Monday, December 27, 2010


It all began November 30th at Central Market Houston and ended Christmas Day. I am referring to Christmas Baking. From cooking Classes to Home Baking my hands have certainly deserved a well earned rest ! Traditional Mince Pies, Christmas Pudding & Brandy Butter, pastry, Cheesecakes and shortbread cookies. My supply of Kerrygold Butter and King Arthur Flour have depleted beyond recognition. So too have my supplies of booze ! Yes, as I mention frequently on my TV cooking segments, I use a lot of booze in my food !

The traditional Pudding is soaked in Guinness & Rum, Brandy Butter is made from Hennessy Cognac , Cheesecake is soaked in Baileys and the mince meat for the mince pies is saturated in Rum & Brandy. For me, the smells of home baking are extremely nostalgic and calming. Walking into a home that actually uses its oven is one of the most welcoming feelings. Funny how many people have such updated kitchens, all the best equipment and gadgets yet you can tell that they are rarely used. How?
It's just like a butchers block. At first it's smooth and new but over time as it is used and treated it becomes a trusted piece, one where you feel confident with your butcher !
A used kitchen is a great kitchen. The aromas become part of this warm place. No matter the size it's still the heart and soul of the home. It's a gathering place and a place to ignite the senses. Over the years kitchen styles change but, thankfully the aromas remain the same...........Comforting & welcoming....

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