Penn's Pinafore Post!

It's not easy to admit you have an addiction. And even once you work up the courage to face your addiction and find help, sometimes help isn't always readily available. So deep breath, I am addicted to FRENCH MACAROONS! Yes, those adorable little, crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside, beautifully colored french cookies. However, whenever it's time to feed my addiction, I basically go broke. A dozen of these tasty morsels, from a good bakery, typically runs about $35! A good example of this is the famous Pierre Herme bakery in Paris! These are the Ferrari of macaroons and cost approximately $3 a cookie! There is no such thing as "MA" Macaroons Anonymous, but I found the next best thing, a macaroon class at Sur La Table in Cherry Creek. For only $69, I spent 2 hours with Chef Brett and a super fun group of ladies learning how to make my own marvelous french macaroons. I am not going to tell you that making macaroons is as easy as making a PJB, but what I can say is that Chef Brett gives you lots of guidance and good tips that definitely increase your chances for success. We made pistachio and Earl Grey infused macaroons with chocolate and butter cream fillings. These little cookies can be very finicky, but if you follow the ingredient ratios, I can tell you that it works! I also suggest not getting cocky just because your macaroons came out perfect the first time with Chef Brett's help, doesn't mean you are ready for your own Food Network show! Remember to stay humble and practice makes perfect, especially when it comes to macaroons. My favorite tips that I picked up during the class were:

  • Make your own nut flour, it's pretty easy, and much cheaper than purchasing the pre-made bags!
  • Get yourself a Silpat Perfect Cooking Baking Mat for $26.95 from Sur La Table. Because not only is the key to great macaroons taste, it's also important that they look good too! And when you take a class, you get 10% of your purchase that day!
  • You can easily add a teaspoon of any kinds of flavoring to your flour and meringue to create all sorts of exotic macaroons. Chef Brett suggested OliveNation as a great resource for those hard-to-find flavors, such as bacon flavor!

If any teens are there are interested in learning how to cook Sur La Table also offers a 5 Day Summer Cooking Series, as well as "Sweet Adventures" a baking series. Cooking is a really great skill to have, especially if you are getting ready to leave for college and don't want to eat ramen 24/7.

Even though I was spending time in the kitchen, I still wanted to look cute doing it. I figured there was no better outfit to bake in than the apron inspired "Pinafore". These dresses are so easy to wear, and they can be dressed down with converse or dressed up with a mock turtleneck and a fuzzy evening bag. I even found a gaucho length, pinafore jumper. This jumper easily could go from the kitchen to a Summer party by simply changing your shoes.

    Lavender Velvet Pinafore by Top Shop $45

    Pink Choker Forever 21 $5.90

    Ribbed White Crop Top Forever 21 $12.90

    Mirrored Sunnies Forever 21 $9.90

    Metalic Flower Headband Forever 21 $4.90

    White Pinafore by Tobi $52 Blush Turtle Neck Forever 21 $12.90 Silver Metallic Flats Forever 21 $24.90 Fuzzy Pink Bag Forever 21 $19.90 Pink Sunnies Forever 21 $9.90

    Denim Pinafore Forever 21 $22.90

    Striped Knit Tee Forever 21 $7.90

    Bandana Bracelet Forever 21 $4.90

    Blue Sunnies Forever 21 $9.90

    Pinafore Striped Jumpsuit Patterns and Pops $85

    Polka Dot off-the-Shoulder top Patterns and Pops $38

    Blue Wallet Forever 21 $12.90