This time of year has us (and probably you too!) in the mood for spending some serious time in the kitchen, making nice things to eat for our families and friends. Baking in particular is a favorite this time of year, so we thought we’d share some tried and true and very delicious recipes that we like to make, with the help of our favorite kitchen supply store – Sur La Table, and the very talented Caroline Tran.
Anything you need to outfit your kitchen for all sorts of baking projects is at your finger tips when you walk into one of their stores. We’re always inspired to be better cooks, and to keep building our stash of cook and bakeware! Like a big, beautiful, red dutch oven that you can use for stews and soups and steaming persimmon pudding. Or a gorgeous copper tea kettle that makes brewing a cup a tea just a little more special.
For this shoot, we made Persimmon Pudding, Pumpkin Pie, Popovers, and Orange Butter Cookies. And they were all delicious, truly. The cookies make such sweet and thoughtful gifts, and the persimmon pudding is the most forgiving recipe you can imagine. Even novice bakers can pull it off with a bit of patience. It’s divine with a few sliced persimmons and freshly whipped cream.
If you have a food processor, making homemade pie dough is literally a snap. And we’ve found that a nice thin cutting board like those made by Epicurean works beautifully for rolling. OR a lovely slab of marble, if you’re not lucky enough to have marble counters. (We can dream, can’t we?)
We think our heart favor bags make perfect packaging for little foodie gifts this time of year – not that we’re biased or anything. And if you’re up for the challenge of trying the persimmon pudding recipe, a sweet little pudding mold makes all the difference for your final presentation.
To create the little heart detail on our pumpkin pie, we used a heart cookie cutter and the left over bit of pie dough. We baked the heart piece separately from the actual pie (so as not to burn it) and added it to the finished pie before serving. Don’t forget a nice glaze of egg wash to give your crust a pretty golden color! We love the ruffled Emile Henry pie pan we used for this shoot.
Do you Silpat? Okay, so it’s not a traditional verb, but it kind of should be. Silpats are so essential for flawless baking! We’ve heard them described as the Spanx of the culinary world and we kind of have to agree.
Read the rest of this recipe here.
Another essential tool for your kitchen? The microplane grater, of course. We can’t live without them in our kitchens and they work particularly well for zesting. Can you say perfect chef’s stocking stuffer?
We liked using these cute wood-topped jars for packing up a stack of butter cookies. A sweet gift that comes with an adorable reusable jar. C’est parfait!
If you plan to have holiday guests in town, making something special for breakfast is always a must. Popovers are yummy and unexpected and require a special pan. We love a good excuse to try something new and expand our baking pan collection! This pretty hammered metal tray makes a nice serving piece for a dressier breakfast or brunch.
A gorgeous little persimmon pudding makes a yummy dessert or decadent holiday breakfast, especially when perched on a teeny cake stand.
Thank you so much for the beautiful photography, Caroline!