Tuesday, December 29, 2015

5 Ways Lighting Control Can Enhance the Look of Your Home

5 Ways Lighting Control Can Enhance the Look of Your Home is available on http://ift.tt/14vA2uD

Modern home automation has produced innovations which were a pipe dream a mere ten years ago, but which have rapidly gained in popularity recently. Through mobile internet connectivity and local device networking, you can control everything from your lights to your motorized window shades at the touch of a button… but, aside from the convenience..

Friday, December 4, 2015

Our Talented Bread Makers Hard at Work!

Our Talented Bread Makers Hard at Work! was first published to Sparrow

Want to see what goes into making the best bread in town?  Check out this video of our amazing bakers hard at work. You can buy all of these amazing breads at The Sparrow Bakery Northwest and the Scott Street location.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Looking for the Best Breakfast in Bend Oregon?

The article Looking for the Best Breakfast in Bend Oregon? is courtesy of The Sparrow Bakery Restaurant

The Sparrow Bakery Northwest offers breakfast in Bend OregonOne of our favorite meals of the day is breakfast.  And here at the Sparrow Bakery Northwest we take pride in offering what we consider the best breakfast in Bend Oregon.  Here are a few of the items we offer every day of the week.

Our Signature Dishes

The first thing that comes to most peoples mind when they think of The Sparrow Bakery Northwest Restaurant is Ocean Rolls.  If you've never tried one then you are in for a treat.  We start with our hand-rolled croissant dough.  We then sprinkle it with a generous helping of cardamom, vanilla, and sugar.  Next we roll it up much like a traditional cinnamon roll.  Then it's baked to golden brown perfection.The combination of these flavors caramelize together creating a deliciously aromatic pastry that is perfectly chewy and crunchy.  It is perfectly paired with a cup of French press coffee or cappuccino.Coming in at a close second is our bacon breakfast sandwich.  We start by cutting one of our flakey, buttery croissants in half.  Inside goes a pair of in-house smoked bacon.   Next comes some arugula, avocado, and aioli.  Finally comes the perfectly cooked poached egg topped with a pinch of salt and pepper.Cut this guy in half to let the yolk spill all over the other ingredients and you'll be in heaven.  Each bite is a symphony of flavors that will have you dreaming of this sandwich nightly!Another popular breakfast choice is our homemade granola.  They're the perfect combination of oats, butter, honey, spices and nuts or seeds.  These are served over yogurt and are the perfect treat when you're in the mood for something other than baked goods.  You can even purchase it by the pound to take home and eat.

Bagels and Breads

Every day at The Sparrow Bakery Northwest we prepare fresh bagels.  We carry three varieties.  Smoked salt is our most popular.  We also have cheese that is either gruyere or muenster.  Finally we offer a poppyseed bagel.  All three can be ordered with cream cheese.  But for the ultimate bagel experience you should try our Lox.  It's pile high with cream cheese, smoked salmon, pickled onions, and capers.  This one will satisfy even the most ravenous appetite.If you're looking for something slightly sweeter we also offer our homemade banana bread.  Made with tons of fresh bananas this has traditionally been one of our top sellers.  You can even find it in coffee shops all over Bend.  With the perfect blend of cinnamon and nutmeg this moist and chewy bread satisfies your hunger without being overly sweet.If you're in the mood for chocolate first thing in the morning then our chocolatine.  For this tasty treat we roll dark chocolate up in our croissant dough and bake it until golden brown.  We also offer a daily selection of scones.  Ask our staff for the flavor of the day as it changes regularly.So if you're in Bend and looking for the perfect breakfast spot, stop by The Sparrow Bakery.  Here's a handy map to help you find both of our locations. More information on the breakfast items at our Northwest Crossing restaurant

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Lemon Meringue Secrets Video

The article Lemon Meringue Secrets Video See more on: http://ift.tt/14vA2uD

Now you can watch while we demonstrate the technique for creating the perfect meringue for your cakes.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Lemon Meringue Cake: Secrets Revealed!

The following blog post Lemon Meringue Cake: Secrets Revealed! was first seen on thesparrowbakery.net

dessert-Bend-OregonFor us at the Sparrow Bakery, bakery “signatures” are not only delicious to eat and gorgeous to look at, but they need to also be unique concepts.  Enter our number one selling cake: The Lemon Meringue Cake!  A smash up of a traditional lemon meringue pie and rich, old-fashioned, yellow cake.

The Basics of the Cake

To double down on the uniqueness of this dessert we fashion the cake into a 6” cube, four layers of cake, three layers of filling high and wide, then frost it with textured Italian meringue to give it a modern, edgy, look.  I won’t bore you with our recipe for the yellow cake, nor the recipes for the buttercream/lemon curd filling. (here’s a great yellow cake recipe!)  Instead I’d like to teach you the recipe and technique for the perfect Italian meringue and give you some basic instructions for building this cake at home, thus truly delighting your dinner guests and family.Choose your favorite cake recipe.  No ones says it has to be yellow cake, and no one says the filling needs to be lemon.  Perhaps your family would be fond of this cake if it was a chocolate cake with traditional buttercream filling and graham cracker crumbles?  The end result will yield a delicious s’mores cake!  Or perhaps carrot cake?Sky is the limit when it comes to modifying the inside of this cake to suit your taste.  The main trick to baking this cake is pouring your batter into a standard sheet pan (17.5” x 12.5” x 1”).  You can find a “half sheet pan”, as they are called in the restaurant industry, at most kitchen supply stores, you may substitute a brownie pan if it has similar dimensions but don’t let the batter get too thick in a deeper pan!Before popping the sheet pan in the oven, slam it down onto the counter a couple times to level out the batter (a great restaurant trick you can use in lots of applications!).  Then bake it!Part of what makes this cake so dramatic is the perfection of it’s geometric shape.   To accomplish this we use a ruler when cutting it.  We’re going for 6” squares.  Because of the dimensions of the pan you will likely have to cut two 6” x 3” pieces and patch them together – I promise you your guests will not be able to tell once the cake is frosted and your secret is safe with me!You will need four 6” square pieces of cake, each approximately 1” thick to create your cake cube.

The Filling

Remember, it’s ok to choose a filling that suits your fancy, it is just important that you choose a filling you know will be firm.  A firm filling (in our case we use Buttercream folded with lemon curd) will help support the weight of four layers of cake.  If you go to all this effort and your filling turns out to be less than firm frost 3 layers separately, lay them on your sheet pan, and freeze them before stacking.  Another handy trick is to use a large, round, pastry tip and pipe your filling onto your cake layers for consistent amounts of filling in each of the three layers of cake (the fourth layer is the top of the cake and does not need to be frosted).  Again this will contribute to a professional visual effect.

Let’s Meringue that cake!

You’ve got your three layers of filled cake stacked one on top of the other and the fourth layer laying squarely on top.  You will need a kitchen aide mixer and a sauce pot with simmering water for this next bit.  Measure 150g of egg white and 240g of white granulated sugar into the mixer bowl of your kitchen aide.  Set the bowl into a sauce pan of simmering water.  Whisk this mixture regularly as you hold it above the hot water until your mixture is HOT to the touch!  Then immediately place the mixing bowl on the mixer, use the whip attachment to whip until hard peaks have formed.How you apply your meringue to your cake is up to you.  We use a pastry bag and a star tip to add increased texture to our cake.  You may prefer to use a cake spatula.  Don’t be afraid to get a bit wild and creative while applying the meringue – remember this cake is all about drama and now’s the time to bring it!Work fast once you’ve removed the meringue from the mixer as the meringue will begin to degrade texturally over time.  The next step will stop this process.Now comes the really fun part.  You must torch the cake.  Using a kitchen torch lightly go over the textured edges of the meringue until it begins to show some color.  Don’t be afraid of a few burnt edges here and there.  Europeans are never afraid of a little color in their food and neither should you.  It will add a dimension of flavor to your cake that is very desirable!Garnish this cake with candied lemon peel, edible flowers, chocolate chips?  Or whatever your heart desires.  Eh Voila!  If you want to see one of our cakes firsthand just pop into the Northwest Crossing or Scott Street locations.

Some Other Options

This same meringue recipe has many uses.  Try it as a base for gluten free pavlovas – simply spoon it into organic shapes on a sheet pan sprayed with non-stick spray and pop it in a 150° oven over night.  Top with a dollop of whip cream and fresh fruit and serve it along side your meringue cake to keep all your friends who are avoiding gluten happy.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015