Wednesday, April 6, 2011
Hot Fudge At Williams Sonoma (And Danish Jam-Filled Pancakes If You'll Buy A Special Pan)
Williams Sonoma is a strange store for a cook to have ignored for so long.
On my own, I have a pretty off-brand kitchen. A pot is a pot is a pot. Maybe I invested in a few items, but mostly I followed Mark Bittman's mantra of no frills supplies and mostly I cooked from scratch. So I really didn't shop for kitchen stuff in the mall.
It took Mrs. HowChow to teach me that the food was delicious. We'd check out Williams Sonoma for samples as we walked around, and I saw how that store -- with its clear directions and its mixes and sauces -- got her excited about cooking more than anything else.
Baking more than cooking. Sweets most often. Mrs. HowChow isn't excited for Williams Sonoma's pot roast spices. She wants new cookie sheets. She also wants hot fudge. Williams Sonoma's hot fudge has no equals around here. No chemicals. It's cream, sugar, butter, cocoa . . . It heats beautifully and makes any ice cream into something special. I cannot find anything that compares, and I have no idea how to make my own.
So we go to Williams Sonoma together.
Another recent find: a pan to make ebelskivers. I have no idea if anyone in Denmark really eats flying-saucer pancakes, but Williams Sonoma sold us on the story, a pan, a cookbook and a can of pancake mix.
Skip the mix. It's flour and baking powder for $10. But the ebelskivers are really fun, and the Nordic Ware pan makes them pretty easy. You make a simple batter, and you cook seven ebelskivers at a time, letting a tablespoon of batter cook and then adding another tablespoon and flipping them over with wooden chopstcks.
You get a pancake shaped in an oval. So far, we have made them filled with jam for breakfast, and these would be huge fun if you're weekend breakfast people. (Father's Day gift? Recipe is easy.) In addition, the cookbook touts savory ebelskivers -- for example smoked salmon mixed in the batter. They'll make great party food one day.