Baked Maple Donuts | @thefauxmartha

Deadlines. Colds. Finally catching up. Fall break. No school. Not on the calendar. Mom fail! Deadlines dropped. Behind again. Maple baked donut testing with Hal. For Dad. Needs maple extract. No where to be found. Amazon Prime? Text Oh, Ladycakes for maple extract recommendation. Frontier Co-op. Call Whole Foods. Run to Whole Foods. Maple flavor secured. Read more

Baked Pumpkin Donuts | @thefauxmarthaSara of Cake Over Steak organized an epic #virtualpumpkinparty today with over 70 bloggers. That means 70 new pumpkin recipes just hit the WWW. Kim K., this is how you break the internet. I’ve used that joke before, haven’t I? I’m nothing if not consistent. So consistent my friend Adam, husband of The Vanilla Bean Blog, said I might as well call myself The Donutmartha. He’s right. I’ve posted my fair share of baked donut recipes. I was actually surprised to realize that I’d never worked on a baked pumpkin donut before. In another life, I’d like to have a baked donut truck. Read more

Baked Apple Cider Donuts | @thefauxmartha

I like round food. Pizza, baked donuts, biscuits. I guess I should clarify, I like round food with flour. Wheat flour if possible. I’ve passed this trait on to Hal (along with my stubbornness). Couldn’t some of my better qualities seep through to her?  The good news—meal times are rarely, if ever, a fight, as long as I get food on the table fast enough. In that case, she’s exactly like her dad. Food. Now. You can see how this is a problem for someone who likes to make everything from scratch. Read more

Baked Blueberry Donuts | @thefauxmartha

“Take a step back. You’re standing too close,” I texted my mom. She sent me a picture of a painting she was working on, worried that she’d added too much detail to the foreground. It’s a line I’d learned from my art teachers over the years. I’d heard it so often, it involuntarily came out. “It looks fine. Just take a step back. You’re standing too close.” Read more

Glazed Chocolate Donuts | The Fauxmartha

Nothing quite says touchdown! like glazed chocolate donuts. Am I right? You should definitely add these gems to your Super Bowl menu. The fellas will go gaga over them. I’m only kidding. Make them now, or tomorrow, or any other day. But maybe not for the big match. Not kidding—I just found out the Super Bowl is this Sunday.  Read more

Vanilla Bean Donuts | The Fauxmartha

This post is sponsored by Horizon Organic. All opinions are my own. Have no fear. I’m not selling out to the big man, only working alongside  a company I already use and love. If you’re down with Horizon Organic Milk as much as I am, here’s a $1 off coupon. Holla!

Sometimes when I say things like “holla” or “holla back youngin, woo woo!”, my husband reminds me I’m a 70 year old trapped in a 20-something year old body. The Martha Stewart Show was my favorite show in college. He may be on to something. Read more

Mix and Match Donuts | The Fauxmartha

If you’ve been around here long enough, you know I like my donuts baked not fried. I know, I’m an anomaly (apart from the fried donuts I recently found at the farmer’s market that nearly made me forget about these). I also like one good recipe per baked treat. And when it’s all-natural too, my heart goes pitter patter. So, in honor of National Donut Day (Friday), I made baked donuts. Naturally.  Read more

Baked Donut Holes | The Fauxmartha

What do you get when you cross a pregnant donut lover with a craft blogger over at The Proper Pinwheel? A surprise baby shower with baked donut holes on a DIYed pinwheel. Myself along with a bunch of my favorite craft bloggers are having a virtual baby shower today to celebrate Lexy and her sweet baby girl on the way. If all goes as planned, Lexy and I will have our littles only a week or so apart. They’ll soon become best friends after we move to Denver next summer (fingers triple crossed). Read more

Lemon Poppyseed Muffin | The Fauxmartha

Breaking news these days—the babe slept in her crib, therefore her room, for the first time this week. All by herself. We’re lame and already miss having her in our room. She also only woke up once to feed. And then slept in the swing the next morning, which she’s hated abhorred up until this point. Sweet, tiny victories. I took advantage of having both hands free and made doughnuts from Ashley’s new book, Baked Doughnuts for Everyone. Read more

When adding doughs and batters to a baking pan, rarely do I just pour. A couple extra utensils make all the difference in achieving a uniform and professional looking outcome. When making baked donuts, I use a piping bag. When making cookies, I use a small spring release scoop. When making cakes, cupcakes, muffins, waffles, and pancakes, I use a large spring release scoop. When making sugar cookies and biscuits (and sometimes when making mini cakes), I use a biscuit cutter. There must be a million other tricks out there. What do you do?

Tart Cherry Almond Baked Oatmeal | @thefauxmartha

On Saturday mornings we have this unspoken rule that breakfast must come out of the oven, the waffle iron, or the cast iron griddle. Though sometimes it comes out of the car. Kev and Hal pick up donuts for themselves and a croissant for me. Special is the name of our weekend breakfast game. Read more

Peppermint Mocha | The Fauxmartha

What will you be known for? Me? Most likely waffles with wheat flour. Baked Donuts with wheat flour. And homemade lattes that rival the $4+ variety. Now up on the bar, a Peppermint Mocha—the drink that first turned me on to coffee. It was high school. Senior year. I was walking through Target. Have I told this story before? Read more

Veggie Pot Pies in a Mug | The Fauxmartha

Crisp temperatures. Cozy couches. Comfort food. Lazy weekends. Sideways sun. Mug filled hands. Red tipped noses. Chunky knit socks. Blue faded jeans. Apple cider donuts. Wood crackling bonfires. She’s back in full force. Hi, Autumn.

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Today marked the start of the farmer’s market season in Oak Park. I’ve been looking forward to this day for weeks. I even popped out of bet a little earlier—with excitement. And the weather was just perfect for a walk. My graduate school husband got a couple homemade donuts—while I got some asparagus, rhubarb, and black raspberry jam. Perfect Saturday morning.

We love asparagus minus it’s after effects, if you know what I mean. It is super easy to cook. Very versatile. With a quick 10 minute cook time. You’re gonna love this recipe, if you can even call it that.

Asparagus

Bunch of fresh asparagus spears (support your local farmers!)
Drizzle of olive oil
Sprinkle of sea salt

1. Preheat oven to 425°.
2. Wash and dry asparagus. Break off hard woody ends.
3. Place on baking sheet covered with foil for easy clean up.
4. Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with sea salt.
5. Bake for 10 minutes. Enjoy.

TIPS
• This recipe is so basic, it’s easy to dress up. Try adding lemon or orange zest, lemon juice, orange slices, garlic slices, balsamic vinegar, or parmesan cheese.
• If you overcook your asparagus, they will no longer be spear-like, but limp and soggy and a little less nutritious. 

PS—Do you notice anything different around here? The ole blog was in need of an update. I’m trying to do it myself with the little web knowledge that I have—scary! If only it was as easy as cooking asparagus.

A post from The Fauxmartha on minimalism and kids toys

Do you remember when I started a permanent series on Minimalism twelve days after the new year? Well, twelve days after that, I signed a contract to write the cookbook The Minimalist Kitchen, which will be in your hands April 2018. This series (and life) took a major pause as every effort went into creating the book. I wont write a whole lot more on minimalism in the kitchen until after the book comes out, which creates plenty of space to talk about minimalism from a different perspective. Since the beginning of January, I’ve gotten several emails about minimalism and kids with subject lines like—SOS, Help, is it even possible?! Read more

Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal | @thefauxmartha

I didn’t go to school to study it. I’m guessing you didn’t either. (On the off chance that you did and can somehow still tolerate this space, I apologize for all the cringe-worthy sentence structures.) Yet somehow we’re all editors. I guess we’ve always been editors to a degree—choosing what we share and what we don’t. But now it’s forever stained into the internet—into your blog, your Instagram feed, and Facebook wall. It’s neatly housed in one space—to be read, to be enjoyed, to be critiqued as a body of work reflecting your life. Read more

Rosemary Cheddar Quick Bread | @thefauxmartha

I started baking in high school. But I really started baking after getting that pink bible of a King Arthur Flour Whole Grain Baking Book in college. I made my first galette, trifle, and rock hard rolls from that book. Rock hard because I used boiling water, like a true novice, to activate my yeast (112° seems like boiling water when you grow up under the Texas heat). My mom still buys an extra set of rolls during the holidays as a backup to mine. That was 10 years ago. Read more

Twin Cities Restaurant Guide

last updated October 2017

Twin Cities Restaurant Guide | @thefauxmartha

We’re recent transplants to the twin cities (summer 2014) but have fallen in love with the area and food scene overnight. Here’s where we frequent. It’s a short list but an ongoing collection. A little bit about our tastes: we’re classic (maybe basic?), far from fancy eaters who care a whole lot about quality. We like to wear jeans and go to dinner without a reservation. We find ourselves at bakeries and coffee shops most often. I’m not sure if that’s to do with having a toddler or loving coffee and pastries. Only 24 hours in Minneapolis? Here’s where I’d go.

Minneapolis

Dinner

Hola Arepa

Venezuelan stuffed arepas, yucca fries, and house made cocktails. So much flavor packed into everything. My favorite restaurant in the Twin Cities. Here’s what I order: El Diablo (cocktail), Shredded Beef and Plantain arepa, yucca fries with chimichurri sauce.

Red Wagon Pizza

Pizza! So far, this is my favorite pizza shop in Minne. The outdoor patio is classy yet casual in the summer. Here’s what I order: The Bahn Mi pizza, but even the plain cheese is excellent with a glass of the $5 sparkling white wine.

Pizzeria Lola

More pizza! It’s a toss up (get it) between Lola and Red Wagon for me. They both make killer pizzas. So far, it’s the only two places I’d recommend for pizza in town. Here’s what I order: Cauliflower appetizer, The Iowan, and and Old Reliable.

Young Joni

Young Joni is owned by the same brilliance as Pizzeria Lola. Expect a wait. It’s a city favorite. If you get the chance, sit at the bar near a wood-fired oven to watch the fire roar and the food cook. It’s amazing. Here’s what I order: The Cauliflower, Bibim Grain, and any of the pizzas

Broder’s Pasta Bar

House made pasta. No wonder there’s always a decent wait. Here’s what I order: seasonal house salad, penne rosa al rosmarino, and tiramisu with house made mascarpone.

Revival

Fine southern dining. Don’t miss their St Paul location! Here’s what I order: 2 piece all white chicken, mac + cheese or white cheddar grits, collard greens, and biscuits + sorghum butter.

Bar la Grassa

Swanky Italian food. You might want to claim a reservation first. Here’s what I order: cauliflower gnocchi.

Spoon and Stable

Fine Midwest fare made with French techniques. Reservations can be hard to come by, but I recommend skipping those and eating at the bar. You can order from both the restaurant and bar menu here. I prefer the bar menu as it’s not quite as fancy. Whatever you do, don’t skip the house made cocktails. The menu is always changing.

The Bachelor Farmer

Local, seasonal ingredients with a Scandinavian composition. We finally caught a reservation here and it was magnificent! It’s right across the street from Spoon and Stable. During the day, I frequent their cafe. We took guidance on what to order from our server. She too was excellent. Save up, and go for all the courses.

Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Birchwood Cafe

Good real food is their motto. And that it is. Birchwood cares as much about flavors as they do the ethics of food. Go for dinner, breakfast, or lunch.It’s super vegetarian friendly. Here’s what I order: the menu is always changing based on the season. If an ingredient sounds iffy, order it anyways. You can’t go wrong here.

Hi-Lo Diner

Diner food done right. It’s classy food with just enough grease to qualify as diner food. The restaurant is an original 1957 Fodero Diner shipped from Gibsonia, PA and restored to its original beauty. If you take a picture while there, it’ll blur the decade lines. It’s open all day and into the night. Go for every meal and cocktails too. Here’s what I order: A Fjord Fiesta to start (cocktail made with Aquavit), pancakes or the biddy board for breakfast and chicken pot pie for dinner. Kev goes for a Hi-Top, usually the Gary Co’oper.

Green + The Grain

A celebration of salads—this little spot is my new favorite place for lunch. The salads a hearty and could almost be split they’re so large. They have two spots in the skyway + a food truck. Plan to stand in line. It’s worth the wait. Here’s what I order: The Cowboy Salad.

Common Roots Cafe

Local, sustainable, really good food. This spot reminds me of Birchwood—quality ingredients with ethical sourcing practices. It’s super vegetarian friendly too. Here’s what I order: a vegetarian falafel. On the list for next time—the wild rice veggie burger.

Coffee

Northern Coffeeworks

This is my new favorite coffee shop. It’s modern but warm. If you stay, they’ll serve your coffee in a beautiful, hand thrown ceramic mug. Don’t just go for coffee, their menu and bakery case is so good. Try the biscuit!

The Bachelor Farmer Cafe

Their house cup of coffee is perfection to me. It’s a light roast but not lacking in flavor. It’s bright but not too hoppy (like an IPA). I upped my coffee budget for their beans. Here’s what I order: a cup of house coffee and a scone.

Cafe Alma

This cafe, restaurant, and urban inn is one of our favorite spots. We’ve been to all three. If you’ve ever heard the hum of hospitality, you’ll hear it here too. Here’s what I order: Coffee and a croissant (maybe my favorite in town).

Spyhouse

Artful, swanky coffee house. I take a number from their interior designer with every new location they open. Here’s what I order: a latte with house made almond syrup and a pastry.

Bakeries

Bogarts

Bogarts is perfect—down to the simple homemade donut menu, subway tiled wall, and red sign. You’ll find us picking up donuts here most Saturday mornings. They’re not too sweet or fried tasting. Here’s what I order: you have to try them all, the menu is so small. But don’t miss an order of holes!

Rise Bagels

This is what bagels should taste like. If their bagels weren’t already the star, their homemade cream cheese spreads might steal the show. Here’s what I order: plain bagel with a shmear of lemon blueberry cream cheese.

Rustica

Rustica is home to the best pastries and cookies in the twin cities. Their bittersweet chocolate cookies made me move here (they ship these anywhere!). Here’s what I order: a bittersweet cookie or a croissant.

Mon Petit Cheri

This is a tiny bakery/cafe in our neighborhood. Everything is made from scratch, down to the bread. Here’s what I order: a seasonal brioche roll to-go for breakfast or the roasted veggie sandwich and house salad for lunch.

Sun Street Breads

My first google search after moving to the area: Best Biscuits in the Twin Cities. That landed me here. Here’s what I order: a biscuit with house made jam.

The Copper Hen

Though they serve dinner, lunch, and weekend brunch, it’s the cupcakes we find ourselves going back for. The cake is perfectly sweet and moist with a tight crumb. I break my cupcake in half to top the frosting. Here’s what I order: a vanilla or champagne cupcake.

Ice cream

Milk Jam

The newest ice cream shop to hit the area. It’s gourmet but recognizable. Here’s what I order: a scoop of Black (it’s vegan and divine).

 

St. Paul

Bakeries

The Buttered Tin

It’s a hopping spot for breakfast or brunch but worth any wait. Here’s what I order: a rosemary biscuit with house made jam.

Dinner

Mucci’s Italian

Modern flare with old school Italian recipes. The pizza is excellent (the fry their dough) but it’s the fresh pasta and house-made tiramisu that we’ll be going back for. Get there early or plan to wait a bit. It’s worth it.