Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Cronut has taken the lead over cupcakes

Pastry chef  Dominique Ansel introduced the world to Cronuts on May 10, 2013 and the exclusive dessert has since then been making quite a name for itself.

In New York, a Cronut might just be more valuable than gold. And the sky-high demand has allowed Ansel to place some stringent restrictions on the sale of his coveted treat. Lines form outside the bakery on 189 Spring St as early as 2 hours prior to opening (8 a.m. from Mon-Sat and 9 a.m. on Sun). Plus, to ensure that the first customers don't buy out all the Cronuts, Ansel has placed a limit of two Cronuts per person. The treats sell for a pretty penny — $5 a piece. Still, they're selling like wildfire.  Source of text and photos:  Hannah Loewentheil in Culture 4 weeks ago.

This over-the-top pastry made of croissant dough that is deep fried, then injected with cream or jam and topped with icing, has New Yorkers  lining up at 3 a.m. at Mr. Ansel’s bakery in SoHo to snatch up the few made each day before they sell out.

It did not take too long before the New York pastry phenomenon —gets to being pirated across Asia.

Ana Lorenzana-De Ocampo knew she had to have it in her high-end Manila eatery, the Wildflour Cafe + Bakery, the minute she heard about the food craze.

A croissant doughnut from the Wildflour Cafe + Bakery in Manila.
She sent her brother, who works in New York, to stand in line and investigate. He waited for two hours to get some allotted cronuts, and then flew one over from New York to Manila. Ms. De Ocampo reverse-engineered the flaky, flavor-packed pastries and came up with her own version. She decided to generically name them croissant doughnuts, to avoid any trademark infringement.

The Japanese are a bit more meticulous. Where Ms. De Ocampo got her version out in just two weeks, Japanese bakery chain Banderole took two months.

Beijing bakery The Sweet Spot unveiled its version a few weeks ago. Store manager Michael Chung was travelling in Australia when he stumbled on the phenomenon, tried an Aussie rendition of the cronut and decided to tweak it in his bakery. Source:  Scene Asia

The cronuts might just be a fad but it  may take time before they fizzle out,  or who knows?  they may also stay like the gourmet cupcakes.  Until a new sweet sensation comes about, the  spiralling craze to try the cronuts at exorbitant prices and patient queuing to buy them are still to be a common scene.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

My Mother at 89

You can be beautiful at any age, just look at my mother at 89!  Feeling great and looking good.

Old age does not come by surprise, we know it has to come. So you may not be as fast on your feet, and the image in your mirror may be a little disappointing, but if you are still functioning and not in pain, gratitude should be the name of the game.  Betty White.





Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Madrid City Council 2013

Palacio de Comunicaciones Photo from google

The Palacio de Comunicaciones is a magnificent building situated along the south side of the Plaza de Cibeles. In 2007 the building was transformed into the new home of Madrid's city council.

Post Office

Even though Madrid's city hall looks like a high-gothic cathedral, it was originally built in the early 20th century as the main office of the Spanish postal service, hence its name Palacio de Comunicaciones (Communications Palace). It continued to serve that purpose for about a century until November 2007 when it took over the function of city hall from the much less impressive Casa de la Villa at the Plaza de la Villa. Some of the city's administration departments continue to be housed in the Casa de la Villa, but the Palacio de Comunicaciones is now the official seat of the mayor.


The flamboyant building was designed by the Spanish architect Antonio Palacios - who designed several other grand buildings in the neighborhood - in collaboration with Julián and Joaquín Otamendi. They combined a Spanish version of the gothic style with neoclassical elements. The structure was based on the steel frame technology that had been pioneered by architects in Paris and Chicago.

The building's facade is elaborately decorated with cartouches and pilasters. Long pinnacles adorn the top of the towers, the tallest of which reaches a height of about 40 meters.  Source of information:  A view on cities

Here are some photos taken by Ron.

Sunday, July 07, 2013

My Wallet Collection

Here are some samples of my mighty wallet collection.  Most of them have been either sold out or donated to the church.  I used pressed flowers on tyvek which is light, water and stain resistant.  I have also printed from my computer on the tyvek background for accent on the flowers. 

These are the regular ones with the front, back and middle views.  They are protected with spray varnish.



Here are some of the plastic covered ones with different sizes.  They have cash pockets, two card pockets and cash receipts pockets on both ends, same as the mighty wallets.

I am still trying to improve the wallets with the use of better quality tyvek paper with more grammage, be more selective in the use of pressed flowers so they stay flat on the surface and be more careful as to avoid creases.  I hope to get better results in the near future, after all, I just started working on this type of wallets last month.  There is always room for improvement and for further creativity.