March 26, 2015 |
There are fewer traditions cuter than watching a wide-eyed 1-year-old slather his face with his very first cake. Typically, the child is shocked at its sweetness, and the birthday party guests get a laugh and a cellphone shot. But like so many other mini-life-cycle events these days - finding out your baby-to-be's sex, getting a marriage proposal - this ritual has now got a name ("cake smash") and any number of entrepreneurs ready to help celebrate. There are cake-smash photographers, cake-smash outfits, and, of course, special cake-smash cakes.
February 18, 2015 |
VERNON WILKINS travels the city on buses, subways and foot, selling $1 carrot cupcakes he bakes from scratch, using a recipe he has made nearly every day - the exact same way - for the past 35 years. "I never ever, ever, ever changed or skimped on my recipe," he said. "I buy fresh products every day. I go to the market every day. One of my favorite sayings in life is, 'If it's not broke, don't fix it,' and that's how I managed to be successful so long. " In the beginning, Wilkins, 60, sold carrot cake in his West Philly store.
January 9, 2015 |
A BUCKS COUNTY prison guard with a Sawschlong Obsession, or a proclivity for ogling inmates' private parts, was arrested for, among other jailhouse shocks, forcing inmates to play "patty-cake [pat-a-cake]" and hug one another, prosecutors said. Joseph Mullen, 28, of Feasterville, was charged by an investigating grand jury with official oppression and harassment yesterday after his sexually suggestive actions toward prisoners at the Bucks County Correctional Facility gave inmates the gruesome prison blues, according to authorities.
October 31, 2014
What to eat: Cupcakes? Pshaw! Wonderland Cakes offers "cake shots," an unusual, delicious alternative. These perfect parfaits come in a plastic tumbler with a spoon - layers of cake, mousse, syrup, frosting, fruit, preserves, liqueurs and even surprises like breakfast cereal and candy. Their best shots: When we visited, the cake shots on the menu were Apple Spice Seductress, Peanut Butter Bombshell and Pumpkin Pinup. All tasted and looked as lovely as they sound. Makin' whoopie: Yes, Wonderland bakers also make jumbo whoopie pies.
August 14, 2014 |
Licking icing from his fingers, 3-year-old Alex DiPasquo buzzed into the arms of his grandmother. "Did you take the smokestack off the cake?" Mickey DiPasquo, 64, said, feigning annoyance. A brightly decorated sheet cake, flaunting a map of Italy and the United States - and now, a mangled ship traveling between the two - sat on the dessert table surrounded by cream-stuffed cannolis, almond cookies, bowls of fruit, and pizzelles. "Why do we have a cake today?" she asked the boy, brushing him with kisses.
June 18, 2014 |
For the customers of family-owned DiBartolo Bakery in Collingswood, it's no secret that Al DiBartolo and pastry chef Manny Agigian are artists in aprons. Think fanciful cake sculptures, freehand buttercream blossoms, to-die-for towers of fudge and chocolate mousse. Great baking, for sure. But do these Jersey guys have what it takes to be the Next Great Baker ? Tune in next Tuesday at 9 p.m. Season Four of the TLC cooking competition show starts with 10 baking teams from around the country, including Agigian, 33, and DiBartolo, 39, a cake artist.
April 11, 2014 |
WHAT'S 5-foot-2, has swans-a-two, and every dude from Dr. Seu-ss? The Jersey-made cake that won Best in Show in City of Hope's 10th annual "Let Them Eat Cake" competition, that's what. Monday evening, Haddonfield's Sweet T's Bakeshop took home the blue ribbon (really a blue glass sculpture and generous gift basket) for its colorful, quirky and purposely askew take on this year's fantasy theme, beating out 20 other pro and student-made over-the-top pastries. The competition was friendly, but fierce: fairies vs. gnomes, happy brides vs. Mad Hatters, the "Hunger Games" vs. a giant orange octopus.
April 1, 2014 |
It's not the most gastronomically appealing pairing of topics: eel and cheesecake. But fortunately for Barry Kratchman, he has an expertise in both. That has given his Classic Cake wholesale bakery, with 55 employees in North Philadelphia, its first export opportunity. Two weeks ago, 15,150 cheesecakes made at Classic's factory on Sedgley Avenue near Juniata Park set sail from the Port of New York on a container ship bound for South Korea. "Koreans revere Philadelphia cheesecake," said Kratchman, president since acquiring the 30-year-old Classic Cake in 2006.
February 4, 2014
It's one thing to fantasize about telling your boss, "Take this job and shove it. " To quit a good-paying gig with no backup plan takes guts. Hilary Beard, of Mounty Airy, did exactly that 17 years ago, after holding down corporate positions at Procter & Gamble, Johnson & Johnson and Pepsi. She had no clue what would come next. "I felt like I was just a liar," Beard recalled last week. "I was working for Pepsi, and I didn't drink Pepsi. I just wanted to have integrity. . . . Integrity is when what you think and what you feel and what you do are all in alignment.
October 18, 2013
CHEMISTRY! Cooking is an art, sure, but it's also a science - specifically chemistry. Especially in the creation of delicious chocolate desserts that are 100 percent animal-free. Fran Costigan has been doing the science since the late '90s, and her new book, Vegan Chocolate: Unapologetically Luscious and Decadent Dairy-Free Desserts , shows great chemistry, not just in the recipes but between her and Philadelphia publisher Running Press. The internationally known desserts diva (just back from Paris Vegan Day 2013)