If My Memory Proves Correct…

October 3, 2011 § Leave a comment

One of the problems with eating a decent amount of baked goods is that sometimes you forget to properly record which is which. From what I can remember about my breakfast last week this should be a rosemary-currant scone:

Regardless of the flavor, I can definitely attest to its overall deliciousness. Another new addition at Joe, this scone was moist, light and flaky; soft currants contrasted nicely against the firm and sugar-speckled crust while a hint of herb (that I believe was rosemary) added a nice earthiness to cut the sweet. I will do some research and determine the bakery responsible since I definitely want to find more like it!

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New Guy at Joe

October 3, 2011 § Leave a comment

In sync with the changing seasons, Joe in Grand Central has brought out several new baked goods to add to their traditional arsenal.

A few weeks ago (and at the recommendation of one of the friendlier baristas) I had the pleasure of trying this muffin:

The “berry cardamom” option was true to its name. Cardamom never fails to remind me of the chai made by my host family in India and as if on cue, after one bite I was transported back several years to the kitchen table at which I first learned of this wonderful spice.

The blueberries and raspberries played well with the cardamom, no one flavor overpowering the other. The texture was on the softer side but I honestly wouldn’t have had it any differently. All in all an excellent muffin and a wonderful addition to the pastry case.

A doughnut, that’s all

August 16, 2011 § Leave a comment

I have always noticed the various Doughnut Plant offerings at Joe but until now (despite my penchant for things sweet and fried) have never been tempted. Perhaps it was because they tended to stock mainly yeast and jam varieties instead of cake, or perhaps I am fiercely and subconsciously loyal to Peter Pan of Greenpoint; for whatever reason it was not until yesterday that I finally walked away with a doughnut alongside my morning coffee.

A banana pecan cake doughnut, to be precise! And, while this was indeed a well-done thing: moist interior reminiscent of banana bread and a crisp, sweet glaze studded with pecan bits, it honestly did not give me much to remember.

Yes it was tasty, and yes perhaps my expectations were too high — I was anticipating being lifted onto another plane by the sheer majesty of the thing — but I honestly can say that I would have been more content eating a slice of good banana bread than I was with this treat. Maybe that’s the problem: the Doughnut Plant’s cake creations are really not suitable for breakfast. Now, if only Joe would start stocking banana bread…

Berries galore

August 2, 2011 § 1 Comment

Thanks to a random work-related errand, this morning I found myself strolling past the Borough Hall farmer’s market before getting into the subway. While my intention was merely to look at all of the fresh produce and perhaps grab a sample or two, I was immediately smitten with the fresh, tiny blueberries being sold for $4 a pint. Not batting an eye I forked over the cash and dug into the tart blue wonders. One mouthful reminded me of how those overblown, bulbous grocery berries are just not the “real” things– not the way berries taste right off of the hiking trail or backyard bush.

In line with the day’s trend, I opted for the blueberry muffin at Joe’s along with my morning iced Americano. Both were delicious, and while the berries in the muffin were of the larger, sweeter grocery-store variety, they were found with such abundance that the overall muffin experience was quite enjoyable. The sweet muffin (made even more so by the cinnamon sugar-coated top) paired beautifully with a handful of tart market berries and a sip of Americano.

A brilliant blue Tuesday, indeed.

The Usual

July 19, 2011 § Leave a comment

A breakfast that I have consistantly enjoyed over the past year is the apple-walnut muffin from Cranberry’s.

Cranberry’s muffins are some of the best around for your everyday breakfast– not too large, not too sweet, simple and satisfying. They are the kind of muffin that are actually meant to be eaten regularly, unlike some of the quasi-cake beasts that can only feel like indulgences. The apple walnut in particular (pictured above next to Joe’s iced Americano) manages to hit the perfect balance of wholesome cinnamon-bread base, soft apple and chopped walnuts that is both enjoyable to the senses and satisfying to the stomach. I can easily have¬†three of these in a given week and still take enjoyment and pleasure in each bite.

My mother likes to buy these in bulk and stash them in her freezer. If you put a frozen one in your bag on the way to work in the morning, by the time you sit down to breakfast it is completely thawed but still chilly– absolutely perfect for summer days. Almost as good as breakfast pie! (But only almost..)

Joe’s

July 16, 2011 § Leave a comment

On Thursday I decided to break out of the Cranberry’s pattern (okay, actually we no longer had any left in the freezer..) and got my breakfast from Joe the Art of Coffee in Grand Central. A small iced coffee and banana-cran muffin were all I needed to start the day off right.

This muffin is moist¬†(in the best way possible) due to ample chunks of banana. To balance the sweet there are plenty of tart cranberries that pop with juice and flavor upon each bite. The top of the muffin is nicely caramelized, allowing for a wonderful array of textures. And check out that crumb! So much airy goodness… this guy is a definitely a keeper.

(Joe’s muffins come from the Corner Cafe & Bakery, located on the Upper East Side)

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