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Portland, Oregon food blog with many years worth of recipes, restaurant features, and food photos.


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WCC 37: Lemon Tart Love


Okay, I guess all good things must come to an end. Weekend Cookbook Challenge being no exception. Thanks Sara for creating and managing such a fun food blogging event for the last 37 months! Wow, I guess it has been along time! Sara rocks big time.

This month’s theme for February is “love”. This recipe is something I made for dessert on Valentine’s Day, so I think it fits. Tarte au Citron. It’s from the cookbook, Bouchon, by Thomas Keller. I really want to add an ! on the end of that for some reason… Bouchon!

My tart pan is only 8 inches. So, I decided to make a half recipe of the crust and see what happened. It worked for me. I ended up dividing the crust dough in half (instead of thirds) and froze one. The full recipe of saybayon filled my tart shell fine. If you have a standard-sized tart pan, just do what it says below for a full recipe of the tart dough. Oh and if pine nuts are not in your budget, almonds will work. I used half almonds and half pine nuts in my crust.

And, yeah, I have tons of pictures here. . . . → Read More: WCC 37: Lemon Tart Love

Plum Tart with Marzipan Crumble


I made this a few weeks ago and both jwa and I really loved it! My friend Vanessa got me some marzipan (no, not this marzipan), while she and her husband were in Norway and now I am looking for marzipany things to do.

I saw this recipe and literally made it the next day. I think my tart pan is 9 inches though. I had too many plums. And too much crumble. Not a big deal. There are many worse things to have extras of — toes, pets, bad habits, etc… Anyway, I used pastry dough from the Dorie Greenspan book — the extra dough from my blueberry pie in fact. Defrosted, rolled out and ready to go!

You can use your favorite pastry recipe for the bottom crust or go the store bought route.

The return of — Printable Recipe pdf!

Plum Tart with Marzipan Crumble
From Bon Appétit magazine
1 pastry round big enough for an 9″ or 11″ tart pan

3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup (packed) almond paste (about 5 ounces)
1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
6 tbsp (3/4 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/4 cup sliced almonds

2 1/4 pounds plums (about 12), halved, pitted, thinly sliced
1/2 . . . → Read More: Plum Tart with Marzipan Crumble

WCC 30: Blueberry Pie (with a Lavender & Orange Zest Crust)


Okay, here is my post for Weekend Cookbook Challenge, which incidentally, I am hosting this month. Yay! But, the real props go to Sara for starting and running such a great blogging event on a regular basis for a while now.

The theme for this July is Farmers Markets and at the Hollywood Farmers Market, (in Portland), I managed to find a whole bunch of beautiful blueberries. And, what’s a great thing to do with summer berries? Why yes, pie. You are so right.

For the cookbook, I turned to the one and only baking book a person could ever need, Baking from My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan. Seriously, if you don’t have this book, go get it. I’ll wait.

Okay now, I am by no means a pie expert, but I’ve a couple made some tasty pies. That said, I’m still never really sure if a pie will turn out. I was a little concerned about not baking the bottom crust before adding the blueberries but I went ahead and followed the directions. And the bottom crust baked fine for me. One thing I did that may or may not have made a difference, was that . . . → Read More: WCC 30: Blueberry Pie (with a Lavender & Orange Zest Crust)

Ending the Weekend Right: Blueberry-Hazelnut Crumble


I have been meaning to make a blueberry pie all Summer — in fact, I have always wanted to make a blueberry pie. Unfortunately, I hadn’t done so yet but then I came across some tasty looking berries at Limbo and was inspired. Sure I was hot and yes, I was kind of lazy. That’s when I decided a blueberry crumble would be just as good. It was. Was there really any doubt? Nope. So, grab yourself some blueberries, a lemon, some assorted crumble accoutrements and you’re all set.

And, as if that was not enough, as an experiment, I mixed up some plain, non-fat yogurt, seeds from a vanilla bean, a little sugar and some cinnamon and threw it in the ice cream maker. I didn’t strain it or anything, just mixed it all up and that’s it. I ended up
with some pretty tasty non-fat frozen yogurt for the top of the crumble.

Blueberry-Hazelnut Crumble
Slightly based on a crumble recipe from the Whole Foods web site
2.5 cups blueberries (about a pint)
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tbsp flour
1/2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup oats
1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts
1/2 tsp cinnamon
4 tbsp butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Rinse the berries . . . → Read More: Ending the Weekend Right: Blueberry-Hazelnut Crumble

Nectarine & Marscapone Tart with a Gingersnap Crust


This recipe is from Bon Appétit magazine and makes a great Summer dessert. I thought the filling maybe needed a bit more ooomph — next time, I may add a teaspoon or two of orange or lemon liqueur. Of course, this might also be because I used “light” cream cheese. Perhaps that was a mistake. Next time? Bring on the fat.

To get the crust nicely padded into the tart pan, I usually use a shot glass to help flatten the bottom and press the sides up. This works very well. I forget where I learned that tip but I did not make it up myself.

Use ripe, tasty nectarines for this — you will not be sorry.

25 gingersnap cookies, coarsely broken (about 6 ounces; about 2 1/4 cups pieces)
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted

1 8-ounce container mascarpone cheese
6 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp grated lemon peel
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp finely chopped crystallized ginger
Optional: 1-2 tsp of your favorite citrusy liqueur (Grand Marnier? Limoncello?)

4 to 5 small nectarines, halved, pitted, cut into thin slices
1/4 cup peach jam, warmed
2 tbsp finely chopped crystallized ginger


For crust:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. . . . → Read More: Nectarine & Marscapone Tart with a Gingersnap Crust