Gina Mahalek: What Karen Barker, “Greatest Pastry Chef,” Taught Me About Dessert

Every time I eat a truly great dessert, I think of Karen Barker. In addition to being a James Beard Award Winner for Outstanding Pastry Chef, Karen was also a great teacher—as I learned when working with her on publicizing and taking a deep, sweet dive into her masterful 2004 cookbook from UNC Press, Sweet… Continue Reading Gina Mahalek: What Karen Barker, “Greatest Pastry Chef,” Taught Me About Dessert

North Carolina Gift Books for Everyone on Your List

Which UNC Press books make the best North Carolina gifts? It’s a question I’m often asked—particularly around the holidays and when people start their vacation travels and want to bring along a thoughtful gift with a connection to their home state.

I’ve narrowed the field to the following bounty of books with a Tar Heel theme, connection, or written by a North Carolina author. With this list as your guide, you can be one of those people who have most of their holiday shopping done by Thanksgiving, which also happens to be the first night of Hannukah this year. Continue Reading North Carolina Gift Books for Everyone on Your List

Free Book Friday: Magnolia Grill edition

Update 6/1/12, 3:10 pm: We’ve thrown names in the hat from commenters here, on Facebook, and on Twitter, and we drew the name of Franziska Korb (FB commenter) as the winner! Congratulations, Franziska! Thanks to all who contributed. This was a totally drool-worthy comment thread. May we all dine on as Ben and Karen taught… Continue Reading Free Book Friday: Magnolia Grill edition

What’s Cooking? Karen Barker’s Cornmeal Vanilla Bean Shortbreads!

Elaine Maisner is a senior editor at UNC Press. Over a recent winter break, she asked her daughter, Zina—a wonderful baker—to make Cornmeal Vanilla Bean Shortbreads, from Sweet Stuff: Karen Barker’s American Desserts. Here’s their step-by-step guide to making these delicious cookies.–ellen I thought it would be fun to take pictures of Zina making these… Continue Reading What’s Cooking? Karen Barker’s Cornmeal Vanilla Bean Shortbreads!