For the food and fun portion of my trip, several destinations stood out:
|Cheesecakes at Pasticceria Rocco|
|Raffetto's Nona Ramona|
Grandaisy Bakery on Sullivan Street for NY-modern, European-style pizza, bread, and more - http://www.grandaisybakery.com/products/pizza/pizza-pecorino/
|Grandaisy's Butternut Squash Pizza|
|None of This My Mac's Better Than Your Mac|
There was a really fun insider's tour of the Test Kitchen at Meredith Publishing, with the food editors of Family Circle, Ladies Home Journal, Everyday with Rachel Ray, and Better Homes & Gardens, with each magazine's version of a Mac & Cheese for tasting. These accomplished women showed exactly how sharing one kitchen works to make each of their magazines better.
|DP's Doughnut Pillow Wall|
http://www.melissas.com/Products/Products/Ojai-Pixie-Tangerines.aspx, with a crushed Pepita garnish. I'm pretty sure DP uses only the finest, best, purest, organic, ingredients for their dough, but I am not so noble. So I used a trick I picked up a couple of years ago of using frozen yeast bread dough to make really pretty amazing doughnuts. I know doughnuts are a nough-nough where healthy eating is concerned, but I never said anything about healthy, did I? Plus really, the glaze and fillings are made with fresh fruits and there's only a short dunk in hot vegetable oil to make these doughnuts worth every ounce of evilness.
Best Doughnuts Ever - Mine!
1 loaf frozen bread dough (out of a 3-pack)
vegetable oil for frying
your favorite jam
2 Melissa's Ojai Pixie Tangerines
1. Defrost the loaf in the fridge overnight. Cut the loaf into 6 sections, form each section into whatever shape you want, then put each piece on a cooking oil sprayed, parchment paper lined baking sheet, and cover with cooking oil sprayed plastic wrap. Put the pan in a warm place (I use my oven) and let dough rise at least 1 hour - longer is even better.
2. Then take each piece of dough, gently punch it a bit, reshape, and again place on the baking sheet, cover, and let rise another hour or so.
3. Using a pretty deep pan that is wide enough to fit one doughnut at a time, fill the pan with vegetable oil about 3" or so deep, and heat at medium-high about 10-15 minutes until oil sizzles when you stick a wooden skewer into it.
4. Gently place one doughnut into the hot oil and cook one one side about 20 seconds then turn over with the wooden skewer and cook on the other side 20 seconds. Then flip the doughnut back over and cook another 10 seconds or so on each side until golden brown. Use a spatula to remove the doughnut to a parchment lined baking sheet, then repeat with remaining 5 doughnuts, one at a time.
5. Make the glaze with the juice of one pixie tangerine and powdered sugar blended together until smooth and glazey. Add the zest of one tangerine into the glaze. Reserve the zest from the other tangerine.
6. When the doughnuts are cool enough to handle, take a metal skewer and poke a small hole into the side of each doughnut, twisting the skewer slightly to create a pocket for the filling. Put your jam into a squeeze bottle or piping bag and fill each hole with the jam. Lay the doughnuts back on the baking sheet.
7. Take the glaze and put a heaping spoonful onto the middle of the top of each donut. It will drip on its own but help it out if necessary. Sprinkle each glazed doughnut with the crushed pepitas and some tangerine zest.