Thursday, April 18, 2013

Introducing Sweet Amanda Leigh

You never know who you're going to meet, as this theory truly came into play when I met with Marc, one of my co-workers about something completely non-food related.  We got to chatting about our interests and I found out he's related to the talented Sweet Amanda Leigh of Astoria.  "How amazing and what a small world!," I thought, as I couldn't believe there was an Astoria connection between us.  

In no time, Marc connected me to Amanda and off we went, exploring our common likes for sweet treats.  I was so intrigued that we set up a little tasting at Mackenzi's SITE, and Amanda gave us each a generous box of her signature treats.  But before I get into some of my faves, here's a little bit of info about Sweet Amanda Leigh.

About Sweet Amanda Leigh
Specializing in custom cakes, Amanda is known for some pretty amazing designs, which span from whimsy, kid oriented themes to romantic wedding cakes.  I love that everything is made from scratch and Amanda uses premium quality ingredients, which really shine in her sweet goodies.  

Amanda's background lies in art & design, hence her creative touch to each confection, but her baking expertise comes from NY's ICE Culinary.  Needless to say, this talented lady is legit and she's even worked with the amazing, George McKirdy of Astor Bake Shop.  Her attention to detail and professionalism shines in every treat from a full blown cake to the smallest cookie.

Sweet Treats
Besides her signature cakes, Amanda also excels in baking cookies, cupcakes, brownies and everything in between.  I was happy to see that our box of samples included a few different things.  While I was pretty much in love with it all, here are a few things that were total home runs.

Lavender lemon cookie - An elegant, sophisticated treat, this cookie was not only surprising for the senses, it was also really light.  Boasting the most amazing buttery, crumbly texture, each bite was the perfect combination of earthy and zesty.  The lavender was apparent but not overbearing, whereas the lemon presented a beautifully clean flavor.  I can see enjoying this with a piping hot cup of herbal tea.

Rainbow cookie - Everyone has a soft spot for a good old fashioned rainbow cookie, and this one totally ruled.  I appreciated its soft colors, which indicated to me that Amanda went light on food coloring (a good sign).  The binder for its three signature layers tasted of apricot jam, which was amazing, while the cake itself was nice and almondy.

Classic vanilla cupcake - Even though there were fancier things in the box than this, simplicity is always appreciated in my book.  The vanilla dough was flavorful and had a lovely, moist texture, while the frosting was absolutely delectable.   Made with semi-sweet chocolate, it wasn't too overpowering and did a great job at dressing the cupcake instead of stealing the show.

To further explore Amanda's delicious treats, check out her site, and let her know who sent you.

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