June 18, 2013
June 14, 2013
Most ridiculous stories start with one of a few lines. “Remember our last night in Morocco…?” ”So it seemed like a good idea at the time, but…” and “When I was eighteen…”
When I was eighteen.
I got this tattoo on my back on my eighteenth birthday. Fourteen years ago. My mom cried. No wait… she didn’t cry. She called me a masochist. I wonder if she remembers that. It made me wonder what she knew about masochism.
I got this tattoo on a whim. Mostly because I could and I did. No wait… it was more than that. I felt like the only way I could express my individuality was with a Japanese character I picked out of a plastic-coated tattoo artist book. I undoubtedly employed phrases like “this just feels right” to convince myself and calm the nerves of the best friend I coerced into ditching 7th period with me.
This tattoo is the first in a long string of impulsive things I could do and did do as an adult in the world… including but not limited to: dropping out of college before even starting, moving to Vermont with a single suitcase and $973, that one thing I did on that bridge, and all the ridiculous things my Dad should not know about, ever… thanks.
June 11, 2013
I’m looking out for your weekend. Also… let’s be real. I’m looking out for my weekend, too.
I don’t know about you, but I need this weekend to feel extra different from the work week. Like… forever different. I want to cross at least four things off my Guilty Pleasure List. Can we do this together? Can we sleep until we’re boooored of sleeping? Can we eat Cinnamon Sugar Toast at any time of the day or night? Can we do that weird thing where we sit on the couch reading food magazines while listening to old Jewel songs and eating cold meatballs? Is that one just my guilty pleasure…? Jewel used to live in a van in Alaska, right!? Nevermind…
I’m sure we can all agree to enjoy late-morning homemade pancakes. The rest of our weekend guilty pleasures we should execute in private. Things got a little weird with the meatballs (or was it Jewel that made things weird?).
Ps. These pancakes are made all the more special and weekend-y with the addition of sweet summer corn. You in? (Heck yes you are!)
June 9, 2013
I haven’t been feeling at home lately. I don’t think it’s an issue of physical location… I spend a hearty amount of time sitting at my desk. I think this might be more of a brain-space problem… my brain is everywhere but in my head doing its job.
I’m not certain how to coax my brain back into the world of now. I’ve been busying my poor brain with future work, future deadlines, and future anxieties. The now is certainly suffering in a way that feels annoyingly paralyzing.
Making these cookies came to mind more as a meditation than a treat. The act of melting butter down into a fragrant amber-colored fat, and creaming it with brown sugar feels like it could lead me home. Toasted pecans and dark chocolate chunks stud the path. The smell that fills the kitchen?… Yep, I think it’s working. I’m finding my way home.
Thank you for being here with me. Here is home, right?
Editor’s Note (it’s just me, Joy):
- There’s no way I could mention chocolate chip cookies without mentioning the dad who taught me how to make cookies: Dad the Baker. Father’s Day is right around the corner, which makes this week a wonderful time the reminisce about Dad Lessons. Oh how I need these every single day.
- If you follow me on Instagram (and I’m super glad that you do!) you may be have seen that this weekend I’m part of a Pop-Up Bake Sale and Shop in Los Angeles. Just sayin’. Stay in the know!
June 6, 2013
Remember that one time the four of us piled into one pedicab in Austin? Remember how we were simultaniously being pedalled up the hill by one dude, and pushed up the hill by another? Then we sat with candles and good company and drank sparkling pink wine and Gaby and I ate an entire loaf of bread? You don’t remember? It’s cool. There’s a cell phone video to prove it all… except the bread eating. No one wants to see that.
I was in Austin, Texas this past weekend and let me tell you what… Austin knows how to get down with grub and cocktails. Austin-ites are a proud taco, pizza, beer, burger, and cocktail. And people are friendly! It feels like most everyone wants to give you a high-five and a breakfast taco. I love Austin.
A cool way to get to know Austin is with Citygram, a super awesome interactive iPad magzaine. Have you heard of this goodness!? Citygram is about food, fashion, community, and design. It’s interactive features are totally future! It’s a really exciting project and it’s so cool to see the future all up in your face. You might know Citygram founding editor Chris Perez from Apartment Therapy and The Kitchn. He’s proud of Austin and doing really cool things to make the city shine. Can you tell I’m a fan? Yea…
I contributed this cheesey-filled roasted vegetables to Citygram! It’s a play on Mexican Street Corn. It’s different and delicious. Let’s do.
June 4, 2013
Let’s have a Happy Hour cocktail and then walk down the street for hot dogs. I mean it… let’s get outta here.
Before we hit the streets in search of a hot dog dinner adventure, let’s talk about a home Happy Hour situation.
This bright orange cocktail is electric! There are two stars of this Home Happy Hour Show: fresh carrot juice and tasty tasty bourbon.
I know. You might think that carrot juice has no place in a cocktail. But! We’re making this at home, and we can turn our trendy juice cleanse into a re-tox cocktail if we wanna (and we definitely wanna). Duh.
May 31, 2013
It’s starting. It’s starting. It’s starting!!!
Get pumped. Get in the mood. Get out your pretty sandals and toe nail polish. It’s TIME!
…I’m talking about summer… and not the dreaded jean short, bikini life-styling, good beach hair part of summer that is totally stressful. I’m talking about peaches. With fresh peaches and ripe tomatoes, summer is set! Also, jean shorts are dumb… they’re either getting shorter or I’m getting older. They’re probably getting shorter… just sayin’.
This salad is a summer celebration. Yea… I said it. Also.. there’s bread and butter in this salad because a) I can’t help myself, and b) it’s delicious!
May 29, 2013
Let’s just get this humble-brag out of the way now: I’m REALLY good at making sandwiches. It’s mostly just about piling delicious things onto fresh bread. It’s not really rocket surgery.
Making a sandwich for someone is dang important. A good sandwich can’t be faked. Avocado must be ripe. Bacon must be crisp. Produce must be fresh and cheese must be perfectly melty.
It’s a science… but it’s not a science at all. It’s just a sandwich, but it’s important.
Can we just talk about sandwiches? K. Thanks.
May 26, 2013
Can we all just stop pretending like it’s easy to take pictures of ice cream? It’s not. It’s melty. It’s madness. Can we just let it be what it is? Geez! We’re not superheros!
I remember the days when I just ate ice cream… and didn’t take picture of ice cream and then eat mostly melted ice cream. Those were the days when we just… you know… ate food. WEIRD!
Nowadays (I love that word, it makes me feel old), I always have my camera with me in the kitchen. It’s caked in an almost embarrassing amount of flour. It’s ridiculous and wonderful and I’m glad you’re here to see the results.
Let’s make puffs now.
May 22, 2013
Mornings that look this apricot-sweet and cherry-studded are lovely indeed… especially since summer is just starting to really show off.
We’re in the middle of a holiday weekend here, so it seems like we should all just take it easy on the breakfast front. Let’s mellow out, roast our fruit, and serve it with sweet yogurt and crunchy granola.
It’s called LIVING, and we’re really good at it.
May 22, 2013
You know what’s weird? Getting older. I think it must be weird for everyone.
I’m celebrating a birthday this weekend. The big 32. That just sounds strange. I was just getting used to 30, but I feel like I’m 26. Somewhere. Somehow. The numbers feel off.
I’m not the kind of person who has life goals set for each year of life. I don’t feel behind in the marriage game. I can barely handle babysitting. I’m not trying to reach the top of the baking ladder… that just sounds sticky. I subscribe to the idea that working really hard and loving people better every day will get me where I want to be each day, week, month and year. Too loose a plan? I dunno. It feels right. It requires a lot of ever-changing lists…but it feels right.
I don’t make myself a birthday cake and blog about it. Birthday cake doesn’t taste as good if you make it for yourself. It’s a thing. This year I’m going to eat as many doughnuts as my heart desires. This will probably fall in the 2 to 8.5 range… I’ll let you know where I land. Ps. My dream birthday cake is this Angel Food Cake with Vanilla Strawberries. Hint (Dad, do you still read my blog?) Hint.
Every year I make a list of things I’ve gained perspective on, and a list of things that I’m still stubbornly trying to figure out. The list is as shallow as selfies and as deep as God… because that’s exactly how life is. On the real. On the reg.
May 20, 2013
A few weeks ago, a friend asked me what I thought was a totally ridiculous question. She said, ‘How do you feed yourself?’.
Um… With a fork. Sometimes chopsticks. Occasionally my hands. Usually a shovel.
What she meant was… how do you feed your creativity? My initial answer was bewilderment. What? Don’t people just work and work until they can’t work anymore and then collapse on the couch and watch reruns of The Voice? Not everyone does that? Oh…
My friend was right. Creativity is such a bountiful blessing but it does take some tending to. Creativity can be exhausted. I reach that point in my brain often and it leaves me wondering exactly what else I can smash butter and bacon into (I’m sorry/not sorry that I do that).
Work is awesome and I’m a total fiend for it, but it’s not a creativity feeder. Couch-time is just like turning my brain to stand-by mode… welcome but not a creativity feeder. Pasta is a belly and creativity feeder. Ok! We’ve got one on the list so far.
Bike rides are also a creativity feeder. Seeing how the sun makes shapes in the world, watching people live this life, and daydreaming about the lives of my neighbors… these things totally get my brain working. Yes! Two things on our list! Now we’re cookin’.
Let’s go on a creativity-feeding, pasta-heavy adventure. I hope this inspires you get out and see your neighborhood in a new light. You don’t necessarily need a fancy bike or mason, a pair of loafers and a granola bar will do for a nice stroll. Get out there and find what feeds you (I hope there’s pasta involved).
May 17, 2013
Friday is a dangerous day.
Friday afternoon, after a long week of words and dishes and more dishes and words… I feel very deserving.
I feel like I deserve a double cheeseburger with short ribs. I feel like I deserve a negroni or several. I feel like I should see how many Oreo cookies I can fit in my mouth… just so I know… in case anyone ever asks.
Maybe I am deserving of such indulgence. Maybe though… maybe I’m just eating my feelings a little bit. Real life. I’m just being honest.
Here we are staring Monday in the face. I’m ready for something green… and something a little less short rib-y.
A few months ago we talked about juicing. It’s totally a thing.
Takes some fruits and vegetables, mash them through a grind-y thing, drink the juice and hope it tastes good.
Today’s Apple Cucumber Celery Kale Ginger Juice definitely tasted great! Not like short ribs… but that’s good, right?
Let’s talk green, and you don’t even need a juicer to do it!
May 15, 2013
I’m currently working on the pie chapter for my new cookbook… the new book that doesn’t yet have a name, but does have an awesome (and ever evolving) BRUNCH CHAPTER, and should be in your hot little hands in Fall 2014. Now though… now, I’m working on the pie chapter. It’s a humdinger. It’s a doozie.
A lot of words go into the making of a pie. A lot of butter goes into the making of a pie. A lot of proportions, and cream, and cornstarch, and hope, and confidence, and trust, and joy. Sometimes tears.
If you do it right, you can taste it all.
It’s hard to find the words to express the chaos and triumph of pie baking. It’s also hard to find the words to express the chaos and triumph of writing a book.
Whoa. Wait. Did I just have a breakthrough?
While I gather my thoughts, gather my butter, gather my pie recipes and try to get everything sorted… I’m realizing that some recipes were just too good to keep from you for so long. This is that.
I hope you make a pie this weekend. I also hope the pie plate is scraped clean come Sunday night.
I love you, it’s true.
May 12, 2013
I realized this week that I use Instagram at a mini vacation from work. I click on my phone, tap into the Instagram app and scroll through images of your lives.
My mind wanders through pictures of your perfectly portioned lunch, your late afternoon coffee meeting , yes your child is totally cute… of course I’ll tap like on that picture.
You’re a farmer in the English countryside? Show me things! Help me escape!
You love taking pictures of your shoes? Sure, I’m into it. I’ll like that!
You like holding random objects up in front of a white backdrops? I’m down.
You’re Rihanna? You’re crazy and I kinda love it.
Ooh… you had a party and I wasn’t invited? That’s awkward for everyone, now isn’t it? Suddenly this mini work vacation feels bad.
Aaaand, just as easily as I click in for vacation… I can click out.
Um… Instagram vacations might not be that brain healthy. They’re cheap and easy and in-chair.
Speaking of Spring Rolls (I totally wasn’t speaking of Spring Rolls)…
I think we should unwrap and deconstruct spring rolls, load up a giant bowl, douse it in spicy peanut sauce, and have a mini eat-vacation. I did that. Obviously I took pictures… ironically, I didn’t Instagram it.
May 10, 2013
This is my Dance Like Nobody Is Watching Sandwich.
I’ve been pretty humble on my blog up until this point, but it’s time I tell you something: I’m an uh-mazing dancer. (This is a bald-faced LIE!)
In my dreams, I’m an amazing dancer. In reality I’m a whole lotta elbows on the dance floor. Things get real arm-y. I also have this butt move that I’m pretty sure is flawless… but I refuse to bust that move in any sort of close proximity to a mirror. I fear I may be sadly mistaken.
I dance like nobody is watching because on a dance floor, no one is watching! Everyone is too consumed with their own possibly embarrassing butt move to be concerned with me, their elbow-y neighbor.
I’d like to take this moment to kindly suggest that we also eat like nobody is watching
Maybe that means putting peanut butter and sweet pickles on the same sandwich. Go on… I dare ya.
May 9, 2013
Welcome Friday! It’s time for Mother’s Day cocktail inspiration!
It’s been a stunning week of color and brunch-fun with HonestlyYUM.
We’ve made Lavender Blackberry Scones, Baked Egg Tartlets, a pretty DIY Dessert Stands, a gorgeous (if I do say so myself) White Chocolate Rose Cake, and today… today is pink cocktail day!
Todd, the cocktail mind behind HonestlyYUM, whipped up (literallly) these incredible Raspberry Rose Fizzes. Fresh raspberries, fragrant rose, and frothy egg whites for added class. This is just beyond! Find the recipe here!
images by HonestlyYUM
We had such a wonderful time putting together these pretties for you this week! I hope you’ve found some inspiration to treat your mama right. In the very least, get a card. Mamas have an abnormal amount of love for cards.
Thank you to HonestlyYUM + Love and Cupcakes + Twig and Twine + Dish Wish
Thank YOU for being here/being awesome. You are appreciated.
May 8, 2013
Time is a gift.
I know this because everyday feels like no one has time for anything ever. I’m not complaining. I’m not above it. I’m all up in it. No time? Guilty as ever.
Sometimes the best gift you can give someone is your time. Time at a new restaurant for one of those extra long lunches with pink wine and comfortable eye contact. Time at the dog park with a friend… when you’re mostly scared of large groups of dogs. Time on the phone when it’s late and your phone is over-heating on your face. Time in the kitchen making a very (very) special cake for the woman that took the dang time to carry you around in her body for nine dang months.
Time. Gosh it’s such a gift.
Let’s find some and share it with each other.
May 6, 2013
We’re still talking Mother’s Day Brunch. All week long! It’s a lifestyle.
Yesterday we kicked off our brunch menu with the mom-approved color, lavender. Today we’re talking yellow, and HonestlyYUM made you Baked Egg Tartlets. Supreme! Also check out this beautiful DIY Dessert Stand. Dessert stand meets Mother’s Day gift!? Genius.
Hop on over to check out the recipe and stand instructions at HonestlyYUM. We’re making cake tomorrow and cocktails on Friday. This life is a good one!
(images by Joy the Baker + HonestlyYUM)
May 5, 2013
My mom isn’t afraid of spiders. I am deathly, unreasonably, irrationally afraid of spiders. My Mom is the only one that will walk me down the spider-ridden stairs to my car when I stop by for family dinner. Ok… to be fair, my dad will walk me down the stairs too, but it took a lot of irrational screaming about spiders to make him understand my crazy brain.
I figure I’ll have to get over my fear of spiders before I become a mom myself. Is that normal? Does a fear of spiders dissipate during pregnancy or will I constantly be calling my mom every time I’m about to vacuum a spider (not that I’ve actually ever done that) (sorry spiders).
Because my mom saves me from spiders well into my thirty plus years on this planet, she has earned warm, lavender-scented scones. She’s actually earned so much more… but scones will have to do for now.
Spiders to scones. Yea… we just did that.
I think we should talk about Mother’s Day. It’s time.
Let’s act like we’re all sorts of prepared to honor the women that were patient through our various temper tantrums (toddler, teenage, and otherwise). If anyone is deserving of pink cocktails and warm scones, it’s our mamas.
I’m pretty sure that my mom is the best thing that ever happened to me… ever. For this reason, she deserves brunch that she doesn’t have to prepared served on dishes she does not have to wash with gifts she did not have to wrap (or help me find the tape to seal). Once a year isn’t too much to ask (actually… it’s probably waaay too little).
This year I paired up with the awesome people of HonestlyYUM for some totally proper, majorly colorful, Mother’s Day inspiration. Everyday this week, Erica, Karen, Todd, and I will bring you a different Mother’s Day recipe, craft, or cocktail, centered around a pretty (mama approved) color.
Pink cocktails. Yellow yums. Lavender treats straight from the oven. Pretty cream cake topped with white rose petals. It’s going to be a good week indeed.