Posted in Pics

MTA at Columbus Circle: CB&W

Oh dear, I missed last week’s challenges. I went away for the holiday weekend and it threw off my whole schedule. Anyway, I’m back!

I’m still experimenting with selective colorization in my black and white photos (my first attempt was reasonably successful). I’ve downloaded GIMP and have been slowly learning it over the last month. Continue reading “MTA at Columbus Circle: CB&W”

Posted in Pastries

Faux Fudge: TBT

There’s something about winter that makes me crave candy. Perhaps it’s because I’m more willing to tolerate standing in a hot kitchen stirring tempered chocolate or boiling sugar when the alternative is braving the arctic temperatures of the North East. This winter it’s not actually been very cold. Just today the mercury creeped up into the mid-40s!

Plus my apartment kitchen doesn’t really lend itself to full scale candy making.

I think I might have to settle for making my ‘fake fudge.’ It’s made with condensed milk and lots of chocolate. It solidifies into something very close to fudge when it’s chilled. It’s incredibly easy and really delicious. So while it’s not quite real fudge, maybe it’s better!

That’s why today I’m throwing back to that time that I made this fudge and actually bothered to write down the proportions of everything rather than my usual throw-handfuls-of-chocolate-and-fixin’s-into-the-pot-and-hope-for-the-best method of making my fake fudge. Continue reading “Faux Fudge: TBT”

Posted in Pastries

Triple Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies: Recipe (and TBT)

Oh dear, I’m off from classes (I’ve got a lovely, long winter break) and so have completely lost track of the days of the week! So today for my belated Throwback Thursday–shall we call it Throwback Friday?–I’m giving you a treat.

A simple recipe for triple chocolate oatmeal cookies! It’s winter and we are headed back to work and school after the holiday (some people much later than others); don’t you want to curl up inside with a cup of cocoa and a cookie? Well this can get you there pretty darn fast, no electric mixer involved. Continue reading “Triple Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies: Recipe (and TBT)”

Posted in Pics

Names: WPC

What’s in a name? That which we call a rose, by any other name, would smell as sweet.

This week’s photo challenge was simple: names. I almost used a photo I took many years ago in Stratford-upon-Avon that shows the grave stone with Shakespeare’s name on it. But it’s not actually a great photo, even if it is a great subject.

So I took my camera out to Lincoln Center, because I love it. The low slung stairs have displays that show different information (like what’s showing that night). It also says the name of the famous Lincoln Center plaza with the founding–the Josie Robertson Plaza–and of course the name “Lincoln Center.”

The photo didn’t come out quite as I’d wanted–they display is only on at night but to get the steps properly exposed, I ended up over exposing the lights. You aren’t allowed to use a tripod on Lincoln Center’s plaza so it’s difficult. I’ll have to go back another night and work on it. I decided to make this black and white, to play up the simplicity and contrast, and ended up quite happy with this all things considered.


On the other end of the spectrum, I love this photo of the brightly informational posters the the names of upcoming performances at Lincoln Center. Again, the exposure isn’t quite right, but it’s a hard balance (especially for hand-held photography). And again, I’m quite pleased with the final product. What a fun challenge!

Posted in Pastries

Lemon Chiffon Cake: TBT

Throwback to when I was in the second cake unit in culinary school (about 3 months into the program, I think) and piped a basketweave decorations for the first time. I ended up have to make this exact cake (well, pretty much) for my final exam. It was, arguably, the hardest assignment since no one else was forced to do buttercream decorations and make a different filling. But I loved the chiffon cake and even after all the genoise we made during the course (this was the only time we made a chiffon cake), I found it easier to get perfect.
The one in this photo isn’t perfect, but it was close. The buttercream was a perfect consistency, if I remember correctly, but still not an amazing flavor. It was an Italian buttercream and, if I’m forced to use a meringue based buttercream, I prefer Swiss buttercream. Still it looked great and was really easy to pipe.

Continue reading “Lemon Chiffon Cake: TBT”

Posted in Pics

Twinkle Lights: Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge (CFFC)

Guess what? I found another photography challenge! It’s hosted by the same site that runs the Black and White Photo Challenge I started last week. This one is a bit different: there’s fun new a theme every week that explores different aspects of a month or two long series of ideas. A new series started this week: twosies. Sort of pairs of opposites so far. This weeks’s challenge is titled “Light and Dark.” I love it!


As I’m learning, light is vitally important to photography. After all, photography is (at it’s most basic) capturing the images made by photons hitting film (or a digital sensor, as the case may be.) Continue reading “Twinkle Lights: Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge (CFFC)”

Posted in Pics

Resilient: WPC

Resilient. It could mean so many things. As a New Yorker, I thought about photographing the new building where the World Trade Center had stood–talk about resilience. But I was doing that because it fit the challenge, not because it inspired me.

So I took my camera, with my new 40mm prime lens attached, for a walk. It was a beautiful day. I thought I’d see something.

I took pictures of bulbs sprouting from under dead leaves. I found some pansies that were somehow hanging in there after a recent cold snap. Continue reading “Resilient: WPC”

Posted in Pastries

Fudgy Chocolate-Orange Brownies: Recipe

Happy New Year everyone!

2016 was quite the year. Some very good things happened for me personally (I started grad school, for one). But overall, it’s a year I’m quite glad to have behind us. Terrorist attacks across Europe, Aleppo, Brexit, Trump, Carrie Fisher (I met her and Gary, her adorable dog, at my vet a few years ago. She was so kind and friendly as we sat and chatted in the waiting room, just what you’d hope a celebrity would be like.)

So, I thought I’d start 2017 on a high note by sharing the recipe for the Chocolate Orange Brownies I made for the New Year’s party I attended. Enjoy!



  • 14 tbsp butter (1 and 3/4 sticks butter)
  • 3/4 cup bittersweet chocolate chips (approx. 5 oz)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • pinch salt
  • zest of 1/2 navel orange*
  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 flour
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder

Continue reading “Fudgy Chocolate-Orange Brownies: Recipe”