Apple-cranberry galette ($32) from Manresa Bakery. (Photo courtesy of the bakery.)
Pre-Order At Manresa Bread Bakery
Yes, Manresa Bread Bakery in Los Gatos is now taking online pre-orders for breads and pastries up to two weeks in advance.
For Thanksgiving orders, you can pick up your items anytime from Nov. 20 to Nov. 25. Just note that the bakery will be closed on Thanksgiving and the day after that holiday.
For those of you in Santa Cruz, you can even choose to pick up your items Nov. 25 at the bakery pop-up at Assembly in Santa Cruz.
The super-sized kouign-amann. (Photo courtesy of Manresa Bakery)
Items that can be ordered ahead include baguettes, brioche rolls, almond croissants, apple-cranberry galettes, pumpkin loaves, pumpkin pie, and even a giant version of the kouign-amann ($28) that feeds 6 to 8 (or probably one in my case).
Stock Up on Pies and Cakes To-Go at Presidio Social Club
Up in San Francisco, Presidio Social Club is also making it easy to enjoy fresh-baked pies and cakes this holiday season.
Individual cakes made with dessert wine, whole grapes, and a new red grapeseed flour blend.
You probably know the name White Lily as the go-to flour Southerners swear by for the most tender biscuits.
Now that Southern institution has introduced its first new flours in 130 years.
Partnering with Shepherd’s Grain, a group of wheat growers in the Pacific Northwest, White Lily has created three new flours: Wheat and Red Grapeseed Flour Blend, Wheat and White Grape Seed Flour Blend, and All-Purpose Wheat.
The non-GMO wheat is grown sustainably. You can even plug in a code printed on each bag of flour into the Web site to find out information about the farmers who grew the wheat for your specific bag of flour. For instance, I tried a sample of the Wheat and Red Grapeseed Flour Blend, which was made with wheat grown by Cherry Creek Ranch in Washington, Spokane Hutterian Brethren Inc. in Washington, and RattleSnake Ranches in Idaho., all of whom have operated for generations.
Grapeseed flour is gluten-free, but of course not when it’s mixed with all-purpose flour, as is the case with these blends. But what’s great about the blends is that they have been formulated so that you can use them 1:1 in place of regular all-purpose flour in any recipe. Grapeseed flour also is purported to be high in antioxidants.
I was most eager to try out the Wheat and Red Grapeseed Flour Blend because of its subtle purple color.
Take a taste of Sopressata Calabrese.
Brothers Steven and Eric are the fourth generation of Bavas to hand-craft a spicy Italian dry salami specialty known as sopressata Calabrese.
Their grandfather brought the recipe to America after immigrating to Chicago from the small mountain town of Simbario in Calabria, Italy. Every winter following Christmas, the whole family gathered to whip up a batch, which would then be served at every special family occasion throughout the year.
Now, the brothers are making that same cured sausage in small batches in Los Angeles and selling it via a small select group of retail stores.
Recently, I had a chance to try Bavas Brothers Sopressata Calabrese.
Deep ruby red, the squat sausage is firm and chewy. It’s full of sweet porkiness, along with a good jolt of peppery spice that builds the more you chew.
French delicacies delivered right to your door from Bon Appetit Box.
They say good things come in small packages.
Zoe Capdevila and Bertrand Corp want you to know that so do tasty French treats that can be delivered to your front door (or to friends and family).
The couple, who both grew up in the South of France and are now based in Alameda, CA, started Bon Appetit Box nearly a year ago after studying business in Paris, and working in the Paris offices of Pepsi, Unilever, and L’Oreal.
The delivery service lets you choose a single or subscription service for their curated boxes full of authentic French-made foods. Each box is $75, though, there is a discount if you order a four- or six-month subscription.
A lamb chop gets even more yummy with Sosu Sriracha Rub all over it. Plus a few home-grown Padron peppers as a garnish.
Imagine the fruity heat of Sriracha crossed with the unmistakable aromatic, earthy smokiness of cumin.
That’s what you get in the new Sosu Sriracha Spice Rub.
Lisa Murphy of Oakland’s Sosu Sauces makes what is probably my favorite Sriracha sauce around. It’s aged and fermented in whiskey barrels to give it even more fruitiness and smokiness, adding to its overall complexity not found in other run-of-the-mill Asian hot sauces.
Very much like a winemaker, she produces the sauce only once a year — when peppers and tomatoes are at their peak in summer. It’s a controlled frenzy to take all that fresh produce and turn it into her Sriracha and Srirachup (Sriracha ketchup).
As a small producer cognizant of the importance of not wasting anything, she developed the rub as a way to use up the peppers used in aging the Sriracha. She was inspired by the cumin lamb skewers famed in Xi’an, China.