I had a friendly chat this morning with Ettore Ravazzolo of Ettore's European Bakery & Restaurant at 2376 Fair Oaks Blvd.
I could talk all day about his superb Black Forest cake, carrot cake or Kahlua cake, but this time we focused on giving back.
It's certainly appropriate for a successful business to find ways to thank the community and inspire others to give as well. Along the way, we can have a little fun, raise a little money and, well, devour a few thousand calories.
Ettore told me about the origin of the bakery's new pink fondant cookie devoted to breast cancer awareness and research. The extra large cookie sells for $4.50, $2.00 of which goes to the Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
"I have a longtime friend who developed breast cancer a few years ago and she became very involved in the breast cancer cause," Ettore told me. "Every year, she does a fundraiser. Two years ago, I helped her do a spaghetti dinner and last year I supplied the pastries for a car wash.
This year, Ettore announced he wanted to come up with something that would make a difference - something permanent. So he developed a cookie, using a standard butter dough and applying pink fondant on top.
The idea is to sell the cookies in a decorative pink box, but the box has yet to be designed. Still, the cookies are already being made and Ettore figured he should sell them. For now, they're in a bag with a pink ribbon.
Ettore is no stranger to pairing his popular desserts with good causes. He started a fundraiser called Ettore's Coffee Break. Last year, the one-day event raised about $7,000 for Wellspring Women's Center, a non-profit based in Oak Park devoted to assisting and encouraging low-income women and their children.
Next year's fundraiser in February will be for the Youth Development Network.
Best of luck with the cookies and the causes.