Greenpoint Food Market Part Deux!

May 22, 2010

photo courtesy of GFM

Fanny & Jane is happy to announce that we will be vending (and snacking and schmoozing) at this afternoon’s Greenpoint Food Market!

We participated last month, and had such a wonderful time. There was a band, and a huge crowd, and delicious snacks, and a puppy dog, and lovely people…I’m rambling, I’m so excited!

Last month’s theme was “Spring Awakening”, and this month we’re bringing you: “A Picnic In The Park”. It’s a perfect theme for a gorgeous New York Spring day like today! We’re bringing plenty of freshly baked bite-sized sweets – if you’re in the neighborhood, we’d love to see you!

So bring a picnic blanket and an appetite. We’re ready for ya.

*Fanny & Jane

*Greenpoint Food Market

129 Russell Street

Today 5/22, noon-5pm

New York Adventure Day: Red Hook!

May 21, 2010

It’s Spring, people! But with this weather we’ve been having in New York (oy the heat!), you could easily trick me into believing it’s summer. Regardless. It’s warm. It’s lighter later. Let’s get on our bikes and find some ice cold beverages.

Welcome to one of my favorite new neighborhoods: Red Hook!

I feel like I’m telling the world about a great secret whenever I talk about Red Hook. Although many have explored and enjoyed the neighborhood before lil’ ol’ me came along, it still feels like uncharted territory. It has a small community feel and a very beachy vibe. And as a California girl, it really felt like home. It’s the type of place that makes me wanna listen to Jack Johnson and take a long nap. And maybe bring along a sketch book.

The first time I visited, I remember thinking, “This type of place exists in New York? And it’s a mere 20 minute bike ride from my apartment??”

I tell ya, it’s worth the trip.

Not only is Red Hook home to the only Ikea in New York, and the 2nd location of the huge amazing market, Fairway. But it also hosts a number of delightful small businesses (which is the more appealing aspect of Red Hook to me personally). You can’t swing a dead cat without hitting a delicious bakery, or a homegrown nursery or flower shop, or a fresh lobster place. They have everything!

With a free Saturday and a loose gameplan, my boyfriend and I set out to do some Red Hook exploring last weekend. Here are the highlights.

Calexico. Holy moly. This is some of the best Mexican food I’ve had in New York. I felt like I was transported to San Francisco. They’ve been getting some crazy press (they used to be just a food cart, and now they have this store front! YAY Calexico!), so I was eager to see what all the buzz was about.

This food was outrageously good. It was the perfect fuel to keep us going for our bike ride. The atmosphere is not pretentious at all and the food is such good quality. Calexico gets an “A+” in my book. And David was very pleased as well.

Please allow me to recommend the Carne Asada Quesadillas. Promise me that you’ll get this when you go there. It was a recommendation from my friend Jessica, who said to me: “I know, I know, quesadilla?  What are you, 11?  I’m telling you, you won’t be disappointed because it comes with the crackiest of crack sauces I’ve had in a long time”. She was right. The Crack Sauce. Mmm! Don’t even get me started. Here’s their website.

whatadweeb

Free kayaking! WHAT!? Yes. Red Hook is, apparently, just that cool.

As a totally unplanned unexpected bonus, David and I happened upon this amazing program sponsored by the volunteer organization called the Redhook Boaters. The kind and good-hearted people of Redhook Boaters set up shop at Louis Valentino Jr. Pier Park (phew, what a mouthful!). And in exchange for helping them clean up the waterfront, they provide free kayaks to take out on the river. With gorgeous views of the Statue of Liberty and the satisfaction of knowing that the Red Hook waterfront has a few less cigarette butts and bottle caps as a direct result of your help, an afternoon spent at the Pier is a win win!

It was a blast. And a pleasant little work out! When we got there, it wasn’t super crowded and we didn’t wait more than 10 minutes for a kayak. But I would recommend checking it out soon before word gets out that this is the best deal in the city. They’ll be at the Pier every Sunday, and during July and August they’ll be adding evening kayaking on Thursdays from 6-8pm! Checkemout.

Say hello to Steve’s Authentic Key Lime Pies. If you’re a key lime pie person (which, why shouldn’t you be?), then fuggedaboutit. Yer done. This is all you need. These little treats are off the hook.

David and I kept things classic with their 4-Inch Key Lime Tart. But if you’re lookin’ to get crazy, try their Swingle: a key lime tart, on a stick, dipped in semi-sweet chocolate. I have yet to sample one myself, but I hear good things.

I heart Red Hook. It’s so quiet and charming…in an abandoned-warehouse-beach-town-sorta-way. There are a few other wonderful little places that I love, but didn’t mention in this post.  They are definitely worth a visit:

*Baked – their Sweet & Salty Brownies make me weak. And check out Jen’s delicious blog post about her first time at Baked!

*Fort Defiance – order their Muffuletta and Ginger Soda, and you’re looking at a perfect lunch.

*Saipua – a flower and soap shoppe, this is the best-smelling storefront in Red Hook. The gorgeous bouquets that they post on their blog cheer me up daily. (Click here to check out my amateur, but beautiful, bouquet I assembled there!)

Fanny & Jane Does FoodStuff!

May 16, 2010

Tonight, people. At 8pm. At The PIT in NYC. Jen and I will be making our first public-performancey type of appearance at our friends’ variety show, FoodStuff!

This is the first installment of this monthly show, and we are thrilled to be the first food guests!  And what’s more, it’s a great lineup with some veddy funny people:

SNAKES (our good buddies Billy & Adam), and the hilarious NYC improv troupe, Centralia.

We’ll be havin’ a laugh and teaching the audience how to make one of our signature sweets (ooohh, ahhhh!).

It’s a gorgeous day in New York–if you’re around, treat yourself to some comedy and sweet treats. Click here for more info and to get tix!

Holy Hiatus

May 3, 2010

Remember when I started an exciting new fulltime job back in September? You don’t? Oh. That’s okay. Here’s a refresher.

Just because I seemingly never talk about my office job on this blog, doesn’t mean that it’s not a huge part of my everyday life. In fact, it is actually the one commitment that is currently taking up the vast majority of my time.

That’s about to change.

In 2 weeks, I’m a free agent. I get a summer vacation. Like a teacher! The reason being: my job is seasonal. Working on a TV show is apparently not a year-long commitment. So this summer I will be experiencing my first official “hiatus”.

When I started this job back in September, the Summer Hiatus that my boss spoke of couldn’t have seemed farther away. But all of a sudden, it’s a mere 2 weeks from now, and I still have very little idea what I plan to actually do with my time off! I recognize that this is a pretty cushy problem to have. And don’t get me wrong, I’m not crying over the fact that a summer vacation is essentially built into my work schedule. I’m just trying to wrap my head around the fact that very soon, I won’t be responsible for reporting somewhere 5 mornings a week.

My day-to-day schedule will have no structure. Wait, I take that back. My day-to-day schedule will have whatever structure I choose. This thought is both empowering and intimidating.

When I’ve lamented about this recent fear of free time (new blog title?), a friend who also works in casting reassured me: “Trust me, you’ll find things to do. You’ll meet up with friends you haven’t seen in a while. You’ll sleep in. You’ll go to yoga. You’ll be fine.” In the words of Buckwheat: Oootay.

I have a basic idea of things I could willingly spend my time doing. Like focusing more attention on the bakery, and performing with Harvard Sailing Team, and taking that occasional yoga class. And I’m hoping to be able to squeeze an *actual* vacation in there too! David and I were toying with the idea of Greece, but now I’m thinking maybe Costa Rica? Without any flights booked or hotel rooms reserved, it’s all still a bit of a dream. But if I can manage to get in some pool time in a foreign place, sipping tropical cocktails, and taking long summer evening walks, I’d consider it a hiatus well spent.

With all of these prospective summer options laid out in front of me, I realize how lucky I am to even have this opportunity to take a break from the 9-5 lifestyle. Which makes these months off feel even more precious! I must remember to get off my own back about Making The Most Of Every Second Of My Hiatus, and instead focus on How Do I Choose To Spend My Day Today.

Maybe I’ll just take up an instrument. Like the accordion. Ooh sexy.

Or maybe, as soon as May 20th actually gets here, you’ll find me taking long naps under that heavenly magnolia tree in Prospect Park.

Nothing But Juice

April 26, 2010

You’re looking at my meals from yesterday and today. I’m a few hours away from being done with my 2-day cleanse.

Despite a momentary lapse of major hunger when my roommates (cruelly) ordered 2 delicious-smelling large pizzas on Saturday, I’ve actually been doing well and feeling great! And I’ve been practicing some serious discipline.

Interestingly, I don’t miss food and I haven’t been hungry these past 2 days – the juices actually have enough calories to get you through the day, so it doesn’t really feel like I’m fasting. Actually, the thing that I miss the most is the social aspect of eating.

Abstaining from food this weekend has really shown me how much of my weekend activities are food motivated! With all my “meals” pre-packaged and separated into juice bottles, all of a sudden I’m not going out for brunch or meeting friends at a bar. It feels so bizarre for me to make plans that don’t revolve around food.

Just as important as cleansing my body, this cleanse has really highlighted what a huge role food plays in my everyday life. It’s a major part of my workday and my evening and weekend plans. Like a security blanket or something! My goal is that I’ll be able to continue this acute awareness of what (and how much) food I’m putting into my body. And to exercise self-control when there is a huge bar of Trader Joe’s dark chocolate in my cupboard and leftover pizza in the fridge.

For more info on this particular cleanse, check out BluePrintCleanse.

BKLYN Larder

April 22, 2010

This is my friend Jessica.

She works at BKLYN Larder, a delicious gourmet cheese and provisions shop in my neighborhood.

This is a great thing for the community because she is an extremely friendly person and she’s passionate about good, quality, locally produced food. More specifically, this is a great thing for me because sometimes she’ll feed me a ridiculously delicious meal.

Like this lunch:

Mmm, I’m drooling. Did someone say something about a cleanse? Pass me that bacon and egg sandwich!

BKLYN Larder always has consistently delicious side snacks and lunches. With a few tables in the front and a little counter with stools in the window, it’s perfect for perching with a mid-day meal or taking a treat to go. Though some of their items can be a bit pricey, the quality is always high, and you can take comfort in knowing that you’re eating something fresh, local, and seasonal. Support small local business, people!🙂

Cleanse

April 21, 2010

Isn’t this tree beautiful? I noticed it for the first time on my walk home from work. It’s like Fern Gully or something!

Spring is here. And that means Spring showers, Spring iced coffee (just go with me), and Spring cleaning. Whether I want to admit it or not, I am in some dire need of Spring cleaning. I have a dust buster for a reason, and I’m gonna put it to use dammit!

And this Spring, I’m doing something new that I’ve never done before. I’m not just cleaning my apartment, but I’m also cleaning my body. I’m going to go on my first ever cleanse!

Yep. You heard it here first, folks. I’m doin’ a cleanse. Call it one too many chocolate chip cookies, or the gym membership that I recently cancelled, or panic about getting ready for swimsuit season. Whatever the many reasons may be, I realized that I needed something to kickstart my movement towards a healthier lifestyle. Am I cutting out caffeine, sugar, and dairy forever? Heck no. Just for these next few days. As a little experiment.🙂

Right now I’m in the “prep” phase of a 2-day juice cleanse that goes down on Saturday and Sunday. Prepping for this cleanse basically means gradually weaning out certain foods (sugar, meat, dairy) to prepare your body for a smoother transition into the juice cleanse. After doing some research and talking to friends who’ve tried it, I decided to go with the BluePrintCleanse. You drink 6 “special” juices a day that the BPC elves prepare for you in advance. It’s all fresh and natural and some of the flavors actually sound yummy (cashew milk?!). And in between each juice, I’m supposed to drink A LOT of water. Oh boy. We shall see how this whole cleanse thing goes down… Fortunately, a few of my girl friends have signed up to do it with me this weekend as well! So we’ll have each other’s backs when we’re looking for a hunger sympathy vote.

I’m not looking forward to the kvetching that will inevitably come with the fact that I WON’T BE EATING FOOD for 2 days. But actually, in this very moment I’m buzzing with the excitement of embarking on this little juice adventure. (If my tone seems testy on Sunday, you can blame the fact that my belly will be filled with mostly water). And I just keep telling myself, “It’s only 2 days. You can drink a few colorful juices for 2 days. Just think about the slice of pizza that’s waiting for you on that 3rd day!” Just kidding. Am I?

I’m making a Spring resolution to look good and feel good. A resolution to say “yes” to more yoga classes and “no” to second helpings of pasta.

A Getaway San Francisco Weekend

April 19, 2010

Before I get on with this post, I just have to state the following fact: I AM BLOGGING THIS FROM A PLANE. That above photo is my view RIGHT NOW. What!? I know! I’m just as shocked as you are. Is this the future? Where’s my hover car? Am I on some supremely boring candid camera show? Yet another reason why Virgin Airlines is my jam: they allow me to feel the exhilaration that comes with blogging at 35,000 feet.

Okay, now that that’s out of the way, I can get on with this post. Ladies and gentlemen, San Francisco!

So, the reason I’m on a plane in the first place is because I’m coming back from a weekend trip to San Francisco! That’s right. The home to Rice-a-roni, trolley cars, and the Tanner family.

Though the vacation was brief, I seemed to pack a lot into just a few days. Also, a trip like this reminds me how necessary it is to get out of New York, if even just for a little while. I feel like I say that every time I take a day or weekend trip out of NY, but you guys, it’s true! New York, I love you…as long as I can escape you every now and again. Don’t take it personally, New York. You’re still my favorite. You just better not be raining when I get back, or else we’re having words.

The fresh familiar air of California was the sweetest way for me to recharge my sun-craving batteries.

My trip to SF was grounded by one main event: my great friend, MacKenzie‘s, 100th birthday party. Well, “100” collectively: she turned 25 and her dad turned 75. So a group of us gals made the trek, 3 of us coming from Brooklyn and 1 from L.A., and we partied in her Bay area hometown. The party was a blast. It was hosted in the upstairs dining room of her family’s Hunan restaurant (I think every family should have a family-owned banquet hall, they come in handy!).

The soiree fit MacKenzie’s quirky, kitschy, foodie personality to a tee. There was plenty of pig to eat, a spirited “Oh Danny Boy” sing-a-long accompanied by her cousin on the accordion, your typical family life-sized cardboard cutouts, and custom-made pinatas of the evening’s honorees. MacKenzie going to town on her own paper-mached head with a baseball bat was incredibly bizarre. But then again, delicious butterscotch candy came out of her face, so who am I to complain!

Fortunately, our group of girl friends all had a similar agenda for the rest of the trip. Eat, shop, drink, sun, and more eat. Naturally our first stop was a little local food tour led by MacKenzie.

didn't get to go in, but gotta love the name

get in my belly

get in my belly

And the grand finale, a bakery that I absolutely fell in love with. The sweetest little pink and yellow bakery with a variety of handmade sweets. Miette is a sweet-toothed girl’s heaven. If you don’t “aww” over the adorably decorated cupcakes, then I guarantee you’ll at least love the cheerful wallpaper.  The pastries at Miette were a little more formal than the comfort sweets that we make for Fanny & Jane, but certainly got my bakery wheels a-turnin’!

And I couldn’t leave without trying one of these little guys:

a happy camper

And on the last day of my trip, my mom flew up from Los Angeles to spend some time in San Fran with me! She splurged on a super swanky hotel for us to stay the night! The kind of hotel that has random artsy chairs in the dimly-lit lobby and an iPod dock with speakers in each room. So we (I) jumped on the beds, played some backgammon, caught up over coffee, and took nice long sunny walks. It was, simply put, THE BEST.

family time with cousin Tony!

It was certainly a trip packed to the brim. I’m hoping to get in another visit to California this summer. But instead of NorCal, I’d go down to my hometown L.A., to visit my family and friends. And favorite restaurants. Naturally. But until then, I’ll be dreaming of the amazing Cali Mexican food that NY just can’t hold a candle to.

(p.s. Would you believe me if I told you that it took me the ENTIRE plane ride to put this post together? I guess in-the-sky-wifi isn’t as speedy as it’s on-the-ground counterpart.)

Harvard Sailing Team on CBS?(!)

April 15, 2010

Remember a week or so ago when I blogged about my sketch comedy group getting a little bit o’ buzz from a few videos we recently released? Well, I guess the buzz hit the ears of the people over at CBS because this past Tuesday, they had 4 members of the team on THE CBS EARLY SHOW! TALKING ABOUT OUR VIDEOS!

It was a bit of a bummer that we couldn’t all be on the show together, but I guess the CBS people weren’t ready for the heat that our 9-member comedy group could bring to an early show🙂

So we told our 4 representatives, Chris, Rebecca, Adam and Jen, to go with god and to knock ’em dead (“’em” being CBS…and America). And so they bought spiffy new outfits and did us proud, talking about Harvard Sailing Team on national television! It was the highlight of my day, quite possibly my decade. That is, until we do Oprah.

Thanks to our buddy Geoff for putting if up on youtube! Click Here for the official CBS link to the clip.

As always, we perform our live show weekly at The PIT in New York. Check The PIT’s website for specific show times and details!

Our Greenpoint Food Market Debut

April 15, 2010

Greenpoint has been good to Fanny & Jane in 2010. The neighborhood has welcomed our sweets with open arms. And we are happy to provide.

If you’ve never been to Greenpoint in Brooklyn, it’s definitely a cool spot to visit. It’s not on the radar quite as much as it’s neighbor, Williamsburg, but I have a feeling that will be changing soon. As a matter of fact, Greenpoint was just ranked #5 in New York Magazine’s recent article about The Most Livable Neighborhoods in New York! It’s a great mix of burgeoning brunch spots and cafes in the midst of a traditionally Polish neighborhood (you won’t find better Polish food anywhere in New York!).

Jen and I were proud to make our Brooklyn cafe debut at a wonderful happy little (bright green!) cafe owned by a husband and wife team in Greenpoint called CUP. Some Fanny & Jane favorites, Peanut Butter Buckeyes, Red Velvet Cake Bites, Classic Brownie Bites, and Mini Buttercream Sammies, are all featured at CUP alongside their other delectable treats (like croissants from Balthazar, yummm). You can stop by anytime for a cuppa coffee and a Fanny & Jane pick-me-up!

And this past weekend, we were delighted to participate in the monthly foodie event, Greenpoint Food Market.  Thanks to all the Fanny & Jane fans, new and old, for stopping by and introducing yourselves! It’s always fun to meet you and I hope to see more sweet-toothed faces as the season of food markets continues. I promise we won’t bite! Well, I won’t speak for Jen. I keed I keed Jen🙂

Saturday was a particularly gorgeous day and the market was bustlin’! There was live music by The People’s Champs, delicious sodas and handmade cards from Pumpkin & Honeybunny, tahdiefor chocolate chip oreo cookies, and lots of kimchi. It was so inspiring to see the creativity and passion of all these other vendors. The theme was “Spring Awakening”, so flowers were plentiful and love was certainly in the air. I felt twitterpated. It was the perfect place to debut our brand new labels and packaging! You like? A huge thank you to our designer, Julien Fyhrie, who did an awesome job.

Looking forward to the next market on May 22nd. We’ll be sure to keep you posted with details!

photo via Greenpoint Food Market's flickr

our helpful hero boyfriends

photo via Greenpoint Food Market's flickr

our big F&J fans, Matt and Katie!