Archive | Worth Blowing Your Diet

Valentine’s Day – Sweet Memories

Candy from the heart - by Crown Candy Kitchen in St. Louis

When I was a kid growing up in the Midwest, Russell Stover was the “swanky” candy. I remember my dad buying big, red, heart-shaped, boxes of it for my mom every Valentine’s Day. We kids would each get a little box of something – usually the less-prestigious Whitman’s Sampler. Well, chocolate (and I!) have come a long way since then. Give me a wicked-dark bar from Poco Dolce or Dandelion, and I’ll see hearts. No need for a froofy box. And yet, I was delighted when a pal visiting from St. Louis brought a heart full of old-school chocolates from Crown Candy Kitchen – my hometown’s oldest soda fountain (celebrating its 100th birthday this year). Look, nonpareils with colored sprinkles! Sometimes memories taste good, too.

New York City: 5 Things Worth Blowing Your Diet For – #2

Come to mama! Cupcakes at Magnolia Bakery
At 10:30 on a Friday night, there’s a line out the door at Magnolia Bakery in the West Village. This may be because their cupcakes were anointed by “Sex & the City” – or just because they’re so damn good.
The Bottomless Pit doubles down – scarfing two cupcakes before I can eat one!
Magnolia has been cranking them out for years, despite the fact that the whole operation looks like it’s run by unruly, overgrown kids. There’s no standard cupcake decoration here – one staffer might favor colored sprinkles, while another goes for a single, minimalist sugar daisy. There will always be more swirling oceans of icing than your mother would have ever allowed. You can be guaranteed that its lavish buttercream goodness will end up on your face, hands – and probably clothes.
Magnolia Bakery – no adult supervision, fortunately.
Since I lived in Magnolia’s West Village neighborhood ten years ago, the price has jumped from $1.50 to $2.75 per cupcake. But it’s still one of the best dessert bargains around. And you still serve yourself from a tray in the window, so you can grab the one (or three, if you’re the Bottomless Pit) cupcake that calls out to you and nestle it into a cardboard box. Assuming you don’t devour it on the spot, like the clusters of cupcake-scarfing hipsters grinning like gleeful 3-year olds. Magnolia Bakery 401 Bleaker St. (corner of 11th St.) There are 2 other locations but, really, visit the original! 212-462-2572 Open til 11:30 pm; 12:30 am Friday/Saturday Want to know when a new post is up? Subscribe to my RSS feed and follow me on Twitter!

New York City: 5 Things Worth Blowing Your Diet For – #1

Why on earth don’t more restaurants serve popovers? They are the food equivalent of a torrid affair: steamy, naughty and full of hot air. On New York’s Upper West Side, the Popover Cafe has been popping them out for years. I made a beeline for a basket of their monsters right after getting off the redeye. This lovechild of Yorkshire pudding and cream puffs is best served fresh from the oven – crisp on the outside but moist and slightly eggy on the inside. Even better, Popover Cafe serves them with strawberry butter. The Bottomless Pit (aka, my husband) titled this photo the “popover autopsy.” Was he hoping to creep me out so he could eat more? No luck, buddy! For those of you who can’t get enough, BLT Steak turns out a wicked Gruyere version that’s set on the table as a far-superior alternative to a bread basket. Know any other popover sources? Do tell! Popover Cafe 551 Amsterdam Avenue (at 87th St. – 1 block from the #1 subway line) New York, NY 10024-2803 (212) 595-8555
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