Pearl’s for the Culture.

Pearl’s for the Culture.

When Chéo said we’d be spending Labor Day in Brooklyn this year, I automatically thought back to last year and how we ended up at j’eatjet. I pretty much spent the morning calling restaurants to find out if they were open—but not this time! I did my research, found quite a few restaurants that would be open, but we still ended up at Pearl’s in Williamsburg, for the culture.

Each visit to Pearl’s, I try something new—last time was the tamarind wings. As much as I would’ve loved to have an order, we went with the sweet plantains, served with a tamarind chili sauce. I’d never had a crunchy plantain until then: it seemed to have had a light flour-coating that added a much-needed texture once paired with the sauce. It was a pleasant surprise and definitely a dish I’ll be trying at home, as soon as I figure out how to make tamarind sauce.img_8023

I had a few tastes of his Trini rum punch; that was definitely a hit! I got my usual bake and shrimp, Chéo ordered a bake and jerk chicken with a side of avocado, and of course the macaroni pie.

It was a short drive to OddFellows to get ice cream for dessert. Their ice cream is so creamy and smooth, I had to put Chéo on. Instead, he ordered a milkshake. ::rolls eyes::

 

Brunch and candids: our NYC Labor Day tradition. The traffic we hit was horrible, but we were surrounded by the sounds of the Caribbean, and that was home to us.

 

 

 

 

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A Toast: Prosecco Doughnuts

I’m always getting tagged on food posts on Facebook, so when I got the tag for the prosecco doughnut video, I was intrigued.

The Doughnut Project teamed up with Ruffino for National Prosecco Day—August 13th—to make these glamorous prosecco-glazed doughnuts. I was tagged on Friday, and I was at the shop Saturday morning. They make their batch, and when they sell out, that’s it- so I made sure I got mine!

They’re selling them until the end of August, so act fast!

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The Doughnut Project
10 Morton Street
New York, NY

 

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Christina & I keeping ourselves entertained in NYC Saturday-morning traffic.

#avaeats All White Party + Potluck

#avaeats All White Party + Potluck

img_7055I. Am. Floating.

Saturday night was the night! The #avaeats all white party and potluck was an absolute success! Naturally, there were a few hiccups—but all the little things I worried about were nonexistent. We had a great turnout and variety of dishes from West Indian to Italian, and the never-failing tray of chicken wings from the Chinese spot. I can’t thank everyone enough!

I ordered an infused unicorn cake from @sugarhighbakes and they delivered! I offer them the opportunity to set up at the party and they gladly took it. I was a little nervous about them coming, I’ll admit, but they had a successful night and enjoy themselves, and I couldn’t ask for anything else. I know for a fact they’ll be getting some new business after this—mission accomplished!img_7059

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I enjoy making pretty desserts, so I held that down on the contribution list. I made vanilla cupcakes topped with vanilla buttercream and a white chocolate brush stroke, chocolate covered pretzels, chocolate bark, and brownies in a brand new silicone mold that almost made me shit myself—I’ll tell that story another time. Angelena reminded me the day before that she is a pescatarian, so I had to run out to grab some shrimp and decided to make shrimp kebabs two ways: lemon and garlic and jerk, using the jerk seasoning my god-sister brought me from Barbados.

The contributing menu consisted of so many bottles of liquor, homemade rum punch for adult capri suns, lo mein, rasta pasta, quinoa with kale, potato and green bean salad, macaroni pie, a gluten-free vegan interpretation of doubles, chicken wings, homemade pickled red onions and hot sauce, flan, a bunch of cookies, marble cheesecake with Oreo and graham cracker crust, and the plethora of sugary shit I mentioned earlier. 

Speaking of chicken wings, let me big up the contributor, Jeff, real quick for taking the initiative so whip out his handy-dandy camera and start snapping away! When I’m hosting, I have severe tunnel vision to make sure all of my guests are taken care of and I often forget to document the good times, so Jeff’s presence was clutch.

I made photo props and bought buttons and pool floaties to give away. There were contests for the best Instagram photo and caption using #avaeats: these were the winners. FullSizeRenderimg_7101img_7103

Chéo drove up for my first event. I was entirely too happy he was here. He seen me host so he knows how I maneuver, so having him here was a huge help! He made sure everyone had drinks and food and got them everything they needed, and like always, he was the captain of the cleanup crew. He looked at me with hearts in his eyes the whole time; he was so proud of me when he saw how everything came together. He won’t stop telling me; this man of mine is always making me blush. I love that his friends came and supported me too. These guys are always a fun bunch.

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I had such an amazing time. I’m exhausted, but I’m still on a party high. I put a lot of time, energy and money into concepts when I come out with them, so when I hear amazing reviews about anything I do I’m always grateful and always humble. I can’t wait to do this again!

I stole a few Instagram/Facebook posts because I’m screenshot mami: I like to see what I do through other people’s eyes.

Prohibition Bakery.

After Angelena and I pigged out at Pearl’s, Christina met us nearby to continue our food-filled Saturday. Christina has proven time and time again to be a rider- I have no idea how she found Prohibition Bakery, but I’m glad she did! If you want a real boozy (min) (cup)cake, this is the place!

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There were only a handful of flavors left when we got there: Pretzels & Beer, Old Fashioned, Dark & Stormy, Sangria, and Negroni. My favorites were Pretzels & Beer, made with Six Point Sweet Action Ale, Nutella, pretzel and white truffle, and the Old Fashioned, made with whiskey, bitters, orange, and a whiskey soaked cherry—but tasted everything like the typical black cake with icing served at every Trini wedding. We also tried Paloma rum drops with tequila and grapefruit for free!

I’m convinced the three of us walked out at the end of the night strangely tipsy off some cake! The alcohol doesn’t bake out, as one might think, because they add the liquor after they’re baked. These mini cupcakes are crazy boozy so you just might get carded, but each contains less than 5% alcohol by volume, in compliance with NY State Law.

Prohibition Bakery was founded in 2011 by a bartender and a chef, Leslie Feinberg and Brooke Siem. Unfortunately, their Clinton Street location closed down a few weeks ago after five years due to typical NYC rent hikes—a whopping 40% increase. They’ve since relocated and only offers delivery and catering services for now. Hopefully they’ll get another brick-and-mortar soon.

img_6890They even have a cookbook, so you can get boozy from the comfort of your own home!

Happy (Belated) National Ice Cream Day

img_6422I double scooped Ice Ice Baby (triple vanilla) and Dough Boy (chocolate chip cookie dough and chocolate brownie dough pieces) for National Ice Cream Day at Mikey Likes It! I really wanted to try the flavor of the month, Forrest Gum, but every time I came back to get it, it was either being remade or sold out! Think about it, it’s ice cream with strawberry crumb cheesecake and blueberry compote covered pound cake—no wonder it sells out so quickly!

Mikey Likes It
199 Avenue A
New York, NY

Pretty Please Bake Shop

You can’t recommend what you don’t know, and since this is the only bakery I know of in San Francisco, it’s the only one I can recommend!

But this is an excellent recommendation! With Chéo, carrot cake is king, so when baecation planning went into effect, I made it my duty to blindly find a bakery from across the country. 

Yelp will never steer you wrong!

My San Francisco bakery search brought me to Pretty Please Bake Shop. Not only were the ladies of Pretty Please a pleasure to work with, but the carrot cake we blindly selected was ah-mazing! Super moist and not painfully sweet flavorful, we had a few for dessert after dinner, then some more for breakfast the following day!

I was able to send them these isomalt crystal cake toppers I got from Lucitini Cakes on Etsy. I squealed when I saw the finished product- our cupcakes were beautiful!

I’m currently following Pretty Please on instagram, and what these ladies do with cakes is nothing short of jaw dropping! They even made the 2017 birthday cake for the Golden State Warriors, so you know their cakes are legit!

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Shout out to Lucitini Cakes- we definitely didn’t expect those isomalt crystals to be as tasty as they were!

 

 

Pretty Please Bake Shop
291 3rd Ave
San Francisco, CA

 

Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory

During our baecation to San Francisco back in March, we found the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory in the Fisherman’s Wharf area. Chéo has a sweet tooth like my dad- somewhat uncontrollable- so we just had to go inside.

In the words of Chéo, this was some fat shit…

..but we loved every second in here! The Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory had chocolates I’d never imagined, like Snickers-stuffed marshmallows and chocolate-covered s’mores.

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They had the usual candied and caramel apples, a childhood favorite of mine, and added mini M&M’s, chocolate chips, even white and dark marbled chocolate!

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That chocolate dipped frozen cheesecake caught my eye, but we’d already had so much chocolate on the counter I decided to save it for our next baecation to SF.

img_5336This is the face one makes after spending over $70 in sugar and stuff: caramel apples, white chocolate covered Rice Krispies, Kahlua bonbons, snow clusters, and a bunch of souvenir half mugs.