Why do I love cinnamon? Let me count the ways.
Perhaps it all started as a kid, when my Dad and I would indulge on weekend mornings with cinnamon raisin toast slathered with butter. Truth be told, he often ate it for a late-night snack, too. Crisp, and heady with that warm, sweet, fragrant spice, who could blame him?
When I got older, and started my endless weekend baking bouts, Snickerdoodles were a favorite to make. Of course, rolling them in cinnamon-sugar was the best part.
And when I got older still, there was nothing so intoxicating as a Moroccan chicken scented heavily with cinnamon all over its beautiful bronze skin.
As a result, jars of cinnamon are always on hand in my pantry.
But nothing prepared me quite for the beauty of this container of cinnamon, which I received as a sample.
“Prosperity Cinnamon” is a lovely cinnamon bark box hand-carved with the Asian character for “prosperity.” Inside is 3 ounces of ground Vietnamese sweet cinnamon that is so fragrant, you’ll want to use it the minute you open it up.
It’s one of the many items included in the 2014 World Vision Gift Catalog.
A snack of Chocolate Almond Butter? Justin’s makes it super easy to do so.
Justin Gold was a vegetarian with an athletic lifestyle when he started whipping up his own nut butters in his Boulder, CO home.
It wasn’t long before he was packing them in 16-ounce jars to sell at local stores.
As an outdoorsy kind of guy, though, it dawned on him that so many energy bars and goos were just packed with sugar, not to mention pretty lacking in flavor. So, he thought, “Why not package his nut butters in on-the-go individual squeeze packets”?
Justin’s nut butters come in eight flavors. They’re all natural, made with dry-roasted nuts, organic cane sugar, palm fruit oil, vanilla and sea salt, as well as organic cocoa and organic cocoa butter in the chocolate varieties.
The nut butters stay fresh until you open the packet. Just knead the packet a little before opening to soften the nut butter and to incorporate the oil that naturally tends to separate out.
Rediscovering the cookies I loved as a kid.
If you’re a long-time or native San Franciscan like myself, you probably grew up with these Danish butter cookies.
My aunt would bestow a box on our family every Christmas. The box would be lined with rows of five different types of golden-hued cookies. The oatmeal was always my favorite, and the one I reached for first.
When my aunt retired, so did the cookie gift-giving. And I never had them again.
Bently Ranch New York steak right off the grill.
Bently Ranch of Minden, NV aims to do things the right way.
It started out in 1997, raising cattle for the commodity market. But two years ago, family member and San Francisco local Christopher Bently started raising the cows on pasture to create premium grass-fed, dry-aged beef.
Today, the farm also produces hay for other regional farms, and takes in for no charge everything from yard debris to leaves and grass from its neighbors that goes into creating compost for the ranch.
As noble as those efforts are, the real test, of course, is in the taste of the beef.
Now, it’s a lot easier to try it for yourself, as Bently Ranch just launched a new online store last month.
Imagine tasting four different vanilla ice creams, each sourced with vanilla from a different country.
The same concept of single-origin that’s been applied to coffees and chocolate bars now comes to premium ice cream.
Los Angeles-based Choctal has done just that with its chocolate and vanilla ice creams. Think four different kinds of vanilla ice cream plus four different kinds of chocolate ice cream. How’s that for a surprising way to introduce variety?
The ice creams come in these flavors: Madagascar Vanilla, Mexican Vanilla, Papua New Guinea Vanilla, Indonesian Vanilla, Ghana Chocolate, Kalimantan Chocolate, Dominican Chocolate and Costa Rican Chocolate.
They are made with single-0rigin chocolate and vanilla sourced from around the world. The ice creams are made without eggs or gluten.