Edible Gift Guide | @thefauxmartha

I’m certain it was Maggie, founder of Eat Boutique, who turned me on to gifting food. Aside from trading turkeys made from Keebler Fudge Shoppe cookies, Rolos, and candy corns with neighbors growing up, the idea never crossed my mind. Two years ago, when we still lived on the east coast, we made the trek to Boston for Maggie’s annual Holiday Market. (Boston locals, it’s going on now! Details here.) The shelves of the market were filled with thoughtful, beautifully packaged, small batch food items. In that same spirit, Maggie recently published her first book, Food Gift Love. It’s full of homemade recipes for gifting—from pickled cucumbers to limoncello to candied blood orange rinds. I dog-eared her Salted Dark Caramel and prayed it was the caramel sauce recipe I’d been waiting for. The one I could actually replicate. It’s been my achilles heal since the first day I stepped foot in the kitchen. Not to sweet, almost burnt in flavor. That’s how she describes it. That’s also how my first successful caramel tasted. It worked! Read more

Blender Eggnog | @thefauxmartha

I have a lightening quick post today, on all fronts. Yesterday, just hours before the annual neighborhood Christmas party, Lucy (my neighbor) and I got together to concoct what some said is the best eggnog they’ve ever had. Now, I don’t usually care for eggnog, but I care very deeply for this one. We tested several versions until we hit perfection, hiccup. Ella Wang, Diddy, Dumps, Wingnut, Mrs. Thompson, Sweet Alice, and Aunt Cleo provided the eggs. Lucy has a chicken coop and 4 tiny humans that come up with the best names. Now about that blender eggnog. It comes together quick, in a blender. It’s light in texture compared to the thick custardy version you might be used to (mostly due to the raw, uncooked eggs) and not overly sweet. I know the raw eggs will ruffle some chicken feathers. Choose your eggs wisely, wash them well before cracking, and crack on a flat surface (like a counter), says my neighbor Beth. Skip the alcohol if you must, but please don’t skip the freshly grated nutmeg. Clink, cluck, cheers! Read more

Make Ahead Orange Clove Rolls | @thefauxmartha

I forgot to post the picture of Hallie throwing a tantrum for the twelfth time the morning after Thanksgiving. And the picture where I threw one too, beet red and angry. And I didn’t tell you how I threw out the stuffing before anyone could take seconds because it didn’t taste right. I bought the wrong bread. And I didn’t record the argument we had about how to best hang the garland outside either. But I did want to tell you about these make ahead orange clove rolls we consumed during those days. That cream cheese glaze, it can cover a multitude of sins. Read more

Blender Dutch Baby | @thefauxmartha

There’s American pancakes. True to their name, they’re cake like and leavened with baking powder or soda. They’re divisive in nature. Fluffy or thin? Kev likes his fluffy. I like mine the way I cut a deck of cards—thin to win—preferably with wheat flour. And then there’s French crêpes. A paper thin pancake. Best whipped together the night before with plenty of eggs and a good rest before hitting the griddle in the morning. It’s in that time that the flavor develops and milds while forming many tiny but strong webs within the batter. No chemical leavener necessary. Wedged in between the American pancake and the French crêpe, sits the Dutch Baby. Our second favorite baby. Hal is number one, of course.  Read more

Vegetarian Chipotle Bowls | @thefauxmartha

Come the weekend, we’re communal food people. I’ve talked about this same topic over these fajitas and this podcast recently. I like food speckled across the table as the centerpiece, mostly because it seems fitting. The table is our meeting place, our sustenance. I like the way passing bowls full of food gently nudges the start of a conversation. Can you pass the rice? And the beans? 
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Baked Onion Rings | @thefauxmarthaThere’s a point between here and there where the newness runs out. When I do feels like do I have to? When a newborn’s cry feels common and exhausting. When misplaced rose colored glasses shatter beneath a tiny foot and a pile of leaves. When you walk through the back door for the 100th time and the house no longer smells new. It’s to be expected, even when it’s not. 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

How to make good coffee at home | @thefauxmartha

There are more important things that need protecting in this world than my morning coffee routine. But I protect it because there are more important things in this world. Coffee fuels those efforts. Quick and fast are heralded words these days. I like to apply those terms to my weeknight dinners. But with a new day soon to be swept away with 10,000 to-dos, I like to start my mornings slow. With pour over coffee that requires a quiet and steady attention. Hallie now knows our coffee time is sacred time. She pulls out two enamel mugs from the drawer. “Oh, here you go mommy.” We cheers with our pretend coffee while I continue attending to the real coffee. This all started after going to a coffee cupping, much like a wine tasting, during our time in Chicago. I fell in love with the nuances in flavor and the brewing technique. I’ve been making pour over coffee since, 3+ years and counting. Here’s a guide to making really good coffee at home. Read more