Sabrina Stavenjord is my kind of person - someone who strives to always be kind towards others and believes in building community, not competition. She is a friendly, gracious hostess and boy, oh boy, does she ever bake the most delicious cookies! Baking is an activity that Sabrina not only excels at, but that has played a significant role in shaping her identity. We got together over coffee (and baked goods, of course) at one of the city's cutest coffee shops to talk more about this, and I'm happy to share more about the lovely Sabrina with you.
Sabrina has a very clear date in her mind - September 20th, 2016 - when a shift happened in her life that separates what came before from all that has happened since. She remembers this date so vividly because on that day she shared a photo on social media that, in retrospect, revealed her path to her. The photo featured the things she loves most - coffee and baking. Prior to this date, Sabrina struggled with a dilemma that many people (myself included) encounter - that is, figuring out what it was she wanted to do with her life and her career, attempting to find herself and discover her true passions. Having always worked in the hospitality industry as a bartender, she knew she had potential for more and studied makeup artistry before becoming a dental hygienist, quickly learning in both instances, however, that neither vocation was the right one for her. Sabrina then opened an online boutique called Miaou Vintage, selling vintage jewellery to start, and eventually expanding her inventory to include items she carefully curated from stationery to furniture and decorative items. But something didn't feel right to Sabrina about this either and she closed up shop in June 2016. She needed time to find herself, so she booked herself on a three-day trip to London, England in October and set off on a journey of self-discovery.
Upon her return from London and with a renewed sense of self, Sabrina immersed herself further in her baking, an activity she had been fond of for years - she started baking after she met her husband, and the two of them enjoyed spending time in the kitchen cooking and baking together, trying out new recipes and inventing their own. Sabrina entered her Spicy Ginger Molasses Cookie recipe into Cityline's Annual Cookie Swap competition...and she won! She appeared on an episode of Cityline with Mairlyn Smith, in which she shared her winning recipe. This win gave her the confidence to enter one of her other recipes into another contest, Bake It Possible, hosted by Pillsbury and Betty Crocker, and at the time of this publication she has been selected as one of 10 finalists for her Apple Rose Maple Tart recipe. These baking achievements are a great endorsement that Sabrina is on the right track. She very recently launched a blog, My Miaou, to continue on her path of self-discovery, as well as to catalogue and share her recipes and the things that inspire her with others. (Fun fact: My Miaou is so named for Sabrina's love of cats! Miaou being the French translation of "meow." Sabrina has the cutest, sweetest little kitty named Storm.) Sabrina's blog is as much a treat for the eyes as it is for your sweet tooth! A place where the content is both inspiring and informative. Sabrina has a keen eye and a pleasing aesthetic, and in addition to her recipes and mouthwatering food photography, I look forward to seeing her forthcoming posts on entertaining, decorating, travel and more.
We have a sweet treat for you today, as Sabrina is kindly sharing her recipe for her Apple Rose Maple Tart! Keep reading, because it follows at the end of this article!
Want more? Here's what We Want To Know about Sabrina:
I can't start my morning without...a large cup of coffee! Coffee is such an important part in my life. It's not just the fuel that gets me going throughout the day, it's what brings people together, all good conversations start with a cup of coffee. And on the plus side, if the latte art is beautiful, it makes for a pretty great photo op.
I have a weakness for...SWEETS. All things sweets. If you ever witness me turning down a treat, I must be having an off day.
Most people don't know that I...am a very superstitious and paranoid person. I once broke a hand held mirror (omg, 7 years bad luck right?) nope, apparently if you leave it untouched for 7 days, the curse is void. I left it and then googled how to properly dispose of a broken mirror to avoid bad luck.
Currently reading... Twenty-Two: Letters to a Young Woman Searching for Meaning. Recommended by Valeria Lipovetsky.
I want...this world to be a happier and kinder place. I also want a croissant from Paris.
Sabrina's Apple Rose Maple Tart Recipe
4 extra large egg yolks
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups whole milk
1/2 cup maple syrup
2 tbsp unsalted butter
Pillsbury Cinnamon Roll
1 pink lady or honey crisp Apple
2 tbsp brown sugar
Cream cheese whip cream
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream (optional)
1 tbsp granulated sugar
Preheat the oven at 375.
In a medium saucepan, whisk together the granulated sugar, cornstarch and salt. Measure out the whole milk, add the egg yolks and whisk to combine. Stream the milk into the saucepan and whisk at the same time so that it's evenly mixed in. Turn on the element to medium heat. Add the maple syrup and butter. Whisk until the mixture comes to a boil (starts to bubble) and thickens, and continue to whisk for 1 minute. Take it off the heat and strain it through a fine sieve. Cover with plastic wrap directly on the pastry cream so that a skin does not form. Set aside.
In medium bowl, juice 1 lemon, add 2 tbsp brown sugar. Cut the Apple in half lengthwise and take out the core and the stem. On a mandoline on the thinnest setting, slice the apples. Place them immediately into the lemon juice so they don't brown.
Using the Pillsbury Cinnamon rolls, place the rolls in one single layer and with a rolling pin roll the dough out as thin as you can. As you roll, the pieces will stick together to form one large sheet. If there are holes or gaps in the sheet, tear off pieces on the ends to patch up the gaps. Lift the sheet onto the tart pan and press it up the sides. Pour the pastry cream mixture into the tart pan and smooth the top with an off-set spatula.
With the Apple slices, line up the 8-10 slices overlapping the pieces into a row, going left to right. Starting from the left, start rolling the Apple slices until you form an Apple rose! Place the Apple roses as close together or as far apart from each other as you'd like. I made 6 roses.
Carefully place the pan in the oven for 20-22 minutes until the crust is a golden brown colour. Remove from the oven and let cool on a cooling rack for at least an hour. Can be served at room temperature or chilled.
For the cream cheese whipped cream. In a stand mixer or with a hand mixer whip the heavy cream until it's firm. Fold in the Pillsbury cream cheese icing. Serve with the Apple Rose Maple Tart.
Thank you, Sabrina, for participating in #WeWantToKnow!