkin bread

Ugh, I hate when I make something so delicious as this pumpkin bread, sometimes.

It’s just too, too much for one little body.

But when the leaves start to shift from green to gold — yes, even here in New York City — and I can no longer wear flipflops when walking Mitra in the mornings (sniff), my thoughts turn to pumpkins and squash and apples with such a force that recipes like this get penciled in my day between interviews and rough drafts and number crunching, or whatever it is the day may hold.

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{gluten-free, dairy-free} Kallari Chocolate Coffee Cake

Gluten and dairy-free Chocolate Coffee Cake with Kallari Chocolate

Gluten and dairy-free Chocolate Coffee Cake with Kallari Chocolate

I have a fun little history with Kallari chocolate.

One of my darlingest lady friends, who I commonly refer to as Muffin on here, went to Ecuador for a semester while we were in college. Amongst the many experiences she came back with, one was literally a sweet treat for her friends; bars of chocolate wrapped in wax paper from a cooperative set where the Andes and the Amazon overlap. Kallari was a small company then, one that strove to independently own and sell their chocolate to make a much healthier living wage and quality product, and I indulged in buying a few bars. Dark, slightly bitter, and incredibly floral and fruity, I didn’t forget the name. Kallari. Continue reading

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Nutty Gluten-Free Peach Buckle for Four

Nutty Gluten-Free Peach Buckle for Four

Oh, summer, how bittersweet ’tis to lose thee!

I’ve been spending a good amount of time observing the shifting in the seasons, lately. I take Mitra out every morning and take in the weight of the clothes I’m adding on, the chill of the frost on the grass when I’m in my dad’s backyard, or the whip of the wind off of the Hudson River when I’m home in New York. I stare at how the sun blasts up the luminosity of green leaves while dozing in my hammock, and the first touches of gold as I drive the Merritt Parkway back to the city again. The shadows on the brick outside my building seem a tad muted, now, and I know soon there will be only trunks sketched on them, their branches bare and trembling.

But I love this time of year, the duality of it. At the local market the apples have taken their first sign of crispness and cold, while the peaches soften and bruise next to them. Last week I made a gingerbread cake with pears for a sunny social event, and I’ve already clipped my crop of herbs and stuck jars of gremolata in my freezer to get me through the winter.

But then… there are still peaches.

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Upside-Down Pear Gingerbread Cake (gluten free)

Photo by my brother's awesomely talented friend, Louis Abate

Photos by my brother’s awesomely talented friend, Louis Abate

I am conflicted about the end of summer.

I don’t want to say goodbye to peaches, or long swings in the hammock in Connecticut, or walking barefoot through grass, or taking Mitra for her morning walk in flip flops and short sleeves. I don’t want to say goodbye to the farmer’s markets that dot the northeast and flourish only a few months a year. I don’t want “school to start again”. Or to admit that I haven’t “started school again” in ten years.

But then…

There are pumpkin-laced candles to be burned. And root vegetables to roast. And CHRISTMAS. And fireplaces to light. And scarves and jackets and warm cocktails and long, hot baths. And apples and pears and gingerbread.

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