chocolate

Montclair Bread Company

BY CAILIN BURKE

Lately, Tara and I have been on an artisanal doughnut kick. Like a serious one in which we hunt out the best, most unique doughnuts everywhere! After trying great doughnuts from Dough, Dun-Well Doughnuts, and Nibble Inc. (in Troy, NY) we headed to Montclair, NJ to try the fun doughnuts from Montclair Bread Company.

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Feature Friday Sneak Peek

Make sure to check back tomorrow for our third Screen Shot 2014-03-14 at 17.05.05!

This time we’re spotlighting someone with a talent a little different than those we’ve featured before. Here’s a clue:

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The full interview will be revealed at 10AM. Don’t forget to check it out and email castlefoundations@gmail.com if you’re interested in being featured yourself!

Banana Peanut Butter Waffles

BY TARA BURKE

I don’t know about you guys, but I have been enjoying a lazy Sunday and have been loving every minute of it. Although we didn’t make these delicious Banana Peanut Butter Waffles today, I think they are a perfect Sunday brunch option! It’s a super simple recipe and is completely customizable.

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Here is what we used:

A Waffle Press

Box of Waffle Mix

A Few Fresh Bananas

Creamy Peanut Butter

Half a Handful of Chocolate Chips

However, like I said this recipe can be changed to reflect whatever your tastes are for that day. Crunchy peanut butter, Nutella, cinnamon and a little vanilla extract are just a few simple ways I can think of to switch the recipe up. When it comes to making waffles and pancakes we tend to eyeball all of our measurements, but for this particular batch of waffles we filled a standard Pyrex up about halfway with waffle mix, added water until it was a liquid consistency, put in a whole over-ripe banana (much easier to mash and mix into the waffle mix), and added a few generous spoonfuls of creamy peanut butter. This makes the batter a little stiff so give it a good strong stir to make sure the batter is fully mixed. Make sure to oil or butter your waffle maker a little before putting the batter in.

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We like to mix our batter straight in a Pyrex cup since it makes it much easier to control the batter as you pour it into the waffle maker. This mixture usually makes a good four waffles in our maker. Try to keep them in the waffle maker as long as possible before they burn. Since the batter is so dense the waffles are ooey gooey in the center, so a crispy crust adds a needed crunchy texture. We added some fresh cut bananas on top and poured some pure maple syrup over the whole thing. If I’m going to do sweet I like to go full-out in order to appease my sweet tooth, but these waffles have all the natural sugar of the bananas in them so they taste great all on their own. If you’re ever bored with your typical waffles and pancakes try this really easy recipe for something different!

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In the Spirit of St. Patrick’s Day

BY CAILIN BURKE

Since St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner, Tara and I’s favorite Parisian bakery started selling Chocolate Guinness macarons and there’s no way we could pass that up! We are half Irish after all. So today we picked up our friend Jenny (who is also Irish!) and drove a 30 minute distance to get these delicious macarons from TC Bakery. We got a few of them and also got Chocolate Caramel ones which are our absolute favorite.

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Now we’ve tried macarons from Laduree and Pierre Herme in Paris and I have to say that TC Bakery is just as good as both of them. It’s great to be able to get macarons that taste like they’re from Paris, but instead are from a little town in New York.

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We then went to Jenny’s house and had them with tea, because for some reason they taste so much better that way. To stay true to our St. Patrick’s Day theme, we had Irish Breakfast Tea and talked about Ireland all afternoon long, since Jenny is going to Ireland this summer and Tara and I had a lot of tips from when we went last year.

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All in all it was a very Irish-filled day and the Chocolate Guinness macarons were decorated with green sprinkles to have even more Irish spirit. Besides the amazing texture that macarons have, these had a tiny Guinness taste that wasn’t overwhelming and went so well with the chocolate.

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Although Tara and I have had many strange macaron flavors like Liquorice, Olive Oil and Vanilla, the tea flavored Marie Antoinette macaron, and the strangest one of all, Cognac, I’ve never heard of a place that has had Chocolate Guinness macarons! That’s why it was necessary that we try them and add them to our long list of interesting flavors. I’m glad they tasted more chocolatey than Guinnessy though, because I’ll never forget how strange and weird I thought that Cognac macaron was. Although you may be skeptical, if you want to treat yourself this St. Patrick’s Day don’t hesitate to combine Ireland’s favorite beer with chocolate because it ended up being a pretty great combo!