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Showing posts from May 2, 2014

CHOCOLATE DREAMS!!

Love deep, dark chocolate cookies? Daydream about crisp, melt-in-your-mouth goodness?

KAF friend and fellow baker Paul Basten, warmly known as "Paul in Ohio" by many, was kind enough to share his chocolate version of our mega-popular Vanilla Dreams. A few test kitchen tweaks, and a chocolate star is born. 
ingredients Volume  Ounces  Grams 1 cup butter1 1/2 cups sugar1 teaspoon vanilla1/2 teaspoon baker's ammonia, for best texture; or 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder1 teaspoon salt2 cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour1/2 cup Dutch-process cocoa

SCOPPIO DEL CARRO FROM ITALY!!!

The Scoppio del Carro ("Explosion of the Cart") is a folk tradition of Florence, Italy. On Easter Sunday, a cart, packed full of fireworks and other pyrotechnics, is lit and provides a historic spectacle in the civic life of the city.

A Little History on the Festival

    The event of the Scoppio del Carro has its origins in the First Crusade, when Europeans laid siege to the city of Jerusalem in a conflict to claim Palestine for Christianity. In 1097, Pazzino de' Pazzi, a Florentine from a very prominent family, was by tradition, the first man to scale the fortified walls that surrounded Jerusalem. As a reward for this act of bravery, his commander gave him three flints (fire starters) from the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, which were then carried back to Tuscany. These were and still are kept in the Chiesa delgli Santi Apostoli.













    It became the practice for a "holy fire" to be struck from these flints at Easter tide, which was then carried throughout the…