As promised here is the first segment of my Guest Event with Jan Silverman
I think I’ve stumbled upon something that I am going to actually planning to make a regular feature on my blog. Having some local friends and celebs chefs to come and share their secrets and tips with us. Let’s take a moment getting to know Jan Silverman
Me: Jan, I am so happy you’ve graciously accepted to share with us your time and experience in the area of cooking that can be most challenging – making desserts
Tell us a little about Jan…
Jan: I’m retired. Enjoy cooking and spending time with my wonderful husband of 36 years, grown son, daughter and son-in-law. I also have 7 cats and volunteer at a cats only shelter and spay and neuter clinic for feral cats.
Me: And how about Jan the Dessert Queen J?
Jan: My husband calls me “Jan, the Dessert Queen” because I always read the dessert menu first when we eat out and I like dessert at lunch and dinner (even if it’s only a chocolate truffle).
Desserts have always been my favorite part of the meal. Eating and making them. I owe my love for baking (and my sweet tooth) to my paternal grandmother who started teaching me at age 5. She kept all her recipes in her head and only used measuring cups and spoons for my benefit. I have yet to find a better pie crust than hers. I like making desserts because they are visually attractive, allow me to express my artistic side and make people smile.
Me: Can you share a few standard tips on dessert making?
Jan: These are some things I like to do
1) Always do a trial run of a new recipe. It’s easy to underestimate taste, time or degree of difficulty (ex: for me chocolate leaves)
2) Combine recipes. Pick and choose what you like. For example use the tart crust from 1 recipe and the filling from another.
3) Use real vanilla (or other flavors) extract not “flavoring”.
4) Use organic ingredients if possible. They’re more accessible and affordable now the chain stores carry them.
Me: Your favorite baking spice?
Jan: I use cinnamon the most, although I have a yummy apple cake recipe in which cardamom makes it extra special
Me: Your top three favorite desserts that you make?
Jan: I would have to say Vegan Carrot Cake, Lime Sour Cream Pie, Fresh Fruit Tart