one. nested baker set $99
two. wood cutting board $160
three. spades measuring cups $32
four. chandler in whisky tortoise $95
five. apron $56
six. falcon enamelware prep set £54.99
seven. rolling pin $70

It's that time of year, where all I want to do is pretty much live in the kitchen. I have never been much of a baker, but lately I have become consumed with it. I'm determined to be good/better at it. I always like the ability to improvise when cooking and I think the main reason I'm slow to come around to baking is the mathematics involved. But, I've got to say I'm quite enjoying the challenge of using more of my left brain. What about you, do you like the simplicity of following a recipe, or do you like to add/subtract ingredients as you go? 

{pie photo by michael graydon, styling by nikole herriott}


Monica was a chef and a friend of my parents growing up. She created this recipe and soon my family adopted it as one of our go-tos. I used to beg my mom to make this. It was originally made with chicken drumettes, which is part of the wing, but they are harder and harder to find in the grocery store, so now I make it with regular sized drumsticks. I'm just warning you, these are addictive. They are perfect for a potluck or watching the game. 

2 packages of drumsticks {12 total}

2 tbs kosher salt
2 tbs lemon pepper
2 tbs garlic powder
2 tbs ground sage
2 tbs ground ginger
2 tbs paprika

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper {this makes clean up much easier} and sprinkle the lined sheet with kosher salt. Wash and pat dry the drumsticks and lay them out on the salted baking sheet. Salt the chicken and then generously sprinkle each drumstick in the lemon pepper, garlic powder, sage, ginger and paprika. Flip the drumsticks and cover the other side in the spices. You want every inch to be covered. Bake them in the oven for 45 minutes, flip them over and bake another 45 minutes until crispy. 


I love sweet potatoes and this time of year I try to incorporate them into pretty much everything. This salad is perfect for a light lunch, or to go along side a roast chicken for a cozy get together with friends. Enjoy!   
Arugula Salad with Sweet Potato & Goat Cheese
{serves 4}

5 oz. arugula

1 large sweet potato, cubed
1/3 of a cup crumbled goat cheese { I used humbolt fog}

1/2 a cup of walnuts
3 tbs. lemon juice
4 tbs. extra virgin olive oil
Pinch of salt & pepper

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. On a baking sheet, toss sweet potatoes with 1 tablespoon oil, salt and pepper. Roast on upper rack, until tender, 30 to 35 minutes, tossing halfway through.
Place walnuts on another baking sheet and bake on lower rack until golden, about 6 minutes. 
In a medium bowl, whisk together lemon juice and remaining 2 tablespoons oil; season with salt and pepper. Add arugula, sweet potatoes, walnuts, and goat cheese. Toss to combine.


This recipe came out of necessity really. I needed to makes dinner one night and didn't have time to go to the grocery store. I found whatever ingredients I had in my pantry and ended up throwing this together. It was so delicious I have since made it a dozen times. Although I've got to admit- these Calabrian chilies really make the dish. If you don't like spicy food, than of course you can leave them out, but If you do then I highly recommend buying a big jar. They perfectly balance heat and salt and in my opinion make practically everything better. 
Spaghetti Al Tonno
{serves 4}

1 lb. dried spaghetti {I used whole wheat, but use whatever you prefer}
1 tsp olive oil
10 large pitted green olives chopped
1-2 tbs pepperoncini picante/Calabrian chilies chopped, depending on how spicy you like things {I bought mine here, but you can find them in an italian deli or the italian section of your grocery store}
2 5oz cans of albacore tuna drained of water {I prefer the no salt added, so I can control the seasoning}
1 15oz can of tomato sauce {my favorite is the organic sauce from trader joe's}

In a large pot, bring 6 quarts of salted water to a boil. When water comes to a boil, add your pasta. Cook until al dente, about 8 to 10 minutes.
In a large saute pan, heat your oil over medium heat. Add the olives, pepperoncini picante and the two cans of tuna to the pan and stir, letting the chilis flavor the tuna.  Then add your can of tomato sauce and simmer for 3 minutes. No need to add salt, as the chilis are already salt heavy.
Drain your spaghetti and add it to the sauce. Toss the spaghetti, making sure it is coated and serve. 


On an episode of Barefoot Contessa, I saw Ina Garten make these simple apple tarts. Since stone fruit is in season {my favorite}, I thought I would try out this recipe with a few revisions. I lowered the sugar measurements since I decided not to use green apples and used coconut oil instead of butter. The coconut oil worked like a charm and still managed to thicken the juices and give the pastry a glisten. Since you are using prepackaged puff pastery they couldn't be easier to make and might I add, insanely delicious. These would be perfect for a dinner party, right out of the oven with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or whipped cream. 
Stone Fruit Tarts
{makes 12 tarts}

1 package {2 sheets} frozen puff pastry, defrosted 
Fruit of your choice {I used rainier cherries, apricots and nectarines, but you can stick to one}
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup coconut oil {you can use butter if you prefer}
1/2 cup Apricot Jam
3 tbs liqueur of choice {I used frangelico}

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line 2 sheet pans with parchment paper. Cut each sheet of puff pastry into 6 squares. Divide the pastry between the prepared sheet pans and refrigerate while you prepare the fruit. Slice cherries in half, removing the pits. Slice nectarines and apricots crosswise in 1/4-inch-thick slices. Place overlapping slices of fruit diagonally across the pastry and placing a few on each side of the arranged slices. Sprinkle the fruit evenly with the sugar and dot them with coconut oil {or butter}. Bake for 40 minutes, until the pastry is browned and the edges of the fruit starts to brown. When the tarts are done, heat the apricot jam together with the liqueur of your choice until bubbly and brush the fruit and pastry completely with the jam mixture. Allow to cool and serve warm or at room temperature.

{recipe revised from ina garten}


Sweet. Acacia Wedge Server $21.95
Sweeter. Colorblocked Bread Board $128
Sweetest. Oar Server $24.95

I just added that Oar Server to my little collection of pretty wooden boards. I use them all the time for cheese plates or to serve appetizers. They add a relaxed, rustic vibe to any get together, which I love. 

How was your weekend? Mine was so lovely. James and I had an impromptu dinner and a movie date night, which was insanely fun. When you live with your boyfriend it's nice to throw on some heels every once and a while and go on a proper date, don't ya think? I also did something quite frightening...I cut my hair. I have had practically the same hair cut for eight years and suddenly felt like I should mix things up. I don't know if I love it or hate it, but it felt good to let go {this was my inspiration photo}. I promise pictures coming soon! 


One of my dearest and most adorable friends Jacqui made me these raw date truffles the other night and I could not stop eating them. They were so delicious I immediately asked her to let me share the recipe with you all and photograph her making them. Lucky for me she agreed. Thanks Jacqui! I hope you all enjoy this recipe. 

This recipe is an adapted version of vegan truffles that my friend makes...he uses walnuts (not my favorite), so I swapped in some cashews, threw in some vanilla extract and voila!! These truffles are so easy it has become a problem for me, and I have eaten them for dinner on more than one occasion. Oops! 

Raw Date Truffles
(Makes about 15 truffles)

1 1/2 C. Medjool Dates (remove the pits)
1/2 C. Raw Cashews
3 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder
1 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract

Blend everything very well in a food processor. Then begin rolling the mixture into the truffle balls. Once you are finished rolling you can refrigerate the truffles, or eat them all up like me. 

P.S. No need to stick with what I do...if you prefer a different nut over cashews, want it more chocolatey, etc., change it up and happy eating!


If you follow me on twitter you might have heard me talk about the delicious kale salad from one of my favorite restaurants in Venice, Gjelina. Lilly even mentioned it in her "sweetest day!" One of my friends made it for a little get together a few weeks back and it was so good, she inspired me to try it myself. I have made it practically every day for lunch since...

Kale Salad 
{from Gjelina in Venice, CA}
Serves 2
1 Bunch of Kale, stems and centers discarded, finely sliced
1 Bulb of Fennel, finely sliced
4 Radishes, finely sliced
1 cup Ricotta Salata, finely sliced
5 slices French or Sourdough Baguette {or any crusty bread}, toasted and drizzled with olive oil {you can sub store bought croutons}
Splash of White Balsamic Vinegar
1/2 Lemon, juiced
1/4 cup Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper to taste

Slice bread, drizzle with olive oil and toast in the oven for 5 minutes, until crispy and golden. In a large bowl, combine finely sliced kale, a drizzle of olive oil, 1/4 of lemon and a pinch of salt. Massage the kale until it starts to soften, about 2 min. Then add the sliced fennel, radish and ricotta salata. Crumble toasted bread over the salad. Toss with the rest of the lemon juice, a splash of white balsamic vinegar and salt and pepper to taste.

**massaging the kale in the oil makes all the difference


My last soup recipe was such a hit, I thought I would share my latest soup obsession. This soup is vegetarian, a tad spicy and perfect for a cool winters eve. I have been making it way too often, alongside the most delicious popovers. Two of my dear friends bought me a popover pan back in June and I have been baking them almost weekly. Once you see how easy they are to make, you wont stop making them either. There is NOTHING like fresh bread! You don't need a popover pan to make these, you can use a muffin tin, but they wont come out quite as puffed up.
Recipe by Dave Lieberman {from the Food Network}

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, medium diced
6 to 8 cloves garlic, pressed
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 heaping teaspoon sweet paprika
1 (14.5-ounce) can chopped tomatoes
3 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed well
1 quart vegetable broth
1 teaspoon sugar
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 (5-ounce) package pre-washed baby spinach

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and saute until the onions begin to turn translucent; lower heat if browning starts to occur. Add spices and saute a minute or so. Add tomatoes, chickpeas, broth, and sugar. Season with a couple pinches of salt and 10 grinds fresh pepper. Stir well. Chickpeas should be just covered with liquid. If level is shy, add some water so the chickpeas are just covered.

Bring to a simmer, then lower heat to low and gently simmer for 45 minutes.
Remove soup from heat. Use a potato masher to mash up some of the chickpeas right in the pot. Stir in the spinach and let heat through until wilted, just a couple minutes.
Season again, to taste, with salt and pepper.


RECIPE BY ANNA THOMAS {from her book Love Soup}
3 large eggs
1 cup whole milk
2 tbs unsalted butter, melted, plus more for the pan
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp finely chopped fresh or dried thyme
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup unbleached white flour

Preheat the oven to 425
Beat the eggs with the milk, 2 tbs of melted butter, salt, thyme. Beat in the flours until the batter is perfectly smooth. 

Brush 12 nonstick three-inch muffin cups lightly with butter. Distribute the batter evenly between them, filling the cups about halfway. 

Bake the popovers for 15 minutes, then reduce the temp to 350 and back another 20 minutes. The popovers will balloon up high over the rim of the muffin cups and turn a deep golden brown. 

{I have been playing with the popovers lately, making them different each time. Sometimes I leave out the thyme and add lots of fresh ground black pepper. Sometimes I add grated parmesan to the batter. Feel free to experiment!}


I used to beg my mom to make me this soup for me growing up. It is delicious, comforting and the epitome of fall. I like to make a big batch and eat a bowl for lunch all week. This recipe is better then I've ever had in a restaurant and it is so easy to make. You're friends will be so impressed!
Butternut Squash Soup
Serves 8

1 butternut squash
2 large onions
3 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon chopped thyme (I prefer fresh but you can use dried)
1 teaspoon red pepper flake
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 cups of vegetable or chicken stock
3 tablespoons white miso paste (the secret ingredient, trust me, it is amazing)

Start out by chopping the onions and garlic. 
Add to heated stock pot over medium flame with olive oil, thyme, red pepper flake and black pepper. 
Cook uncovered for 10-15 min until the onions are tender. 
Stir occasionally.

Peel the butternut squash and remove seeds (save seeds in a bowl) chop squash in to chunks. Add squash to onion mixture and stir. 
Pour in the vegetable stock and bring to a boil, cover, and cook over low heat for 30 to 40 minutes until the squash is soft. 

Pour squash mixture into blender, add miso paste and puree (you may have to do this in two batches depending on the size of your blender). 
Top with tamari squash seeds (see recipe below) and serve with a crusty piece of bread. 

{ps. no need to add salt, the miso paste is plenty salty}

Tamari Roasted Squash Seeds
squash seeds (or pumpkin)
2 table spoons tamari (soy sauce)

Preheat oven to 350. Remove any squash remaining on the seeds. 
Coat seeds in tamari and spread evenly on tin foil lined baking sheet. 
Bake for approx. 10 minutes until crispy. 

Perfect for a snack or to top the squash soup.


I love checking out the latest recipes The Jewels of New York have posted on their site. You can be assured the styling will be gorgeous and the food delicious. Although this time all I could think about were the oxfords Lisel (one of the co-founders) had on in the pictures...

Oh the food looks amazing too...

So I went on the hunt for tan two tone oxfords, also known as spectators, wingtips or saddle shoes. Here is what I found...


Every Monday night my friends and I get together for $1 Taco night at Malo Cantina in Silverlake. It's a nice tradition. Whoever can make it that Monday comes and we talk about our week and gorge ourselves on chips, burnt habanero and cream salsa, margaritas and tacos. It makes Mondays a little less unbearable. You would think I wouldn't want to let the secret out, but trust me it is already out! It can be crazy busy on Mondays, so I recommend getting there no later then 7:30...

 And YES, the entire building is CHEVRON!!! Recognize that wall next to Malo that has sadly been tagged with graffiti? It was from the cover of Elliott Smith's album Figure 8. RIP Elliott!

 Malo has just started a new special night, Margarita Tuesdays. $4 Margaritas starting at 7pm! What are they trying to do to me?! PS. Their margaritas are made with fresh lime juice, not that bottled stuff. Happy Tuesday!!!