Subscription boxes have been around for a bit, but it seemed to me that last year snack boxes popped up everywhere. Because it’s food, I was eager to try one of these services. However, I needed an invitation and couldn’t score one for the life of me. The universe must’ve heard my call because when I opened a month old Sunday New York Times stacked amongst other old issues, I found an exclusive reader coupon for Graze. Score!
I signed up right away for the $6 nibble box that includes four snacks in individually portioned containers each with a calorie count displayed on the front label. At the time, I didn’t think much of the first box (pictured above). That was until I stashed a few containers in my bag and tried them when I was ravenous from running errands but unable to grab a meal. These snacks are handy, tasty and convenient. Aside from the snacks themselves, I particularly like that Graze allows me to rate each snack in the box so future boxes are customized based on my preferences. Also, I’m able to choose how often I want a new box, every two weeks or monthly.
I thought Graze‘s snack box was a convenient idea for a healthier alternative especially during the workday. In the following weeks, I weeded out the ones I didn’t think I’d like and gave them to my husband. It wasn’t until he started bringing back the snack labels for the ones he liked that I knew Graze had won us over. I only wish I could specifically request certain snacks, but I guess the more I try, the better the customization.
The best part is Graze sends friend codes, so you don’t have to wait until you open an old newspaper to find a coupon. I have three up for grabs. If you’re interested, please email me. Go ahead, get your snack on!
I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating. Christina Tosi is a freaking genius! If you don’t know who she is, allow me to make the introduction. She’s a superstar pastry chef who rose through the ranks at David Chang’s Momofuku, after leaving the illustrious wd~50. At Momofuku she created distinctive and tasty desserts that warranted their own showcase and thus Momofuku Milk Bar was born. Not sounding special yet? Well, let me clarify. She uses all those things you loved as a child and still enjoy as an adult but wouldn’t think to put into your dessert like cereal milk™ and Fruity Pebbles. I knew I’d get your attention.
Last year I had the privilege of spending the weekend in Brooklyn with my husband to celebrate his birthday. I won’t bore you with all the personal details of the weekend, but I will say that I squealed with excitement when we got off the subway on our way to the fabulous Buttermilk Channel seeing a Momofuku Milk Bar just outside our stop. I hadn’t even had dinner and was already thinking about what I was going to have for dessert because that’s how I roll.
After dinner we stopped in and bought a few cookies. I’d had them before and knew better than to buy just one. My husband, on the other hand, had never partaken in the religious experience that is Tosi’s treats. While I was there, I picked up an autographed cookbook. Too full from dinner, we indulged in the cookies the next day. I enjoyed every complex, crunchy morsel while my husband made mouth noises asking what magical stuff was in the cookies. There weren’t even crumbs left when we finished.
On the way back home to Chicago I dove into the cookbook on the plane. I’m one of those odd people who actually read cookbooks. This one is skillfully written with detailed sections devoted to ingredients (everyday and unique), tools and techniques (be sure to read the section on her creaming method). Tosi explains all her choices and what will happen if you decide to do it your way. I appreciate that. She anticipated all my questions and answered them as if she were in the kitchen baking by my side.
This is one of my favorite cookbooks ever. Yes, ever. I even made the Cornflake Chocolate Chip Marshmallow Cookies for this year’s cookie exchange. They were a big hit. This cookbook makes a perfect present for any baker, arming you with new techniques but also instilling confidence in what you already know.
Have you tried any recipes from the Momofuku Milk Bar Cookbook? Let me know in the comments below.
Have you checked your calendar? At the risk of sounding hysterical or giving you anxiety, it’s December-freaking-20th! In case you’ve been hiding under reindeer hooves, Christmas is approaching quicker than you can say Blitzen.
I bet you have that one impossible person on your list that you still haven’t crossed off because you’re “selective” (ahem, procrastinating) and now you’re totally scrambling. Well, I’m here to rescue you. Actually, me and nearly 30 Chicago Food Bloggers.
Enter the Chicago Food Bloggers 2013 Holiday Gift Guide (cue the heavens parting, angels appearing from a blinding light and a choir singing “Hallelujah”). This jam-packed, 140-plus-page tome is carefully curated by people who know and love food. Grouped into 10 sections so you can easily navigate and pick a gift for every person on your list, including my 5 suggestions on pages 24-25, 90, 105, 114-115 and 128-129. You officially have no excuse. You’re welcome; that’s my holiday gift to you!