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Overnight Mango Ginger Donuts and NEW BLOG!

16 Jan

Overnight Mango Ginger DonutsIn order to start the new year our right, I’ll be blogging from now on at

Same great recipes, different address.

Don’t forget to subscribe to the new address so you continue receiving new recipes directly to your inbox.

Come on over to the new blog and check out this recipe for Mango Ginger Overnight Donuts!


Celebrating a New Year with Champagne Mousse

29 Dec

So many reasons to celebrate this new year with an elegant and festive champagne mousse. Some are small reasons (I bought a new cat-print dress) and some are big reasons (I graduated pastry school!)

Pastry chef

Kelly Poindexter, the pastry chef…no, no scratch that – the world’s BEST pastry chef! Hey, a girl can dream, no? So, after a year of kneading, whisking, flouring and rolling, I’ve graduated from the Escuela de Gastronomia del ISMM with a title of Pastelero Profesional (Professional Pastry Chef). I’m absolutely over the moon about my accomplishment, although it now leaves me with that burning question: What next? Will I look for a job as a pastry chef here in Argentina? Maybe it’s time to go back to the US? So many choices, and all I want to do is celebrate.

And what better way to celebrate than with a champagne mousse? This mousse is very easy to make, and the taste of champagne is subtle but just enough. I highly recommend to play around with different citruses. Orange, grapefruit, mandarine, they really bring out the flavor and pop of the champagne. You’ll need to let this mousse sit for at least 4-6 hours in the cold before serving, so plan ahead! It also freezes beautifully.

I wanted to pair my mousse with a blueberry sauce, which at the last minute I folded into some softly-whipped cream. BAD idea. Not only did it dilute the intense blueberry flavor, it also floated unevenly to the top of the mousse. Next time, I’ll just put the sauce on after the mousse is nice and cold.


Champagne mousse

250 cc. champagne or sparkling wine

1/2 squeezed grapefruit

80 grams of egg yolk

125 grams of sugar

10 grams of powdered gelatine

300 cc of heavy whipping cream

Make a sabayon:

Mix the yolks, sugar, 200 cc. of the champagne and the grapefruit juice in a heatproof bowl.

Beat continuously over a bain-marie, until thickened. You can test if it’s done by inserting a wooden spoon into the sabayon and drawing a line on the back of the spoon with your finger. The mixture shouldn’t drip down the line you just created.

Set aside to cool.

Beat the heavy whipping cream until soft peaks have formed.

Dilute the gelatine in 50 cc. of champagne, it always helps me to zap in the microwave for 2 seconds. Add diluted gelatine to the sabayon.

Fold in the whipping cream.

You’ll want to put this in it’s final mold immediately, before the gelatin sets.

Some suggestions on presentation:

Wide martini classes with slices of strawberry and a thin cookie.

Make a single layer of vainilla cake in a springform pan and when completely cool, top it with the mousse and put into the refrigerator. Top with fresh blueberries.

Cherry Clafoutis: Summertime Breakfast

17 Dec

Cherry Clafoutis Recipe

One of the most difficult things about being an American living in the Southern Hemisphere and reading food blogs is the opposite seasons. While everyone in the North is blogging about and posting pics of tree-ripe peaches, green, tender asparagus and juicy raspberries, we in the South, are freezing our butts off and trying to find more uses for oranges and grapefruit.

But summertime in Buenos Aires has finally arrived! And with the hot weather, we also have an abundance of beautiful cherries. Ripe, dark, sweet and juicy. Perfect for a summery breakfast.

Now, I really don’t like to turn my oven on in the summer, but this quick recipe has minimal oven time and minimal supervision. Just set the timer and leave the room. In 18-20 minutes you’ll have a beautiful, puffy cherry clafoutis.

Some recipes suggest eating the clafoutis fresh from the oven, but personally, I like it at room temperature – I feel like the vanilla flavors come out more, and you won’t burn your mouth with bubbling cherry juice.

Clafoutis is easy to whip up, and the texture is like a dense flan – which makes for an indulgent breakfast or snack. You can also bake these up in individual molds and serve them for brunch, just be sure to keep an eye on them in the oven.

Cherry clafoutis

Cherry Clafoutis Recipe

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C)

Cherry Clafoutis Batter:

1/2 cup (65 grams) all purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

2 tablespoosn (25 grams) sugar

3/4 cup (180 ml) milk

1 tablespoon melted butter

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Whisk all ingredients together in a bowl until smooth. Set aside to rest.


3/4 pound (350 grams) fresh sweet cherries, pitted

1 tablespoon (13 grams) butter

1 tablespoon (15 grams) sugar

Melt butter in oven-proof 9-inch (23 cm.) skillet. Add cherries and sauté until soft, about two minutes.

Sprinkle cherries with sugar and cook until the sugar has dissolved.

Pour the batter over the cherries and bake for 18-20 minutes, until golden brown and puffy.

Women who inspire me and their recipes

11 Dec
My Grandma, Suzanne Kagan

My Grandma, Suzanne Kagan

Everyone loves their grandma, there’s no denying that. Their cooking is always the best, they know exactly what to say to cheer us up, grandmas and they are sweetest and cutest people we know. Luckily, I’ve been blessed with a fantastic grandma.

You see, my grandma is not a typical grandma. She is a cool grandma. She texts, she has Facebook, and she swears sometimes (don’t deny it granny, I’ve heard you!) She also happens to be a fashion designer, jewelry maker and amazing cook. You can check out and purchase her fancy purses on Etsy. She’s pretty much the star of the family.

When I was a little girl, I loved her for her endless supply of cookies at Christmas time and when she dressed me up like a doll with the clothes she sewed herself. As a teen, we bonded over iced coffees, thrift shopping and “making beads” as we’d call it, or as my grandpa would call it – covering the dining room table and floor in crystals of all shapes and sizes. Now as an adult, I start to see my grandma as the incredible woman she is: an entrepeneur, an amazing chef, an artist, a diva and an endless source of motivation and inspiration.

To honor her and all grandmothers, I asked her to answer a few questions and also share one of her and my favorite recipe: Secret Kiss Cookies. My grandma got this recipe from her neighbors while living in Milwaukee, WI and has been making them every single year since 1966! This recipe is definitely a family tradition and favorite.

Interview with my Grandma, Suzanne Kagan

When did you start cooking and why?

I cooked with my mother when I was small and enjoyed learning new recipes.

You cook a lot of healthy food and pay attention to what you put in your body. Do you feel this makes a difference in the way you feel? 

I do pay attention to what I put into my recipes and it does make a difference on the way I feel…using less sugar, salt and fats help keep us healthier.

You are a lady of many talents and interests, where do you find your inspiration (and energy!) for new projects?

I love to keep busy and got inspired from my mom and grandmother when it came to cooking and sewing. I love going out and looking for new ideas and that keeps me inspired and energized. You helped too, when the two of us got together and started making the pretty jewelry. One exciting project just leads to another. I’m still looking and finding new things to make. It never ends and you feel a satisfaction when you finish a new project.

What is your favorite thing to cook?

I love to make soups, but I think my favorite is desserts, especially during the holidays!

Who inspires/has inspired you in your life?

As I said, my mother and grandmother got me started and it just goes on down the line and makes me proud when I see how you have been so inspired to keep this love of cooking A family tradition ….you especially keep me inspired with your new and inventive ways and methods .. You make me proud.

Thanks granny, you make me proud too!

Secret Kiss Cookies

Secret Kiss Cookies

1/2 pound butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 teas. vanilla
2 cups flour
1 cup chopped pecans   chopped very fine or use ground pecans.
Hershey kisses (unwrap)
Cream together butter, sugar and vanilla.
Add flour and pecans.
Wrap 1 teas. dough around chocolate kiss.
Place on cookie sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Sprinkle with powdered sugar while still warm.
Makes about 90 cookies.

Salted Caramel Sauce Recipe

14 Nov

Salted Caramel Chocolates

A few months ago, I tried my hand at making these amazing salty, chewy caramels from David Lebovitz. It was my first time making candy and even *gasp* using a candy themometer! Which really can be quite scary and takes a lot of practice balancing between a themometer, spatula and boiling pot of sugar.

The first batch turned out like a burnt, caramel sucker. I had over-cooked and the sugar formed a hard, hard mass. The second batch was better, but this time under-cooked and as a result a bit too soft. I decided to call off my candy-making days for a while because, quoting the great Forrest Gump, candy-makin’ is tough.

Until I found the recipe for a salted-caramel sauce that is easy and addicting. I’ve been using it for everything, on top of ice cream, sandwiched between cookies, drizzled on upside-down apple cake and in my most recent venture, as the filling for some very delicious chocolates. Or you can just eat it with a spoon directly from a bowl…not that I’ve done this…

If you’ve never had salty caramels, don’t be afraid. There’s nothing better than the sweet toffee notes and little spikes of salty goodness rolling all over your tongue. You’ll be hooked for life on salty sweets.

Salted Caramel Sauce from Smitten Kitchen

Makes about 1 1/3 cups

1 cup sugar
3 ounces (6 tablespoons) salted butter
1/2 cup plus two tablespoons heavy cream, at room temperature
1/4 tsp. sea salt for sprinkling or more to your liking!

Melt the sugar over medium heat ( I choose to take my time and cook at a lower temperature for longer in order to avoid burning the sugar) whisking the sugar so it cooks evenly. If you get little chunks of sugar sticking together, don’t worry, as the mixture heats up the will dissinegrate, but you smush them up a bit to help with the process.

The sugar will liquify, cook this liquid until it reaches a dark copper color. Add the butter all at once, and keep whisking. Turn off the stove and add the heavy cream, careful it foams. Whisk until all ingredients are incorporated and you have a smooth sauce.

Pour into jar, bowl or use immediately. Sprinkle with a little bit of seasalt and enjoy!

Cleaning tip: boiling water cleans up any hardened sugar!

Behind the scenes with NOLA chef and rose water profiteroles

19 Oct

On my recent trip to lands far-away, culinary inspiration hit me hard. I love trying new foods, flavors and combinations. But I must admit that after two years of living in Buenos Aires, even a medialuna filled with dulce de leche was seeming exciting to me. But after travelling around the US for three weeks, seeing the variety and endless possibilities of tastes and textures, I knew I had to step out of my fruit pie comfort zone and do something different.

This must-needed change came in the form of a bottle of rose-water extract and a request from NOLA chef for profiteroles to serve as a dessert at her weekly Mexican pop-up night at Tout le monde café.

NOLA chef Mexican

I had never played with rose water before, mostly because I have traumatic childhood memories of a strongly-perfumed rose soap, but I won’t bore you with that story. Rose water is strong and must be used sparingly. A little goes a long way. It’s got an amazingly fresh and floral (duh) flavor that complements perfectly fresh fruit. I chose to go with strawberries since they are in season right now. Continue reading

Sugar Cookies, Royal Icing and the Buenos Aires Cookie Club

20 Sep
Sugar Cookie Recipe

Sugar Cookies (Pink and blue frosting)

What a success the first Buenos Aires Cookie Club was! There were a few hiccups along the way (how many cookies should everyone make??), but in the end everything turned out beautifully and we were blown away by the positive reaction. This meeting was just the first of many to come, and the grand event will be near Christmas time! Just think: dozens and dozens of beautiful Christmas cookies. Mmmm…

I thought for weeks about which cookie I’d make: peanut butter? gingerbread? biscotti? In the end, I decided to make a childhood classic, that I have fond memories of decorating as a child: Sugar cookies with royal icing.

They turned out decent…I didn’t realize the icing would need so long to dry, so they kind of stuck together during transport. But the taste was awesome! I threw in some orange juice and lots of orange zest to give it an extra kick.

Buenos Aires Cookie Club

Sugar Cookie Recipe (Adapted from Joy of Baking)

3 cups (390 grams) flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 cup (227 grams) butter, room temperature

1 cup (200 grams) white sugar

2 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 tablespoons orange juice

Zest of one orange

Preheat oven to 350F (177C).

Mix flour, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Cream the butter with the sugar, then add eggs one at a time, then the vanilla and orange juice and zest. Add the flour and mix well. Divide the dough into two balls and cover with plastic wrap and store in fridge for at least an hour.

Roll out the dough and cut with your favorite cookie cutter. Bake 8-10 minutes, until the borders are lightly brown. Cool completely before icing.

Royal icing:

2 large (60 grams) egg whites

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

3 cups (330 grams) powdered sugar, sifted

Beat eggs whites with lemon juice until foamy, add powdered sugar and continue beating until you get the right consistency. You don’t want it to be too runny otherwise they will drip off the cookies. You can add food coloring at this time.

Have fun with decorating! You can put the icing in a pastry bag, try different tips, different colors, use a tooth pick to swirl it around, anything really. Here’s some inspirational cupcakes that I made:

Cupcakes with Royal Icing

The best lemon curd recipe and how to use it

6 Sep

Lemon CurdThe first time I tried lemon curd was during a trip to London when I was 21. I had it slathered on a piece of toast, and it completely blew my mind and rejected every idea I had on all the jams and jellies eaten in my lifetime. Curd is sweet, tangy, cool and smooth. Not too sweet, not too sour. And completely versatile.

If you search “lemon curd recipe” on Google, you’ll get bombarded by dozens of different recipes and techniques. Which is the best? Which is the simplest? Well, I’ve done the work for you, weeded through the recipes and selected this recipe for lime curd, which can be apdated to other citruses, like lemon! I’ve also tried grapefruit and my mom tested this recipe with orange, in both cases we did half lemon juice and it tasted amazing.

Lemon Curd (adapted from Lime Curd recipe on Honest Cooking)

3 large eggs
1/2 cup (96g) of sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup (0.118L) of fresh lemon juice
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla

1. Whisk the eggs and sugar in saucepan until a light lemony color. Add in the zest, lime juice and pieces of butter.

2. Place saucepan over medium heat and constantly whisk mixture until it starts to thicken.  Allow it to come to a simmer for a couple of seconds and remove from heat.  Cool to room temperature, add vanilla and then place in a container in the fridge. It will thicken more as it cools down.

How to use it:

1) Slathered on a freshly-baked scone

2) As a filling to a spongy vanilla caked, topped with my whipped white chocolate and orange ganache.

3) Served with toasted baguette, perhaps in this shape?

3) Sandwiched between two crispy, chewy macaron shells.

4) Fill a pâte sucrée with it, and top with toasted coconut and/or whipped cream, or some fresh fruit.

5) You tell me how you used it! 🙂

Whipped White Chocolate and Orange Ganache Recipe

15 Aug

White Chocolate Ganache FrostingOne thing that Argentina doesn’t do well is cake frosting. The idea of buttercream frosting is non-existent on Argentine cakes, and the most home cooks use is a baño de chocolate, melted chocolate or just whipped cream spread thickly on the cake. Most bakeries and restaurants go a little further and pile on layers and layers of swiss or italian meringue, like in the famous tarta rogel, which will most likely send you into cardiac arrest for the amount of sugar it contains.

Luckily for Buenos Aires, I offer an amazingly fluffy cake with buttercream frosting, which you can order for your birthday, tea party or any time you are in the mood for cake.

And although I love buttercream, I wanted to experiment with other types of frosting, one that doesn’t consist solely in butter and sugar, but that was rich enough to compliment a fluffy cake. I did some research on the internet and quickly decided on a white chocolate ganache, but I still wanted that fluffiness you get from a buttercream. With a little bit more research, I found out that you can change the texture of ganache by whipping it when it’s cool. And so was born the Whipped White Chocolate and Orange Ganache, an ultra fluffy, melt in your mouth type of frosting, that’s light in texture but rich in flavor. A perfect topping for cakes and cupcakes.

Whipped White Chocolate Ganache

Adapted from Joy of Baking

8 ounces (227 grams) white chocolate, cut into small pieces

3/4 cup (180 ml) heavy whipping cream

2 tablespoons (28 grams) unsalted butter

2-4 tablespoons of orange marmalade (to taste)

Place white chocolate into a heat-resistent bowl.

Boil cream with butter and then pour over chocolate and stir until smooth.

Let cool a bit and then stir in the orange marmelade.

Chill until firm, but not solid. Whip until fluffy and use immediately!

45-minute cupcake challenge

1 Aug

Chocolate fudge cupcakes

The other night I was laying around watching some old episodes of Master Chef, putting off getting dressed for a special dinner date with the husband, when all of a sudden -whaaattt– one of the challenges on Master Chef was to create an incredible, unique cupcake in 45 minutes!

Pfff, I thought…how are they supposed to bake, cool and decorate a cupcake in just 45 minutes?? I mean, whenever I bake, sure I always say, “ok, I’ll be done with this in one hour”, but then there’s facebook, the cat’s meowing, the phone rings, I get hungry etc. But then it got me thinking…could it be done? I looked at the clock…I had 1 hour to shower, get dressed and be out the door to meet the husband….I’d have to shower while the cakes were baking…but…it could be done!

Considering that I was seriously craving chocolate, I decided to make a Chocolate Bomba Cupcake. Continue reading

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