Beloved SoHo Baker Makes a Mountain of Valentine's Day Brownies
MANHATTAN — As Valentine's Day approaches, one SoHo chef is baking a heap of fudgy brownies.
Chuck Piekarski, the pastry chef at the Sixth Avenue-based nonprofit God's Love We Deliver, said he'll spend Wednesday making and wrapping 1,500 desserts to be taken to the homes of the chronically ill people the organization serves.
Piekarski, aka Chuck the Baker, said he hopes the results of the recipe he's perfected over the course of his 21-year tenure at the nonprofit will bring a smile to the faces of sick clients.
"[Dessert] makes you feel like you're at home and mom's giving you a cake or a piece of pie," said Piekarski, who once got a hand in the kitchen from God's Love We Deliver board member Joan Rivers.
Piekarski's brownies — which have been sold online for several years — are rich, preservative-free and made with semi-sweet chocolate and butter.
"The problem is, they don't last long," he said.
The baker will also whip up cranberry scones and pound cake with berries, cranberries and a drizzle of chocolate.
"Everything will be pink and red," said Piekarski, a 58-year-old Woodside, Queens resident.
Founded in 1986, God's Love We Deliver serves about 4,500 meals every day to people in the tri-state area who are too sick to shop or cook for themselves.
Rivers tried her hand at helping Piekarski make desserts about three years ago, he said. Cake decorating wasn't the comic's strength, but she was kind, he said.
"Joan is a sweet lady, but don't tell anyone — she doesn't want anyone to know."