May 25, 2013

Morning Glory Muffins

Why is it that nowadays some places have the chutzpah to refer to massive un-frosted cupcakes as "muffins"?  Have you stopped by the bakery department of your local Costco lately?  You know which ones I'm talking about.

In search of something more to the core of what a muffin should be I was really happy to find this recipe from Cook's Country.  I'd never heard of Morning Glory Muffins before but with ingredients that included carrots, coconut, walnuts, apples and pineapples it sounded delicious and healthy to boot.  Full disclosure: I'm a sucker for anything with pineapple and coconut!

I made these for Mother's Day breakfast recently and they got the thumbs-up.  How could they not?  They met all of Mom's requirements: not too sweet, moist and super flavorful. 

May 12, 2013

Coffee Crunch Cake

By the time I moved to San Francisco Blum's pastry shops had been long closed, but their desserts continued to live on.  My sister told me about their most famous creation, Coffee Crunch Cake, and brought me a slice from Yasukochi's Sweet Stop in Japantown.  

Coffee-flavored desserts aren't really a favorite of mine, but the combination of sponge-y lemon scented vanilla cake frosted with whipped cream and covered with light, airy honeycomb textured coffee candy was divine.   I had to see if I could make it for myself.

Luckily I didn't have any trouble finding a recipe online, one that was originally published in the San Francisco Chronicle.   Overall the cake was delicious and very well-received.  The only adjustments for next time would be to make an oil-based chiffon for the cake and to use stronger coffee, like espresso, for the coffee flavor to really come through in the crunch.