cranberry brie puff pastries

Cranberry Brie Puff Pastries

In a surprise twist, today I’m doing a guest post over at Nancy’s blog, Gotta Get Baked! About six months ago, I had just set up blog in my little corner of the WordPress-world, and was timidly and somewhat nervously dipping my toes into the vast food blogosphere. Nancy was one of the first blog-friends I made.  Given that she, too, is a lawyer-blogger, she was also the first beacon of hope for me that I’d be able to embark on this crazy career of mine and blog at the same time. I love that she keeps it so real — a healthy reminder that we are all people and not carefully curated cyber-identities. Nancy is on a much, much deserved vacation (in Thailand! Ahh!) right now, and I’m super excited to be contributing to her blog today as a result.

Nancy is kind of a baking genius, folks.  Baking is not something that comes naturally to me, so she’s been a wealth of inspiration as I’ve slowly developed my baking chops. As a result, I thought it only fitting to post something that incorporates a baking milestone I wouldn’t have reached without Nancy’s help — pie crust! The first pie crust I ever made was because I saw this post on Nancy’s blog.  Only with that under my belt would I have tried making pie crust’s frou frou cousin, puff pastry — this time from another lovely blogger friend, Sam at Love Comma Cake.  (I love how collaborative food blogging is. Or, how you can crib from others as much as I do and call it collaboration.)  To check out the recipe (and some very kind words I don’t deserve — you’re too sweet, Nancy!), click here to go on over to Nancy’s blog.

Earlier this week I posted about my lukewarm feelings about New Year’s Eve parties, and my associations with food instead of socializing and festivities. Funnily enough — or, perhaps aptly, since it wasn’t much of a party — the very next day I had one of the loveliest New Year’s celebrations I’ve had in a long time, consisting mainly of a few close friends and a lot of food.  All we did was chat, and sip things, and eat. (And remember at the very last minute to watch the ball drop.)  Maybe I’m boring, but it was kind of perfect. Full bellies and good friends.

As for what we ate (obviously the most important part) — we had peanut butter chocolate chunk cookies from this recipe by Averie Cooks (divine!), these chocolate truffle candy cane cookiescranberry orange shortbread cookies (okay, I got carried away with the cookies, maybe), and a super exciting ice cream that I’ll post about next week.

I would have served these cranberry brie puffs, but. I ate them all. And then felt very, very ill.

How was your New Year’s Eve?  Hopefully just as exciting, or calm, or food-filled, or drink-filled as you wanted it to be. 🙂 I hope you all are having a wonderful start to your new year — and that those of you in the Northeast are staying warm and dry today!

Cranberry Brie PuffsCranberry Brie PuffsCranberry Brie Puffs


    • tworedbowls says:

      January 3, 2014 at 10:58 am

      Oh my gosh, aren’t mini pies the best? Or mini anything, really … I have a problem with mini things. Thanks so much, Kathryn!! 🙂 I am so in love with your blog — so happy you stopped by!

  1. says:

    January 3, 2014 at 10:45 am

    Hi Cynthia! Happy New Year! You’ve only been blogging for 6 months?! wow! love your recipes and photographs! I am visiting you today from Nancy’s blog. . I love Nancy as well and it doesn’t surprise me at all that she was one of the first blog friends you made, because she was also the first “real” blogging friend I made as well. 🙂 love that you love Korean food. . I’m off to check out your kimchi fried rice (one of my faves) but before I go, I must give you BIG props for making your own homemade puff pastry! I have yet to do this myself. . but will give this fabulous cranberry brie puff pastry recipe of your a go! cheers! Alice

  2. says:

    January 3, 2014 at 10:49 am

    hi and whenever you get a chance, can you provide the correct link for the wonderful step-by-step photos and instructions over at Love, Cake? The link in Nancy’s post is not clicking out properly, thank you!!

    • tworedbowls says:

      January 3, 2014 at 11:01 am

      Alice! I’m so excited to see you here! Love your blog (and love following you on IG, your daughters are melt-my-heart adorable!) I am 100% sure my Korean cooking can’t hold a candle to yours, but would totally love hearing any tips you have. Korean food is a favorite of ours. Oh boy, making puff pastry was scary, but if I could do it, you most certainly can. I hope you enjoy these if you try them! 🙂

      And, so funny that Nancy was one of your first blogger friends too — like you said, I’m not surprised either!! She is too wonderful. Her support and friendship reminds me exactly what blogging is supposed to be about (and reminds me to try to provide the same for others!) Glad to have met you through her, too!!

      Lastly, the link — UGH geez, that’s totally my fault. I always leave out the “http://” by accident. Her post is here: ! Love Sam and all that she does, and I’m sure you will too.

      • says:

        January 3, 2014 at 10:39 pm

        Hey ladies! I’ll change that asap. Oops – I really should’ve checked all the links but darn me for being lazy and procrastinating. Cynthia, thanks so much for your guest post. You (and Alice, my dear friend) really saved my butt by guest posting while I’m away. Happy New Year!

        • tworedbowls says:

          January 4, 2014 at 1:24 am

          Are you kidding, totally my fault!! Such a bad habit of mine, I do it all the time. I’m the worst for taking you away from Thai massages and delicious food and hot sun! (It’s freezing over here and snowing, so you have to enjoy it extra for me!) So happy to have guest posted for you Nance (even if I gave you shoddy links!). Happy new year to you and hope you’re having the BEST time!

    • tworedbowls says:

      January 3, 2014 at 2:48 pm

      Mm, love savory puffs, too. Joy the Baker posted a french onion and gruyere puff a few weeks ago I’ve been dying to try. Hope you enjoy this if you try it. 🙂

  3. says:

    January 3, 2014 at 2:24 pm

    These look wonderful! I’ve never made a mini version, but you are right. I am also a sucker for all things “mini”. Your blog is wonderful, and congrats on the opportunity to guest post! Keep up the great work! Thanks for sharing. I ate WAY too much Brie over New Years as well. I wish I would have saved some of it to try your recipe.

    • tworedbowls says:

      January 3, 2014 at 2:50 pm

      Oh my gosh, right?! I wonder why brie is such a New Year’s staple (not that I’m complaining!) Thanks so much for your sweet words, Mandy 🙂 Hope you had a wonderful holiday season and that you’re having a great start to your 2014.

    • tworedbowls says:

      January 4, 2014 at 4:59 pm

      And to you, Sini! Thank you so much for your sweet words and so happy you stopped by my little blog 🙂

  4. says:

    January 4, 2014 at 6:18 pm

    I’m also kinda obsessed by mini pies right now, having made some for our Christmas road trip, and then devoured all of them before getting a photo. Yours sound wonderful, can imagine using some fig or blackcurrant jams that we have in the pantry!

    • tworedbowls says:

      January 4, 2014 at 6:35 pm

      Haha! They go unbelievably quick, don’t they? Especially for being so rich … Lol, oops. Mm, I think both of those jams sound fabulous — I’ll have to keep those in mind for next time!

  5. says:

    January 4, 2014 at 7:24 pm

    These are too cute, and even though I’m scratching my head at making pastry from scratch (me + baking = disaster), it’s tempting, very tempting. Gorgeous photos as usual, and, hello — how have I not noticed that you redesigned your site?! It’s darling, and the subtlety lets your rad imagery shine. Job well done! I’ve got “finally get off my ass and move to self-hosted” on my to-do list for 2014. We’ll see when I can make it happen! Congrats and, again, so lovely!

    • tworedbowls says:

      January 4, 2014 at 11:35 pm

      Dude, if I did it, you totally can. It’s not as hard as I thought it was — just gotta keep everything cold and … resist the urge to smash it into things when it starts softening. Lol. And aw, thank you SO much for your kind words, Emily!! Bowl #2 is a whiz at digital art and helped me redo my logo on a tablet as my Christmas present 😉

      Definitely give self-hosting a try!!! I enjoy it, but half the fun was the layouts, since I was too cheap to shell out for customizable themes on Yours look so gorgeous already — I adore your site layout/design!

      • says:

        January 11, 2014 at 8:55 pm

        I need a Bowl #2 to help me out! (Mine designs cars, not websites, boo.) I’m fairly confident I can pull it off, but it’s a matter of carving out the time to learn the ropes — though I’m sure I’ll be grateful for the knowledge later.

        And you’ve given me a modicum of hope when it comes to pastry. But I’m terrible at resisting urges, especially those to smash things. 🙂 We shall see!

    • tworedbowls says:

      January 4, 2014 at 11:36 pm

      Yay, definitely do!! Her recipes always look so droolworthy. Thanks so much Cate — happy new year to you too!

  6. says:

    January 6, 2014 at 2:31 am

    I’m glad you’ve guest posted for Nancy. She’s a dear sweetheart. And it’s great to know that you’ve only started blogging for 6 months. You blog looks fantastic and I see you’ve learned pretty quick!

    • says:

      January 6, 2014 at 11:44 am

      Haha I just went back and looked, and I created this in April! So I guess technically 8 months. I just always think of June as when I really started because that’s when I inherited my hand-me-down DSLR, and started seriously thinking about whether to keep this up as a regular thing… I think I posted twice in April and then shelved it for two months 😉 I had no idea I’d really keep going with it until much later… Funny how these things happen, huh?

      So glad I guest posted for her too!! I can’t think of anyone else I’d want my first guest post to be for, she’s the true definition of a friend. Can’t wait to see yours this week :):)

    • tworedbowls says:

      January 6, 2014 at 11:46 am

      Ahh, I am so so happy to read that! Yay and welcome! 🙂 And yes, what a winning combo in any form, huh? 😉

  7. says:

    January 6, 2014 at 12:10 pm

    I just can’t get over how awesome your photos are looking!! And your blog! Serious props for someone who’s been blogging for only six months–wow! You are an inspiration. I feel like you’re already coming close to rivaling those blogs that you post in your Blogs I’m Loving series–I don’t know how you manage to find so many amazing ones every month! So impressive.

    And I love that you’re letting us get to know you better–now I can call you Cynthia instead of just “lady” all the time haha.

    I ADORE the light in these photos. Kind of reminds me of My Name is Yeh/Oh Ladycakes and Joy the Baker-ish composition. YAY YOU!!

    • tworedbowls says:

      January 6, 2014 at 12:29 pm

      Aww, Erika!! Such sweet words! And it means so much, seriously, because I feel like it can be difficult to figure out with your nose pressed so close to your own work whether you’re improving and what you need to improve upon. Sometimes it feels a little myopic from your own perspective, don’t you think? (And I’m especially glad you said you loved the light because I felt it was tragically dim in a lot of the photos I was processing. Winter light, you are my unconquerable foe.)

      I’m also glad to know I’m not oversharing! 😉 It was scary but worth it. So glad to call you my blog-friend, Erika! <3

      PS Also, if we're talking inspiration, I was definitely inspired by a certain someone’s window photos! So thank you so much for that! I was definitely stuck on posterboard backdrops for awhile there…

      • says:

        January 6, 2014 at 4:11 pm

        I can definitely, definitely relate to the myopic feeling. So no worries, you have me here to tell you that your light is looking fantastic!

        AND the window photos really?? I am so flatteredddd 🙂 Dirty little secret: I just cannot figure out how to get the posterboard backdrops to work for me (too many weird shadow casts, etc.) so I can pretty much only do window photos lol. Sadface.

  8. says:

    January 6, 2014 at 3:44 pm

    Your hand pies are just gorgeous, im impressed with how good you are at not making them leek! I usually steer away from this kind of thing because I am so prone to adding WAY too much filling about 15 times consecutively, I just dont want any of it to go to waste damnit!

    • tworedbowls says:

      January 8, 2014 at 6:35 pm

      Haha aw! You know, I actually like the crispy leaked parts though, is that weird?! And I kind of liked the look of the batch I did where I didn’t tamp the edges as hard. They were more evenly round, though they did leak a bit more. It’s a toss-up…. Thanks for stopping by, Em!! 🙂

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