You can be pretty much anywhere when inspiration whacks you in the face. I was in one of the classes at work when I was craving carrots, strange I know, but we were making pies.
We have Pumpkin Pie, Sweet Potato Pie, why not Carrot pie?
Into the kitchen we go! I based this recipe off The Gourmandise School’s Pumpkin Pie recipe and it came out super tasty.
I will say creating this recipe was a process. Pies get their flakey goodness from ice cold butter and a super hot oven. When the two meet each other a beautiful steam is produced from the water in the butter and wha-la, flakey layers of crust are the result. Continue reading
Sometimes life is interesting. Sometimes life is really boring, sometimes I really crave boring. Over the holidays between work, family, and attempting to maintain full social order things can get crazy. I love spending time with everyone but I do look forward to the time when everything calms down and you can subtly day-dream about lazy sunday morning with a good book, a mug of tea, and some coffee cake without worrying about having to be anywhere.
I know it’s Monday, but I encourage you to carve out some time this week to try out this recipe, your lazy weekend morning will thank you later. Continue reading
With this new year underway it seems that everyone is in full resolution mode. I have never really been big into new years resolutions but this year somehow feels different. I have decided that this year will be better than the last; more exciting, more adventures, lots more tasty food, more great memories.
I know that one thing everyone seems to want to do once the clock strikes midnight is work off all the weight that seemed to find us between the holidays, if not more (myself included.) As much as I’d love to be one of those girls who can juice cleanse her way into her skinny jeans, when I don’t eat solid food I’m not someone you want to be trapped in close proximity to.
So instead I cleanse my comfort food cookbooks for healthier options. I also like to try and replenish my savings after all the christmas spending I’ve done so I hit up one of my favorite cookbook spots – the library!
Most libraries carry a decent selection of cookbooks or have the ability to acquire them for you through an inter-library loan system. This is a great way to pick up some great reads that are light on your waistline and on your purse. My rule of thumb is that if I like it and I cook 2-3 things out of the book then I’ll consider buying it.
Some of my favorites this season are:
When you trade a night out for a night in sometimes that can means your tastebuds suffer. Rebecca did a great job in creating this amazing book that helps you to eat well even on a budget. If I ever meet her, she’s getting a big-ol-hug. This is probably one of my favorite new cookbooks I’ve added recently.
Candice’s books have been a staple in my cookbook collection for years now. I love returning to them when I’m in the mood for something tasty and light; plus she has a lot of great health tips peppered in throughout this book. My favorite section is the one on date night meals – I’d love for a fella to make me a candle lit dinner. (Swoon.)
Homemade by Clodagh McKenna is simply wonderful. (How cute is the cover?) She has a little bit of everything in the book from homemade ketchup to Pine nut & Rosemary Crusted Lamb to homemade muesli. Next to her muesli recipe my she is responsible for one of my favorite brunch recipes – her Cinnamon French Toast with Honey-Vanilla Mascarpone (it’s my favorite lazy thing to make and makes me feel like I’m eating at one of my favorite spots Superba Snack Bar.)
So if you’re like me and rather would just spend one more day at the gym to offset the cookie you know you cannot pass up, I hope you’ll consider a cookbook cleanse instead.
I hope that everyone is having a safe and wonderful holiday season.
I’m visiting with family back in Chicago but I promise lots of fun & tasty treats soon!
(Follow me on Instagram to watch my adventures!)
See you next year!!
So I haven’t posted on here for awhile… fail I know. Sometimes though you need to take a step back and reevaluate.
If you follow me on Instagram you’ll see that I haven’t completely dropped off the face of the earth.
There have been some changes in my life that caused me to rethink some things and get a new perspective, a part of this is what I want this blog to be.
Took some bubble baths..
Read some books…
Got silly with some friends…
Drank lots of coffee!
And basically looked for inspiration.
I’ll be making some changes which I hope you’re really excited about – I’ll be posting more consistently about food but also about my travel adventures! I am also happy to announce the business side of things with my recipe consulting & development.
I also have a new project that has been in the works for awhile now that is coming together called Follow Your Taste Buds which is a culinary tour company that does walking tours of West Los Angeles for now but will soon do abroad tours and be in other cities. (Gotta start small 😛 )
Fall is pretty much my favorite time of year. Being warm and cozy, getting to hide under blankets without being sweaty, snuggling up with a nice mug of apple cider.
It also makes me miss the Midwest because I don’t live near trees that change colors, but I’ve discovered new ways to celebrate fall.
Such as cloudy day beach walks — there is a certain appeal to the beach in the fall and winter when it is abandoned by the tourists.
One of my favorite ways to connect with the fall weather are the colors. Burnt orange, mustard yellows, olive greens, oh my!
Thinking of those colors and feeling a bit hungry and I came up with a quick and easy fall trail mix.
Fall Trail Mix
1/3 cup White Chocolate Chips
1/3 cup Dried Apricots
1/2 cup toasted Walnuts
1/3 cup Honey Sesame Cashews (I got these from Trader Joes)
1/4 cup dried cranberries
Combine & Serve
I’ll be on hiatus until September.
See you in the fall!!
I was a weird kid. I was never into traditional kid foods like Peanut Butter & Jelly sandwiches, or Kraft Mac & Cheese.
I was really into spinach, asparagus, and pineapple deep dish. (If you haven’t tried Spinach Pineapple Pizza, I encourage you. It will blow your mind.)
It wasn’t until recently that I rediscovered homemade mac & cheese and fell in love. Crispy topping, perfectly cooked noodles, crazy amounts of cheese. What’s a girl not to love?
Mac & Cheese and bikini season normally don’t mix but I came across Candice Kumai’s recipe and felt that it could totally be modified to one of my favorite treats. She uses almond milk which adds a great flavor but less calories (vs heavy cream). I tweaked her recipe a bit and wah-lah, a less bad for you Truffle Mac & Cheese. You can thank me later 😉
Truffle Mac & Cheese
(Adapted From: Candice Kumai’s Platinum Mac & Cheese)
3 cups Macaroni (uncooked)
1 tbsp unsalted butter
t tbsp all purpose flour (you can totally use gluten free here)
1 tsp garlic powder
2 1/2 cups Almond Milk
1/4 cup Gruyere Cheese, grated
1/4 cup Truffle Cheese
2 tbsp White Truffle Oil
Sea Salt (to taste)
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1 tbsp italian seasoning
1/8 cup Truffle Cheese
1) Cook the noodles according to the directions on the box. Strain and toss with the Truffle Oil. Set aside.
2) Melt the butter in a large sauce pan on medium low heat, at the flour and stir with a wooden spoon until a paste like texture forms.
3)Add the garlic powder and almond milk. reduce head and allow to thicken for aprox 20 minutes.
4) When the sauce coats the back of a spoon add the noodles and cheeses.
5) Transfer to a over proof skillet and garnish with Italian Seasoning, salt, and extra cheese. Broil for 2-3 minutes.
Before I moved to LA I lived in Chicago and managed an ice cream store called Bobtail. One of my favorite flavors that would make an occasional appearance was Coffee Oreo. In a fit of nostalgia and craving some peanut butter I decided Peanut Butter “Oreo” it is. Since gluten (the protein in wheat) can be a bit bothersome on some stomachs I figured might as well make this one more friendly (however you can totally use the real deal here).
There is something incredibly indulgent while maintaining an innocence about this flavor. It’s like being a kid in an adult way, because I don’t know about you, but I was more into eating ice cream as a kid rather than making it. That is until I was introduced to the ziploc technique in my high school science class.
Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Oreo Ice Cream
Base (Adapted from Jenni’s Splendid Ice Creams)
1 1/2 cups milk (full fat is best)
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp corn/tapioca starch
1/8 tsp sea salt
5 egg yokes
1. Whisk the sugar and the egg yokes together. Set aside
2. Mix the starch in with the milk, one tbsp at a time. Heat the milk on medium heat until a rolling boil. Take off the heat and slowly add to the yokes.
3. Pour the yoke mixture back into the sauce pan on low heat, add salt, allow to thicken. Chill when the mixture coats the back of a spoon.
Peanut Butter Sauce
1/4 cup Peanut Butter (make sure this is gluten free if you’re intolerant — I used Jiff)
5 oz heavy cream
3 tbsp butter
splash of vanilla
1/8 cup powdered sugar (more to taste)
Heat all ingredients in a sauce pot of over medium heat, whisking occasionally until combined.
1/4 cup Peanut Sauce
1 1/2 tsp Peanut Oil
1/4 cup Gluten Free Jo Jo’s from Trader Joe’s (Or Oreos) — You can also sub out the cookies for chocolate chips
Combine the Base, Peanut Sauce, and oil into an Ice Cream Machine (I have a Cuisinart), Mix until done. Stir in toppings. Freeze until solid. Serve!
There are few things in life that are tastier than bacon, unless of course you’re a vegetarian. (Although with pure number of meat flavored non-meat products it makes me think you miss it…) Bacon is also a manly food which makes for a perfect Fathers day addition. These biscuits are simple and quick to make, so let Dad sleep in and then wake him up with a delicious brunch; some eggs, biscuits and OJ, then convince him to fire of the grill so he can show off his skills. It is summer after all.
Maple Bacon Biscuits (adapted from A Cozy Kitchen)
5-6 slices of Bacon
3 1/4 cup all purpose flour, sifted
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 stick super cold butter, cubed
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 tbsp heavy cream
1 large egg
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tbsp butter, set aside (this is for when they come out of the oven)
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
First you’re going to need to cook your bacon up, if you’re making these as a surprise from someone and your kitchen is downwind from where ever they are I recommend doing this before hand and just wrap it in a paper towel and put it in a ziploc bag in the fridge. You can cook your bacon however you like but I recommend stopping when it’s still chewy, it will make for a more suple biscuit. Once you’ve got your bacon diced it up into small little pieces. Set aside.
Take your buttermilk (or if you don’t have any on hand just take regular milk and squeeze a bit of lemon juice in –wahla! buttermilk) and whisk in the egg and heavy cream. Set aside.
In a large bowl take your sifted flour and add in your baking power, brown sugar and salt. Next quickly add your cold butter. Mix in with a your fingers or a pastry cutter until the cubes are now pea sized marbles. If you have naturally warm hands, invest in a pastry cutter. I chill mine before I used it as well just too keep things extra flakey. Quickly add your maple syrup and the milk/cream/egg mixture until just combined.
Dust your counter with flour and roll it out about 1 inch thick. Cut out your biscuits and place them on a parchment lined cookie sheet. For traditional biscuits use a 2 inch circle cutter, or if you don’t have one try a d 1 cup measure or a glass. You don’t have to be fancy here, creative is just a fun. Chill the cut out dough in the freezer while you preheat your over to 450 degrees. (You don’t want to preheat your oven when you’re working with cold butter.)
Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown. When they come out of the oven rub the butter we set aside earlier on the top. You can either enjoy this way or you can whisk up some glaze to pour over. Just whisk the powdered sugar and maple syrup together. Feel free to play with the amounts to taste. Make sure though that it’s not TOO thick. You want it to be pourable.