Huntington Holiday Bake-Off!

by:  Thom Dunn at 12/17/2013

Deck Deane Hall With Tasty Baked Goods / Fa La La La La / La La La La...

This past Monday was our annual Huntington Holiday Party, which means three things: Candy Cane Ravioli*, Michael Maso's Year-In-Review Poem, and the Staff Bake-Off. Unfortunately, there was no candy cane ravioli this year. Not that I'm bitter or anything. But I am bitter about that time that my Double Chocolate Blood Orange Stout was disqualified because it "wasn't actually baked" (whatever, there was yeast and chocolate and oatmeal in it. That count).

Ahem. Where was I? Yes, that's right. The Bake-Off! The winning treats were judged by a highly trained panel of culinary experts including General Manager Sondra Katz, Assistant Audience Services Manager Derrick Martin, and Sound Engineer J Jumbelic, none of whom were in any way biased towards things that involved bacon. Really.

Here's the Dessert Menu for the evening, and a little shout-out to the multitalented staffer that baked it:

 

Amor Al Fuego (Mexican Chocolate Cake) by Mercedes Roman-Manson, Calderwood Pavilion House Electrician

 

Chocolate Maple Cookies by Andrew Brown, Calderwood Professional Intern

 

Delicious Brownies Made With Guinness and Bailey's and Possibly Some Jameson That I Refuse To Call By Their Real Name Because It Would Anger My Uncle From Belfast by Anna Trachtman, Calderwood Pavilion Management Assistant

 

"Sacrilegious" Bread Pudding by Katie Most, Calderwood Events Coordinator

 
"Director's Special" aka Bacon Apple Crisp (available with cider or bourbon) by Anna Correa, Box Office Representative, and Gabe Hughes, Calderwood Front-of-House Staff

 

 

Cranberry Rosemary Thyme Trees by Sam Pagnotta, Scenic Artist

 

Marshmallow Brownie Bars by Ali Leskowitz, Assistant Company Manager

 

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Bundt Cake by Kat Herzig, Master Electrician

 

Vanilla Chip Pistacho Cookies by Becky Hylton, Costumes First Hand

 

Apple Pie Bars by Chris Largent, Calderwood House Carpenter

 

Rum-Infused Eggnog Cupcakes (!!) by Raissa Bretaña, Costumes Professional Intern

 

Sugar Cookies by Bryce Avery, Calderwood Assistant House Manager

 

Salty Honey Pie by Lisa McColgan, Annual Fund Coordinator

 

Chocolate Cupcakes with Caramel Sauce by Tiffany Evans, Database Coordinator

 

Chocolate Temptation by Catherine Halpin, Development Associate

 

"Jane Fonda In...Peanutella!" by Charles Haugland, Artistic Programs and Dramaturgy

 

Peppermint Chocolate Blossoms by Rob Orzalli, Box Office Representative

 

Alli Engelsma-Mosser by Alli Engelsma-Moser, Special Events Manager, who also made a Potato Chip Short Bread that I failed to get a picture of.

And the winners...

 

Maple Pecan Macaroons by Alisa Hartle, Electrics Professional Intern

 

Triple Chocolate Trifle Cake by Kara Nemergut, Calderwood Front-of-House Staff

 

Snowman Sur-pies by Stephanie Ormston, Marketing Professional Intern, whose score was somehow not penalized despite the fact that she forced us to eat Candy Corn after Halloween.

 

Sweet Pear Gorgon Tart by Allison McDonough, Assistant to Michael Maso, whose Grand Prize winning was totally not rigged or anything.

And while we're unable to share the entirety of Michael Maso's year-end speech, here's a delightful little GIF of the end of it, to satisfy your curiosity:

 

*Yes, I realize it's just lobster ravioli with a cool striped outside. But that doesn't make it any less delicious!

Comments

  1. I was going to make a comment about resenting the "it was rigged" comment, citing that I came in 2nd last year, but then I realized that doesn't actually help my case... :) #humblebrag
  2. Which one was the "cupcake/brownie" category? I see cookies, cake and a pie-like thing....
  3. I took a day off from work to begin my baking yeestrday! It's a change from our annual family cookie bake day that I've hosted for 15 years. This year we're trying a family cookie exchange for the first time.
  4. PERFECT WHITE BREAD Two loaves of bread crisp of crust and ednetr of crumb.1 pkg. active dry yeast1 c. lukewarm water2 tbsp. sugar2 tsp. salt1/4 c. Crisco1 c. hot milk5 to 6 c. enriched flourSoften yeast in 1/4 cup of the lukewarm water for 5 minutes, then stir until blended. Measure sugar, salt and Crisco into mixing bowl, pour hot milk over them and stir, mashing Crisco against sides of bowl until broken into small lumps. Add remaining water and cool to lukewarm. Stir in 1 cup flour. Add yeast and 2 more cups flour and beat with a wooden spoon until batter is smooth and elastic. Stir in 1 1/2 to 2 cups more flour, then, with floured fingers, work in enough additional flour to make a soft dough that does not stock to the fingers.Turn dough onto lightly floured board and knead for 2 minutes, about 100 kneading strokes. Shape dough into a ball and put it in a bowl rubbed with Crisco. Spread surface of dough lightly with Crisco, cover with a towel and let dough rise until double in bulk, about 1 1/2 hours. Punch dough down and turn onto floured board. Cut dough in half and shape each half into a smooth ball. Shape each ball into a loaf and put into bread pan rubbed with Crisco. Cover pans with a towel and let bread rise until the sides of the raised bread reach the top of the pans and the center is nicely rounded above it, about 1 hour.To bake: Bake loaves at 400 degrees for 45 to 50 minutes, or until golden brown.When baked: Turn loaves from pans immediately to keep crust crisp, and cool on a cake rack. For a soft, ednetr crust: Brush loaves with Crisco as soon as they come from oven. quantum I gave this recipe to a lady who was cooking for 4 comercial fishermen and in her commentsshe liked it very much. I hope you do also.But remember home made bread will not be as light and fluffy as commercial bread. jim b
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About me

Thom Dunn is the Web & New Media Manager at the Huntington, meaning it's his job to play around on the Internet and make things cool. He handles all of the video content and social media as well, and has the biggest computer monitor in the office. Like, ginormous.

Outside of the Huntington, Thom is a writer, musician, and homebrewer. It's all pretty cool. You can find out more about it at thomdunn.net.

 
 

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