Monday, June 26, 2017

IKEA's "Cook This Page" Recipe Series Is a Coloring Page for Food!

Remember how much I loved Ikea’s minimalist cookbook way back in 2010? (Side note: can you believe that was 7 years ago? Yipers...) Well now everybody's favorite build-it-yourself-because-you're-too-broke-to-buy-pre-built-furniture furniture store is injecting a little more fun and play into cooking with parchment recipe sheets that resemble its assembly instructions. In order to get people comfortable with cooking—and buy its kitchen gear, obviously—ad agency Leo Burnett Toronto designed “The Cook This Page Parchment Paper Recipe Series.” Various recipes, each of which could be made with IKEA items, are illustrated and printed on parchment paper with food-safe inks. All you have to do is fill in the illustrations with the necessary ingredients and amounts, wrap it all up and pop it into the oven, recipe sheet and all. It’s like a coloring page for food!

Though I can't lie, am I really going to lay out each shrimpy one by one like that? And I might have to stack that ravioli recipe about four high just make a dent on this hunger...but I'd totally do it for an Instagram post.

The “Cook This Page” campaign launched in October 2016 at 18 IKEA locations around Canada and all 12,500 parchment recipe posters were gone within hours. And just last week, the campaign won a Gold Lion in the Outdoor category at the 64th annual Cannes Lion International Festival of Creativity. It’s such a simple concept—that still had to overcome lots of challenges to execute properly and safely—and completely on brand. Hopefully, they decide to test that idea out over here!


Tuesday, June 13, 2017

All the #DessertGoals Met at Spot Dessert Bar

A couple months ago, my friend invited me and a few others to Spot Dessert Bar down in the West Village and holy yum! I'd never heard of it before, but I was certainly glad we went with a group so that we could each order—and taste—a few things on the menu. In fact, Spot encourages this by offering these dessert tapas in sets so you can share or indulge your taste buds. I loved that the Asia-inspired seasonal desserts were really satisfying and delicious without being over-the-top sweet. In clockwise order from the top left:

Yuzu Eskimo: frozen Japanese citrus cream bars with chocolate ganache, strawberries, and Oreo crumbs.

Golden Toast: crispy honey buttered toast with fresh strawberries, whipped cream, and condensed milk ice cream.

The Harvest: layers of berries, soft cheesecake, meringue kisses, raspberry sorbet, and black rose milk tea.

Milky Puff: warm flaky puff pastry served with milk ice cream, corn flakes, brûlée bananas, and white chocolate honey comb.

And yes, they all tasted as delicious as they look. Not pictured are my Nutella hot chocolate, which tasted so much better and less sweet than one I'd ordered days earlier, and my friends' bubble teas served in plastic light bulbs! A+ for cuteness and presentation, no?

By the way, I've been on such a dessert kick lately thanks to work. I've been writing so much about sweets, including safe-to-eat raw cookie dough, an all-you-can-eat ice cream festival, fancy banana pudding, kids' birthday cakes, and the best rainbow foods around NYC, that I've been wondering if I shouldn't just say goodbye to my teeth and hello to becoming the resident dessert expert.