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Category Archives: Cookbooks

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year … To be a Cookbook!

Written on December 15, 2012 at 2:36 pm, by

I believe that if you’re a cookbook, this has to be the best time of the year. Everybody is talking about you (and in my case sometimes talking to you). You’re front and centre in the bookstore. More likely than not, either you or one of your cookbook friends are being wrapped in pretty paper  Continue Reading »

The Art of the Cookbook

Written on October 29, 2012 at 8:28 pm, by

People ask me all the time how many cookbooks I own (never count them) and do I actually use them all (I certainly use a lot of them). Inevitably I’m asked which ones are my favourite and that’s a really tough one to answer as so many are near and dear to me. I’m happy  Continue Reading »

Magazine Mondays: Paris in the Spring

Written on April 30, 2012 at 7:12 pm, by

Something is going on. While I have a deep fondness for Paris ever since my trip there in 2010, the past few weeks have been filled with an almost unbearable longing to go back. Maybe it’s the cover of the latest issue of Bon Appétit. Maybe it’s the promise of spring. Maybe it’s all the  Continue Reading »

It’s The Most Wonderful Time of The Year!

Written on December 3, 2011 at 8:26 pm, by

December 1st is probably one of my favourite days of the year. Not only does it mark the end of November (always a tough month for my family), but it marks the beginning of the holiday season. I always give people fair warning. If you’re in my presence from December 1st onward you are more  Continue Reading »

All the Sweet Things

Written on September 5, 2011 at 11:36 am, by

As I take on the task of organizing the massive number of photos I took in Italy this summer, I find it’s taking a lot longer than expected and that it’s a lot harder than I thought it would be. This is mainly because every other photo, I pause to wistfully replay the scene captured  Continue Reading »


Written on December 29, 2010 at 5:49 pm, by

Focus. I know. It’s hard to look at a stack of pancakes without just thinking, “Ooooooh…pancaaaaaaaaakes.” It’s made even more difficult in this case because the picture of the stack of pancakes isn’t particularly good. That’s because I couldn’t focus. But I want you to really try and focus. Avoid the pancakes. Look at the  Continue Reading »

Magazine Mondays: Nigella Lawson

Written on December 20, 2010 at 12:30 am, by

I love Nigella. Like I really really love her. I love her food and her attitude and her eyebrows. I love her eyebrows. I wish she would publish a new cookbook every week because I would totally buy it. And I wish she would be on television more, not less. More. Just sayin’. Naturally I  Continue Reading »

Honourable Mentions

Written on December 18, 2010 at 7:40 pm, by

I really enjoyed my 12 Days of Cookbooks series! Having said that, I could have easily done the 31 Days of Cookbooks because there have been a lot of really great cookbooks published this year. While I’ve mentioned some of them already, there are quite a few that I haven’t mentioned and I wanted to  Continue Reading »

Back to our Regularly Scheduled Programming

Written on December 13, 2010 at 7:20 pm, by

Hello all! I have to apologize for the unexpected delay in completing the 12 Days of Cookbooks series. My site was down over the weekend but all has been rectified and we are back in business! I had planned a Magazine Mondays post today, however, that takes a back seat to the 12 Days of  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 10

Written on December 10, 2010 at 8:30 pm, by

As part of my ongoing desire to have more bread baking in my life, I’m delighted to bring you my choice for Day 10. That’s Elinor Klivans’ Fast Breads: 50 Recipes for Easy, Delicious Bread. Elinor Klivans is an accomplished baker and cookbook author. I’m happy to say I own many of her cookbooks and  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 9

Written on December 9, 2010 at 7:23 pm, by

Don’t be afraid. What you see at the top of this post is not a science experiement gone wrong. Trust me. It is the beginning of what I hope will become a beautiful loaf of bread. If you have ever dreamt of baking delicious bread at home, join me. I give you Tartine Bread by  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 8

Written on December 8, 2010 at 12:30 am, by

Let me just say this: if you wanted to fill up my Christmas stocking with these Sage Biscuits, I would not object. Whatsoever. They come from Amanda Hesser‘s incredibly satisfying and enthralling The Essential New York Times Cookbook: Classic Recipes for a New Century. I cannot believe the amount of work and effort that must  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 7

Written on December 7, 2010 at 12:30 am, by

Of all the months in the year, December is the one with the most parties. Sometimes it’s a relief when Christmas finally arrives because it means we can settle down to some beautiful meals and then … relax! Don’t get me wrong. I love the parties! I especially love the planning of the parties and  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 6

Written on December 6, 2010 at 12:30 am, by

Wow … we’re already at the halfway mark of the 12 Days of Cookbooks … hard to believe! There is never a shortage of Italian-themed cookbooks, especially at this time of year. Unfortunately, I find that many of them often disappoint for various reasons. Not so with Julia Della Croce‘s Italian Home Cooking: 125 Recipes  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 5

Written on December 5, 2010 at 9:15 am, by

While almost all of the cookbooks that you’ll see in my 12 Days of Cookbooks feature are books that are new to me in 2010, that is not the case with all of them. Case-in-point: Stonewall Kitchen Favorites: Delicious Recipes to Share with Family and Friends Every Day. This cookbook has been on my shelf  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 4

Written on December 4, 2010 at 12:08 pm, by

While I’ve been to New York City several times, I have never been to Sarabeth’s. I was enormously pleased to find out that Sarabeth Levine was coming out with a cookbook called Sarabeth’s Bakery: From My Hands to Yours. I don’t know if it’s made things better or worse that I own this cookbook because  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 3

Written on December 3, 2010 at 12:30 am, by

Ah, cookbooks! Where would we be without you?! Today I bring you a cookbook that I was anticipating for more than a year: Rosetta Costantino’s My Calabria: Rustic Family Cooking from Italy’s Undiscovered South. I first heard about Rosetta through her blog, Calabria From Scratch. My mother is a native of Calabria, born in the  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 2

Written on December 2, 2010 at 12:30 am, by

Sometimes, if my day isn’t going so well or if I just need to relax a little, I’ll visit the big, shiny bookstore that is very close to my place of work. Or I’ll go here. Both very dangerous places. But what’s a Cream Puff to do? Sometimes I just need that thrill of walking  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 1

Written on December 1, 2010 at 12:30 am, by

It’s December 1st. For Cream Puff, that means Christmas is here. Christmas in all its glory, all its baking, all its music, all its cheer and all its splendor! I. LOVE. CHRISTMAS. Last year, come December, I had so many cookbooks to tell people about that I decided to talk about twelve of them in  Continue Reading »


Written on September 21, 2010 at 2:06 pm, by

I have been thinking about endings lately. As I looked at the calendar and noted that today is the last full day of summer, I thought that the end of another season has come with a new one to begin. Today was also another ending of sorts. My mom and I attended the funeral of  Continue Reading »

Two For One

Written on August 4, 2010 at 6:30 pm, by

I’m going on vacation in a few weeks and I’m trying to work my way through as many cookbooks as I can because I have so many to tell you about! One of the blessings of having a food blog is the opportunity (the honour!) to have a peek at the amazing cookbooks that are  Continue Reading »

The Buttercream’s The Thing

Written on August 3, 2010 at 7:50 pm, by

Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing

Written on July 28, 2010 at 6:51 pm, by

For as long as I can remember, I have detested store-bought mayonnaise. It doesn’t matter the brand, the very sight of that off-white, jiggly stuff in a jar (or worse … squeeze bottle) is enough to make my stomach turn. While I am generally a card-carrying member of the condiments appreciation club, I cannot do  Continue Reading »

In the Divinest of Kitchens

Written on June 26, 2010 at 1:55 pm, by

I’m not ashamed to admit it. When it comes to “social media”, I’m just a tad behind the times. I’m still trying to figure out Twitter and while I have a Facebook account, let’s just say I’m apt to forget about it for weeks on end. It’s not that I don’t like interacting with people,  Continue Reading »

Take a Bite. A Big, Big Bite.

Written on June 15, 2010 at 7:58 pm, by

I love cheeky cookbooks. This is probably what first attracted me to the charming, shameless and utterly delicious cookbook Bite Me: A Stomach-Satisfying, Visually Gratifying, Fresh-Mounthed Cookbook. I remember it well. It was a Friday night, after work. I had taken my weekly trip to the local bookstore and was cruising the cookbook section for  Continue Reading »

Getting to the Fruit of the Matter

Written on May 16, 2010 at 5:31 pm, by

I always heed Cath’s call. Whenever she asks if I want to participate in a book event, I’m there. Especially when the author of the book is someone like Deborah Madison. Some people are born to write cookbooks and Deborah is one of those people. Her latest cookbook, Seasonal Fruit Desserts: From Orchard, Farm, and  Continue Reading »

Every Kitchen Should Be So Sweet!

Written on May 12, 2010 at 5:25 pm, by

I have been fortunate enough to have a few brushes with the pastry world. I have had the tremendous honour of having lunch with Dorie Greenspan and many, many, many years ago, shortly after completing my university degree and enrolling in a publishing certificate program, I had the opportunity to talk to Regan Daley. For  Continue Reading »

Smile. Have a Cookie.

Written on April 18, 2010 at 6:02 pm, by

In the moments when baking seems most impossible, I think of cookies and I smile. That’s because I know that as soon as I can get back to baking, I will be baking cookies. Is there anything more perfect in baking then a warm cookie, fresh out of the oven? How about a heart-shaped warm  Continue Reading »

Wrap Me in Cake

Written on February 2, 2010 at 12:30 am, by

I am a four-season child. By that I mean I have to live somewhere that has four distinct seasons. I can appreciate the allure of a place that is sunny and warm all year long, perhaps I might even visit said place for some rest or relaxation, but to live there permanently? Don’t think so.  Continue Reading »


Written on January 21, 2010 at 7:58 pm, by

Ever since the announcement in October 2009 that Gourmet magazine would cease publication, I’ve read countless tributes to the magazine and to the people who contributed to making it a favourite for those who love food and wine. I don’t know how many times I read the word impeccable in those tributes. Ruth Reichl …  Continue Reading »


Written on December 30, 2009 at 9:34 am, by

What is it about this time of year that makes us look back and wonder? What was the most important event of the year? Best song of the year? Favourite movie? Biggest discovery? It goes and on. In the days before the new year makes itself known, it seems we spend endless time evaluating the  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 12

Written on December 12, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

And on the twelfth day of the 12 Days of Cookbooks, I give you The Happy Baker by Erin Bolger. One of my frequent lunch-time treats during the workday is to walk up to Yonge and Yorkville and stop in at The Cookbook Store, Toronto’s best store. Admittedly, I try not to do this too  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 11

Written on December 11, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

And on the eleventh day of the 12 Days of Cookbooks, I give you Mad Hungry by Lucinda Scala Quinn. I first “encountered” Lucinda Scala Quinn on the show Everyday Food. I would catch an episode every now and then and was always impressed by her straightforward, pleasing dishes. When I found out that she’d  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 10

Written on December 10, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

And on the tenth day of the 12 Days of Cookbooks I give you Dolce Italiano: Desserts from the Babbo Kitchen by Gina DePalma. While it was published in 2007 and while I’ve owned it since it was published, I really only started to focus on this book during this past year. My birthday cake  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 9

Written on December 9, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

And on the ninth day of the 12 Days of Cookbooks, I give you A Year in Lucy’s Kitchen by Lucy Waverman. I’m not sure how well Lucy Waverman is known outside of Canada (hopefully very well). She’s a very well-respected food writer and cookbook author. Her most recent book is yet another winner. In  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 8

Written on December 8, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

And on the eigth day of the 12 Days of Cookbooks I give you Domenica Marchetti’s Big Night In: More Than 100 Wonderful Recipes for Feeding Family and Friends Italian-Style. Domenica Marchetti is a cookbook author of Italian background who has very quickly become one of my favourites. I also own her book The Glorious  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 7

Written on December 7, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

And on the seventh day of the 12 Days of Cookbooks I give you Carole Bloom’sBite-Size Desserts: Creating Mini Sweet Treats, from Cupcakes and Cobblers to Custards and Cookies. Carole Bloom is yet another brilliant pastry chef and cookbook author who I am lucky enough to “know” through her books. I own several of them  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 6

Written on December 6, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

And on the sixth day of the 12 Days of Cookbooks, I give you Mario Batali’s Holiday Food. Published in 2000, this book has been around for almost ten years but I only discovered it earlier this year while perusing some titles on-line. I immediately snapped it up and haven’t been disappointed. Besides being the  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 5

Written on December 5, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

And on the fifth day of the 12 days of cookbooks I give you The Craft of Baking by Karen DeMasco and Mindy Fox. Honestly, 2009 is a year where you could probably buy four or five baking books for the baker in your life. That’s how many high calibre baking books have been published  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 4

Written on December 4, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

And on the fourth day of the 12 Days of Cookbooks I give you Martha Stewart’s Cookies. I’ve had both success and failure with Martha Stewart recipes in the past, but this book, published in 2008, is a big success in my opinion. It made my list of top 12 cookbooks that I discovered in  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 3

Written on December 3, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

On the third day of the 12 Days of Cookbooks I give you Savory Baking by Mary Cech. Published this past summer, I bought this lovely book several months ago during one of my almost-weekly trips to my most favourite bookstore in the world. I’d never heard of author Mary Cech before, but I must  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 2

Written on December 2, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

On the second day of the 12 Days of Cookbooks, I give you Baking for All Occasions. December 27, 2008. That’s the day that I purchased Flo Braker’s brilliant baking book. I pretty much worship at the altar of Flo Braker, who is a stunningly accomplished baker, teacher and food author. This book was published  Continue Reading »

The 12 Days of Cookbooks: Day 1

Written on December 1, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

Disclaimer: Cream Puff will not be held responsible for the dramatic reduction in bookshelf space due to the purchasing of any cookbooks as a result of posts on this blog between December 1, 2009 and December 12, 2009, inclusive. I happen to believe that cookbooks make the very best Christmas gifts. Well, okay, maybe diamonds  Continue Reading »

Knock, Knock. Who’s There?

Written on November 3, 2009 at 12:30 am, by

It’s all the cookies you’ll be baking. Don’t look now but it’s already November and if you think that the holiday season is still far off, you’re wrong. Very soon cookie recipes from all over the world will be knocking on your door, begging you to bake them. Don’t fight it. Embrace the cookies. Let’s  Continue Reading »

I Confect

Written on October 7, 2009 at 6:39 pm, by

I love Cath of A Blithe Palate for many, many reasons, not the least of which being that every now and then, unto my life, she will bring joy in the form of a cookbook. That’s what I call a fabulous virtual friend. Were I ever to meet her in person, I just might smother  Continue Reading »

Oh, Noble Cookie!

Written on August 7, 2009 at 7:50 pm, by

When I first flipped through Urban Italian: Simple Recipes and True Stories from a Life in Food by Andrew Carmellini and Gwen Hyman, I of course started with the dessert section. And the recipe that made me stop was this one: Nero Cookies. At first I smiled because I thought “mmm … chocolate cookies …  Continue Reading »

Keepin’ it Simple

Written on August 6, 2009 at 6:27 pm, by

As I’ve written previously, I’m just trying to keep it simple these days. In that vein, I must tell you, there are very few simpler menu items for me, nor more comforting, than a good burger. Add a side of onion rings and I’m pretty much in a state of bliss. This may sound odd  Continue Reading »

Fry, Baby, Fry!

Written on May 8, 2009 at 7:34 pm, by

Is there anyone out there that doesn’t like the potato? Especially when said potato is deep fried and then kissed with a light sprinkling of salt? Anyone? Anyone? Honestly, I can’t think of one person I know that would turn down a french fry. Clearly, I know the right people! Going into the weekend, I’ve  Continue Reading »

It’s the Weekend! Time to Entertain!

Written on May 1, 2009 at 6:58 pm, by

When I was a little girl, it seemed our weekends were always filled with visiting, going on family outings and entertaining friends and family. It was all very simple, mind you. In fact I’m not even sure if we would refer to it as “entertaining”, in today’s context. Nowadays I sometimes feel that entertaining comes  Continue Reading »

Let’s Have Some Brunch

Written on April 25, 2009 at 3:58 pm, by

I specifically waited until Saturday to put this post up because to me, Sunday is the king of brunch days. Thanks to my dear friend Cath of A Blithe Palate and Stephanie of Dispensing Happiness, I’ve had the chance to review Gale Gand’s Brunch! as part of a cookbook spotlight that they’re co-hosting. I’m lucky  Continue Reading »

A Little Something for the Weekend …

Written on April 17, 2009 at 5:49 pm, by

I cannot believe April is more than halfway over and I have yet to even mention my Flavour of the Month: Lori Longbotham’s Luscious Lemon Desserts. I adore Lori. I love her recipes and all her cookbooks are just so good. I count them among my most treasured books. The warm weather has (finally) arrived  Continue Reading »

What Sustains Me

Written on April 2, 2009 at 8:20 pm, by

Whenever I tell people that I have no idea how many cookbooks I own (I never count them!), I usually get a surprised response. Most people I know might own a handful to ten cookbooks. I own well in excess of 100 (and counting). The inevitable question is: Why do you have so many? And  Continue Reading »

Who’s Coming to Italy with Me???

Written on February 17, 2009 at 8:06 pm, by

Just kidding! But I made ya’ look, didn’t I? While I would love to hop on a plane tomorrow and fly back to the homeland, that’s just not in the cards (at least not for tomorrow). Instead, let us take a moment to sit back and pretend that we’re flying to Italy tomorrow and then  Continue Reading »

I’m A Sucker for a Good Cookie …

Written on January 14, 2009 at 8:32 pm, by

I think I’ve written this many times before on my blog but whenever people ask me what I most enjoy baking, my answer is always cookies. I love all baking, but cookies are my favourite because to me they offer a certain freedom that other baked goods don’t. You have to commit to a cake  Continue Reading »

Confessions of a Reformed Breakfast Skipper (Part 1)

Written on January 8, 2009 at 6:24 pm, by

So here’s my dirty little secret: For almost all of my 20s and part of my early 30s, I regularly skipped breakfast. And by regularly I mean, almost all the time. So there you have it. I don’t have a particularly good reason for being such a habitual offender beyond the most basic (and perhaps  Continue Reading »

My Top Five

Written on December 16, 2008 at 8:02 pm, by

If you’re like me and haven’t started your Christmas shopping yet … yes … it’s true … and I’m not ashamed of it either … then here’s the post that might help you figure out how to begin. In past years, many bloggers have summarized their favourite cookbooks of the year and last year I  Continue Reading »

My New Favourite Thing

Written on December 3, 2008 at 10:34 pm, by

Cream Puffs in Venice readers, meet my new favourite French Apple Tart. French Apple Tart, meet Cream Puffs in Venice readers. I was introduced to my new favourite French Apple Tart in the whole wide world by Ina Garten, author of the brand new Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics. When I write reviews, I try  Continue Reading »

Her Best One Yet

Written on November 30, 2008 at 2:26 pm, by

Often, when I’m together with friends or family, and the topic turns to food (when doesn’t it turn to food?), we find ourselves inevitably discussing food shows and cookbooks. Whenever Giada De Laurentiis’ name comes up, the reaction is interesting. There are those that admire her, those that ADMIRE her, those that dislike her and  Continue Reading »

It Must be Cookbook Season!

Written on November 20, 2008 at 1:01 am, by

While I would argue that every season is cookbook season, I don’t think there’s any question that that the lead-up to Christmas is probably one of the most intense times for cookbook authors and publishers. After all, cookbooks make great gifts. Ahem. Hint. Hint. Anyway, it’s usually around this time that friends will begin asking  Continue Reading »

I ♥ Anita’s Cookies

Written on November 14, 2008 at 6:01 am, by

You may have noticed that a certain book has been taking over the food blogging world thanks to an exciting virtual cookbook blog tour. The book I speak of is none other than Anita Chu’s Field Guide to Cookies: How to Identify and Bake Virtually Every Cookie Imagineable. Most of you will know Anita from  Continue Reading »

Something To Munch On

Written on October 31, 2008 at 6:44 pm, by

What attracted me to Carol Field’s Italy in Small Bites was the idea of small snacks throughout the day to sustain me. Wouldn’t that be amazing … if at any time of the day you could bite into something tasty, yet not filling? I’ve spent most of October dreaming about what I’d try from this  Continue Reading »


Written on October 17, 2008 at 5:32 pm, by

It’s hard to believe that half of October has already passed and I have yet to talk about my Flavour of the Month for October 2008: Carol Field’s Italy in Small Bites. I’m a big fan of Carol Field. I have a number of her cookbooks and have always had great success with them. To  Continue Reading »

Saturday August 2, 2008; 3:37 p.m.

Written on September 9, 2008 at 5:21 am, by

Saturday August 2, 2008; 3:37 p.m. That is the exact time that my vacation started. That is the time of the last e-mail I sent (to Lis, for the record). Right after that e-mail, I turned off my computer, and shortly thereafter left for the airport. And so began three weeks of computer-free living in  Continue Reading »

Taking Solace in the Garden

Written on July 26, 2008 at 8:06 pm, by

There are many reasons to grow your own food. Some people do it as a hobby, some people do it for a living and some people do it because they believe it is the best way to ensure that the food they’re eating is the freshest and healthiest food available. But I also happen to  Continue Reading »

Grain Power

Written on July 17, 2008 at 5:51 pm, by

With a few exceptions, I know that I don’t eat nearly as many grains as I should. While certain grains like oats and barley find their way into my meals on a somewhat regular basis, there is an astounding number of grains that I have never even seen, much less tasted. And this is truly  Continue Reading »

Red Velvet Revisited

Written on July 12, 2008 at 3:08 pm, by

Thanks to the Daring Bakers, I had the opportunity to reveal my true Southern Belle self, if only for a little while. Thanks to an opportunity to review Katie Lee Joel’s The Comfort Table, I had the opportunity to revisit Red Velvet Cake, not to mention the petticoats and hoops skirts my inner-Southern self loves  Continue Reading »

A Thing of Beauty

Written on July 2, 2008 at 7:30 pm, by

One of my favourite ways to unwind at the end of the week is to stop by my local big-box bookstore on the way home from work. Once there, I have a strict routine that I follow each and every time. First, I peruse the food section of the magazine rack. From there I make  Continue Reading »

Sssssssssssssss …

Written on June 14, 2008 at 2:31 pm, by

Makes you think of snakes doesn’t it? Creepy! But actually there’s nothing creepy about this post or the cookies pictured above for those are S Cookies made by my very own Mama Cream Puff! When I was a kid, we would either eat homemade cookies or, on occasion, Italian store-bought cookies. While my brother and  Continue Reading »

One Dolce Book!

Written on June 10, 2008 at 7:07 pm, by

Okay. I know I said June was going to be all Italian and stuff but I had to really struggle to find the Italian link for today’s post. So I figured I’d figured I’d use one of my favourite Italian words, dolce (sweet), to describe one truly sweet book: My Sweet Vegan by Hannah Kaminsky.  Continue Reading »

Italian June

Written on June 4, 2008 at 5:50 pm, by

I have decided that June is going to be an Italian month. So that would be Giugno. I have no particular reason for this decision other than the fact that a little over a month ago I purchased this delightful little book by Maxine Clark and fell in love with it. Seriously in love. In  Continue Reading »

Fly Away!

Written on May 15, 2008 at 5:46 pm, by

There was a time when nary a butterfuly was seen in these parts. I think it had a lot to do with the widespread use of pesticides which, thankfully, has been curtailed. In my opinion, the sight of a butterfly flitting around a garden is surely one of Nature’s most beautiful sights. So when I  Continue Reading »

Paris on My Mind

Written on May 13, 2008 at 5:38 pm, by

I’ve had Paris on my mind of late. I suspect part of it is that I recently finished reading this lovely book. Not to mention that I kept seeing this other pretty little tome pop up all over the food blog world (who wouldn’t want to go to Paris after seeing that?). But part of  Continue Reading »

Now, Spring has Truly Sprung!

Written on April 22, 2008 at 8:33 pm, by

After putting up my last post, I realized that the recipe was somewhat incongruous with the theme of the post. Baked pasta is good and all, but not quite what one thinks of when one imagines the arrival of spring. I returned to the inspiration drawing board and realized that it was time to finally  Continue Reading »

Let the Whimsy In!

Written on April 3, 2008 at 8:21 pm, by

What is life without a little bit of the whimsical? The magical? The fanciful? I think that is perhaps what I love most about the idea of decorating a wee cupcake: it’s an opportunity to let your creative heart out. Call me silly, but I just can’t help but feel a bit of whimsy these  Continue Reading »

My Cookie Friends

Written on March 28, 2008 at 4:22 pm, by

One cannot choose a cookbook as the Flavour of the Month and then allow the whole month to pass without saying even one thing about said cookbook. That just won’t do. Especially when one has chosen such a special, pretty little cookbook as the Flavour of the Month for March 2008. As often happens in  Continue Reading »

WCC # 26: Rice Pudding with Dulce de Leche

Written on March 26, 2008 at 3:33 pm, by

When I saw that my sweetie Lis was hosting the latest edition of the Weekend Cookbook Challenge (originated by Sara of i like to cook), I knew that I had to find time to participate. Between work and the Easter holiday, this past month has been a busy one to say the least. But I  Continue Reading »

Ambition, Thy Name is Chocolate!

Written on February 2, 2008 at 2:11 pm, by

Well, February certainly isn’t shy. She has announced herself with much snow and bluster around these parts, anyway. But I don’t mind. The weather has given all of us the perfect reason to hunker down and indulge in hot chocolate and cookbooks. As I perused The Overburdened Bookshelf for a book to feature as the  Continue Reading »

Chickpea Magic

Written on January 9, 2008 at 10:24 pm, by

Talk about coming down from a high! I want to thank everyone for all of your incredible comments and support after my post about the cupcakes I baked for my coworker’s wedding. It was quite an experience and I’m looking forward to where it leads. As exciting as it was, it was also exhausting. I  Continue Reading »

Cleaning Up (Part 3)

Written on December 29, 2007 at 7:31 pm, by

After having sorted through all my photos yesterday, the cleaning up process continues with a post that I’d meant to put up prior to American Thanksgiving but never did. This past fall, I had the opportunity to review a copy of the cookbook How to Cook a Turkey produced by the talented team of people  Continue Reading »

Do You Hear What I Hear?

Written on November 29, 2007 at 9:06 pm, by

Do you hear that? Listen carefully. It’s the sound of all that holiday baking coming your way. While I am not one of those people that starts decorating the house for Christmas in July, I am one of those people that starts thinking about Christmas baking in … oh … say April. And while I  Continue Reading »

Get Your Dolce On!

Written on November 24, 2007 at 10:53 pm, by

I’m always happy … no wait … make that THRILLED whenever I find someone who is as addicted to cookbooks as I am! You can imagine how pleased … no wait … make that THRILLED I was Liliana of My Cookbook Addiction introduced herself to me. Not only is she a fellow Italian Canadian, as  Continue Reading »

What’s in the Cantina?

Written on November 17, 2007 at 6:04 pm, by

In Italian, we use the word cantina to refer to what in English is commonly called the cold cellar. Growing up, every Italian family I knew had a cantina. Without question, all of these cantinas could be expected to contain the following: jars of tomatoes, a variety of preserves, barrels of homemade wine, olive oil,  Continue Reading »

The Memory of Food

Written on October 25, 2007 at 7:25 pm, by

I sometimes find myself looking at the calendar in astonishment after I realize how quickly the months slip by. Is it really two months until Christmas? And is October really almost over (already) without my having written once about my Flavour of the Month, Father Giuseppe Orsini’s Italian Baking Secrets? Of course I’ve mentioned this  Continue Reading »

The Long Garden Goodbye

Written on October 3, 2007 at 9:46 pm, by

As much as I love the fall, I inevitably find myself shaking my head at this time of year as I find it harder and harder to believe that it actually is the fall. True, the leaves are slowly changing colour and the nights are noticeably cooler, but the days are still warm and for  Continue Reading »

Letting Go

Written on August 7, 2007 at 9:02 pm, by

My apologies for the lack of posts around here. It’s not that the Cream Puff has abandoned you or anything. It’s just that in all the recent heat and steam we’ve been experiencing lately, I’ve barely been able to muster the energy to lift a glass of iced tea to my lips. Yes, it’s been  Continue Reading »

Adventures of an Italian Food Lover: The Event

Written on July 25, 2007 at 9:03 pm, by

As many of you who stop by here regularly know, a few weeks ago I had the pleasure of telling you about Faith Heller Willinger‘s newest book, Adventures of an Italian Food Lover. Part cookbook, part memoir, part travelogue, the book is an homage to all of the friends that Faith has made throughout her  Continue Reading »

Always Time for Vanilla and Chocolate!

Written on July 11, 2007 at 10:48 pm, by

Well, it’s still very much hot in the city! I’m itching to try quite a few recipes from Lori Longbotham’s Luscious Berry Desserts (Flavour of the Month for July 2007), but I just can’t stand to turn on the oven. And when even the Cream Puff won’t turn on the oven … well … that  Continue Reading »

Introducing …

Written on July 4, 2007 at 8:16 pm, by

… the Flavour of the Month for July 2007 … Lori Longbotham’s Luscious Berry Desserts! Applause! Clap … clap … clap! First of all, let me wish all of my American friends a very happy Fourth of July! After a lovely long weekend wherein we Canadians celebrated our country’s 140th birthday on July 1st, it’s  Continue Reading »

Coconut, My Love!

Written on June 22, 2007 at 8:15 pm, by

When I read that The Domestic Goddess was bringing Sugar High Friday back to its beginning (so to speak), I was happy. It’s only right, after all, that the person who created such a popular event should get to host it every now and then. But I was even happier when I read that the  Continue Reading »

For Jasmine

Written on June 19, 2007 at 8:50 pm, by

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the greatest benefit of blogging is the chance to meet so many wonderful people. Shortly after I began blogging I had the good fortune to meet Jasmine of Confessions of a Cardamom Addict and Sensual Gourmet. Intelligent, warm, witty, sexy, sweet, beautiful – these are all  Continue Reading »

The Adventure of Italian Food

Written on June 14, 2007 at 9:20 pm, by

Have you ever looked at a plate of pasta, your very favourite pasta, and thought back to the first moment that you tried it? Or how about the first time you tasted the richness of a tiramisu’ or the crisp bite of a biscotto? Being born in an Italian family means that I actually have  Continue Reading »

Back to Tea

Written on May 25, 2007 at 9:06 pm, by

I’d like to thank everyone for all the kind words and comments you’ve left about the redesign of my blog. This was a big step for me and I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t nervous as to how the new design would be received. There are still a few little issues to  Continue Reading »

At Home with Giada

Written on April 16, 2007 at 12:11 am, by

I certainly hope Jamie Oliver doesn’t mind, but I’ve been cheating on him with Giada De Laurentiis. Can you blame me? While I rarely watch her television program, Everyday Italian, I am a fan of her cookbooks. I don’t think anyone would disagree when I say that they very clearly fall into the category of  Continue Reading »

Fishing on Friday

Written on April 6, 2007 at 8:23 pm, by

I’ve heard rumours that the Easter Bunny has been seen hopping around our neighbourhood. Perhaps. What I do know, is that it’s Good Friday and that means fish and seafood in our household. I’m often asked why it is that we eat fish on Good Friday and to be honest, I don’t know the precise  Continue Reading »

… Hello April!

Written on April 2, 2007 at 1:06 am, by

Hello, April! I see you’ve brought a new Flavour of the Month with you:  Jamie’s Italy. I received a copy of this book to review and as soon as I picked up, I knew I’d like it. Who wouldn’t want to be sitting in Italy with a plate of pasta and a glass of wine?  Continue Reading »

Goodbye March …

Written on March 31, 2007 at 3:56 pm, by

Goodbye March! You were a busy month. You whizzed right by me with almost no opportunity for me to bake. But it’s time for you to go now. April is knocking at the door and I see she’s bringing flour and eggs and baking pans. But before you go, March, I wanted to thank you  Continue Reading »

Colour Me Orange

Written on March 12, 2007 at 11:05 pm, by

I’ve often heard people say that their least favourite months of the year are November and February. Myself, I’ve always had a challenge with March. Granted there are some highlights like my mother’s birthday and the gentle promise of spring, but overall, for me it’s always a bit of a tricky month to get through.  Continue Reading »

The Flavour of the Month, Some Recipes and Some News

Written on February 5, 2007 at 9:06 pm, by

The Flavour of the Month for February 2006 A new month means a new flavour to enjoy. I said farewell to Patricia Wells’ Trattoria and hello to Matt Kramer’s A Passion for Piedmont. I can hardly believe that it’s already been a year since the Olympics in Torino. I had such fun learning about the  Continue Reading »

Cream Puff Falls in Love!

Written on January 23, 2007 at 9:04 pm, by

Not with a man. Not with a Cream Puff. With a book! I am working on a review of the cookbook Essence of Chocolate:  Recipes for Baking and Cooking with Fine Chocolate by Robert Steinberg and John Scharffenberger. The review isn’t ready yet, but I just had to tell you about it and give you  Continue Reading »

Feasting on Nigella

Written on January 19, 2007 at 10:06 pm, by

It’s difficult not to like Nigella Lawson. You’d have to be hard-hearted indeed not to fall prey to the charms of this intelligent, witty and yes – gorgeous – woman. As a television personality, her presence is infectious. Don’t we all wish we could look so good throwing egg shells into the sink?! I own  Continue Reading »