Thursday, August 14, 2014

Kahlua Coffee Ice Cream!

Hello my lovely readers!

I know this post is long overdue. So what I have I been up to this year?

Well to start off I've left the foggy city of San Francisco and moved to a much sunnier city that is very much closer home. I packed up my bags a little while ago and with the help of my awesome family, I was able to transport everything down all the way to San Diego!

I don't know why it took me so long to figure out that San Diego was a great fit for me personally speaking, and I already feel right at home. Although it does help that the beach is just a couple blocks away. I am truly living the dream. Sometimes I forget how blessed and lucky I am. For the first time in my life I get a brand new kitchen to play and host parties in (well not parties but lets just say host great dinners with close friends). Huzzah I say!

Lets fast forward to last week where I watched a video on how to make ice cream without an ice cream maker. I was fascinated, seriously I never knew such a method existed! My only fear was that something this easy couldn't taste like real ice cream...right? Oh prove me wrong Nigella. Prove me wrong.

No Churn- Kahlua Coffee Ice Cream (yields 3-4 servings)
Recipe from Nigella Lawson

1 1/4 cup of Heaving Whipping Cream
2/3 cup of sweetened condensed milk
2 Tablespoons of Instant Espresso Powder
2 Tablespoons of Kahlua

Directions: Using your stand mixer and the whisk attachment, combine all of the ingredients until you get a delicious and light soft peak. Do not over beat. Then freeze the mixture in a freezer safe container for at least six hours or overnight.

The combinations here are endless but you need the alcohol (no substitutes).

Pros: This recipe is super easy and fast. Also it only requires just a few ingredients. I mean what could be better? Nigella says that this recipe is "embarrassingly easy". But the true test of all, does it taste like real ice cream? Absolutely yes, a bit more creamier but still delicious enough to fill anybody's craving.

Cons: Waiting 6 hours. I know I'm not the most patient person when it comes to waiting for dessert or food for that matter. I also apologize for what I say when I'm hungry. I can't help it that I'm always hungry. But as a matter of fact, I waited overnight for this ice cream. Will power my friends. If I can wait so can you.

And was it worth it? Heck yes. I would have had more than 3 scoops but I don't want to stay up too late, yup I'm getting soft in my old age.

Looks so real doesn't it? Haha

Thank you Nigella, you truly are an amazing & beautiful chef!

Enjoy the weekend my lovelies!

All the best,


Monday, November 18, 2013

The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies...Ever!

Now that I got your attention, I first must apologize in the absence or non-existence of my blogging. Whenever I bake, I tend to always make a mental note to come here and share with you some amazing recipe but that was several weeks ago and well now... its November! Better late than never, am I right?

You know how impatient people can be when waiting for freshly baked Chocolate Chip Cookies to cool? Namely my sister. But for me the problem lies when most of the recipes out there involve "softened room temperature butter". I mean who has time to wait for that? Especially since the climate here in foggy, San Francisco is chilly and so, waiting for the butter to soften up can drive me a little mad. And don't get me started on cookie dough that needs to chill for a day. I was born to be an impatient little baker.

Now what you're probably thinking is that I'm going to use melted butter, but that's not fun and way to overdone. This recipe calls for melted, brown butter! Oh my freaking god, this is so good and it will make your apartment/house smell so nutty and delicious. I have also used this recipe numerous times, because it serves as a great base cookie. I've added Snickers, English Toffee, Reese's Pieces, Chocolate Chunks with Walnuts, Holiday M&M's and they turn out just as amazing as the originals. Please give it a try and let me know what you think.

Chocolate Chip Cookies (with Toffee Pieces)

adapted from Cook’s Illustrated + BethT + Eat, Live, Run

Yields 15 Large Cookies (I'm talking about the size of my hand!)

  • 1 3/4 c all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 14 tbsp unsalted butter (1 3/4 sticks)
  • 1/2 c white sugar
  • 3/4 c packed brown sugar (recipe suggests dark brown, but light brown is also acceptable)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 1/4 c chocolate chips
  • 1/2 a box of Trader Joe's English Toffee (crushed)


Preheat oven to 375 and line two large baking sheets with parchment or silicone baking mats. Sift or whisk together the flour and baking soda in a medium bowl. Using a food processor crush half the box of toffee pieces til a coarse grain appears (You can also make this with chunkier pieces of toffee, it is really up to you) and set aside. 
Put 10 tbsp of the butter in a medium skillet set over medium high heat. Allow the butter to melt for 2 minutes and begin to swirl it around the pan, allowing it to brown. Keep the butter moving so it doesn’t burn. Browning should take about 3 minutes and you’ll know it’s done when it smells nutty and it has a dark golden brown color. Remove the pan from the heat and use a heatsafe spatula to transfer the butter to a large, heatsafe mixing bowl. Add the remaining 4 tbsp of cold butter to the melted butter, and stir gently until it is melted.
Add the white sugar, brown sugar, vanilla and salt to the butter and whisk the ingredients together. Add the egg and egg yolk and whisk again until mixture is smooth, 30 seconds. Allow the batter to rest for 3 minutes, then whisk for 30 seconds more. Do this two more times; the end result should be thick and shiny.
Add the flour mixture and stir until just combined, about 1 minute. Gently stir in chocolate chips and toffee pieces, if using. 
Form each cookie with a regular sized ice cream scoop, roll and pat down on your silicone mat or baking sheet, spread them about 2 inches apart (for a half sheet pan, I made 5 very large cookies). Baking time will vary for obvious reasons, but for large cookies, bake for 13-15 minutes. Let them cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely, if possible.

I will be posting more asap, before my favorite holiday Thanksgiving arrives! Have a lovely week everyone!


Friday, July 19, 2013

Banana Bread Brownies with Browned Butter Frosting!

Happy Friday everyone!

To celebrate the best day of the week, I'm going to make all of you banana lovers so happy! Trust me on this.

I know its been a while since I've blogged, but I really have a good excuse this time. Ready?

Ok. So 3 weeks ago I drove back home to LA, and it really was such a long, exhausting drive! Marin to Stockton took about 3 hours, plus the horrendous heat wave didn't help one bit. I finally got home at 12:01 am, parked my car and just as I was emerging out of my car my right hand, specifically my right thumb got slammed in the driver door. It was only 12:03am. Damn, 2 minutes into my awesome, much needed vacation. Unfortunately, the pain got worse. About half of my hand was swollen. Oh super! Now it wouldn't have been so bad, but I practically use my right hand exclusively. So learning how to do things with my left hand was frustrating, I mean do you know how hard it is to put on a bra with one hand? Or let alone use chopsticks? Anyway to conclude, I'm finally getting back to normal. Although my thumb looks really disgusting. Just thought I'd share.

Thanks for reading, if you did.

So, last week my office mate Brenda, shared a wonderful recipe she found on facebook. I couldn't help but feel inspired! I decided to make and share them with my co-workers, I really don't know how fast the brownies disappeared (I slightly feared that nobody would like them, but I guess that's my perfectionist syndrome kicking in) but I did get many e-mail compliments and personal thank you's! And yes on the corny side, it really does make me happy when people enjoy what I bake, that is really why I do it all.

Banana Bread Brownies with Browned Butter Frosting


Banana Bread Bars:

1 ½ cups sugar
1 cup sour cream, room temperature (you can also substitute with buttermilk)
½ cup of unsalted butter, softened (1 stick)
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 ¾ cups (3 or 4) ripe bananas, mashed
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon salt
½ cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Browned Butter Frosting:
½ cup unsalted butter
1-2 cups powdered sugar (sift to get a smooth frosting)
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
3 tablespoons milk or half and half


Heat oven to 375 degrees. Grease and flour 10x15 jelly roll pan or line with parchment paper (for thicker bars use a 9x13 pan). Beat first four ingredients until creamy. Blend in bananas and vanilla for one minute. Add dry ingredients and blend for one minute. Stir in nuts and spread in pan. Bake 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown (For a 9x13 pan, 40-45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean--- I used this pan and it comes out thick and cake like) Cool slighty until warm but not hot and frost with Browned Butter Frosting (recipe below).
For the Browned Butter Frosting: Heat butter in saucepan over medium heat past the melting point until it is boiling and a delicate brown. Remove from the heat and immediately add the remaining ingredients. This should be thicker than a glaze and thinner than frosting. Using a spatula smooth over the top of the brownies immediately. The frosting will be easier to spread once it's on the warm bread.


The Girl Who Ate Everything

Also, here's a great tip. If you need ripe bananas, because I never seem to have any on hand you can use this trick to get a ripe banana perfect for baking! Remember that the banana is the main ingredient in bread and in these delicious brownies, so a ripe banana and a unripe banana can make quite a difference.

To make this simple, preheat your oven to 300 Degrees Fahrenheit. Lay out your bananas on a shallow baking pan. Make sure your bananas are not green, you need to have somewhat yellow bananas for this to work (this trick saves you about a few days in the ripening process). It took me about 20-30 minutes in the oven to get my bananas to ripen. The time varies. And they will come out of the oven looking freakishly black. Don't worry, this means you did it right. For more specific instructions with pictures, please check out this blog! Thanks to Jessica, from clean, green, and simple!

Banana Bread Brownie with Browned Butter Frosting Review:

Pros: This is such an easy recipe, anyone can do it! My sister could, if she wanted to : ). It is super moist and the reduction of sugar in the frosting makes it pure deliciousness! You can eat this as a dessert or for the daredevils at breakfast with coffee or tea. It tastes great warm or cold. And you don't need too many special ingredients, if you have bananas use the tip I listed above. And seriously, banana bread and brownies combined to one fabulous dessert = pure magic!

Cons: ..... If I must put something down here, walnuts. I've never been a fan, but its optional. But as a baker enthusiast, people seem to like the crunch of the walnuts with the soft, pillowy brownie.

Now go ahead, happy baking and let the compliments start rolling in! ; )

Have a wonderful weekend!

All the best,