The bread is toasted and golden now, filling the cabin with undeniable aroma of French toast. One slice goes down on the plate, promptly smeared with sweetened cream cheese and layered with fresh strawberries, then topped with another steaming hot slice. The cream cheese begins to fall over the edges, the strawberries peeking out. I dust the plate with powdered sugar like a light snowfall and take it to the table where the syrup is waiting and the light is still pouring in, reflecting back at me in pools of maple.
Four years ago, when my eldest son turned nine, he declared that he was getting too big for the cupcakes I made every year on his birthday. He wanted a big cake. Gasp. Cupcakes were safe. Cupcakes I could do. This was the day the cupcakes died. It was early on in my food writing days and I, admittedly, had very little experience decorating bigger cakes. When I asked him what kind of cake he wanted, he announced it would be a lime cake and that it would be green, his favorite color. This week, as my son reached his thirteenth birthday, I revisited that first key lime cake recipe that made me the confident cake-baking mom I am today.
When I’m at my local library or bookstore, you can most often find me in the cookbook section. Shocker, I know. When I pore over a cookbook, I’m looking for more than just recipe inspiration. I’m taking in the food photography and styling. I’m soaking up the fine design details like the fonts and colors. I’m listening to the author’s voice and seeing if it resonates with my own. I’m familiarizing myself with the weight of the paper, the texture of it, the way it smells when the book is opened.
I’ve rounded up a bunch of my favorite GREEN recipes to help make your St. Patrick’s Day as festive and flavorful as possible.
I have had a pancake obsession all my life. When I was little, I would automatically navigate to pancakes on breakfast menus and was incredulous whenever anyone with me ordered something other than pancakes. “What is the point of an omelette when there are pancakes to be had?” I would wonder to myself, thinking I knew a secret no one else knew. As a kid, a trip to the International House of Pancakes was nearly as fun as going to Disneyland. At home, I’d practice my early pancake-making skills with those bright yellow boxes of mix.