A Bowl of Marzipan Cherries!

Marzipan Cherries | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

These marzipan cherries topped a carrot cake from Carole Bloom’s newest book I made for a friend’s birthday party this weekend. Cherries were the theme of her party, because her name is Carolyn Cherry! Her birthday happens to fall at a time of year when there is not a fresh fruit to be found. Not even those grown in South America. So what is a pastry chef to do? Make her own, of course! Read More

English Breakfast Tea Angel Food Cake

English Breakfast Tea Angel Food Cake | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

My second venture into Carole Bloom’s baking book resulted in a new household favorite. English Breakfast Tea Angel Food Cake (p. 590) from The Essential Baker is absolutely amazing. It is scented with tea, has the perfect texture and isn’t overly sweet. Paired with sour cherries and raspberry sorbet it is a lovely and light dessert for spring. (That is if spring ever comes!)

I was so taken with this cake and its unique twist on a traditional and often dull recipe, that I am going to share it with you. I’ve mentioned that I am in the process of baking my way through many of the cakes in this book for the Edesia cookbook group on May 19th. In fairness to Carole Bloom I will not share all of the recipes I make. I’ve decided to pick 2-3 that are exceptional in my modest opinion. If any of you have suggestions please share them with me!

English Breakfast Tea Angel Food Cake by Carole Bloom: Read More

Dark Chocolate Madeleines

Dark Chocolate Madeleines | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Over the course of the next month I am going to be preparing recipes from Carole Bloom’s latest baking tome The Essential Baker, which came out last year. Kim Ode from the Star Tribune hosts a wonderful cookbook review at the Barnes and Noble in Edina called Edesia (it means the Roman Goddess of Food). On May 19th I’ll be one of the “guest experts” and will give my opinion, along with some sample goodies of the recipes I’ve tested. Along the way I thought I would share some of my findings with you. Read More

Citrus Fruit Pâtes (French Fruit Jellies)

Citrus Fruit Pâtes | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Last week Graham and I went to dinner at Cosmos restaurant in Minneapolis where my friend Khanh Tran is the pastry chef. She is a brilliantly talented woman and all of the desserts were breathtaking. I am not generally this liberal with my praise of sweets. I’m often disappointed and rarely quiet about it. Khanh has managed to balance the art of beautiful presentation with deep and true flavors. The last thing we ate that night was a plate of mignardises (small bite sized desserts) and on the platter were two of my all time favorites: French macaroons and citrus fruit pâtes. Read More