I walk by this  wall on my way home from my Chelsea Market store to Union Square almost every day. It reminds me why I ❤ living in NYC. I know not everything about New York is beloved. New York is not the most beautiful city in the world. Paris has that honor. And, like Parisians, we are often brusque and impolite. However, NYC has an amazing array of cultures, cuisines, languages and crafts unmatched anywhere.

Many restaurants serve fantastic cuisine in our 5 boroughs. Himalayan fusion sound interesting? Try Café Serai at Rubin Art Museum.

We have the best street hot dogs in the world. Hmmm, could folks from Copenhagen challenge this? How about calling it a tie?

There are one-of-a-kind shops: Tender Buttons is one of them. Yes, you buy buttons and just might rub elbows with a celebrity.

The most famous museums in NYC are the Metropolitan Museum of Art and MoMA, but there are others. The Firemen’s Museum is among the tiny gems worth discovering.

Party balloons get delivered.

And… we protect our mail!

Read about YOUR February.

And, don’t forget to bake for your sweethearts.

Enjoy winter!
The Witch </:)
fun starts here

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

December is always busy, but this year I managed to sneak away for 4 days to Oregon.  It was a new experience to leave baking behind and enjoy Christmas Day.  This Witch hopes to make it a tradition.

It’s a new year and here’s what’s new at Fat Witch Bakery.

Favors Page
We’ve created a FAVORs Page on our website.  Fat Witch loves being the something sweet for your special occasion.  You will need to call us, as all favors are custom.  888-41WITCH (888-419-4824).

27 Baby Magnet Box
This gift box is as magical as the 27 Baby Witches inside.  It is held together by magnets. You will be spell-bound!  Available online and in our Chelsea Market store.

Japanese Collection
Last year we opened a store in Kyoto, Japan.  In Chelsea Market in NYC, we sell Baby Witches, inspired by the Kyoto recipes, but baked in NYC.  Delicious!  Available soon on our website.

Valentine’s Day
Be a sweetheart!  Our tiny bags have been a hit (October, December), so we created a limited edition for Valentine’s Day.  Available online January 14 and in our Chelsea Market store after February 1, while supplies last.

In Japan, women give men Valentine’s sweets.  And, if you are an ex-pat, and want to send American inspired brownies, here’s where to go.  Our Kyoto store has fantastic gift boxes (available only in Japan)!

Check out YOUR January at our Witchscopes.

Here’s to the best 2017 EVER!
The Witch </:)
fun starts here


Fat Witch Bakery is so busy in December that sometimes we end up extra-loading the last available rack. It’s all good. More racks next year!
Sending our brownies across the USA is exciting. We are a small bakery with production space in upper Manhattan and ship 7,500 brownies almost every day in December. It takes a bit of magic to rearrange racks to end up with gifts to be shipped.
We manage to stay talking with each other, although sometimes with a bit of a witchy 
attitude. At the end of the day, we go home and get ready for the next. ☺

One of the items we often sell out of is Witch Ends, which are created by cutting off the edges from pans of Fat Witch Original and Carmel Witch brownies. Thank goodness our sales are increasing so we can keep up. One of these days, we will need to bake just for this product.
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I have been pondering lately about popular thinking. At one point in time, people thought the world was flat. Up until the 16th century, this seemed logical. Thank goodness some observant folk noticed ships dropping off the horizon. What one saw was not really the end.

At the other end of the Pacific Ocean from California is Asia. 2016 has been a great year! We opened a shop in Kyoto, Japan.
Despite being at the end of popularity for this book, I loved it. A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman is delightful. On a winter afternoon, it’s the perfect read. BTW, it was originally written in Swedish. While I usually steer clear of novels translated into English, this book is a charmer in any language.
Check out your December Witchscopes.
And, don’t forget to bake.
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Happy Holidays!
The Witch </:)
fun starts here

Lettuce Soup

You might be doing a double-take after reading the title of this blog. When I told a friend, she said, “Huh? Let us oop?” Maybe I slur my words.

I started making lettuce soup a couple of months ago after I heard about it on radio’s The Splendid Table. Lynne Rossetto Kasper suggested lettuce soup to a call-in listener who wondered what to do with an over-abundance of home-grown lettuce. FYI, other chefs make it, including Emeril.

Lettuce soup will be the starter at my vegetable forward Thanksgiving meal. Hence, the emphasis on greens from the get-go.

Here’s how I’ve been making Lettuce Soup for the past 2 months, experimenting on adventurous friends.

I buy my lettuce (and most of my produce) at the Manhattan Union Square farmer’s market.  It is as fresh as one can get unless one makes a living off the earth. If there are no local vegetable stands near you, grocery store Romaine or a Mesclun mix should be fine, but I would steer clear of Iceberg (too much water). You can substitute fresh spinach for a heartier flavor.
Here’s my version of Lettuce Soup:

Saute 1 medium onion coarsely chopped with 3-4 peeled whole cloves of garlic for 5-7 minutes in olive oil in a deep pan. Pour in a quart of vegetable broth (use chicken broth if you prefer a deeper flavor). Add water to boost the volume, if needed. Bring all to a boil and then toss in torn lettuce and stir. Do not worry about pieces being the same size. Cook for 2 minutes on reduced heat. Remove the pan from the heat and let cool. Put everything into a blender (2 separate portions unless you have a really big blender/Cuisinart) on chop for 1 minute or less. You are not looking for a complete puree. You are trying for a soup that has lettuce in small bits. The Splendid Table recommended blending in yogurt to the soup stock. I stir in 2 tablespoons at the last minute before serving. On Thanksgiving, I will boil a carrot and slice it paper-thin. Going for presentation as well as taste!

Next up will be Turkey Risotto, a riff on tradition. My risotto will incorporate cooked turkey breast, mushrooms, asparagus and sit on top of fresh chives. There are many online risotto recipes. Discover what suits you. I add the turkey, mushrooms and asparagus near the end so they are not over-cooked. I plate the risotto on top of uncut chives. Again, going for the visuals.

There are many things to do with Arborio rice. Get creative! Remember 1 cup of uncooked rice will yield about 3 cups cooked.

Every main dish deserves side dishes. My vegetable forward meal will include Brussels sprouts which are abundant in the fall. Of course, I go to the farmer’s market. I cut the sprouts off the stem, wash and slice in half. I toss the slices with sesame oil and saute for a few minutes. I transfer the pieces to a shallow ceramic pan with about a half inch of water and braise for 20 minutes in the oven at 300 degrees and then broil for 1-2 minutes.
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A nod to the traditional will be on the menu. I will use the NY Times Cookbook (from way-back) recipe for home-made cranberry sauce. I put in half the sugar and don’t bother with the almonds. There are also tons of online recipes and usually instructions are on the package. You’ll never buy a can of cranberry sauce again once you see how easy it is to make your own. I scoop the prepared cranberries onto a slice of orange for a tang of flavor and color.

I think the meal will be a winner, even if not the usual spread.
For dessert, the morning of the 24th I’ll bike over Chelsea Market to lift some Pumpkin Witches from Fat Witch Bakery. If you don’t live in NYC, you can bake these delicious treats from the recipe in Fat Witch Brownie cookbook, pages 126 and 127.

I have never been to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade at street level.  I’ve often watched it from a friend’s Central Park West apartment. Not this year, I will be making Lettuce Soup.

May your Thanksgiving be bountiful with friends and family!
The Witch </:)
fun starts here


We start thinking about Halloween early at Fat Witch. This year, during the hottest summer ever, we designed the cutest bag ever to be filled with 2 Baby Witches.
This perfectly cute treat is available online  on October 6 and in our store inside Chelsea Market while supplies last. No promises we’ll still have some if you order at the last minute.

Our partners in Japan have already done press conferences about Halloween. Fat Witch fans in Japan will be able to order a perfect gift filled with Fat Babies and have them shipped within Japan. Sorry, not available in the USA.
Costumes and make-up. What’s not to love about Halloween? Designing a costume and doing your make-up will fulfill your inner creativity. Or, save time and energy by shopping at a party store and get everything in one place, including the candy.
costumes  cmwitch
At Fat Witch Bakery inside Chelsea Market, we hand out over 2,000 Fat Witch Baby treats to folks in costume every October 31. It’s fun; it’s exciting; it’s exhausting. Trick or Treat early in the day — we might run out!
The NYC Annual Halloween Parade route is worth standing behind barricades to view the fabulous costumes and groups. It‘s a fun event, but I am watching it on local TV this 31st.

I’ve been fascinated with witches since I was a girl. Was it seeing the movie, The Wizard of Oz? I loved the fact there are good witches and bad ones. Just like all of us, eh?

I’ve done a little research about why witches have green skin. No, there wasn’t neon-lime make-up 500 years ago. I think the green face came about because some women made herbal remedies that seemed magical. Obviously they would use local grasses. Since washing was not a constant long ago, their hands touched their faces and their faces got green. That’s my theory and I’m sticking with it.
Whatever you plan to give out on Halloween (you are the house every kid wants to go to, right?), include some home-made baking. Even if only for the folks opening the door! Here’s what is in our recipe file this month.

Whether you are flying among them or want to know what they are saying about YOU, read what the stars say about your October.

Happy Halloween. If you’ve got it, haunt it!!
The Witch
fun starts here

Drink Like A Fish

Recently, I was asked to suggest places to have a cocktail in NYC. GAME ON. Since fish swim in schools, and September is back-to-school month, I thought it appropriate to write about our local bars.

Here are some this Witch knows. I plan to continue the research, so this might be my September blog subject FOREVER.

Sardi’s on West 44th Street is definitely a NYC blast-from-the-past. Long ago, producers tossed back drinks (probably Manhattans) while waiting for newspaper reviews of Broadway plays. Now, social media tells all as soon as the curtains close. Climb the stairs to the second floor and grab a stool at the bar, before, during or after the theatre. Take a look at the iconic cartoons on the walls. Sardi’s is closed on Mondays. Other days, it opens at 11:30am and closes at 11:30pm.
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The Algonquin Hotel on West 44th Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenues is the grand-dame of another era. Dorothy Parker reigned with wit at the famous Round Table in the 1920’s and 30’s. The door to the Blue Bar is next to the main entrance and still attracts local notables. One can also order a drink in the hotel lobby filled with comfortable tables and chairs. This Witch prefers the lobby, but neither is impressive unless you know the history.
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Location is everything and Central Park views are not cheap. Money will need to leave your pocket to get into the Metropolitan Museum, but it is a donation. Contribute what you want. You’ll gain access to some of the world’s most magnificent art collections.

The Roof Garden Bar at the Metropolitan Museum is open from early May through October, weather permitting. The roof-top hours are 10am to 4:30pm Sunday through Thursday and 10am to 8:15pm on Friday and Saturdays. Get to the roof from the elevator in the European Sculpture and Decorative Arts Galleries.

There are no tables and no waiter service. Fetch your own drink and search for a bench. If none available, put your glass (plastic) on a ledge and take out your smart phone camera. The Central Park views are amazing! BTW, it is not necessary to purchase a cocktail. You can be up there without a drink, but this Witch likes the over-priced $15 (per glass) sangria.
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Williamsburg is one of trendy Brooklyn’s trendiest neighborhoods. Wythe Hotel is on many “best bar” lists. This Witch suspects it is because the view of Manhattan is not to be forgotten. Take the elevator to the 6th floor. The bar is often crowded and drinks are costly. Be prepared for loud music and loud folks nestling in for more than one. Winter is better than summer, despite no outside terrace, but calmer atmosphere.

No need to drink at a chain restaurant! If wandering around Times Square in need of a drink or maybe a bathroom, try Times Square Hilton just past Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum on West 42nd Street.

Take the elevator up to the Main Lobby (15th floor) and enjoy a cocktail at one of mid-Manhattan’s best kept secrets. Locals along with the hotel guests are usually the only peeps there. It’s not a trendy bar, but you can gaze upon Times Square. Call for bar hours: 844-278-9140.

Across (west side) from the ½ price tickets booth, is Blue Fin. The bar is on the second floor.  Open at some point in the morning (what is that saying about locals?). Call for exact bar hours: 212-918-1400.
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Go to TAO for fake-fusian Asian ambience. The younger you are, the more you will enjoy the “scene.” If, like this old Witch, one drink among a multitude of candles, is perfect.  Opens at 5pm.
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If you are from California, you won’t be impressed with the mash-it-up-at-your-table guacamole at Rosa Mexicano. If you are from any place else, including NYC, consider having a margarita to accompany the guacamole. The food is excellent American style Mexican cuisine, even though they call it “true” Mexican.”  The bar on East 18th Street opens at 4pm.

12th Street Grill is so Brooklyn, once you walk in, you’ll feel as if you live in the neighborhood.  Park Slope families come for dinner around 5:30pm, but sitting on a stool at the bar after visiting Brooklyn Art Museum and/or Brooklyn Botanical Garden is a nice experience. Dinner and drinks start at 5:30pm until 11pm.
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Corner Social in Harlem has become a destination bar even if you don’t live near 126th Street. The bar is long, so there is plenty of elbow room. There’s good food on the menu, if you want something to go with your glass of whatever. Open for brunch on the weekends.

Old Town Bar is the place to go for an old-fashioned hamburger with your beer. The Late Show with David Letterman started with a long shot of the marble/mahogany bar. So, if you were a fan, you might recognize this Manhattan East 18th St interior. The classiest thing about Old Town Bar is “no cell phones.” Don’t even think about putting one on that iconic bar. Open every day. The booths are great for a little elbow room if you can snag one (get there before 5pm). There is additional seating upstairs. No reservations.
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Fat Buddha in the East Village screams funky fun.  This Witch can’t resist the name despite the fact it is noisy the moment the doors open at 5pm. Warning: there is a DJ on premises after 8pm.

Check out September Witchscopes. Have a glass of wine while you read about what’s in YOUR stars!

Fun starts now!


Vegetables are at their ripest and most delicious near the end of the summer. In August, there’s an over-abundance of zucchini.photo#1


One of my go-to bloggers is Clotilde Dusoulier, who lives in a favorite section of Paris, Montmartre. She shops for ingredients brought into the city from nearby farms. She points out, when zucchini is on the stands, everyone gets creative with recipes. I made her signature pastry from her first cookbook: chocolate & zucchini cake. Deep chocolate flavor and what a delicious way to eat your vegetables!
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Recently, a vegetarian friend came for dinner, but I had little time to cook. Not to worry. I picked up zucchini from the farmer’s market. We started with zucchini flowers stuffed with ricotta cheese. The main dish was kind of a zucchini crostini. I dropped the zucchini whole into boiling water for 1 minute. Toasted bread got slathered with a little olive oil. Then I added fresh tomato slices, sliced zucchini laced with a very little bit of marinara sauce (from a jar) and baked on a pan at 350 degree oven for 15 minutes. 3 minutes before the pan came out of the oven, I sprinkled shredded cheese. Good sandwich/dinner. And wine is plant-based, eh?
photo#4zucchinicrostini  dinnerphoto#3


During the winter, I try not to complain about cold temperatures. NYC summers are awful with cement sidewalks and tall buildings intensifying the heat and humidity. That being said, there are outdoor bars/restaurants only open in the warmest months. With a summer cocktail in hand, I keep my whining to a minimum. Although I couldn’t find any place that serves a zucchini drink (I will work on that), here are two fun local spots:

The Frying Pan is as far west as one can go in Manhattan without plunging into the Hudson River. It is open May through October.     On 26th Street, just past the West Side Highway, walk over a trestle bridge to a few rusty boats, all serving drinks and food. Don’t expect much beyond the great view. However, the sunset is worth the fight for a stool at a bar around 8:30pm during the summer. Always check the website or call since weather and private events can change everything. 212-989-6363.
fryingpanphoto#6  fryingpanphoto#5

The Pavilion restaurant is a gem located at the top of Union Square in Manhattan that’s open until mid-October.  Most of the appetizers and main courses are made with ingredients from Union Square Farmer’s Market. Even if you only belly up to the bar, there’s a nice neighborhood vibe.  212-677-7818.
pavilionphoto#8  pavilionphoto#7

Check out what the stars have in store for you this August.

Happy End of Summer
fun starts now
The Witch </:)

Japan 2016

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Last month I spent 2 weeks in Japan. I flew from New York (JFK), transferred in Tokyo (Narita) to Osaka (Kansai Airport). It was a business trip.

Fat Witch Bakery is now international! We opened a store in Kyoto, Japan.
Kyoto is a beautiful city 35 minutes north of Osaka via train or an hour by car.  Kyoto is filled with history, including the decision by US Secretary of War, Henry Stimson, not to bomb it during WWII as it is symbolic of Japan. Kyoto was the capital centuries before Tokyo.
photo4At a press conference, I was asked, “Why Kyoto, not Tokyo for your bakery?” I answered, “Because Kyoto represents Japan.”

Two days before the store opened, I met with some Kyoto business women. I gave a talk about being an entrepreneur, of course with an interpreter. I did something very American and asked each attendee to introduce herself and say something about her business. There were many beautiful moments, and I was honored to have met such remarkable women.
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Kyoto is the home of many old temples, including the Buddhist temple Kiyomizu-dera which was built in the 8th century and constructed without nails. There are still a few craftsmen who can build this way and are considered “national treasures.”
The magnificent bamboo path, Arashiyama is nearby. Although it is humid during the summer months, it is not to be missed.
On June 11, 2016, Fat Witch Bakery Japan officially opened. The store reflects traditional Kyoto/Japanese décor.
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If you live in Japan, you can order Witches online and have the order shipped to you. I brought home many of the Japanese specialty brownies and have enjoyed giving them to friends. You can also order New York style Witches on the Japan website. And there is merchandise you can buy in Kyoto, but not in NYC and vice versa.
We received many congratulation bouquets of orchids from all over Japan. They were beautiful.
I was nervous. Despite my fears (being polite in a Japanese way), everyone was fantastic. I signed cards printed in the USA and customers posed for photos.
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The generosity of spirit was all around; the Japanese bakery across the street sent over traditional treats.

OSAKA Cuisine
I did not spend all my time in Kyoto; I was in Osaka in the evenings.
Like the USA (East Coast and West Coast), Osaka is a little different from Tokyo. The Kansai area is known for delicious cuisine.
Okonomiyaki (pronounced o-con-o-me-ya-ki) is an Osaka specialty and one of my favorites. It is a Sunday-supper-kind-of meal. Okonomiyaki is a pancake made with freshly sliced cabbage, tossed with special flour, water, eggs, and topped with whatever is leftover in the refrigerator (often bacon, pork, shrimp or beef). There are a few Osaka restaurants that make it perfectly (just like Mom). Forget any place in NYC.
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I was also taken to a restaurant that makes kushikatsu (pronounced ku-she-cat-su), another Osaka specialty. Absolutely delectable or as they say in Japan, “oishi” (pronounced o-she). Kushikatsu is similar to tempura, but deeper in flavor. The bartender knew someone from NYC was coming. LOL.
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I have a friend who lives in Osaka and one night she took me to a restaurant that seats only 14. Each seat at a table has a drawer that holds chopsticks, napkins and surprises (tiny Eiffel Towers). The chef/waiter/busboy/dishwasher was ONE person! If you are in Osaka and want a delicious experience (sort of French food), find CERCLE, but you need to make reservations about one month in advance. No website, only the telephone. I don’t know the number, but probably easier if a local calls and helps find the location.
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If you are visiting Osaka, not to be missed is the Osaka Castle. Think beyond Emperor and read up on Shogun(s). This 16th century palace is an authentic view into historic Japan.

The Japanese have a time-honored tradition of gift giving. It is called “omiyage” (pronounced o-me-ya-gay). It was important for me to bring omiyage for our partners. The price is not important, but thoughtfulness is. I brought Oregon hazelnuts, Vermont maple syrup and NY chocolate babka, a Jonathan Adler bowl, as well as Fat Witch NY key chains and t-shirts. In return, I was given a beautiful sake cup from a pottery in Nagasaki. I will always treasure it.

Over the past 6 months, our Japanese partners patiently listened to our baking recommendations. I thank them for always being open to American ways.

In return, we have learned much from them. With deepest respect, their packaging is beyond what we do in the USA! Although the world has already taken note of Japanese presentations, I give a tip of the Witch hat to perfection and we plan to copy many of their ideas!

My niece lives on Okinawa. She flew up to Osaka the day before the opening of the store in Kyoto. I traveled back with her the next evening to spend 2 days on the island. Okinawa is one of the USA’s biggest military bases. This is a plus and a minus for the local population. The plus is we provide jobs; the minus is we are on someone else’s land with our military presence. Acknowledged are the current protests.

The food on Okinawa is heavily influenced by Chinese cuisine, so it was different from Osaka, Kyoto and Tokyo. We went to a traditional Okinawan restaurant for lunch – fabulous and, of course, the food was presented beautifully.
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Flying back to the USA was a long trek. I started in Okinawa on a 7am flight to Tokyo. I spent 5 hours at Narita, but the shopping is always good at this airport!
After 25 hours in transit, it was wonderful to fly close to Manhattan and know I was HOME.
To celebrate Japan, we’ve created 4 recipes with ingredients and concepts inspired by our Japanese partners. The new Baby Witches will be available in our store on July 5 for at least the next 6 months.  They are delicious!!!!
Check out what the stars will tell you about your July.

Best Witches,
fun starts here

Start of Summer

PSST… online discount!
From 6/01/16 to 8/30/16 you can enter the code summerwitch and get a 15% discount at fatwitch.com.
I must give our webmaster a shout-out. He keeps a cool demeanor no matter what crazy ideas I propose. Thank you Steve!!!
New Gift Box
We have an exciting new 27 Baby Witch gift box in the works. Magnets will hold it all together. NIFTY! They will be available October, 2016. It’s exciting to come up with new packaging and alarming how long it takes from planning to the actual arrival of inventory.
Last month, I spent a long weekend with my friend Doug. Yep, he’s the Black & White Vegan Cookie guy in Fat Witch Bake Sale cookbook, pages 106 and 107. The highlight of the weekend was a food fundraising event where you wear an apron. I painted our aprons and we made the local news.
This month, I plan to do what I love best — curl up with a cookbook. I will be leafing through David Lebovitz’s My Paris Kitchen. He is a good writer and was the pastry chef at Chez Panisse in California. I enjoy his blogs immensely.  I hope to make some of his recipes soon!
Read what is in the stars for you this June.

Check out this month’s Recipe File. These are GR8 cookies… perfect baking for teacher thank-you’s. recipefileMilkChocThumb_075
Happy Summer!
fun starts here
The Witch  </:)

Bicycles & Flora

It’s National Bike Month!bikingmonthphoto

If a bike share program can work in New York City, it will work anywhere. This Witch goes from her Manhattan apartment in Union Square to Chelsea not on a broom, but on a bike. The cost in NYC is $155 a year. You take out a bike from a docking station for up to 45 minutes at a clip. There are also day and week passes, but make certain you re-dock every 30 minutes before overtime charges kick in.
citibike   bikepath

I occasionally have been known to yell back vulgarities to truck drivers who seem to love honking and driving very close to bikers. Riding along the Hudson River Greenway is a more leisurely experience. Everyone is polite, including me. There is a lot of flora on this biking/jogging path. Spring came late to NYC this year, so some trees were just popping out at the end of April.

hudsonbikepath3   hudsonriverbikepath1

Some of us live near an ocean, lake or river; some of us are nestled in the mountains; some live in between. Whether you put down roots in Los Angeles, Chicago or Katmandu, there are plants that flower. I’m guessing there are none in the arctic, so please don’t challenge me about “everywhere” on the planet. I am in awe of natural colors. How can you beat that yellow?  This red-orange?

floraphoto1   floraphoto2

When one goes with friends to see a play in NYC, the question is always, “Where should we go for dinner?” I recently discovered Marseille in the Theatre District in Midtown. Good food at reasonable prices. Find this nifty place on Ninth Avenue between 44th and 45th Streets.
restaurant2   Marseillecouscous

Speaking of theatre, this Witch has seen Hamilton.  It is definitely a theatrical experience not to be missed. Coming soon to a few other American cities.

Of course this Witch bought The Witch of Lime Street by David Jaher. Interesting to learn about a long-gone era!


Often there is a healthy substitute for a baking ingredient. Check out Yogurt Brownies from my Fat Witch Bake Sale cookbook.

Find out what’s in the stars for you during May.

Happy Spring!
The Witch </:)
fun starts here