La Cocina Launches at the San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmers Market
And I Discover ClaireSquares
(much to the pleasure of my belly and the regret of my waistline)
Do you know any of those food-obsessed kind of people who prefer to only buy unprocessed food and to make absolutely everything from scratch if possible. You know - the kind of people who, if they were throwing together an English trifle would, make the Boudoirs themselves, and make up some freshly made custard, using egg yolks and cream without going anywhere near Birds Instant Custard Powder. Yes, I am one of those people. And for the longest time I have been meaning to find out, some day, how to make some of those shortbread and caramel squares topped with chocolate, those Millionaire's Shortbreads that I sometimes miss from the UK.
Rewind to last Saturday when I was preparing for a little dinner party. Early in the morning, co-chef Amanda and I popped to the market to pick up the remainder of the ingredients we were missing for our feast. And because we needed some energy, some breakfast, we decided to stop at La Cocina on their inaugural day at the market.
La Cocina is a Community Kitchen, a nonprofit, shared use, commercial kitchen and business incubator. La Cocina was founded to serve as a platform for low-income entrepreneurs launching or expanding their food businesses. La Cocina assists low-income food entrepreneurs by providing access to a fully approved and equipped commercial kitchen and to the training and technical assistance they need.And this is where I discovered Claire. And her Squares. Claire grew up in Ireland where, as a child, she started baking these treats and selling them at school. Clairesquares.com are the most delicious caramel shortbread chocolate squares I have ever tasted. I am not sure about Ireland, but back in Britain I am certain they used to make these with margarine and cheap baking chocolate. But not Claire, she only uses the best preservative-free ingredients - Belgian chocolate, unbleached flour, butter! These squares are quality, they should rightly be called Gazillionaire's Shortbreads. You even have a choice of a milk or plain chocolate topping. That's what I call class, that's what I call luxury. That is also what I call a good enough excuse to let someone else do your baking for you from time to time...
Community Kitchen | La Cocina
Delicious | Clairesquares
Flakiest Pastries, Mmmm | Mystiepies
Cute Jams | CMBsweets
Other Resources & Further Reading
2006 | Mabel's Just For You Cafe - 22nd Street - San Francisco
2005 | Shrove Tuesday - Pancake Day
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Labels: Bay PurveyLa Cocina Launches at the San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmers Market