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Posted on 09/25/2015 in by
Simon Stevenson
,
Pastry Chef/Bake Shop Manager

What’s that, is it good?

As you begin your new academic year you’ll be opening yourself up to new challenges and experiences. Some will be positive and some not so much. That’s part of what makes life so interesting. The same can be said for the food we decide to eat. Some good, some not so good. Some to our taste, some not our cup of tea.

Posted on 03/04/2015 in by
Simon Stevenson
,
Pastry Chef/Bake Shop Manager

Blog the Eighth: Was Alfred the Great Guilty?

Posted on 02/20/2015 in by
Simon Stevenson
,
Pastry Chef/Bake Shop Manager

Who’d be a Chef?

Well apparently lots of people would. Every semester students come to see me asking how to get into the business, telling me they really wanted to become a Chef but their parents thought it a good idea they got a “proper degree” (whatever that is) before heading off to culinary school.

Posted on 02/09/2015 in by
Simon Stevenson
,
Pastry Chef/Bake Shop Manager

The Return:

After a semester absence I am back! (Cue crickets chirping and tumble weeds blowing by…sigh.)

Last semester was a crazy one in the UMass Bakeshop and I didn’t have the time to write this blog. Rest assured I’m back and ready to regale you with my pastry curmudgeon musings.

The subject of Blog The Sixth is YOU!

Posted on 03/19/2014 in by
Simon Stevenson
,
Pastry Chef/Bake Shop Manager

There is little doubt to anyone that knows me how I feel about cooking/baking shows on TV and the “Chefs” that present them. The content of many of these shows is vapid at best and the presenters/participants are merely fame seekers desperate to be noticed by someone…anyone. I say all this as a TV Chef myself but more about that later.

Posted on 03/06/2014 in by
Simon Stevenson
,
Pastry Chef/Bake Shop Manager

Texas Orange Order.

Posted on 01/21/2014 in by
Simon Stevenson
,
Pastry Chef/Bake Shop Manager

How big is too big? Double entendre’s aside, portion control was something I didn’t think about that much until I moved to the USA almost 20 years ago. No sooner had I arrived than I realized I was in the land of the 20oz steak, supersized fries and drinks so large members of the British Royal Family could take a well-earned boating holiday on their surfaces.

Posted on 11/27/2013 in by
Simon Stevenson
,
Pastry Chef/Bake Shop Manager

Science! I’m sure I’m showing my age but do any of you recall the Thomas Dolby song “She Blinded Me With Science!”? It featured Dr. Magnus Pyke (A British scientist) shouting the word “Science” at various intervals throughout the song. Dr. Pyke was a popular scientist and media figure while I was growing up but began his career as a food researcher during WWII. He became very well known for his on camera eccentric manner which endeared him to the British public. One can only assume the British took him to their hearts because they themselves are pretty much all eccentrics.

Posted on 11/25/2013 in by
Simon Stevenson
,
Pastry Chef/Bake Shop Manager

I sat for quite some time and gave careful consideration to what my first blog should be about. While I’m familiar with the term “blog” this is the first Web Log I’ve written and although I can honestly say the experience feels about as rewarding as receiving a shower curtain for Christmas I will admit to feeling slightly interested in knowing if anyone will admit to reading it.

Shower curtains aside, I feel I should write something about baking, this being a baking web site and all, so let’s begin with this: