Friday, February 24, 2012

Oats Stole the Show

Hello there. I suppose I owe you all an event recap. What can I tell you? It's been four whole days since I had people over and I'm still smiling ear to ear about it! It went better than I could have ever expected. Thank you to everyone that came by to support me, and to those who helped me prep; the lovely Dolores for helping with my test cookie batches leading up to the event, Elizabeth and Caroline for giving me pro feedback and letting me bounce recipe ideas off them, Jill for helping with the day-off merchandising, and most of all, Steve-o for coming in and completely saving my sanity on Monday afternoon. 

And although I was too busy to take a single picture (I could kick myself!), the two beautiful Laurens in my life did snap a few shots using their mobiles. So at least there's proof that something did in fact go down in my apartment on Monday evening. 

Here's a very tired Shanti, setting the table!

Apple Cider Granola ($12/lb) and Oatmeal Bread ($4)
Oatmeal bread was the first to sell out!
Oatmeal Pear Cardamom Cookies  

Man, I guess oats really dominated the party. It's true, I am total glutton for oats. But oat-based treats were not all that was served! Check out my last post to see some of my delicious non-oat cookies. Chocolate lavender was also a big stud that night.

What's next? Recovery? Yes. But not too much. Aside from moving into my new apartment in Fort Greene next week, I have a few very exciting baking opportunities in March. More to come on that. Until then, you can find me at Saltie, baking every Tuesday-Saturday. Tomorrow morning I'll be lining the pastry case with croissants, flaky poppy seed buns, chocolate lavender brioche, and the best old fashion doughnuts you'll ever try. Goodnight!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Shawls and Shantilly Sweets

I know I haven't been posting much lately but in case you're still paying attention (and I hope you are!) I wanted to let you in on some of the latest shantilly picnic happenings. As most of you all know, I left my job at the agency in October and started pursuing baking full-force. I was lucky enough to be welcomed into the Saltie family and have been there, happily baking away, five days a week (and learning loads in the process!). My personal time has been divied up between the following priorities: 1- perfecting my pizza dough methodology (and eating entirely too much pizza in the process), 2- building my dream cookbook collection, 3- researching the heck out of wedding cakes (I'm making my beautiful friend, Emma's, wedding cake in August!!!), 4- obsessing over antique kitchen tools, 5- testing and tweaking ideas for cookie recipes (ok, maybe this should be listed as #1), 6- learning about and practicing food photography, 7- designing my own logo and packaging with the help of uber talented Steve and Leigh Mignogna, and 8- planning my first shantilly picnic event!!

My Shawl and Shantilly Sweets Sale is taking place this Monday, Feb 20, at my little apartment in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Shawls are being supplied by Fenella Pearson, a licensed interior designer and Home & Garden Editor of The Daily, who collects them from her travels to India, China, and beyond. Sweets of course will be coming straight from my oven, with plenty to snack on during the event and some available for purchase! I bake with all-natural ingredients, using organic, seasonal and local whenever possible. Soon I hope to offer custom order desserts, but for now I have a seasonal granola and five delicious cookies to choose from.

Apple Cider Granola- made with reduced apple cider, local Fugi apples dehydrated in my rinky dinky little hand-me-down dehydrator. Can be made gluten-free upon request.

Photo by shantilly picnic

These cookies have a lot of character and represent some of my favorite flavor combinations. I'm selling them both, freshly baked and in dough form. I wanted to offer cookie dough's so they can be baked and enjoyed as cookies should be eaten, which is fresh out of the oven with no preservatives. 

Photo by shantilly picnic

The decadent Chocolate Lavender, made with flowers from a beautiful Long Island lavender farm.

Photo by shantilly picnic

The down home classic, Caramelized Banana Shortbread.

Photo by shantilly picnic

The aromatic Oatmeal Pear with fresh ground cardamom (gluten-free!).

Photo by shantilly picnic

The instant favorite, Apple-Honey Almond.

Photo by shantilly picnic

The bright Meyer Lemon Olive Oil with poppy seeds. 

Photo by shantilly picnic

I wish all of you could join us on Monday! But don't fret, I will post pictures so you can all witness my apartment transformed into a shawl fort. AND this is only the beginning- I hope to host many more mini events in the future. Perhaps once a month? We'll see. If you're not in NY... Come visit! Or just stay tuned for more updates.  

Cheers! Thanks for reading.