Partner In Crime (or Home EC)


I once heard at a blog conference that the average blog reader reads your blog for about a year and a half and moves on (so if you have read my blog longer than that…thanks for sticking with me). I’m into year 9 on my blog so it got me thinking about how a lot of my more favorite stories/writing pieces are in the beginning of this blog. And most of those people who read it back then are no longer around if the stats are true. So if you are a long time reader you might be seeing some of the older blog post popping up…update a little and with a new recipe.

In 7th grade I took Home Economics (they call it Life Skills now or something like that). The old school way was half a year was sewing (to this day I still cannot sew on a button) and the other half was cooking. We had to fly solo in sewing class (which was taught by the math teacher who no doubt regretted raising her hand in a staff meeting when the principal asked who here knows how to sew…again, perhaps why I can’t even sew on a button). But in cooking class we had a partner. Little did I know that my partner D and I would be partners in classes all the way through our undergraduate degrees. Oddly enough only two of those times did we selected each other, the other 9 times were random. Yes, I had the same lab partner 11 times.

D was not someone I would have chosen. D took Home EC to try and pick up girls, and well, I was so not someone he wanted to scam on. So we didn’t start off on the best foot. We sooo did not get along in Home EC. I was the nerd that was very concerned about her grades. He never paid attention and I ended up doing all the cooking. Luckily by the time we got to high school, that all changed. We learned to draw on each other’s strengths to get each other through the class. In AP Biology, he did all the dissecting because that was too icky for me. In AP Chemistry class I did all the calculations and so on because I was way better at that than him but I made him poor all the harmful chemicals :P. We didn’t hang out together, we ran in very different crowds, but he did become someone I ended up depending on time and time again. He was even nice enough to get suspended for 3 days for telling our AP Physics teacher to go F*c& himself for saying that girls were too stupid to take physics (on our first day of class….and by the way I carried the highest grade the whole year and scored a perfect score on my AP exam).

Anyway, back to our Home EC days. Like I had said, D was of little help….he would stir stuff and what not to look busy but that was about it. One day we were making pumpkin pie. I had to use the rest room and I told him to go gather our ingredients. For some stupid reason all of our ingredients were put into bowls. And right next to each other was the salt and the sugar. I’m sure you know where this story is going. D had grabbed us a cup and a half of salt. This of course did not become apparent till it started to bake, and curdle like crazy. Unfortunately for us, the main rule in class was, whatever you bake/cook (allergies excluded) you had to take a bite of. So that was the day I threw up in class, which then caused three other people to vomit seeing me vomit. Good times, good times.

This recipe doesn’t have any salt so you are probably going to not be able to make the same mistake as my Home EC partner did so many years ago. :) But if you are hot and not wanting to turn the oven on this is for you. It’s also a great recipe for showcasing fruit. When I was a Weight Watcher leader I used to use Greek yogurt instead of whipping cream. Clearly I prefer the heavy cream but know that is an option. You can use just about any berry or stone fruit, but we are in Tayberry (cross of a raspberry and blackberry) season right now so there was no question for me what fruit to use. If you don’t have a culinary torch (fix tha… Culinary Torch – Ever Chef Professional Creme Brulee Kitchen Cooking Torch – The best and most reliable butane torch on the market. No Risk Money Back Guarantee) you can use your broiler…but then you are using the oven and it doesn’t come out quite the same.
*this post has an Amazon affiliate link which the sale provides a small percentage to me to help keep the blog running.

Tayberry Brulee


  • 1¼ cups heavy cream
  • ¾ cup superfine sugar
  • 7 cups (about 2 lbs.) tayberries or any berry or stone fruit of your chosing (discard any "bruisers")
  • ⅓ cup light brown sugar


  1. Using a stand mixer with whisk attachment, beat cream until stiff peaks form.
  2. Add half of the superfine sugar and beat to stiff peaks again.
  3. Gently fold in the remaining superfine sugar until well combined.
  4. Add the tayberries to the whipped cream and fold gently to coat.
  5. Carefully transfer raspberries to a wide serving dish and liberally strew the top with brown sugar.
  6. Using a kitchen torch, evenly caramelize the sugar until it gets bubbly and darkened in some spots. Use broiler if you do not have a kitchen torch.
  7. Refrigerate brûlée for about 15 minutes to let the sugar harden.
  8. Scoop servings into bowls, making sure that each scoop includes some of the crunchy sugar topping. Serve immediately.
  9. Adapted from Saveur magazine


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  1. I’ve been reading your blog since the beginning, and will continue to do so :)

    Yikes about the salt in Home EC! Glad you made it through that experience, haha.

    Love this brûlée recipe!

  2. I’m kinda new, but I anticipate sticking longer than a year and a half! I’ve never had tayberries but I’m going to have to find them because I’m intrigued. This looks awesome :)

  3. Peabody says:

    That you have Liz S! And I greatly appreciate it!

  4. Peabody says:

    Thanks @Medha I hope you do stick around

  5. this looks like HEAVEN… such an innovative take on the traditional brulee. thanks for sharing the great post + for providing some new inspiration!

  6. Hi!I have been around here for more than a year and a half and probably even more longer than that!But I must admit I have been a silnet visitor to your place and have read almost all your posts. And I intend to stick around too:). It was nice reading your post and it got back all the lab memories from college times! We don’t get tayberries around here but I would love to taste that brulee :)

  7. You are one of our favorite blogs! I’ve mentioned before that you are one of the reasons why we started our own food blog. We are definitely not going anywhere :)

  8. I can’t remember how long I’ve been reading, but it’s been a while :) I do get tired of other blogs, but not yours. I think it’s b/c you stay true to yourself and don’t try to please the masses :)

    This looks delicious! I’ll try with raspberries.

  9. Audra Blair says:

    I have been reading for close to the 9 years, maybe 8?

    Along the lines of your Physics teacher, my Biology teacher in high school announced that girls only go to college to get MRS degrees. I think I graduated with everything but an MRS degree just to prove him wrong!

  10. I’ve been reading for years and have no intention of stopping!

    It sounds like your AP Physics teacher came from the same school of thought as some of my mom’s college civil engineering professors. One gave her a C when she got the same answer as a guy who got a B and told her to her face it was because women shouldn’t be engineers. Another saw her turn in a huge exam a long time before anyone else in the class and he asked, “You give up?” She had finished. She got an A on the exam. And hey, even I’ve gotten that sort of thing in my biochem field, just not as obvious because now I can sue. :P

    The tayberry brulee looks so good and sounds so easy. I don’t get tayberries down here (cry, cry) but I know we get spectacular blackberries in spring/summer, so I might grab some of those just to try it. And…yes, heavy cream all the way. :)

  11. I know I’ve been around more than a year and a half!

    One of my first weekends at my in-laws lake house, my mother in law made cinnamon toast and I had the pleasure of taking the first bite. She had accidentally used salt instead of sugar. Yeah – not a pleasant experience.

    On to that brulee: My husband loves brulee but not very many fruits. I may have to try this with no fruit, just for him…

  12. I once did that with msg, we did not eat it though. I think I’ve been reading your blog for at least 7 years.

  13. Love the Home Ec story! Brought back fond memories of my high school Home Ec class. The teacher has long since passed away, but if she were still around, I’d tell her what a difference she made in my life. She’s the one who taught me to make yeast breads, and I haven’t stopped since. I’ve been reading your blog since 2007 (at least) with no intention of quitting, especially with your sense of humor and terrific stories.

  14. I am sure that I have been following you for at least 5 or 6 years… and have enjoyed every recipe I have ever made from the site!
    I remember Home Ec.. we have 5 separate courses in the “life skills and shop” stream in Grade 7: sewing, Home Ec, electronics, wood working, and metal shop. I recall being totally crap at all of them except home ec.
    I wasn’t impressed that we made French Toast on the first day of Home Ec: I have never liked it, and still don’t. And our teacher was a throw-back from the 50s: she talked about the importance of setting the table nicely for your husband and family! I though “Geez lady, if you cooked the dinner, can’t your husband and family at least set the table?”

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