Auditioning for The Great Canadian Baking Show

[and a recipe for sesame marzipan & sea salt mandel bread]

audition ready with tika the iggy!

One of my best friends encouraged me to apply for The Great Canadian Baking Show last winter. After quickly looking through pictures from the first season of the TV show I told her there was no way that I was in that kind of baking league, but Andrea’s a great cheerleader (and works in reality TV!) so her encouragement was persuasive. Before leaving work that day I quickly threw together an application online and figured that would be the end of it.

The next day I received a phone call from the casting producer and was invited to audition. My mum – who has witnessed many a Katie-kitchen-mishap – thought this was hilarious, but kindly offered to chauffeur me to Montreal since there were no auditions in Ottawa.

nothing like having to shovel your car out of the snow before an audition…
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The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap! [Chocolate Pistachio and Cherry Biscotti]

cookieswapI think sending and receiving snail mail is one of my favourite things (brown paper packages tied up with string…). So snail mail containing cookies? Oh, baby. cookieswap1This was my second year joining in The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap, and considering I really only participated by proxy last year I was even more excited. (Plus, all the entry fees go to a good cause — yay cookies!)
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Chocolate Orange Biscotti

As you may have guessed from previous posts (see here and here), I quite like tea. By extension, I guess it’s not surprising that I also really like biscotti; perfect for tea and coffee dunking! These treats are fun and easy to make, and the result is a biscotti that rivals any coffee shop’s, but better cause they’re yours and oh-so-fresh!
I love the combination of chocolate and orange in almost any form, so this recipe seemed perfect.

I only made a few modifications: added a teaspoon more orange zest, used bittersweet chocolate chips and left out the nuts so that my brother could enjoy these, too! These were a big hit. Happy weekend, you guys!

Perfect for a rainy day.