February 20, 2006
bathroom typing, City Bakery, and a taste of Bouchon
...IS THE COLOR OF MY URINE.
Hm. I suppose it's the supplements I've been taking lately. They're green. I can see them turning my pee an alarming shade of yellow that would otherwise seem to result from the ingestion of radioactive waste, or being zapped with some radioactive ray of fluorescent doom that the government created for fun. "It makes our organs glow, wee!" They gotta do something to amuse themselves, right?
So that's my introduction. Moving on, I'm in the bathroom right now, balancing my laptop on the toilet seat cover. Why? Well, I just love the way this bathroom rug caresses my bum...no, that's not it. My roommate went to sleep already (at around 12:30 AM, which I'm sorry to say is early for me) and even though she wouldn't rip my head off for continuing my annoying typing under the aid of a light that shoots out wavelengths that allow me to...ye know, see stuff, but also inconveniently bounce off the walls into her eyes every so slightly (I live in a studio and the way our furniture is set up, my desk is parallel to her bed), I'm pretty sure she'd be pissed off if I stayed out there, invading her sleep with CLICKING SOUNDS and HORRIBLE LIGHT and OH MY GOD, I AM SATAN.
(sigh) I do care enough to not bother her though. I mean, I do bother her sometimes, such as when I don't move myself to the bathroom for late night typing (I wouldn't be so reluctant if we had a wireless connection in the dorm), but she unintentionally shoots right back by letting the kitchen trash bin accumulate so that the trash level reaches "you cannot possibly shove any more crap in here" or the sink level reaches "you cannot possible shove any more crap in here either"
But it's not that bad; I'm just hard to please. However, I'm very passive about it (every time I take out the garbage because it gets to the point where it seems to be giving birth to more trash, I internally give her the finger), thus why I am in the bathroom, and why you just read three paragraphs that were unrelated to food. Sorry. She's actually not a bad roommate, but she's no super-friend either. Next year I get to have yet another random roommate because friends who dorm are nonexistent. All those dreams of living with friends in college are down the drain, mingling with hairs of all different ages, coagulated by dirt and soap gunk.
I went to City Bakery last Friday with Sarah, Carol, and Patricia so that we could all get a dose of hot chocolate and/or a baked good and/or a chocolate coma. Sarah and I were especially excited about the flavor of the day, "Caramel Hot Chocolate". I dunno about you, but I sure love my burnt sugar products. SUUURE DOOOO. I think CB's regular hot chocolate costs $3 a cup while the flavored ones tack on another $1.50. This better be some damn good caramel.
It looks good, eh? See that froth? It's frothy! Boy, you didn't see that one coming. This was the third time I drank CB's hot chocolate; it was thick and, dare I say...luscious? (I don't really like that word for some reason.) You know those Pepto-Bismol commercials that feature an animation of a stomach slowly being engulfed in a liquid curtain of thick, pink goo? That's what it feels like to drink this hot chocolate, but more pleasant. Hopefully. (ACtually, too much hot chocolate could do the opposite of Pepto-Bismol and give you stomach problems. Just made sure to not drink a gallon of the stuff.)
HOWEVER, sadness looms ahead. Neither Sarah nor I could taste the caramel. There may have been just a whisper of caramel in our cups, but who wants that? I wanna be shot in the head with caramel, dammit! This was like a flick! Sarah investigated our hot chocolate by getting a sample of the flavored one; after we both tooks sips, we realized that this was what it was supposed to taste like, as in it tasted a lot like regular hot chocolate. Nothin' more. I find that unaccceptable, as I've had their ginger hot chocolate and was clearly shot in the face with tingly ginger-ness (okay, not shot in the face, but it was a strong flavor that melded nicely with the thick chocolate). Where's mah caramel? Wheeere?!
Oh, I still drank the whole thing of course. Happily. When I was done, I thought, "Wait, I could have more!" However, my last CB hot chocolate drinking experience--during which I downed nearly two cups due to overestimating how much I could drink--resulted in a chocolate coma and continous thoughts of, "Oh my god I'm going to die why won't my head stop doing that wooshy thing and my leg keeps jerking what is up with that oh jeez chocolate in my veins what is the teacher saying and why'd I drink all that chocolate?" No wonder I waited a year before allowing CB's hot chocolate enter my bloodsteam again.
Instead of going for the chocolate chip cookie, no matter how tempting it was, I opted for the small, minimalist passion fruit tart, decorated with a splodge of what may have been raspberry jelly (well, it ain't orange). "Time to try something new, Robyn! DO IT. PEOPLE ARE DEPENDING ON YOU." I don't know whick people in particular my brain was referring to, but whatever; it sends me cryptic messages that I follow through on for no good reason.
I didn't know what to expect, but this tart wasn't exactly what I was expecting. From the looks of it, I thought the filling would have a thicker, custard-like texture, but instead it was very light and somewhat airy. It was creamy, just not in the stomach-coating sense. The thin, tender crust broke down at the approach of my fork. And knife. Which I guess is supposed to happen. (Sure is better than having to attack it with your fork and knife repeatedly, only to send crust bits flying while making your dessert and plate look like a stabbing scene.) If you don't know what passion fruit tastes like, it's quite tart and otherwise hard for me to explain because it doesn't taste like much else; I'd say this tart's passion fruity-ness was just right. The tart was fine and I enjoyed it, but I like denser things and would enjoy a $2 cookie much more than a $6 tart. Hell, three $2 cookies! Hehe. Hehehehehe. (rubs hands together)
So that was my CB excursion. Strangely unflavored flavored hot chocolate and an interesting, but not-my-cup-of-tea tart. I'm going back to CB this afternoon to try the chili hot chocolate. That flavor definitely shouldn't make me wonder whether it's actually flavored or not.
An anonymous baked goods donor (but not very anonymous if you poke around my blogosphere) has showered me with goodies from the soon-to-be-opened Bouchon Bakery, aka Thomas Keller's latest venture, aka THE BIG TK IS OPENING A BAKERY FOR THE NYC-BASED MASSES, BWAHAAHA! Sure, he's not actually tying ribbons around these bags of chocolate cake bits (which I think are called bouchons, but I'd rather call "chocolate cake bits" because the word "bouchon" sounds too refined for my blog and you know how I liked to downgrade things to a plebeian level), but he surely had some hand in ...um, everything Bouchon makes. This is the closest I will ever get to eating his food. Ye-up. I'll tie that Per Se ribbon to my backpack and explain, "Nope, so didn't go there."
And not that this guy is tying the ribbons either, but the pastry chef is S�bastien Rouxel. I don't know him, but he's automatically awesome. Every pastry chef wins the badge of awesomeness. Unless they derive pleasure from torturing cute animals, which I doubt they do.
As my friend is thoughful enough to smuggle me this tasty contraband (my first response when they handed me a scone and a cookie was something like, "OMG I LOVE YOU NO WAY *takes a breath* AHRAHHRA SCONE NO WAY") I will give you pointless reviews of what I have tried so far, "pointless" because everything's good.
Mm, chocolate cake. Moist, dense, and full of chocolate. There were bits of something in here, but I had a lobotomy in my sleep and forget what the bits were. Um. Chocolate? Nuts? It's mainly cake with nothing else. I can't think of anything wrong with it, "wrong" being that it was too dry, crumbly, sweet, unsweet...nah, I've got nothing. I guess that means it didn't blow me away either, but I'd definitely put this in the "eat again" list.
For some reason, I liked how it was wrapped up in plastic like any old candy. This truffle had a white chocolate shell delicately coated with toasted-coconut and filled with vanilla bean-speckled white chocolate ganache. Methinks. There's a manual for the bakery/cafe with overly detailed descriptions of everything, which I unfortunately do not possess. This was actually sweeter than I was expecting (WHOA, HOLD THE PRESSES), but I do like my sugar so that's fine with me. Also, white chocolate tends to be sweeter; I love white chocolate. Just. Love. If you don't like white chocolate my assumption is that you may not have had good white chocolate. People who say they don't like white chocolate because it's not chocolate kind of drive me insane; no duh it's not CHOCOLATE-chocolate. Let's not pick at semantics here. If you truly do not like white chocolate though, then that's cool. Avoid this truffle. I wouldn't. ;)
Behold, the lemon currant scone. Lordy. This was the clear winner; it was just SO DAMN TASTY. Crumbly and buttery with a crispy sugar coating on top, I would gladly eat a few more of these. Two. Three? Four? CAN WE HAVE A CONTEST? They were unlike any other scone I had ever had, perhaps more comparable to shortbread-esque Russian tea cakes I used to eat from Whole Foods (I know that description doesn't help you much, but I haven't eaten those tea cakes in years and you know...I had that lobotomy) than a drier, breadier, biscuit-like scone. The texture kind of reminded me of shortbread except not as dense or rich, but still containing enough density and richness to be totally awesome. Yeah. This made me very happy.
Mmm, the humble chocolate chip cookie. This was certainly better than a lot of other chocolate chip cookies I've had, but despite its chewy-crispy texture that I enjoy, plus the layered chocolate chunk-innards that I also enjoy (who wouldn't?), I wouldn't prefer this over my top three cookie purveyors (City Bakery, Jacques Torres, and Levain Bakery). It probably didn't help that I ate it after the "I really love this" scone.
So...that's all I've had so far. I don't know if there are more things coming, but I hope so, even if my pancreas wishes otherwise.
Posted by roboppy at 1:20 AM
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