Archive for April, 2010

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!

Whataweekend

April 14, 2010

I know I know, it’s already Wednesday. But you guys, I can’t get over what an awesomely packed weekend I just got through.

It was filled old friends (Chris & Rebe visiting from L.A.!) and new ones (hello BakedByBub!), sweet treats, and lotsa Harvard Sailing Team activity. Even though my dogs were barkin’ by the end of Sunday night, the hard work and long days were worth it because I was busy doing the things I love. It’s always easier to put in those long hours when the work feels more like play, and you’re surrounded by people who make you laugh.

Photos from the weekend to come.

If you can’t tell, I’m on a bit of a lifehigh right now. For now, I’m happy to ride this wave because inevitably, New York will have another rainy Spring day and I’ll have to pay my taxes and I’ll curl up on the couch with a tub of Ben & Jerry’s and lament. But until then, I’m welcoming these happy giddy feelings.

Greenpoint Food Market Brings You Fanny & Jane Tomorrow

April 9, 2010

Get yer Fanny & Jane fix this weekend at the Greenpoint Food Market! Been dying to try our Salted Peanut butter Buckeyes? They’ll be there. Fancy yourself a Classic Brownie Bites person? Those’ll be there too! It’s all happening tomorrow, people!

This is our first food market of the season, and it’s always so exciting to get ready for a market. There are a ton of extra factors to consider that Jen and I don’t have to think about when we are preparing our online orders (like mainly, should we wear our matching aprons or not??). But it’s always so rewarding to meet, not only our fans, but also all the other inspiring vendors that are making great stuff in Brooklyn! It’s a wonderful community of creative and foodie-minded folk. I’m particularly excited to sample some of Slant Shack’s Jerkey tomorrow. Nothing like a little bit o’ salty followed by somethin’ sweet!

The event is “Spring” themed, so it’s sure to be a lovely time. Look forward to seeing you there!

The market is open from noon till 5pm, and then Jen and I are running off to wear our other hats: our sketch comedienne hats. At 9:30 Harvard Sailing Team is performing our comedy show at The PIT. And with all 9 members in town performing together again, it’s sure to be a memorable show! Busy bizzy Saturday. I imagine Jen and I will be running on adrenaline (and large amounts of coffee) until Sunday.

Click here for location details and the official Greenpoint Food Market website.

Click here for a complete list of vendors.

And check out our twitter for updates throughout the day!

Have a great weekend!

Matzoh Toffee

April 8, 2010

Got a few extra boxes of matzoh burning a hole in your pocket?

If you’re anything like my mom (who would happily eat matzoh with butter for breakfast for the rest of time), you’ll hoard those matzoh boxes until next Passover.  But if you’re looking to do something fun with your leftover matzoh this year, here is a recipe for AMAZING matzoh toffee!  This is the first time I’ve ever made matzoh toffee, and it was a huge hit among all my toffee-loving chocoholic friends at this years’ seder.  Anything covered in butter, chocolate, and sugar — I mean, really, how can you go wrong?

This is one of the quickest, easiest, and yummiest recipes I’ve ever made.  You can buy already-made matzoh toffee from Whole Foods (it’s my fave), but you’ll get a lot more gratification out of telling your fellow seder-ers that you made it yourself.

Matzoh Toffee – a recipe lovingly passed on from my mother

(can be made with or without the almonds)

Ingredients

  • 3 1/2  sheets unsalted matzos
  • 1  cup  unsalted butter
  • 1  cup  firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1  cup  semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 1/3  cup  finely chopped toasted slivered almonds

Preparation

1. Line a 15- x 10-inch jelly-roll pan with nonstick aluminum foil. Arrange matzos in prepared pan, breaking as necessary to fit and completely cover bottom of pan.

2. Bring butter and brown sugar to a boil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Boil, stirring constantly, 3 minutes. Carefully pour mixture evenly over matzos in pan, and spread over matzos.

3. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes. (Mixture will start to bubble at about 10 minutes. Continue to bake to 15 minutes.) Carefully remove pan from oven to a wire rack. (Mixture will still be bubbly.) Let stand 1 minute at room temperature or until no longer bubbly. Sprinkle top evenly with morsels; let stand 1 minute or until morsels soften. Spread morsels over brittle. Sprinkle with almonds; let stand at room temperature 30 minutes. Place pan in refrigerator; chill 30 minutes or until chocolate is firm. Break into about 20 pieces. Store in an airtight container up to 1 week in refrigerator.

Note: I used Manischewitz Unsalted Matzos.

A delicious treat you can enjoy long after the “chametz” is allowed back in the house!

Happy Quichester!

April 7, 2010
homemade quiche and pie, made by MacKenzie

homemade quiche and pie by MacKenzie

french toast stuffed with ricotta

beautiful birthday girl

Who’s a Jew that loves Easter and has two thumbs?

>Points thumbs enthusiastically at self<

This guy.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve suffered from a mild case of Goy Holiday-envy. As soon as Thanksgiving is over, I play my “Holiday playlist” nonstop, and I don’t retire it until a few weeks after new years. I’ve never had a christmas tree, I’ve always yearned for my own stocking over the mantle, and I didn’t even fully understand what a Cadbury egg was (it’s a chocolate shell but the inside is filled with white and yellow goo?) until just a few years ago.

This past Sunday was a heavenly delight. One of my best friends’ birthday’s coincided with Easter this year. So like any good shiksa would, she planned an Easter brunch. And we called it an Easter slash Birthday brunch. And it was at my apartment. And I couldn’t wait. Not only was I co-hosting an Easter brunch, but I also got to participate in my FIRST EVER EASTER EGG HUNT! I heard that, apparently, traditional easter egg hunts take place outside, preferably in someone’s yard.  But due to limitations of my Brooklyn apartment (mainly the fact that I don’t have a yard to speak of), we did an urban version: eggs were hidden in my bathroom and living room.  Hey, good enough for me!

The whole experience was just as I had imagined: exhilarating, hilarious, and drunk. And delicious. There were Rolos and Hershey Kisses inside!

Enjoy the photos, and Happy birthday, Natalie!