Piña coladas might possibly be my favorite thing to drink in the whole, wide world. When we go out for Mexican food, what do I order to go with my combination plate? A piña colada. If I’m lounging by a fancy resort pool in the tropics, what do I have the waiter charge to the room? A piña colada. Sipping on a cool, fruity drink while laying in the warm sun is pretty much the most delightful thing I can think of! With sunny weather here for good (fingers crossed), I can’t wait to enjoy these all summer long for cook-outs, family BBQs, afternoon snacks…
Super Tiki is the perfect font to go with these delicious Strawberry Piña Coladas. It’s fun, it’s tropical, and it’s got just the right amount of retro kitsch. It looks like a Gidget movie, for crying out loud!
I’m a total and complete sucker for good chicken salad, and I have been for as long as I can remember. When I was little, one of my favorite dinners was chicken salad in pita pockets! I’m lucky to be friends with Connie, who is a wonderful cook all around, and a fantastic chicken salad maker. Now that I’ve talked her into giving me the recipe, I don’t think my chicken salad-loving life will ever be the same!
I spotted this fun font, Mayonaise by Maria Nunes, several months ago, and was just waiting for the perfect recipe to go with it: something a little retro with a nod to the 1950′s. I love that the font is crisp and clean, but still has a hand-written vibe. It is decorative and special, but completely easy to read. It’s kind of perfect!
2 cups mayonnaise 2 Tablespoons dry ranch dressing powder 1/2 cup Cool Whip 4 cups cooked, chopped chicken breast 1 cup chopped celery 1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced 1 cup cooked orzo pasta 1/3 cup slivered almonds, toasted 1 cup chopped grapes
In a medium bowl, combine mayonnaise, ranch dressing powder, and Cool Whip. Whisk until smooth, and set aside. In a large bowl, combine all remaining ingredients. Toss with mayonnaise mixture, cover, and refrigerate until needed.
Did y’all know that April is National Grilled Cheese month? I don’t know who decides these things but I’m going with it, because I love anything cheese! And while I love your good old fashioned slice of cheese between some bread grilled cheese, I though it would be fun to round up some more exciting variations of this yummy sandwich!
I’ve missed sharing some of my local favorites ever since my Boston Photo Tour was retired – so I’m starting a new column called Out & About! Sometimes I take New Orleans for granted, so I want to embrace it and share my favorite spots with you! I’m starting out with one of my neighborhood favorites, Satsuma Cafe. They specialize in breakfast and lunch and are so good at what they do. They have the BEST juice, awesome sandwiches, pastries and coffee! I would get juice from there everyday if I could! It is such a cute little spot with a few outdoor tables. I go to the Maple Street location, but they also have one on Dauphine Street. It’s in walking distance from my house, which is great for a nice day. You know, I think I am going to head there right now!
Somehow, I managed to escape childhood without ever having a Peanut Butter Scotcheroo. And honestly, that’s practically a crime! I don’t even know where to start with these devilishly good little bars. They are pretty unassuming–they just look like glorified rice krispy treats–but they are so delicious, I had to give over half of the pan away because I seriously could not stop eating them! And then I was really sad that I didn’t have any, and instantly regretted my momentary generosity! I mean, who willingly parts with chewy, gooey bars of sugary, peanut buttery goodness slathered in chocolate?
The font I picked to go with the Peanut Butter Scotcheroos is simple and straightforward, almost child-like, but modern and cool at the same time: Mountain Retreat by Andrew Clark. I knew I wanted a tall, skinny, hand-written font to go with the Scotcheroos, and once someone clued me into the beauty that is Mountain Retreat, I’ve spotted it everywhere! I guess I’m a Mountain Retreat/Scotcheroo addict!
6 cups Rice Krispies 1 cup corn syrup 1 cup sugar 1 cup peanut butter 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips 1 cup butterscotch chips
Pour Rice Krispies into a large bowl and set aside. In a medium saucepan, combine corn syrup and sugar. Cook over medium heat until sugar is dissolved and mixture had come to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter. Pour mixture over Rice Krispies and stir gently with a large spoon until well combined. Spray a 9×13″ pan with nonstick cooking spray, and press Rice Krispies evenly into pan. Place the semi-sweet and butterscotch chips in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave, stirring every 30 seconds, until chips are melted and mixture is smooth. Pour over the Rice Krispies and spread evenly with an offset spatula. Allow to cool completely before serving.
When Ciera and I first started talking about The Font Feast, one of the examples I pitched to her was a recipe for Madeleines inspired by the lovely, delicate font Matilde. And I’ve been meaning to make that pairing happen ever since! For anyone not in the know, Madeleines are light, delicate little cookies that are really more like tiny cakes. They are ever-so slightly sweet, deliciously buttery, and always baked in a scalloped, shell-shaped pan. They are so good on their own, and extra special dunked in tea, coffee, hot chocolate, or ice-cold milk. These Madeleines have just a hint of citrus flavor from a sprinkling of orange zest, and tiny freckles of milk and dark chocolate to make them even more delicious!
Chocolate-Flecked Orange-Scented Madeleines Inspired by Matilde Font
adapted from The Gourmet Cookbook
1 1/4 cups cake flour 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon orange zest 3 large eggs 1 teaspoon vanilla 2/3 cup sugar 12 Tablespoons butter, melted and cooled 3 oz chocolate, finely chopped (I used equal parts milk and semisweet chocolate)
Preheat the oven to 350°F. If your madeleine pans* are at all dark, preheat the oven to 325°F instead. Spray the pans thoroughly with a nonstick cooking spray that contains flour, and set aside. Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and orange zest in a medium bowl, and set aside. In a large bowl, beat eggs on high speed until lightly and frothy, about 1 minute. Briefly beat in the vanilla. While mixing on medium, gradually add the sugar, then turn the mixer up to high speed and beat until the mixture has tripled in volume, 3-5 minutes. Using a spatula, gently fold in the flour mixture, then the butter, then the chopped chocolate. Scoop a Tablespoon of batter into each shell-shaped well, and place the madeleine pans in the oven. Bake for 10-12 minutes, until the edges are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center of one cookie comes out clean. Allow to cool for 1-2 minutes before turning out onto a rack to cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar before serving. Makes 3 dozen cookies.
*If you don’t have a madeleine pan, but you’re just dying to try these tasty little cookie-cakes, you can use a mini muffin pan. The resulting cakelets technically won’t be Madeleines, but they’ll taste exactly the same.
Happy New Year, Everybody! Melissa from Lulu the Baker here with another fabulous installment of The Font Feast! I first spotted this gorgeous font, Pepita Script, on a guest post that Lisa of Elembee wrote for Curating Style last summer. And I instantly fell in love with the beautiful swoops and swashes. Pepita Script is feminine without being fussy. It is light and clean, just a little delicate, but not too fancy for everyday. I thought these yummy Sparkling Citrus Floats would be the perfect complement to Pepita Script–sweet, light, and refreshing!
So, I cheated a little bit this month. I swore to myself when I started this series that I would find the font first, and the recipe second, that I would wait until a beautiful font inspired me to make something tasty, that I’d let it all happen very naturally and organically. And that method has gone swimmingly for me so far, and in fact, a font did inspire this month’s recipe. The problem is that the font that inspired Mallowmint Cupcakes–a gorgeous, fluffy font named “Swirl”–isn’t actually developed yet. I saw a prototype of it on Pinterest and became obsessed with it! And I tried to find something exactly like it for this post, but there just isn’t anything like “Swirl.” Hopefully someday. For today, I found a fat, happy font that looks like marshmallows. It’s called “Cream Puff,” and reminds me of old-fashioned tins full of chocolate-covered Christmas delights–the perfect companion for sweet, peppermint cupcakes topped with gooey, marshmallow frosting, and topped with crushed peppermint and sparkling glitter!
for the cupcakes: 2 1/2 cups cake flour 1 Tablespoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 1/4 cups whole milk 4 egg whites 1 1/2 cups sugar 1 stick (8 Tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
for the mallowmint frosting: 2 7-oz jars marshmallow fluff 2 sticks butter 4 cups powdered sugar 1-2 teaspoons peppermint extract crushed candy canes Disco Dust in Rainbow
Preheat the oven to 350°F and line 30 muffin tins with cupcake papers. In a medium bowl, combine cake flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In a large measuring cup, add egg whites to whole milk and whisk to combine; set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat sugar, butter, and peppermint until light and fluffy. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture and beat until combined, then beat in 1/2 of the milk mixture. Repeat until all flour and all milk has been added, then beat 2 minutes on medium speed to mix thoroughly. Divide batter evenly among prepared cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean, 18-23 minutes. Remove from oven, place on a cooling rack, and allow to cool completely before frosting.
While cupcakes are cooling, make the frosting. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer (clean, of course!), combine marshmallow fluff and butter. Beat until combined. Add powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon peppermint extract, and beat until frosting is smooth. Taste the frosting, and add up to 1 more teaspoon of peppermint extract if desired. Spoon frosting into a large pastry bag fitted with just the big, round coupler–no tip needed. When the cupcakes are cool, pipe a modest swirl of frosting onto the top of each cupcake. Avoid piping a huge pile of frosting on the cupcakes; it tends to “relax” as it sits, and you don’t want to have to scoop up the droopy bits! Just before serving, sprinkle generously with crush candy cane pieces and a pinch of Disco Dust! You might think the Disco Dust is unnecessary, but it takes these cupcakes from Ah! to AAAHHH!!!
I spotted the lovely Homestead font on Jenny’s Font Friday column on Hank & Hunt a few months ago, and immediately wanted to grab a mug of luscious hot chocolate and curl up in a warm, toasty blanket! It looks sturdy and old-fashioned and plaid-ish, and brings to mind manly lumber jacks and snowy evergreen forests. I wanted to make shortbread cookies flavored with maple syrup to go with this gorgeous font, but liquids are the enemy of shortbread; adding a liquid like honey or maple syrup to otherwise crispy, crunchy shortbread will make them soft and chewy. Luckily, you can add maple flavor to sweet treats without adding any syrup thanks to maple sugar! Everyone who’s eaten these shortbread cookies so far has raved. And then gone back for seconds!
3 sticks butter (1 1/2 cups), at room temperature 1/2 cup maple sugar (I got mine from Trader Joe’s) 1/2 cup brown sugar 1/2 teaspoon vanilla 1/2 teaspoon maple flavoring 3 1/2 cups flour 3/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat the oven to 350°F. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix the butter and sugars until just combined. Add vanilla and maple flavoring, and mix. In a separate bowl, sift together flour and salt, then add to butter mixture. Mix on low just until dough comes together. Dump dough onto a lightly floured surface and shape into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic and chill 30 minutes. Roll dough to a thickness of 1/2 inch and cut into individual cookies. I used a 2-3″ maple leaf-shaped cookie cutter, but any 2-3″ cookie cutter would work. Place cookies on an ungreased baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. Bake for 18 minutes, until the edges just begin to turn golden. Remove from oven and cool before serving.
My blog, Lulu the Baker, is mostly recipes, but I love anything to do with design–especially beautiful fonts! And like all good design, a great font can be a source of inspiration. Sometimes a striking font inspires you to throw a party. Sometimes it inspires you to re-design your brand or update your logo. In my case, a great font inspires me to cook!
I came across the Los Banditos font while designing a flier for my husband’s office. I can’t even remember what the flier was for, but I needed a font that was old-timey and reminiscent of the Wild West. Los Banditos makes me think of the Spanish Missions all along the coast of California, of ivory-handled pistols with red roses sticking out the barrels and black mariachi suits covered in intricate embroidery. Best of all, it makes me think of tacos! Of sweet and tender shredded pork topped with cool, crisp lettuce and salty cheese wrapped in warm corn tortillas!
3+ lbs boneless pork roast 1/2 cup apple juice 1 cup brown sugar, divided 1 teaspoon kosher salt freshly ground black pepper 1 teaspoon chili powder 1 10-oz can mild green chile enchilada sauce* 1/2 teaspoon onion powder 4-5 good shakes worcestershire sauce 1 lime (optional)
Add all ingredients except 1/2 cup brown sugar and lime to a large crock pot. Cook on low for 8 hours. 30 minutes before the pork is done, add the reserved 1/2 cup brown sugar and stir. When cooked through, remove meat to a large cutting board and shred using two forks. Place shredded pork in a large bowl or baking dish and spoon over it enough of the cooking liquid to make it moist but not soupy. If desired, squeeze lime juice over the meat and toss. Serve in warm tortillas with your favorite taco toppings.
*If you have time, you should really make this green enchilada sauce from Our Best Bites. It is amazing! I make a big batch, divide it into 1- or 2-cup servings, and freeze it to use in this recipe, or for enchiladas or smothered burritos.