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Seattle Times food writer Nancy Leson serves up the best info and tips on Northwest food, cooking, dining and restaurants.

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July 3, 2008 4:09 PM

Cream Puff Daddy

Posted by Nancy Leson


When Karen Gaudette saw the dispatch about Beard Papa's cream puffs at Safeco Field on Daily Candy this morning, she absolutely freaked. How do I know? I got my work-mate's memo at 6:35 a.m., complete with uppercase letters and exclamation points. Karen -- who couldn't believe I hadn't heard about these sweet treats -- patiently explained that Beard Papa's have been spreading around the U.S. almost as fast as Red Mango locations -- now selling frozen yogurt at Pacific Place, Alderwood Mall and U-Village. And she's obviously not the only one who thinks the puff daddy's goodies are worth e-mailing your friends about before you've even downed your first cup of coffee.

On a Google search I found this missive regarding Beard Papa's proposed outlets at Safeco and Uwajimaya, posted a couple of weeks ago on Voracious. And this longstanding discussion here on Chowhound . As of this morning, the owner of the Uwajimaya Village outlet is still awaiting permitting, say folks there.

When I asked Karen what all the hoopla was about, and if the cream puffs taste anything like the custard-filled choux pastries at Than Brothers, she said she loves those too, but insists that Beard Papa's take the cake. Why? Well, talk to her:

"They're light, fluffy and delectable and smell amazing when they're baking. These beauties are the Top Pot of cream puffs -- in part for their taste, in part for the cheerful ambiance of the bakeries, in part because they're always served up fresh and hot. I had my first taste outside a train station in Japan and nearly devoured the whole box."

Me? I'm more likely to try to make my own at home, having just read Sara Dickerman's fine piece on choux paste in the Sunday magazine in the New York Times.

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Listen to Nancy at 5:30 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. during Morning Edition, at 4:40 p.m. during All Things Considered and again the following Saturday at 8:30 a.m. during Weekend Edition on KPLU 88.5.

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