A few days ago, a neighbor came over to perform minor surgery on Portia. I had just gotten back from school and, other than some commercial cookies, I didn’t have much to offer. Enter some frozen chocolate chip cookie dough that, in 20 minutes, yielded freshly baked cookies.
There are three standard desserts you will find in any pizzeria in Italy: panna cotta, torta della nonna and profiteroles. The reason for their ubiquity is that they are all bought from the mass-producing behemoth – for being factory made, they are actually pretty decent. But because I know they are not handmade, I never order them.
Let’s make one thing clear: I excel at baking and pastries but I am not a bread guru. In fact, the two techniques stand quite apart, requiring different skills and different mindsets. I make loaves, focaccia and quick breads on a semi-regular basis but I am not entirely sure you should follow my bread-making advice. There are much more qualified people.
A few days ago, lured by a recipe I saw on goop, I found myself at the stove stirring a tapioca pudding made with almond and coconut milks and a bit of maple syrup. Since the cancer diagnosis a year ago, I had to make some changes to my diet and eliminating refined sugars is one of them.