Neighborhood Treasures

Seven Stars on Hope

One of the things I love the most about my apartment, is its close proximity to Hope Village located on the East Side of Providence, RI. Everything I need is walking distance! The bank, library, pharmacy, restaurants, independent shops,  farmer’s market and more. It really has that charming “small town” feel. Of course when I have company for the weekend, visiting Hope Village is a must on our list of Little Rhody Sightseeing.

I usually start and end a visit with a trip to Seven Stars Bakery. I’d have to say, despite the toaster and coffee maker in perfect working condition sitting on my counter….I still find myself at the Bakery 2-3 times a week! I suppose I could call myself a regular. I cannot help it…with a staple of fabulous breads and baked goods (Chocolate almond croissants,  country loaves and cinnamon sticks are among my faves) who could resist?

A friend of mine from New York was visiting for the weekend. He had to catch a very early bus back to the city, so we ended his visit at the bakery. We decided to try a few different itemsand a seasonal ( summer) specialty, Blueberry Turnovers with local blueberries.

and start our Sunday off right with some Lattes.  Great Latte art!

Seven Stars Anniversary Day!! On January 2, 2011 

The owners of Seven Stars Bakeries, Lynn and Jim Williams, are celebrating their eleventh anniversary of serving the finest “handmade from scratch” breads and pastries in Rhode Island. In honor of this milestone, the three bakery locations (Hope Street, Broadway and Newman Avenue) will donate their entire day’s sales on January 2 to the Rhode Island Community Food Bank. Cost: Just the price of the goodies you buy!

The three locations are: 820 Hope Street and 320 Broadway in Providence, as well as a store in East Providence at 20 Newman Avenue in Rumford Center (in the old Rumford Baking Powder Building). You could head over to each one for Breakfast, Lunch and an Afternoon snack!

Happy Anniversary Lynn and Jim!! I am so happy to be your Hope St. neighbor and a very frequent customer. Here’s to many more scrumptious years to come.

For more information:  or

Last Minute Entertaining?

Curried Crab on Water Crackers

Last Minute Entertaining? Let’s face it, we can’t always do it all. I would love the Holidays to be about relaxing by the tree with friends and family while sipping egg nog or mulled cider. Alas, it is usually about running from place to place after work , scrambling to find that perfect gift . Trying to find the energy to bake some cookies, so that Santa will not go hungry! Fear not, there is help out there. I recently attended a Holiday open house at my local Whole Foods. An array of goodies was laid out before us. My teenage daughter whispered in my ear “Mom, why did we eat dinner before we left?” Goodness what a selection!

As Bonnie Frechette, the Marketing Director stated, this evening’s focus was on affordable Holiday entertaining. Items you can pick up at the shop, already prepared, or creative things to make and do yourself.

Each department had a delectable offering or two.

Seafood had some delicious blinis topped with Whitefish and Salmon Caviar, another great thought for New Year’s.

My favorite of the night was the amazing “Cheesecake” made from Humboldt Fog, Truffle Tremor & Bonhomme Brie cheeses. GORGEOUS! Andrew cut it open and shared with all. Heaven on a cracker. Having a large shindig? You can order one or even “Build your own Brie”! A simpler idea is ordering a Party Pack Cheese Platter for $29.00, all set and ready to go.

Shauna, the Prepared Foods Team Leader made some awesome chutneys that are now available for purchase at  the University Heights store in small mason jars. Perfect for a last-minute hostess gift or a great topping for your Holiday roast. She made, Ginger Pear Chutney, Balsamic Fig Chutney and Mango Apple Chutney. I am dreaming of a Roast Turkey sandwich topped with a little Dijon, stuffing, balsamic fig chutney and cheddar cheese. YUMM.

The Meat Dept. has scrumptious stuffed mushrooms already prepared and ready to go. Just heat and serve! My fave was the Goat Cheese and Bacon Stuffed Shrooms. BACON!

As the violinist played, we floated over to Kate in Bakery and spied a scrumptious Holiday Black & White Cake, festive cupcakes, mini pastry platters(13 items for $15!) and a luscious vanilla cheesecake with a caramel whip cream!

Relax, don’t worry, all will be well.  Head over to your local Whole Foods if you need a little help. There are some great recipe ideas in their Real Deal flyer, their Holiday Magazine(available in the North Atlantic area only) and direct in the stores! Their Party packs are a great deal. Call your local store for hours leading up to Christmas and New Year’s.

Blinis topped with Caviar


Produce had some lovely Stuffed dates w/Roquefort & Dark Chocolate