Search Results for sweets + treats

Sweet potato & orange pound cake

March 11th, 2014

While it may not look like I’ve been cooking up a storm lately, I kind of have. Between recipe testing for Remedy Quarterly (which is currently at the printer!!), introducing Claire to solids (FYI, baby-led weaning has been amazing for us), and making sure Aaron and I eat dinner together, my kitchen looks like a tornado came through on a daily basis. After many months without the urge to cook, it feels good. I’ve been enjoying making those messes and it’s hard to explain the awesomeness that is watching Claire learn to enjoy food.

With recipe testing behind me, and an unexplainable surge of energy, I decided mama needed a treat for herself. After seeing a photo of this sweet potato pound cake in my Instragram feed, I knew exactly what that treat would be. Right then and there, I put on a little cooking show for Claire—complete with lovely background music composed of Claire clanging her toy against her tray and a few gah blah blahs just to mix it up a bit. It was pure entertainment as you can imagine. But since we were the only two to experience that magic, it’s only fair that I share the results of my baking with you, because it was SO GOOD.

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Chocolate + Mint M&M cookies

December 18th, 2013

In the past few years I’ve really slowed down my holiday baking—life is just so busy this time of year, it’s easy to let it go. But this year I was determined to make something—anything. I saw a picture of these chocolate cookies sprinkled with mint m&m’s on my Pinterest page and I got weak in the knees. I am a sucker for mint m&m’s. Why are they so delicious and why do they call my name every time I walk by a bowl of them?! Damn you mint m&m’s! So yeah, that photo was just what I needed to get myself together and back in the holiday baking spirit.

I have to say, it felt so good to be back in the kitchen baking. I’ve done a fair amount of cooking in my kitchen, but believe it or not, this was the first time I’ve made cookies in this kitchen since moving in nearly a year ago. That is just embarrassing—and after making a batch—it’s a real shame too because it’s a great kitchen to bake in. I guess that just means there will be more cookies in my future, which certainly isn’t a bad thing. But back to those mouthwatering mint m&m cookies. They have a chocolate base, enhanced with a little instant espresso powder which makes them nice and rich, and perfectly moist. And in case the m&m’s weren’t enough, they’re also dotted with chocolate chips—they’re almost too good.

So in case you need a little inspiration like I did, I hope this helps. What are you baking this year? Read the rest of this entry »

a new normal + a plum tart

August 5th, 2013

Wow. It’s been a long time and a crazy journey since I was here but it feels so good to be back. I’m happy to say that after 55 days in the hospital, my sweet daughter Claire is doing so much better. Thank you for all the kind words and thoughts sent our way—it really meant the world to me and my family. 

We’ve been home for a few weeks now and things are beginning to feel normal again—of course it’s a new normal, but one I’m pretty jazzed about that. I’m not only seeing things through a new lens as a mother, but also as a Californian—it’s so fun (on both accounts)! When we arrived home, the tree outside our window that had little green berries on it a few months ago was now laden with deep red plums, some of which literally fell into my window when I opened it. Umm, yeah, that’s kind of awesome. After getting adjusted to our new routine, it seemed high time that I pick some of those plums and start whipping up some tasties. I got a few suggestions on instagram and my sweet tooth won—a simple plum tart was the first one and sounded like a perfect way to ease back into the swing of things while using up some of those plums. Ok, and it sounded pretty dang delicious. Lucky for all of us, it lived up to my expectations. 

One of the biggest lessons I learned while Claire was in the hospital was to savor the small things. There were days when I dreamt about simply sitting on my couch with my family, or even better, I loved dreaming about all the adventures we could go on together—from a walk down the street exploring the crazy botanicals California has to offer to taking a trip to Point Reyes together. These things got me through the crazy— I just had to believe that they were more than just dreams, that they were really going to happen. Standing in my kitchen this week picking plum, I felt so thankful that I was able to be in my kitchen, not only look at, but pick awesome fruit, and actually bake something—(there was no kitchen in our hospital life). This tart was like a welcome-back-to-life-tart and man, it tasted good.

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puppy chow

December 20th, 2012

The holidays have been bonkers for me this year (and I’m sure I’m not alone)—between craft fairs and shipping for Remedy Quarterly and this whole pregnancy thing, But yesterday I found myself with a little free time and decided it was time to make at least one thing to share with you. I had three favorites in mind—but the one that rose to the top is this oldie but goodie, puppy chow. I have no idea why it’s called that, but honestly it’s so good that I don’t care what you call it. A mixture of melted peanut butter, butter, and butterscotch all over rice chex, then topped with powdered sugar—this treat is far from healthy but oh-so-good. In fact, that first bite took me right back to my mom’s kitchen growing up where I’d sneak a handful of puppy chow as I walked through the kitchen—then before you knew it the whole bag was gone.

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caramel apple pie

November 9th, 2012

As soon as the first sign of cool weather arrived this year I had a craving for caramel apples. I wanted one—no, it was more dire than that—I needed one. I mean, who doesn’t love that contrast of juicy apple and sweet, gooey caramel. Fall really seems to be the only appropriate time to indulge in them—so it’s time to sieze the day, err season, right?! Well, I never got around to actually making a caramel apple—I totally cheated and bought one, okay maybe more than one, at the farmers’ market. It was delicious and totally hit the spot, but even afterwards I couldn’t shake the thought of those damn caramel apples—let’s just blame it on the pregnancy.

Fast forward to thinking about Thanksgiving pie time, another thing that’s occupying way too much of my brain space. After last year’s magical bourbon pecan pie success from RQ Issue 7, I was feeling good about my pie-making skills. What could possibly top last year’s pie? A caramel apple pie, that’s what! Of course I had to test this theory out before the big day, so I went ahead and did a trial run. Oh. My. Goodness. Get ready for a sweet, buttery caramel apple pie lovefest.

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Hello again: brown butter chocolate chip cookies

October 12th, 2012

You know how there are recipes that you go back to again and again? Sometimes you try another recipe thinking you’re ready for a change, but alas, the new recipe never quite lives up to that good old standby. Three years ago I created this recipe for brown butter chocolate chip cookies and seriously—I think they’re just the best chocolate chip cookies ever. I just whipped up a few batches to share with the folks over at Brooklyn Beta, along with a few other sweet treats, and it just reminded me how good these are. So while it’s not a “new” recipe, it’s a tried and true, gonna make you happy, repeat recipe. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

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carrot + apple loaf cake

September 26th, 2012

I am so ready for fall you guys. I’m ready for sweaters and scarves, leaves changing color along with a little nip in the air when you first walk outside in the morning. I’m ready for root vegetables, apples, pears, and squash galore. But most of all, I’m ready to turn the oven on.

Last weekend I found myself with an abundance of some of those fall goodies, carrots and apples, and I immediately thought of warm, spiced carrot cake. But I didn’t want just any carrot cake—it needed a twist, something to make it a little more fall. That’s when apples came to the rescue. Instead of pineapple, which many carrot cake recipe call for, I simply swapped in some apples, giving this loaf cake the perfect fall twist I was looking for. Oh, and the cinnamon cream cheese frosting didn’t hurt either.

The batter is pretty easy to whip up—there’s no weird waiting time or some secret step that that requires any crazy equipment. In fact I kind of enjoyed the rhythm of the recipe—shredding, chopping, mixing, stirring. The thoughts of fresh, warm cake so near in my future. One of the best parts of this recipe comes about 20 minutes after you’ve tucked it in the oven. All of a sudden you may perk up, find your nose in the air and your stomach begin to rumble because this cake smells like a little piece of heaven. In fact my husband came home while it was in the oven and simply stopped at the door and groaned “whooooaaa”. It’s kind of intoxicating.

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watermelon soda float

August 30th, 2012

It seems like lately the closest I’ve come to making something is browsing through magazines and ooohing over things other people have made. I’m in a bit of a summer slump, which I think might be the saddest kind of slump, but when I saw a recipe for this watermelon float in the latest issue of Bon Appetit, it was just what I needed to get in the kitchen. Delicious, refreshing fruit paired with tangy lime frozen yogurt? That’s one fruity float that I was ready to whip up.

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