Christmas was good to me this year.  Or rather, my family and friends spoiled me, big time.  I received so many wonderful things this year.  My boyfriend got me an amazing new camera, which I’m so grateful for. 

My dear mother made me new aprons that are beyond adorable.

She also made new stockings and a tree skirt for us.  

 That woman is talented.  

I got several cookbooks which I am in love with.  

Cupcakes from the Primrose Bakery by Martha Swift and Lisa Thomas is an excellent book for those who want to learn the foundation to making awesome cupcakes.  They have basic chocolate, vanilla, and carrot cupcake recipes.  With the basics for a perfect cupcake base, you can begin to get creative and add different flavorings and toppings.  They provide several variations to their cupcakes, starting with the basic cupcake, and transforming it into something special, and delicious.

The Art of French Baking by Ginette Mathiot is love at first sight.  This book tries to point out that baking goods and desserts in the home should not be regarded as a luxury, but something that is both practical and satisfying.  This book offers easy and straightforward recipes as well as a very nice introduction to the baking essentials.


I’m Dreaming of a Chocolate Christmas by Marcel Desaulniers.  Chocolate in every recipe. Hello.  Need I say more?

The Lavender Cookbook by Sharon Shipley.  I don’t know what it is about the appeal of Lavender.  There is something whimsical and romantic about it.  Lavender does not have to be reduced to only seeing a spot in your home by way of candles and lotions.  Lavender is a great flavor to cook with as well.  This book offers a wide range of recipes, from appetizers, to desserts, to seafood, all using lavender.

 Can I just say that I have dreams about going to Paris with Ina Garten?  I just love her.  I wish she was my big sister.  I adore her so much, and her cookbook Barefoot in Paris.  The way she writes about her food adventures in Paris and how she has brought recipes home to the states with her is so lovely.  She has some great stories as well as some great recipes.  So funny, so delicious, amen. I love you Ina.

 Tartine is a Bakery in San Francisco, California.  The owners of Tartine, Elisabeth M. Prueitt and Chad Robertson have put together a collection of their favorites.  Not only do they make the recipes manageable for the home cook, they have along with their recipes ways to use any left overs.  For example, the recipes that call for pastry cream, they offer little kitchen notes and tips as to how to use the left over cream, such as pouring it over fresh fruit for a light dessert.  I love this book.  Buy it, cook from it, love it. Hallelujah. 

Thank you everyone for being so generous and making my holiday so special.  You do more than I deserve!