Is my food blog turning me into a fashion victim?


I’ve been in a fashion funk lately. Ill-fitting clothes grace my closet – either the hubby shrank them in the dryer or they’ve seen better days or something more sinister is in play and I simply refuse to acknowledge the obvious.

Since I spend most of my weekends in the kitchen, I am most comfortable in sweat pants and sensible shoes. And when I’m baking for the business – I wear the most unflattering hairnet – thankfully my hair has grown long enough that I can collect it in a ponytail.

This has not always been so. I used to be up to date with the latest fashion, buying Instyle magazine faithfully every month, keeping an eye out for the cutest outfit and snatching it up quickly when I could. And though I don’t own a pair of Manolos, I have ogled them enviously and wished I could walk in them (my feet can never take such torture). I don’t remember shopping for clothes since last spring – didn’t feel inclined to  – I was more interested in kitchen stuff.

Last Friday though, when my sister-in-law asked us to dinner at this swanky new place, I, in my usual lazy dress-up mode, just pulled whatever was in the closet. It was warm that day, so I reached for a worn-out brown tee and matched it with a pair of equally worn out jeans.

When I strode into the restaurant, it was like transporting myself to a fashion palace. The bar was hopping with well-dressed urbanites. Women were in their snazzy spring attires sporting dainty sandals and freshly pedicured toes.

I was in my elf-shoes. And I think the last time I had a pedicure at a salon was a year ago.

I wanted to turn around and flee, especially when I thought the hostess was eyeing my outfit (or non-outfit) disdainfully – ok I’m pretty sure I imagined that part – but I squared my shoulders and bravely marched on to the waiting table.

Oh and it gets better … my sister-in-law, fresh from a vacation from Puerto Rico, waltzes in in an adorable black and white dress that gloriously accentuates her newly acquired golden tan.

Do I feel frumpier than ever? Did I mention my roots were showing too?

It was then and there that I decided enough was enough. Time to get out of the kitchen and have a  “me” day. So I ended up in the mall (hallelujah!) last Saturday afternoon and what perfect timing too – Ann Taylor was having a 60% off sale! I must have bought out the entire store…okay I didn’t – it felt like I did but only because I tried on so many clothes. I was pretty pleased with the good deals on the ones I ended up buying. I also visited Nordstrom’s Laura Mercier counter to pick up my spring/summer foundation and decided to treat myself to a new lipstick! Girls – Laura Mercier Discretion – awesome lip color! Very natural looking but adds that hint of color to your lips in a flattering way. Of course the effect might depend on your skin tone.
   this has not turned into a fashion blog so…

Sunday , I was back in the kitchen. I had a couple of cupcake orders but wanted to make the chocolate friands I have been eyeing from Tartine’s book. I wanted a chocolate fix with the least amount of effort and let me tell you this recipe fits the bill perfectly!


Chocolate Friands

Adapted from Tartine by Elisabeth M. Prueitt and Chad Robertson


Bittersweet Chocolate, coarsely chopped                    6oz/170g

Unsalted Butter                                                      8oz/225g

Sugar                                                                   11oz/310g

All-purpose Flour                                                    3 3/4oz/105g

Cornstarch                                                            2 tbs/30ml

Salt                                                                      ¼ tsp

Large eggs                                                            4


Bittersweet Chocolate, coarsely chopped                     4oz/115 g

Heavy cream                                                             5-½ oz/150ml

Preheat the oven to 350F. Line up 24 mini-muffin-cups on a baking sheet or butter and flour a mini-muffin tin well, knocking out the excess flour.

To make the butter, place the chocolate in a large mixing bowl. Melt the butter over medium heat until very hot. Pour of the chocolate and stir until smooth. In a medium mixing bowl, mix the sugar, flour, cornstarch, and salt and mix well. Add the flour mixture to the chocolate mixture in 3 batches, whisking well after each addition. Add 2 of the eggs and whisk until just combined and then add the remaining eggs and whisk until just incorporated. Be careful not to overmix the batter.

Transfer the batter to a liquid measuring cups and fill the cups ¾ full. Bake until the top of the cakes is crack on top 12 to 15 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack.

To make the ganache, place the chocolate in heat proof bowl. Bring the cream to just under a boil. Pour the cream over the chocolate and let sit for a minute or two. Stir gently with a rubber spatula until the chocolate is melted and smooth.

Make sure the friands are cool before dipping them into the ganache. Holding each friend by its sides, dip the top into the ganache and shake gently to let the excess run of the sides. Let the ganache set up in a cool place for an hour.

Serve the friands within a day of making, or store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Cooking Notes:

As I’ve stated above, this recipe was very easy. It was quick to put together with plenty of time to devote to other things (like a pedicure). As I have baked them in cups without the support of a cupcake tin, the friands started pushing out and looked a bit distorted. Even so, they were the chocolatiest dessert I have made in a while. The flavor of this dessert hinges mainly on the chocolate you use so make sure to pick good brands such as Valrhona or Callebaut.


Oh and this cupcake stand needs some cupcakes, don't ya think?




35 thoughts on “Is my food blog turning me into a fashion victim?

  1. I know how you feel! That is why now, everytime I feel even a little bit of that feeling I rush to the stores or the salon and do something special or crazy or both 🙂 Remember, your most important tool in the kitchen is yourself! 🙂

    I just made chocolate friands last week too! Nice coincidence 🙂

  2. Sometimes I realize how working in jeans, a polo, and steel toed shoes then going home and putting on sweats and a tshirt probably isn't the most flattering way for me to dress – then I realize how much more comfy I am 🙂 What the heck, I get to dress up for all the weddings that I have to go to, so I'm not missing too much! Those friands look wonderful, and I expect to see the cupcakes that will be filling that stand soon…?

  3. Hi Joey- yes, I think I've reached my highest level of drab last weekend and knew I had to do something about it – quick. It was fine in the winter when I could just hide under layers of sweaters…but now…
    thanks fashion beauty!
    Thanks Darius!
    Hi Caitlin – Sometimes I'm so scared a neighbor is going to knock on the door and I have on some ratty sweat pants. I don't think I've updated any of my party clothes either…they are sooo years ago!
    Hi Dani! yes…a spa day would be just perfect!
    Hi REcipe girl – I did that a couple of years ago. I mean I went through my entire closet and tried on every single piece of clothing and even had an inventory ranking the ones I kept. I really need to clean up my closet…my hubby's clothes are better organized than mine!

  4. Every girl needs a bit of shopping therapy every now and then! Ever since I gave up working in the corporate world, more than 30 years ago, my "going out" clothes more closely resemble my "work at home" clothes, designed for comfort. So it's not just you. Hmmm, maybe I need some shopping, too….

  5. I need to go clothes shopping too 😉 I ve only baught kitchen stuff lately. These chocolatey friands look so delicious . They ll surely fix a chocolate craving 🙂

  6. Lydia- nothing like retail therapy!
    Snookydoodle – yes I've bought so much kitchen stuff that it's eating into my clothing budget ;). And yes…those friands are nothing pure chocolate punch.

  7. Oh god, I don't even want to admit what my "fashion" had been like lately. Really, I can barely do better than PJ's most days when I don't work!

  8. Oh, I have been eyeing the exact recipe! Was actually thinking of making this today, but brownies won over. I'd pick baking over dressing swankily any time!

  9. Sis, I can't imagine you looking frumpy. You're gorgeous! 🙂

    But I totally "get it" and I cringe even thinking about what's in my closet. *sigh*

    The friands look AMAZING. *slurp*


  10. I am not sure what is in or out of fashion but I notice that chocolat piece of your looks so indulge of not to have. hehehehe yup that stand news your fine touch of Veron's cupcakes! 😉

  11. Chocolate Friands . . . you say easy . . . they look totally GRAND . . . are they grand enough to hide my frumpy?
    SALE you found a sale like that and bought stuff. . . that's HAPPY!
    Really, the Chocolate Friands are amazing!!

  12. Hannah – yes sometimes it's straight from bed to kitchen. but when I have a big order it's sweat pants and clogs.
    Y – you have to try the friands…almost like brownies actually. I really don't understand how the food network personalities manage to look good while cooking.
    Aw sis you are so sweet!
    Thanks BBoven!
    Hi Tanna! Yes I did enjoy the Ann Taylor sale :).

  13. I really love the texture on these, the chocolate looks dense and delicious. Over the years, I've also abandoned my fashion interest for food :). Sometimes I just feel more justified spending money on food than clothing :D.

  14. well, just aswell [url=]cheap buy uk[/url] stock really cheap electronics products. Make me looking foward to xmas already 🙂

  15. Hello Veron,
    I empathize with you. Just read this coz I am new to your blog. What I do now – when am in my kitchen,even if only my cute pom sees me- i try to dress up as if I am in an industrial kitchen- funny isnt it. So I don my white jacket and put on the hairnet – just to be sure no hair gets in the products. My aunt came by one time and she said- i am so funny. I love to read your blog. hope you can start teaching.

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