Tag Archives: best

NYC3 – One cupcake at a time………..

You might remember that I recently went to New York City with my hubby. We were celebrating our anniversary.

Neither one of us can completely believe that someone else has put up with either one of us for two decades. So, we decided to celebrate – and celebrations require cake. No, really, it’s written on page 1 of the celebration bible. – right after “find a reason to celebrate”. Next, “find cake”.

Sweets aren’t really my thing and I have not gotten caught up in the whole cupcake craze – at least not until I found out there were carrot cake cupcakes being made in the cupcake wars. I love me some carrot cake. But, can everyone please stop putting raisins in them? Walnuts, yes please. Raisins, oh hell no. Not even the cute little white ones.

Anycake, we didn’t really seek any places out. We just stopped along our way at any place that had a picture of icing on its sign.

The first place was Melissa’s. She apparently can’t be bothered with an entire cupcake and just sells you bites of cupcakes with a tinee, tiny little dab of icing. And she, my cupcake-loving friends, is brilliant. They are delish….

They are so good, in fact, that if you drop one on the street, you seriously might be tempted to pick it up. Not that I would recommend that – but some people might do it. Not me. Other people.

I highly recommend the chocolate chip cookie dough and cinnamon varieties. Melissa’s is near Times Square. Lots of people were buzzing in and out with pre-orders. Large pre-orders. That tells me something. The natives even like them.

The next place was the Magnolia Bakery. It’s around the corner from the Today Show studio and Rockefeller Center. Please don’t ask me which corner – it’s just around the corner. Walk a block each way and you’ll (eventually) find it. Promise.

Their cupcakes look like this….

They are very pretty but this one was a wee bit dry. The shop is adorable and the staff is lovely, so that’s good. But, uhm, it is all about the cupcake.

Then we stopped at Juniors. It’s near the Marriott Marquis in Times Square. I loved the name and the feel of the place. These are the vanilla and reeses cupcakes. They were not so good. Sorry Junior, but the competition is stiff. You gotta step it up. I didn’t like these because they were just so dense and the icing was crisco-y. Not fluffy. I discovered I prefer fluffy. In fact, I roll best with cream cheese fluffiness.

Apparently, Juniors is famous for it’s cheesecake so it might not have been entirely fair to hold them to such a high cupcake standard.

And, just in case, you have never been schooled in the proper way to eat a cupcake. Take notes. Break it in half in the middle and stick the bottom on the top – like a sandwich. Then you can call it lunch. 😉 You will thank me later.

Next was Crumbs. Drum roll please. It’s the the creme-DE-la-creme of cupcakes. Angels might have been singing when we walked in. Maybe it was my stomach growling. I am not entirely sure. But there was line – that’s a  good sign, right?

And those wicked smarties had carrot cake cupcakes. Finally. And YUM!

Okay, these guys rocked the cupcake competition. They are fabulouso and awesomesauce. Each one was better than the next. Well, except for the mocha caramel one – I don’t do coffee, so mocha anything is a no-go for me. But the rest were so yummy. These were vanilla with chocolate icing, mocha caramel, carrot cake (the grand supreme winner of all things cupcake in New York City), coconut, vanilla with vanilla, and chocolate chip cookie dough.

Even the elevator guy at the hotel recommended Crumbs. And, thank God, they had an elevator operator at our hotel because pushing my own elevator buttons might just have put me over the edge. Seriously, that is a lot of work. 😉

Now I understand that you might be concerned that we ate cupcakes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and that cupcakes might not have been the healthiest of choices for all three meals. But have no fear, we ate real meals – the cupcakes were snacks. Tee hee.

If you go to NYC and have a hankering for a cupcake, go to Crumbs or Melissa’s. And if you want to bring back a little something for the blogger who pointed you in the right cupcake direction, carrot cake please.Oh, and, if you don’t mind, ask them to hold the raisins. Thanks.

Bits of Bacon……..

I recently heard a story about bits of bacon – maybe on YouTube, probably told by someone famous. I cannot remember the details of who and where but I want to share with you the “why”.

The story was told by a lady – I do remember that. And that lady worked in some sort of rehabilitation center or nursing home with elderly people who could no longer live alone because they needed assistance in some way or another.

As she was walking through the dining room at the end of breakfast one day, a rather crotchety older gentleman demanded bacon. She knew there wasn’t any left, so she told him she was sorry but there wasn’t any left (that might not be a direct quote, by the way). The man got belligerent and wanted to know why “everyone else” had bacon and he couldn’t have any.

In an effort to calm the man down, the woman told him she would go “see what she could do”. This settled him and settled the room and made her more than a wee bit nervous. She knew she had made a mistake even before she tripped over the words coming out of her mouth. She could hear her own words betraying her because she also knew there was no bacon. And she knew that this particular man was not inclined to greet her with a thankful hug for her efforts when she returned to him baconless.

So she searched the kitchen (and likely the heavens) for something that could satisfy the way she feared only bacon could. In her search, she found the pan the bacon had been cooked in. It had not yet been washed and there were bits of bacon in the bottom of it. So she scooped them into a bowl and presented them to the man. He was not impressed. He yelled again – maybe he included some obscenities but he, at the very least, pointed to the fact that the bits were not really bacon – just someone’s leftover mess.

And, the woman admits he was right.

He was already mad and her promise, which at first gave him hope, was actually dripping with inevitable disappointment and just made him madder still.

So the woman reminded her listeners not to offer what they know they cannot deliver. If someone is already mad – making them mad a second time isn’t really the best approach. We cannot do everything – and even if we could, we cannot do everything well. So we should focus on our strengths and accept our shortcomings and leave the bacon bits in the bottom of the pan. Because this….

is never, ever going to compare to this….