Recipe | Cheese Board Inspired Potato Pizza


When my husband and I went to Berkeley to visit friends a couple of years ago, I remember they welcomed us to their home with a huge box of pizza from The Cheese Board. Known for their thin-crust, vegetarian pizzas, Cheese Board only makes one kind of pizza for the day and this time it was topped with roasted potatoes, chile pasilla, onions, feta cheese, mozzarella, cilantro, key limes, and garlic olive oil. It was packed with flavor from the oil, full of starchy goodness, and quality cheese that you would only expect from a respectable cheese shop. All the richness is balanced out with a sprinkle of fresh cilantro and generous amounts of fresh key lime juice. It’s delicious.


Since then, I’ve been making a version of Cheese Board’s delicious potato pizza that my husband and I can have at home. While it takes more time to make than our usual pepperoni or mushroom pizza, we get pretty excited about making this because we know it’s going to be good and extra special.

pizza-trio Continue reading

Recipe | My favorite roasted potatoes


One of my favorite things in the world are potatoes. Whether it’s french fries, gratins, tater tots, or mashed potatoes, I’ll happily eat it all. As far as roasted potatoes go, this recipe from Cook’s Illustrated magazine is one of the best and you’ll be fooled by it’s plain and simple appearance. It has a perfect balance of texture – it’s crisp on the outside and creamy on the inside with just the right amount of salt.

The secret to these potatoes is tossing them with olive oil and salt after they’ve been boiled to create a starchy, kind of fuzzy texture. I have to admit, for a roasted potato recipe it takes a little more time and effort, but I promise you it will all be worth it once you take that first bite.





Crispy Roasted Potatoes
(Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated magazine)
Serves 4-6

2-1/2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes (about 5 medium), rinsed
and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
Kosher salt
5 tablespoons olive oil
Ground black pepper

1. Adjust oven rack to the lowest position, placed a rimmed baking sheet on the rack, and heat oven to 450 degrees. Place the potatoes and 1 tablespoon salt in a large pot or Dutch oven; add cold water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce the heat to a simmer until the exterior of a potato has softened, but the center offers resistance when pierced with a paring knife, about 5 minutes.

2. Drain the potatoes and transfer to a large bowl. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of olive oil and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt; using a rubber spatula, toss to combine. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons more oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt; continue to toss until the exterior of the potato slices are coated with a starchy paste.

3. Working quickly, remove the baking sheet from the oven and drizzle the remaining 1 tablespoon oil over the surface. Carefully transfer the potatoes to the baking sheet and spread them into an even layer (skin side up for the end pieces). Bake until the bottom of the potatoes are golden brown and crisp, 15-25 minutes, rotating the baking sheet after 10 minutes.

4. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and carefully flip each potato slice. Continue to roast until the second side is golden and crisp, 10-20 minutes. Season with pepper to taste and serve immediately.

A good weekend…


It was a one of those weekends where I somehow managed to be really productive and yet still had time for fun. It always feels so satisfying to get a lot done especially when there is a room for a nap somewhere in between. On Friday, I went to Old Navy to return a couple of things but of course you just end up browsing. I could tell they were channeling J.Crew which meant a lot of cute stuff! I bought a couple of striped shirts and I couldn’t resist the print on these pajama pants.


On Saturday morning, we made our favorite french toast recipe (except we use milk instead of half and half) with the sweetest, fresh-squeezed orange juice.



I finally went to the Rose Bowl flea market for the first time on Sunday and now I understand why everyone loves it. The amount of stuff to look at was overwhelming at first, but I got the hang of it and I started to like the thrill of hunting around. I’m really happy with my new coral and I got this really cool recipe converter for $5. Now that I’ve had my flea market primer, I will definitely be coming back.

Hope you had a good weekend, too!


Recipe | Vanilla Cupcakes with Dulce de Leche frosting


Remember when Orla Kiely created a line of housewares for Target a few years back? To this day, I still love the tablecloth I bought from there. I found this old photo of cupcakes I made around the same time inspired by the pattern, and hey, it’s never too late to share.

I made a stencil for the flower by drawing and cutting out the pattern on cardstock. I used a circle stencil to make the center of the flowers, and the colors were created by mixing food dye with fondant. All the shapes were cut out using a clean exacto knife. A little dab of water with a paint brush bound the dots and the flower pattern together. I placed it on top of a caramel-colored dulce de leche frosting as a background (I bet chocolate frosting would look great, too). Once it’s all put together, you’ve got Orla Kiely inspired cupcakes!


Classic Vanilla Cupcakes
Adapted by Amy Sedaris
Makes 12-14 cupcakes

3/4 stick of unsalted butter
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1-1/4 teaspoons of baking powder
1-1/4 cups of flour
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons of milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl. Combine milk and vanilla extract in another bowl.
Beat sugar and butter with mixer on high until creamy, fluffy and light in color (about 3 minutes).
Add egg and mix until combined.
Add in 1/3 third of the dry ingredients and beat on low to medium speed. Then add in about half of the wet ingredients. Continue alternating the dry and wet ingredients, ending with the dry.
Scoop batter a little more than half-full into a muffin pan with cupcake liners.
Bake for about 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Place on cooling rack.

Dulce de Leche Cream Cheese Frosting

1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup dulce de leche (I used La Salamandra)
2 cups powdered sugar

Cream butter with mixer on medium high speed.
Add cream cheese and dulce de leche and beat until combined.
Add powdered sugar and beat at low speed until well incorporated.

I assembled the cupcakes the same way I did it here.

Recipe | Brie, Bacon & Chicken Sandwich

They say you can always talk about the weather when chatting with strangers because it’s the one thing we all have in common. But you know what else is a great universal topic of conversation? Three things: bread, cheese and bacon.

It would be useful for parties in situations where you’re talking to a stranger and you’ve run out of things to say. Just pick up a piece of bread at the appetizer table and say something like, “Man, if there’s one thing I can’t live without, it’s some good bread and cheese.” I can only imagine their eyes will light up in agreement and they might even say, “And bacon!” Then you will be friends for life! Unless of course the person is vegan, allergic or obviously lame. Continue reading

Recipe | Skillet Bacon Jam Fried Rice


My fascination with bacon jam began when I read about it at Matt Bites. He jokingly wrote that it conjured up memories of “a full on addiction to crack cocaine”. The jam is made of quality bacon that is rendered down, mixed with onions and spices then simmered for 6 hours. Immediately after I read his post, with my mouth watering from all the imagery, I ordered a jar.


As I was getting the hamburgers ready, I snuck a taste of the jam and was struck by how sweet it was. It sort of reminded of Honey Baked Ham. I slathered it on the buns and took a bite of my burger piled with mozzarella cheese and arugula. Meh. It was a little too sweet for me but I was still intrigued. What else could I do with this jam?

A few days later, I spread it on a couple pieces of toast, scrambled some eggs and made a breakfast sandwich. It turned out to be much better than the burger because the eggs seemed to  tone down the sweetness of the bacon jam. But I wasn’t satisfied. What else? Where else do I like bacon? Aha! Bacon Fried Rice!

My idea was to take a basic fried rice recipe and mix in spoonfuls of bacon jam. Now I hope I’m not committing a culinary crime here, but the soy sauce combined with the jam totally worked! You know when you get those late-night cravings for something hearty, sweet and salty? You know what I’m talking about – burgers & milkshakes, pancakes & eggs, fried chicken & waffles? Well, you can add Skillet Bacon Jam Fried Rice to your list of fourth meals. I can’t think of anything better in the AM than a bowl full of carbs with sprinkles of sweet bacon. Ridiculous and indulgent? Oh yes.

Skillet Bacon Jam Fried Rice
4 cups of yesterday’s leftover white rice
2 eggs
2 tablespoons Skillet Bacon Jam
3 tablespoons chopped carrots
3 tablespoons chopped green onions
2-1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
1-1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1. Heat oil in a wok or skillet over medium-high heat.
2. Add in carrots and cook for about a minute. Then add green onions and cook until fragrant, about 10 seconds.
3. Crack eggs into pan and quickly stir it around with your spatula until scrambled.
4. Add in rice and toss it all together. Once combined, spread the rice out in the pan and let it heat up for 1-2 minutes.
5. Drop in Skillet Bacon Jam and stir.
6. Drizzle soy sauce all around the rice and mix until it is evenly distributed.
7. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Let the fried rice sit for a bit until it’s nice and hot! Serve.

Printable Recipe

Recipe | Coconut Avocado Ice Cream


When I first discovered guacamole at a young age, I was repulsed. Avocado mixed with tomatoes? And you scoop it up with tortilla chips? Ew. It’s not supposed to be salty. Growing up in the Philippines until I was 7-years-old, I only knew avocado as a sweet ingredient. It was a special treat when my mom brought home some pricey avocados from the store because I knew she would be making her special dessert. I would watch her scoop the avocado meat into a bowl, throw in a bit of sugar and cover the whole thing in cold Carnation evaporated milk. My family would gobble it up fast and fight over who got the last bit of avocado infused milk left over in the bowl.

Recently while sitting at the doctor’s office, flipping through my third magazine, my eyes lit up when I saw a recipe for Coconut Avocado Ice Cream. Ooh! I’ve had avocado shakes before but never ice cream. Plus the addition of coconut would be an interesting spin on my favorite Filipino dessert. I immediately pulled out my camera and snapped a picture of the recipe. Continue reading

Recipe | Leftover egg yolks means Creme Brulee!


Even though a dozen large eggs cost about $1.50, throwing more than four yolks down the sink makes me cringe with guilt. When I was making batches and batches of macaroons for Father’s Day, I was left with nine egg yolks. I looked at them as if they were little abandoned orphans who needed to be saved from the dark hole that leads to the InSinkErator. Luckily for these cute, yellow buttons I always have the perfect home for them- whisked into the sweet, decadent goodness of creme brulee. Continue reading