01 September 2011

The Baker's Nuts Adventures: How I Spent My Vacation

My normal rambling and destruction of good recipes will continue later this week (Same bat-time; same bat-channel -- it almost makes sense :) ), but if you're interested in reading a synopsis of my vacation look no further. However as a warning and despite the title, the following was not in any way written by Paul Dini, so it probably won't be that entertaining :). And Before I start, let me get this out of the way, I didn't end up going to The Ex (booo). In spite of this I still managed to eat a lot, at points it felt like my grandmother was preparing me for a contest :)

Speaking of which, my weekend at the cottage was terrific. Sure the weather was pretty garbage, but I wasn't bothered by it. I was able to spend some quality time with my grandparents. Not only did we get a chance to talk but I also got to watch and help (a bit) my grandmother in the kitchen. Who, under the guise of "teaching," figured out how to make large meals even larger :). I also brought a lot of joy to my aunt, uncle, and cousin who laughed at me over the phone (numerous times) when my cousin "accidentally" took my suitcase home with him on the same day I arrived (har-dee-har-har :)). No worries though, I got it back by the end of the day. I had planned on stealing all of my cousin's shoes as revenge, but it seemed kind of mean and like a lot of work and I'm lazy (though sufficiently mean :))

I made sure to spend some time at my favourite restaurant with blueberry pancakes on Monday and regular pancakes on Wednesday. On the Monday I found out they were opening for dinner service on Thursday night and I immediately made reservations. It was a great time with great food. There was room for improvement with some of their sides, but it was opening night and the quality of the mains was fantastic. And the surprise "Thank You" dessert at the end of the meal was the cherry on top of a very tall ice cream sundae and further solidified how much I love them.

I also visited my other grandparents so we could sit down and talk for a little bit. Unfortunately my grandmother wasn't feeling great, so we couldn't go out, but I had a nice time chatting with my grandmother and grandfather, as always. And yes if you were wondering, my brother and I managed to get through the entire Lord of the Rings Trilogy on Blu-ray (Wednesday 9:30AM to 9:45PM). The picture quality was flawless :), clearer than day. I love HD :).

I managed to bake a bunch too; zucchini cookies, cream cheese brownies, peach pie, and BUTTER TARTS! My aunt successfully showed me what I was doing wrong with my pastry crusts, it came down to nearly everything :). It was one of the most rewarding and frustratingly annoying experiences I have ever had as a baker :) (the reason will become clear in a future post :)). And how do I know her lesson was a success? Because I made a pretty good Peach Pie and crust a few days later. INCROYABLE! Thanks Auntie J! :).

And although I was back to work on Monday and my vacation has been over for a few days now, I figured I would also mention that today, for the first time ever, I saw my house. My big boy living space. This means for the first time ever I saw my brand new kitchen, my kitchen, the birth place of all future baking endeavours.

Appliances won't show up until I move in next week (hopefully, don't ask) but I bought all stainless steel Kitchenaid stuff, because apparently I'm a sucker for what they make :) (in case you're curious: fridge, stove, dishwasher). And because I worry too much I am anxiously waiting for them to break down within the first month, shortly before the entire house collapses on my head.

So that's that. Sure it might not seem like the most exciting vacation, there were no long car rides without air conditioning; no epic boat races requiring my underpants; nor giant bears with large bald spots, but I had a good time and it was over too soon. Thankfully, I managed to catch up on a lot of relaxing, baking, and sleep :). This will all be helpful as my closing date approaches (one week) and my panic level increases to red. The only thing that might sufficiently be able to calm me at that point is a batch of cinnamon apple pancakes :).


P.S. Honestly they don't compensate me in any way :).


  1. It sounds like a great vacation, Adam. I'm glad you got the crust problem straightened out. I'm looking forward to pictures of your new house. Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

  2. I wish I could bake with my grandmother...I wasn't interested much when she was alive :( Did you love what you baked? All 4 look delicious...What are butter tarts? They look like something I could eat a lot of... Is your favorite restaurant a secret??
    Is your new home new, or just new to you? It looks new and bake-ready with lots of counterspace. Have a good long weekend!

  3. I have always counted myself as one of the luckiest people on the planet to not only have such wonderful grandparents, but to still have them all with me. My grandmother is an amazing baker (you can read about it here ( http://www.thebakersnuts.ca/2010/12/terminator-can-be-stopped-same-cannot.html) but at the cottage she was showing me things for dinner, obviously afraid that when I'm on my own I would starve :)). We went over her zucchini topping for pizza, her brajole, and a couple of her tricks :).
    The easiest way to describe butter tarts is that they are like a pecan pie/tart but with raisins instead of pecans. However, I have always found them less sweet and a bit richer and creamier than your typical pecan pie/tart (proportionately it seems they use more butter, maybe hence the name?). But of course this depends on the recipe used. My aunt's are like this and they are beyond perfect. Her's is her mother's recipe, and she has given me permission to post it. You can check around for another recipe but give me a few days and I'll have the best one on the internet here :).
    My home is both new to me and new :) (I chose the kitchen colours myself :)). I'm really excited to get in that kitchen and start working, I just have to get over all the panic first :).
    And have a great long weekend too! :). Bake some more award winning stuff :).

  4. And Thanks Mary :). With pastry crust successfully made I'm excited to finally attempt some of your pie recipes that I've been bookmarking for the last few years :).