An Homage: Missin’ these baked goods..

17 11 2008


I’M NOT the most discriminating gourmand.  But I guess I’ve developed my taste thru the years.  And believe me when I tell you that sometimes, the best food items – baked goods, for example – can actually come from the home kitchen, yours or someone you know.  I’ve been striving hard to get better on making my ‘edible art’ (as Michael James Fisher politely puts it).  And while I may be lightyears away from being the best chef that I can be (sans a CCA education?!), I have to say that I just feel so fortunate to know and be friends with people who can whip up magic in the kitchen.  Obviously, I’m at the receiving, chewing.. munching end of their generosity.


Which brings me to the topic of this post.  This is actually my homage to a couple of my friends who I feel are “goddesses” in the kitchen.  An homage to them and to their own edible works of art.


The first one is Mary Frances Therese B. Yuvienco-Kinney (Therese) and her ‘date & pecan bars.’  She is based in California and that means that I haven’t had these goodies for a wwwwhile now.  And I’ve been missin’ them a lot!  She saw how much I loved these goodies and how fast I could devour one batch.  I am a generous person but to a certain extent, whenever Therese would hand me a Ziploc-bagful of these scrumptious treats, I would lose my magnanimous heart and cling to the bag tightly as if they were my mother’s apron strings.  I’d turn so with good reason.  One bite of these bars, gooey in the center and bursting with the goodness of caramel and ‘caramelized’ dates and pecans, and you will understand why.  They’re on a par with the very famous ‘Becky’s Kitchen’sFood For The Gods.. but Therese’s has that ‘artisan-like’ quality that is so endearing.  She is not totally remiss as a friend because she made sure I had her recipe before I came back to the Philippines.  But there’s nothing like the magic Therese weaves into the bars she actually bakes.  I don’t think I will share this recipe here though – she should guard it.  Hehehe.


The second one – if you’re my friend, you may have guessed it right – is Cecille Carnay and her ‘apple cinammon cookies.’  I still remember the first time she handed me a pack of these luscious, delectable cookies, along with a generous pack of store-bought imported chocolate candies, all beautifully tied with a ribbon of colors that heralded the coming Christmas season.  I won’t forget that because all other subsequent ‘rations’ of these cookies came in the standard Ziploc bag.  Hahaha!  Not that I’m complaining because the cookies are always the ones I really crave for.  My first instinct was to always ask: “May I have the recipe please?”  But  Friendship Cecille was rightful to politely decline my request.  Because as I had said previously, things like this should be safely guarded!  How were the cookies?  They were with a very thin, chewy ‘crust (?)’, lightly dusted with cinnamon (I guess!  Remember, I don’t have the recipe!  Hahaha!)..  with cubes of fresh apples that you can pick out from the top and from within the cookies.  It was for me the perfect blend of slightly crunchy and really chewy – Cecille’s perfect apple cinnamon cookies!