Pistachio Carrot Cake & Saffron Ice Cream
Pistachio Carrot Cake & Saffron Ice Cream

I was planning to write on a different topic today, but when you’re inspired, sometimes you have to go where the wind blows you. Today, the wind was blowing in the a pale green direction, and I’m not talking St. Patrick’s Day here (although a person certainly could, were a person so inclined). The inspiration of the day? Pistachio Carrot Cake & Saffron Coconut Ice Cream. Oh yes. We’re just that crazy around here.

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Day 20: The Scarborough Loaf
Recipes Day 20: The Scarborough Loaf

*This post marks Day 20 of Miss Ginsu’s 2008 Advent Calendar. Like me, you may know a few vegetarians. Like me, you may have once been one of those vegetarians. In those days, I was always a little befuddled at the holidays. I mean, feast foods are pretty proscribed for omnivores (1. roast something 2. add starchy sides). Those who shun meat are left without a lot of festive “center of the plate” foods.

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Day 17: Sweet & Spicy Candied Nuts
Recipes Day 17: Sweet & Spicy Candied Nuts

*This post marks Day 17 of Miss Ginsu’s 2008 Advent Calendar. I’ve been trying not to fixate on financial news, but I recently read a prediction that if bad news keeps rolling in, people may want to want to burrow into their homes and watch movies on the couch. They think the pricetag on going out might be a bit too dear for a tough year. If that’s true, and we’re all turning down the thermostats and stuffing ourselves into our living rooms, I hope we’ve all got good company and tasty snacks as we watch our Netflix or pay-per-views or whatever we happen to be watching.

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Day 12: Cookie o' the Week… Citrus Pignoli
Recipes Day 12: Cookie o' the Week… Citrus Pignoli

*This post marks Day 12 of Miss Ginsu’s 2008 Advent Calendar. Welcome to the second Cookie o' the Week! Last week we sampled a Dutch delight, and this week, we’re moving south. As a child, I sold (and ate) many, many boxes of Girl Scout cookies. They seemed mighty fine at the time (especially the Thin Mints nibbled straight out of the freezer), but that was before I discovered Pignoli Cookies, an Italian confection made up of little more than pine nuts, sugar and almond paste.

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Recipes Day 9: A Holiday Halva

*This post marks Day 9 of Miss Ginsu’s 2008 Advent Calendar. I find it really interesting that the Christmas season is supposed to be about the birth of Christ, and yet modern-era Christmas celebrations don’t feature anything that calls to mind the early Christian-era foods… that is, the foods of the Middle East. Rather than eating something like pita with hummus and baba ganoush or Spiced Ground Lamb, we feast on roasted turkey or baked hams for the holidays.

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Day 5: Cookie o' the Week… Pfeffernusse
Recipes Day 5: Cookie o' the Week… Pfeffernusse

*This post marks Day 5 of Miss Ginsu’s 2008 Advent Calendar . For me, the holidays are all about cookies. I’m not sure why this is… perhaps it’s not such a bad thing to keep the oven on for a while on these chilly December days? Maybe it’s because cookies are convivial and easy to share? Maybe they transport well in one-horse open sleighs? You’ve got me. Whatever the reason, I like ‘em, and the advent calendar this year will feature a cookie of the week .

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Day 2: Cranberry Cream Tart
Recipes Day 2: Cranberry Cream Tart

*This post marks Day 2 of Miss Ginsu’s 2008 Advent Calendar . Everyone needs a nice little “company’s coming” recipe that they can make up ahead of time, and this one is an inexpensive and impressive trick that works with leftovers, so it’s super -thrifty. I whipped up this idea for work to help people use up excess Thanksgiving cranberry sauce, but I think you could really use whatever fruit jelly strikes your fancy.

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Recipes Dead Tasty Maple-Nut Bars

How do you know if you’ve met with bake sale success? Sometimes, all you need is pure, simple, organic swooning. Here’s three organic swoons from my office’s recent “raise funds for Wagga the injured cat” bake sale: “ohmygod so good. I don’t even want to know what’s in those.” “Not right! Maple walnut OFF THE HOOK!!! Pairs with Camel Lights and black coffee…” “Those maple bars are lethal. Can you give me the recipe?

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Recipes Peanut-Butter Glazed Chocolate Cake

Now that we have an official MissGinsu.com Peanut Week theme around these parts, I realized I had to address one of the world’s greatest flavor combinations: chocolate and peanut butter. (Thank you, Reese’s. The world owes you a great debt.) A recent commenter led me to Jen’s Chocolate Cake… a brilliantly simple single-post blog that features a chocolate cake recipe. A chocolate bundt cake recipe, to be precise. And as a side note, I’m honestly incapable of making a bundt cake anymore without thinking of the “parental conflict over bundt cake” scene in My Big Fat Greek Wedding.

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About Me

Miss Ginsu is a nom-nom-nom de plume of Leitha Matz, who worked at Tabla and FreshDirect in NYC, wrote about the food scene from 2004 to 2009 in Brooklyn and presently lives in Berlin. Occasionally seen on TV cooking segments, Leitha has also written for FreshDirect, contributed to Cee Cee Berlin, The Food52 Cookbook and has been interviewed/quoted in The Food Keeper as well as The Washington Times and Salon.

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