Aloo aur Gosht ki Tahari

Aloo aur Gosht ki Tahari.

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Danielle’s Desserts – A Little Slice of Heaven

Danielle’s Desserts – A Little Slice of Heaven

After a recent meeting at the Galleria Mall at Tysons Corner, I wanted to relax and regroup for a few minutes.   I wandered into Danielle’s Desserts.  What delightful surprise was this café!

The charming bakery/café is located on the third floor, just outside Saks.   As it turned out the owner, Danielle Poux, was at the counter attending to the customers.  She was as charming as her baked goods were delicious.  I felt so welcomed.  It was a pleasant difference from some of the larger chains.  She and her staff gave personalized service.

I perused the lovely selection of layer cakes, bundt cakes, pies, cookies (biscuits if your British) and bars.   All baking is done on the premises.  When you watch the bakers at work they are so at ease.  They are very skilled in their profession.

I enjoyed an oatmeal cookie with a cup of freshly brewed coffee. They brewed a fresh pot of coffee for just me.  When I tasted the cookie I “moaned - - - Oh this is like my childhood”.   It was lovely.

As it turned out that was the philosophy and vision that Danielle had when opening the bakery/cafe a couple of years ago.  She explained to me that she believed her niche for the success with the bakery/café is a  “Down Home Southern” style.  The baker’s goal is for the customers to be reminded of an earlier and happy time in their lives.
Maybe the Lemon Buttercream, Red Velvet or Triple Chocolate Fudge cake
will remind someone of their favorite aunt or church social.  The Blueberry Buckle or the Bread Pudding could certainly elicit a sweet moment from childhood.   The Peach Crumb or Death by Chocolate (gluten-free) pies are just two posibilities for a treat.  The cupcakes are also so full of flavor.  I enjoyed a Chocolate on Vanilla cupcake on an ealier visit.

Since Danielle and her staff are committed to excellence; the desserts are made from scratch daily using only the freshest seasonal ingredients.  Special diets can also be accommodated with advance notice.  The staff welcomes a call for such needs.

Danielle and her staff are looking forward to meeting the holiday needs of the customers.  Of course they will be happy to bake that special birthday or special occasion cake anytime.  Corporate catering is also on offer.   Call early to place an order for the upcoming holidays.

I gladly recommend a stop at Danielle’s Desserts.  Their details are Tysons Galleria, 2001
International Drive, Third Floor – near Saks, McLean, VA .  Tel:  7034424096.  The website is www.daniellesdesserts.com.

Thank you ladies for a lovely break in my hectic day.  I will be back soon.

 

 

Posted in cookery, Cuisine, culture, entrepreneur, fine quality products, fresh fruits and vegetables, fruits and vegetables., Uncategorized | Leave a comment

5 Tips for Saving Money on Shipping Costs | SBA.gov Community

5 Tips for Saving Money on Shipping Costs | SBA.gov Community.

Posted in entrepreneur, export/import, Global Mobility, international business, trade, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Inn at Little Washington

When one hears “Relais and Chateau Group” one has confidence that the standards will be high.  This was certainly the case when we spent the weekend at The Inn at Little Washington, Washington,VA.  impeccable service, serene atmosphere, fine cuisine, beautifully appointed rooms and suites are what awaited us for our stay at the Inn.  Patrick O’Connell, the chef /owner, has built a charming Inn.  The setting is extremely peaceful!!!

Across the street from the main building is a lovely shop stocked with local and international fine quality products ranging from teas, to art works, to clothing.  The selection of products from France is lovely.  There are no spa facilities at the present time.

Enjoy a walk on the Peripheral Path and see the Llama, sheep and chickens.  I understand that the Llama takes his job of protecting the sheep very seriously.   I looked out for black bears in the hills, but no bears were spotted.

The kitchen which was my favorite room was magnificent!  The specially made range from France is so useful and well thought out.  The general organization of the chefs is impressive.  I understand that in order to have  such an excellent reputation the kitchen must be perfectly organized.  But to see it in action…………….Magnifique!   To see first hand the chefs’ dedication to excellence was so enjoyable.  All the chefs made time to talk and discuss all aspects of “le cuisine”.   This was the highlight of my stay.

The chefs source local fresh fruits and vegetables.

Do take time to walk the village.  There are a handful of charming artist owned galleries, a jewelry shop, a deli or two and a French linen and home decor shop with a gallery on the lower level.  I met  several artists at the galleries.

As a reminder there will be an “Artist’s Open House” the first weekend of November.  According to one of the Gallery owners “it is a great weekend and not too crowded”.

The Inn is a perfect destination after a long week of work in The District.  The ambience is very relaxing and soothing.  I now feel renewed, ready to tackle work again.   I recommend a meal or better yet a stay without hesitation.  I  look forward to my next stay at The Inn at Little Washington.

Posted in cookery, Cuisine, culture, fine quality products, fresh fruits and vegetables, fruits and vegetables., relais and chateau, Travel, Uncategorized, wines and spirits | 1 Comment

Rescuing Sentimental Memories

Our friend’s home was badly damaged by fire last Sunday morning.
No one was hurt.   The dog escaped the fire too.  Thank goodness.

Monday morning I stopped by the house to offer our family’s support to their family.   The damage looked terrible from the outside.  I wondered what they would find when the workmen entered the inside of the home.

On Tuesday morning I was working in the office.   My girlfriend Emailed me to please go to their home and help oversee the workmen.  The wife was out-of-town on urgent business.  The husband and daughters were at the home.  The husband had so many papers to sort out; plus endless calls and meetings relating to the fire.

When arrived I found things running as smoothly as possible after a disaster.  The workers were doing a great job.  They really did not need my services.   I decided to focus on some small aspect in the home.  I decided to save the wife’s cookery books and attend to the antique family linens from Eastern Europe.  Part of the team of workers were the “Dry
Cleaning “  team.  The husband and I talked with the team and then the husband was able to give special instructions regarding the family linens.   With that matter sorted
I focused on the book shelf in the kitchen.   There was an assortment of
books printed in the USA, Hungary, Poland, Germany etc.   After studying the books it was evident that I couldn’t save them all.  So I focused on the foreign and handwritten
books.  I thought these would be very sentimental and irreplaceable.  Unfortunately these books received the most water damage.  My preservation
work began in earnest.  My fine arts studies aided in how to handle the paper safely.  (My professors would be so happy that I retained and was using some of the knowledge they worked to give me.)

I first sorted them as to amount of damage.  Then I sorted them as to type of paper and whether they were hard cover or soft cover.   I then thought “I have to dry each page”.    So I began trying to dry the first book by fanning each page.  I soon realized that
this would be fruitless and impossible to complete with success.   I then decided to use my common sense.  I remember thinking to myself, “you were a Girl Scout, think…….then it dawned on me, THE SUN”.    So I searched the garden for clean tables and chairs.  I found two chase lounges that were clean.  I rolled them to the sun, set the books upright and fanned open.  I changed the page positions about every twenty minutes for the rest of
the day.

By evening most books were still not dry.    I then took them to my home and began the
fanning process again.  Special attention was given to the hand written book.  Early in the marriage the wife had sat with elder members of the family and wrote down the family recipes from both sides of the family.

Five days later all but one book was dry.  They look a bit wrinkly and swollen.  The last book is still a little damp, but given time it will be dry.  The cookery books are in relatively good condition with what has been their fate.  The family cookery books are saved and ready to be used by the generations to come.

I helped in the best way I knew how.  I focused on a couple of areas that were precious and sentimental.  All the rest – couches, blenders, TVs, clothing, sports equipment, cars, lamps etc., etc., etc., etc., etc. can be replaced.

I hope that my small assistance as a neighbor can give some consolation to all they are facing with the severe damage to their family home.

It has been a week since the fire.  The family’s outlook is so positive.  They believe that good will come out of this tragedy.  They say they are moving forward.  Their courage is to be admired.  The friends have all offered support and wish them the best of luck.   I think the friendships will be strengthened.  That is certainly a good and positive thing that is happening.  I guess the family is right – good will come out of this tragedy.

Posted in cookery, Cookery Books, Cuisine, culture, Diversity, expats, export/import, Global Mobility, Immigrants, international business, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Knowing Your Banker in our Online World

I recently was lobbying on The Hill for our Expat and Trade issues.  One meeting stuck out in my mind.  A 30 something staffer for one of the committees and I were having a banking regulations meeting.  During the discussion of how some of the regulations were inhibiting exports, the staffer strongly stated that ‘there would never be a need for me (the staffer) to meet and get to know my banker ‘.    Puzzled by the abrupt shift in the conversation I queried, “what about when you want a mortgage”?   “No, no need, never – I am online.  There will NEVER be a need for me to know my banker” was the emphatic response!   I was amazed.  I sat back in my chair and thought ” have I missed something in moving into my online lifestyle”?  The meeting resumed on the topic of banking regs.  Points were made for the banking changes, which would give all of us a better chance at improving exports and increasing USA jobs,  the meeting ended.  We shook hands, wished him well and I departed.

As I walked down the long corridors to my next meeting, I had a long time to consider  the points made by the staffer.  I  decided that I hadn’t missed too much in transferring to an online lifestyle.  Being online has enhanced both my business and personal life.  I also decided that I am glad that I know all of my bankers.  I hope to do good business with my bankers for a very long time.  It is so important to build human relationships; whether they be business or personal.   At the end of the day people do business.    And yes you can quote me on that point.

Posted in banking regulations, entrepreneur, expats, export/import, international business, trade, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Learning how to set up a successful blog.

I have been reading other people’s blogs for years on my Blackberry or my PC.  A while ago I decided that I wanted to write a successful and useful blog.  This would not be daily blog as I am not disciplined for that.  I thought that once per week would be about how often anyone would want to read another blog or hear from me.  I narrowed my list of interests for the focus of the La Petite Explorer’s Blog.  The subjects that I love – cookery, cuisines of the world, wines, world travel and last but not least international trade are the main focus for the blog.  My vision is to develop a blog that can bridge business trade with travel, cultural awareness and world cuisines.  I have been an expat and  lived in a different country than my citizenship.   Having traveled extensively I have also learned about the religions and customs practiced in different countries.  I have grown as a person so much because I have been able to meet and get to know so many good people worldwide.  It has been wonderful.  I want to share the business and personal insights I have learned with my readers.

Now for the work of constructing this blog.  Wow!  What a rude awaking  I have had.  I had this fantasy that I would just begin a blog – that’s it.  So easy……. nothing to it.   If I wrote the readers would come.  To my surprise it’s not that simple.  I can write all the articles I want, but unless there is “traffic” or I am “linked” I am just talking to myself.

I decided to get help.  First I had a meeting with a gentleman who excellent at websites and small business development, but  is not such a believer in blogs.  So I reached out to Lylah Alphonse who is is an experienced blogger and former newspaper editor.  For those of you who don’t know Lylah’s work I am happy to tell you.  Lylah is the Senior Editor, Manage Your Life, “Shine”, an on line publication of Yahoo.  She writes on parenting and family much of the time.  She also will publish on other relevent topics.

Lylah was a terrific!  Her advice was right on target.  She guided me on how to use my blog to connect to our company website, www.mistryenterprisesinc.com,  and then to the Twitter account, mistryentinc .  Let us see.  Then I telephoned Ray Heyd, our webmaster for Mistry Enterprises Inc.  As per Lylah’s suggestion Ray set up the Email account: lapetiteexplorer@mistryenterprisesinc.com.  He suggested connecting to Twitter also.  Ray and Lylah are old friends so I anticipate there will be some friendly rivalry.  But Ray is not a blogger, so I needed Lylah.

This afternoon I have worked on improving the “profiles” and  “connecting” the blog to the website and then to Twitter.  I believe that I am on my way to having a good blog.  I think I can build “traffic” now.  Time will tell.  Please connect often and see what’s new.  I hope you will find my blog informative, interesting and useful.  I welcome your stories and ideas.  Thanks again to Lylah and Ray for their support and belief in me.

Posted in cookery, Cuisine, culture, entrepreneur, expats, export/import, international business, trade, Travel, wines and spirits | Leave a comment