April 30, 2018

Jam Hand Pies

bursting with filling

Hand pies are for crust lovers. If you enjoy the flaky, buttery crust of a pie more than the filling, then hand pies are for you.

peach jam filling

They're also conveniently portable. Have you tried lugging a pie dish on public transportation, dodging people on the sidewalk so you can bring a pie to work to share with co-workers? It's not fun. Hand pies can easily fit into a container and thrown into a bag without worrying about spillage.

half-moon shaped pies

And if you're into the cute factor, they're tiny and bite-sized.

pre-baked hand pies

March 31, 2018

Pasta with Cauliflower Pesto

pasta with cauliflower pesto

It's that time of the year where I'm feeling uninspired, cooking-wise. I'm eagerly waiting for winter to end, for the first availability of asparagus and rhubarb because that's when I know spring has finally arrived.

For now, I'm resorting to my old standby meals, the ones I've made countless of times and know they will come out delicious with minimal effort involved.

sundried tomato pesto

This recipe comes from Deb's first cookbook, which is full of gems. You start off by pulsing cauliflower in a food processor (before cauliflower rice became a thing), process the rest of the ingredients to make a pesto, then toss everything together with some pasta. The food processor does all the work and you end up with a tasty meal.

cauliflower rice + pasta

February 26, 2018

Chocolate Pudding

chocolate pudding

Another chocolate recipe, you ask? I personally believe that you can never have too many chocolate recipes, especially in February.

ingredients for pudding

Chocolate pudding is easier to make than you think. The benefit of the homemade version is that it is more chocolaty than what you would get at the grocery store. It does require a bit of patience as you wait for the mixture to boil and thicken up, but it will get there so don't lose hope. Your perseverance will be rewarded.

chocolate-y goodness with every spoonful

January 29, 2018

World Peace Cookies

heaven on a plate

For Christmas last year, a friend asked a group of us if we wanted to participate in a cookie exchange. An abundance of baked goods to share and consume? Of course I was in.

slicing cookie log

She asked each of us to bake a different type of cookie, which sent me down a rabbit hole trying to decide what to make. I associate shortbread with the holidays and prefer them over a sugar cookie, but wanted to add a little oomph to a plain shortbread.

cut and bake

The conclusion: a chocolate shortbread.

fresh from the oven

December 30, 2017

Portugal 2017

clothing line

I never knew how picturesque Portugal was before my visit. It was hard to take a bad photo, which made it even more unfortunate that I lost my camera halfway through my trip. (Cue the sad violins.)

porto sunset
livraria lello douro valley

Photos from my phone will have to do and the beauty of Portugal shines right through. I started up north in Porto, a city known for port wines. As a huge Harry Potter nerd, I had to make the pilgrimage to Livrario Lello, which was where J.K Rowling wrote part of her books. The beautiful staircase in the bookstore was the inspiration for the staircase at Hogwarts. I also did a day trip out to the Douro Valley, one of the oldest wine regions in the world, and drank my fill of wine. Lots of wine was consumed on this trip.

biblioteca joanina
universidade de coimbra old library books

I stopped in Coimbra to visit Portugal's oldest university but my sole target was the Joanina Library, which was stunning. It's a must visit for bibliophiles. Fun fact: university students in Portugal wear capes, just like the students in Harry Potter.

tram 28