Chocolate Babka
So buttery and delicious - this recipe is amazing!  It takes quite a while, almost 6 hours, but it’s worth it.  :)  Plus it makes 2 loaves - one for you and one to share with friends and family.
I’m adding this recipe to my list of favorites.
Get the recipe here. Zoom Permalink
  • Camera: Nikon D90
  • Aperture: f/2
  • Exposure: 1/25th
  • Focal: 50mm

Chocolate Babka

So buttery and delicious - this recipe is amazing!  It takes quite a while, almost 6 hours, but it’s worth it.  :)  Plus it makes 2 loaves - one for you and one to share with friends and family.

I’m adding this recipe to my list of favorites.

Get the recipe here.


My first Philly Cheesesteak

Was out in Philly for work and we took a tourist pit stop at Pat’s King of Steaks.  I got a Philly Cheesesteak wit onions and Provolone.  

Unfortunately, I didn’t realize getting a cheesesteak wit cheese wiz was the original way to order.  But o well, I enjoyed this one nonetheless.

Thanks Philly!


Wine Tasting Weekend

Meet Gopa and Naomi.  Two of my good friends from UCLA.  We enjoyed this weekend in wine country and visited 2 great wineries.  

- Frog’s Leap:  Make reservations ahead of time.  We enjoyed the Signature Seated Tasting and it came with 4 tastings and a delicious cheese platter.  The staff was super friendly and came by to give refills. :)  This place makes it on my list as one of my favorite wineries next to Robert Sinskey.

- Domaine Carneros:  A beautiful large estate - they serve sparkling wines.  I’m such a light weight that I didn’t get to try any of these bubblies - too buzzed from Frog’s Leap.  However, sitting outside on the patio and enjoying the company of my friends made it a relaxing experience.

Cheers!


Pear Vanilla Skyr Cake with Gingersnap Crust
So Farmer Al from Frog Hollow Farm connected with me on LinkedIn, which then prompted me to browse their website to see their latest updates - after a few clicks, guess what I found - a Prepare a Pear Recipe Contest!  
I don’t enter many food recipe contests, but for some reason I felt compelled to enter this one.  Which then led me to recreate my skyr cake recipe using pears!  
I was in a rush and didn’t get a chance to take a nice photo of the whole cake, but hope this one last lonely slice will show how good it is.  :)
The pear plays an integral part in this skyr cake recipe by turning an ordinary vanilla cake into a delicious and satisfying cake by providing a rounded flavor and added texture.  
Plus, this cake is gluten-free!  I used Mi-Del’s Gluten-Free Gingersnap cookies for the crust.
Finally, here’s the recipe:
Pear Vanilla Skyr Cake with Gingersnap Crust Recipe
Ingredients: - 600g vanilla skyr (I used Siggi’s Vanilla & Plain yogurt - about 4 yogurt cups) - 9oz. heavy whipping cream (I used 1/2 pint of Clover Organic Farms Heavy Whipping Cream); split into 2 portions (one portion of 7oz. and the other portion of 2oz.) - 3 oz. of sugar - 1 envelope of gelatin - 1 vanilla pod (or 1 tsp of vanilla extract) - 1 bag of Mi-Del Gluten-Free Gingersnap Cookies  - crushed into crumbs - 1 Tablespoon of cinnamon - 8 tablespoons butter, melted  - 2 pears, sliced into thin pieces
Directions:
In a medium size bowl, combine the ginger snap cookie crumbs with the cinnamon and butter.  Mix well and place in the bottom and sides of an 8-inch springform cake pan.  Make sure to press against the sides of bottom of the pan to make an even crust.
Place into a 350 degree F oven and bake for 8 minutes.  Let cool and layer the crust with pear slices.
In a small bowl, lightly whip the large portion of heavy whipping cream (7oz.)
In a large bowl, mix together the skyr and vanilla seeds or vanilla extract and sugar.
Heat the small portion of heavy whipping cream (2oz.) with the gelatin.  Dissolve the gelatin in the heated cream and cool slightly.
Mix the heated whipping cream with the gelatin carefully into the skyr mixture and then fold in the whipped cream.
Pour the skyr mixture in the gingersnap crust and refrigerate for about 6-8 hours or until firm.(*If you’re in a time crunch like I’m always am, you can put the cake in the freezer for about 2 hours and it should be about firm.)
Place remaining pear slices on top.
Enjoy and share with friends and family!
This is one of my favorite recipes because it includes a few of the textures I love - The cake is creamy, yet the crust provides a soft crunch.  And then the pears add that extra natural sweetness that makes it all so delicious!  Enjoy the skyr cake!  Takk Fyrir! Zoom Permalink

Pear Vanilla Skyr Cake with Gingersnap Crust

So Farmer Al from Frog Hollow Farm connected with me on LinkedIn, which then prompted me to browse their website to see their latest updates - after a few clicks, guess what I found - a Prepare a Pear Recipe Contest!  

I don’t enter many food recipe contests, but for some reason I felt compelled to enter this one.  Which then led me to recreate my skyr cake recipe using pears!  

I was in a rush and didn’t get a chance to take a nice photo of the whole cake, but hope this one last lonely slice will show how good it is.  :)

The pear plays an integral part in this skyr cake recipe by turning an ordinary vanilla cake into a delicious and satisfying cake by providing a rounded flavor and added texture.  

Plus, this cake is gluten-free!  I used Mi-Del’s Gluten-Free Gingersnap cookies for the crust.

Finally, here’s the recipe:

Pear Vanilla Skyr Cake with Gingersnap Crust Recipe

Ingredients:
- 600g vanilla skyr (I used Siggi’s Vanilla & Plain yogurt - about 4 yogurt cups)
- 9oz. heavy whipping cream (I used 1/2 pint of Clover Organic Farms Heavy Whipping Cream); split into 2 portions (one portion of 7oz. and the other portion of 2oz.)
- 3 oz. of sugar
- 1 envelope of gelatin
- 1 vanilla pod (or 1 tsp of vanilla extract)
- 1 bag of Mi-Del Gluten-Free Gingersnap Cookies  - crushed into crumbs
- 1 Tablespoon of cinnamon
- 8 tablespoons butter, melted 
- 2 pears, sliced into thin pieces

Directions:

In a medium size bowl, combine the ginger snap cookie crumbs with the cinnamon and butter.  Mix well and place in the bottom and sides of an 8-inch springform cake pan.  Make sure to press against the sides of bottom of the pan to make an even crust.

Place into a 350 degree F oven and bake for 8 minutes.  Let cool and layer the crust with pear slices.

In a small bowl, lightly whip the large portion of heavy whipping cream (7oz.)

In a large bowl, mix together the skyr and vanilla seeds or vanilla extract and sugar.

Heat the small portion of heavy whipping cream (2oz.) with the gelatin.  Dissolve the gelatin in the heated cream and cool slightly.

Mix the heated whipping cream with the gelatin carefully into the skyr mixture and then fold in the whipped cream.

Pour the skyr mixture in the gingersnap crust and refrigerate for about 6-8 hours or until firm.(*If you’re in a time crunch like I’m always am, you can put the cake in the freezer for about 2 hours and it should be about firm.)

Place remaining pear slices on top.

Enjoy and share with friends and family!

This is one of my favorite recipes because it includes a few of the textures I love - The cake is creamy, yet the crust provides a soft crunch.  And then the pears add that extra natural sweetness that makes it all so delicious!  Enjoy the skyr cake!  Takk Fyrir!


On Assignment: Whole Foods Market Local - Pezzolo Seafood - San Francisco, CA

Today woke up bright and early for a videoshoot out on Pier 45 at Pezzolo Seafood to shoot some DIY holiday videos in preparation for crab season.  

Ron and his team at Pezzolo were a pleasure to work with.  And of course, it’s just always fun to be out in the field and not sitting at my desk. :)

Video production company - Steel Edge.   


Travel: Haiti
This photo reminds me why I love taking photographs.  I finally uploaded some of my photos from my trip to Haiti in May.  
Check them out here. Zoom Permalink
  • Camera: Nikon D90
  • Aperture: f/5.6
  • Exposure: 1/200th
  • Focal: 35mm

Travel: Haiti

This photo reminds me why I love taking photographs.  I finally uploaded some of my photos from my trip to Haiti in May.  

Check them out here.


Barkada Bakery & Cafe - Oakland, CA
I’ve found my favorite coffee shop + cafe in the East Bay - Barkada Bakery and Cafe.
All the pastries are baked in house and are delicious.  The chocolate croissant has generous portion of chocolate filling and they have free wifi and power outlets to work or study and beautiful decor to just chill and relax or catch up with a friend over a warm latte.  
Plus, the people working here are super friendly and parking can be found easily in the residential area behind Telegraph.
Thank God for delicious and beautiful coffee shops!  :) Zoom Permalink

Barkada Bakery & Cafe - Oakland, CA

I’ve found my favorite coffee shop + cafe in the East Bay - Barkada Bakery and Cafe.

All the pastries are baked in house and are delicious.  The chocolate croissant has generous portion of chocolate filling and they have free wifi and power outlets to work or study and beautiful decor to just chill and relax or catch up with a friend over a warm latte.  

Plus, the people working here are super friendly and parking can be found easily in the residential area behind Telegraph.

Thank God for delicious and beautiful coffee shops!  :)


Cardamom Buns
Cardamom Buns - recipe.
I would have to experiment more with this recipe.  The cardamom was a bit subtle and I would add a bit more sugar to sweeten this bun up.
I was rushing to get these out to service, so I didn’t get a finished photo of these little buns. Zoom Permalink
  • Camera: Nikon D90
  • Aperture: f/1.6
  • Exposure: 1/30th
  • Focal: 50mm

Cardamom Buns

Cardamom Buns - recipe.

I would have to experiment more with this recipe.  The cardamom was a bit subtle and I would add a bit more sugar to sweeten this bun up.

I was rushing to get these out to service, so I didn’t get a finished photo of these little buns.



Brioche Buns with Fromage Blanc
I finally bought a KitchenAid stand mixer and decided to make brioche buns with fromage blanc, raspberries, and almonds to christen the machine. Recipe from Macrina Bakery. Zoom Permalink
  • Camera: Nikon D90
  • Aperture: f/2.2
  • Exposure: 1/40th
  • Focal: 50mm

Brioche Buns with Fromage Blanc

I finally bought a KitchenAid stand mixer and decided to make brioche buns with fromage blanc, raspberries, and almonds to christen the machine. Recipe from Macrina Bakery.


On Assignment: Whole Foods Market Local Forager
Whole Foods Market Northern California’s Local Forager - I went out to the Oakland Chinatown Farmer’s Market for a little photoshoot of our region’s local forager, Harv Singh.  He has a pretty awesome job and I got to use his Canon 5D Mark camera to take his photos.   Zoom Permalink

On Assignment: Whole Foods Market Local Forager

Whole Foods Market Northern California’s Local Forager - I went out to the Oakland Chinatown Farmer’s Market for a little photoshoot of our region’s local forager, Harv Singh.  He has a pretty awesome job and I got to use his Canon 5D Mark camera to take his photos.