Monday, February 9, 2009


Over the past two months I have been busy with three priority areas in my life, 1) spending quality time with my wife and kids; 2) teaching the most engaging and informative classes possible at UMKC ; and 3) I have been making caramels, LOTS OF CARAMELS. It has always been my vision that the FOODIE PROJECT would be a multi-layered endeavor filled with collections of images, stories, memories, recipes as well as gatherings, tastings, workshops, “foodie” gear, and yes – food. The caramels are an extension of this vision and a continuation of a legacy passed on to me by my maternal grandmother (See the “Tribute” post). There is something wonderful in the hands-on, focused, highly creative crafting of these soft, rich and soul satisfying treats. Each small batch is an experiment, an exploration of flavor and texture possibilities. Rosemary, Pasilla Chile, Sea Salt, Black Currant, Macha Green Tea, Ginger-Peach and Cappuccino, are some of the current flavors. While the Rosemary, Pasilla Chile and Sea Salt seem to be the most popular, my personal favorite is what I might call “The Highlander” (in homage to my Scottish heritage) – a thick layer of traditional Cream Caramel on top of a rich thick slab of Scottish Shortbread – definitely my favorite. In addition to the great learning experience of crafting these caramels, it has also been a learning opportunity seeking out sources of local, organic, high quality ingredients. While I am not ready to “quit the day job”, I would like to make these treats available to friends and family for a limited time. Please contact me for additional information at

For the past several years there has been a continual inner battle between the part of me that for some reason must create visual art and the part of me that must create great food. This is a constant balancing act - sometimes leaning to the art side only to be countered by a sharp lean to the food side and back and forth. The FOODIE PROJECT allows me the forum to express both sides of this inner struggle and share with you the explorations on each side of the tightrope. The caramels are a definite lean to the food side - careful - I might just fall this time.

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