king arthur flour holiday table: harvest pumpkin scones

kaf harvest pumpkin scones | two red bowls

Too often I feel like scones get the short end of the stick in the coffee shop scene. Maybe it’s because they sit out behind the glass for a little bit too long by the time that they make it into a wax paper bag, ending up just a little too dry and flavorless, unsatisfyingly crumbly, and thus under-appreciated. I’ll admit that before I tried making them at home, I succumbed to that belief, too, thinking that the way I wanted scones to taste was something that existed only in my mind: little puffy triangles that were craggy on the outside, but tender and moist within, with just the slightest springiness to them to distinguish them from cakes or cookies. But in actuality, I think a homemade scone, fresh and warm from the oven, is just that. Slight crunch on the outside, soft inside, with a subtle resilience to the crumb. And they’re, surprisingly, so very easy to make!  We should all have homemade scones in our kitchens. (At least on the weekends.)

kaf harvest pumpkin scones | two red bowls

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kabocha & maple caramel baked french toast

kabocha & maple caramel baked french toast | two red bowls

I’ve been mostly working from home in these last couple of weeks before the home stretch, but went in to the office last week to wrap up loose ends, take home all the heels that I totally forgot about for the last six months, and to do fun things like meet with my pro bono clients, who got all the adoptive funding we requested! It did mean that that hearing didn’t end up happening, but when it’s because we got everything we asked for, that’s okay with me.  To be clear, I think our happy outcome had everything to do with (1) my clients being wonderful parents with the sweetest daughter who really deserved it, (2) the other side really wanting to postpone the hearing, and (3) me really not wanting to postpone the hearing because hey guys, I have a biological baby deadline, and nothing to do with any lawyering I did.  But in a job where most of the time I represent (or, help people senior to me help partners senior to them represent) clients in long, drawn-out matters with things at stake that sometimes feel more abstract than real, helping parents get funding for their sunny, sweet nine-year-old, and getting this thank-you card, was about the best cap on starting maternity leave that I could ask for.  

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jasmine-honeydew sorbet // a cuisinart giveaway!

jasmine-honeydew sorbet

Dear diary.  Dear everyone.  On Sunday, I had my very first cup of coffee in four months.  !!!  To be fair, I think it was about two tablespoons of coffee in a cup of milk and a boatload of sugar, so it tasted more like melted coffee ice cream than coffee, but I’m going to say it counts. It was the most exciting moment of my Sunday. Or July.  I never ever imagined I’d stop drinking coffee while pregnant — instead, I was terrified of going without it, and I’m pretty sure I looked up that “one-cup-a-day” rule way before B3 was a figment of our imagination (and maybe even before B2 was a figment of mine).  I was holding onto that rule with both hands and feet and entire being all the way up until one day around week 6, when I woke up and coffee suddenly and inexplicably smelled like the worst thing in the world.  Such woe.  But somehow this weekend, after four months of matcha (which was, granted, far from the worst), I opened up the coffee tin and thought mm instead of oh no get this noxious tub of poison away from me, and B2 had to listen to me chant “look at me, I’m drinking coffee!” as I sipped a tiny melted-ice-cream for the rest of the morning. It was an excellent Sunday.

jasmine-honeydew sorbet

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lime bars with saffron

lime bars with saffron from #sweeteroffthevine

The first time I had an Apt. 2B Baking Co. creation was at a picnic in Prospect Park (yep, the same as this one — it was a very gastronomically exciting day) on the kind of Brooklyn day that would be so welcome right about now — one of those rare, early summer New York days that is neither stiflingly humid nor oven hot, but breezy, just warm enough, and brilliantly sunny. Yossy’s sour cherry pie bars were kind of like if all that weather got baked into dessert — a touch of sunny warmth from a buttery crust and a craggy landscape of crumble topping, but filled with a cool, bright tartness from the sour cherries. They were thoughtful, in that they were portable and perfect for sharing at a picnic, impeccably seasonal, in that they capitalized on that elusively brief sour cherry season, and totally delicious, in that they were totally delicious. So it should be no surprise that Yossy’s beautiful new cookbook, out as of last Tuesday, is full to the brim of recipes just like that one — thoughtful, seasonal, and totally delicious.

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orange-almond sweet rolls with basil glaze

orange-almond sweet rolls with basil glaze | two red bowls

orange-almond sweet rolls with basil glaze | two red bowls

Happy first week of spring! With how mild our winter has been this year, it doesn’t feel real that it should be spring already, but here we are.  (And it’s supposed to be sunshine-y and 70 degrees today!)  Still, for the lingering blustery days we’ve been having here and there, I thought one more batch of soft, squishy sweet rolls, maybe for an Easter brunch or two, was in order before all the fresh, springy produce and summer baking to come.  Because, you know, it’s not difficult for me to feel that squishy sweet rolls are in order.  (Just see these and these!)

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