Why make hamentaschen? Hamentaschen are traditional cookies for Purim, which usually falls in late February or early March. Purim’s a celebration of Jewish religious freedom, and generally of freedom for all people everywhere, so it’s nice to have cookies when you’re celebrating! The name probably comes from the German/Yiddish mohntashen, meaning poppy-seed purses, and was […]

Creme caramel

Creme Caramel Together with chocolate mousse, creme caramel is the standard dessert in cheaper restaurants in France: it seems fancy because it’s hard to make, but the ingredients are cheap – milk, sugar, eggs – and it can be made ahead and brought out during the dinner rush without reheating or anything. These same qualities make […]

Chocolate mousse

Every day for two weeks… I’ve tried many chocolate mousse recipes over the years, and they’re good, but most of them are unreliable. Sometimes you get a great chocolate mousse, and sometimes it’s all runny and won’t set up. How can you make an unreliable dessert when there’s people coming to dinner? So I decided […]

Chocolate streusel

A fancier chocolate cake This is a more complicated chocolate cake, although considerably simplified from the New York Times recipe I started from. It has a lot of ingredients, but nothing complicated about putting them together, and it cooks pretty fast. What about the frosting? This really, really doesn’t need frosting, especially if you eat […]