Summers in the black forest: a layer cake

Black forest cake reminds me of a ton of things. Most specifically, season 9 of MasterChef when Emily, who in my eyes was the strongest cook there, got sent home over one. Truthfully, seeing her go out on one is a general reason why I stay away from them. Seeing somebody who I personally would…

My matcha dreamscape: a green tea-coconut layer cake

So before the cake replication challenge during MasterChef’s Sweet Week, we actually did get hints that we would be making a layer cake! So thinking we could make our own, I went ahead and thought up of a matcha and coconut layer cake. For the inspiration, I just imagined my trips to Taiwan and Japan,…

Kuromitsu kouign-amann

Kouign-amann, pronounced almost like “queen a man”, is a popular French/Breton pastry, originating from the Brittany region. I remember first learning about it from “Chef Steps” on YouTube, back in high school, where I horrendously butchered the pronunciation of it because I don’t speak French. The last time I successfully made kouign-amann was spring break, during…

Tooigai: a fried chicken sandwich

Who doesn’t like a fried chicken sandwich? I know I’ve made my fair share of them in my 24 years of living. For this rendition, I wanted to do a Japanese take on a Southern classic. I went with milk rolls, and karaage styled fried chicken, using mochiko to crust some thigh meat. For the…

Honey-yuzu Paris Brest

This recipe really just came about because I wanted to make a Paris Brest, aka a ring shaped éclair. When I thought about my fillings, I decided to go with three in total. A yuzu Bavarian cream, homemade honeycomb candy, and honey mascarpone cream. I also made a honey-yuzu-bee pollen glaze, and infused the actual…

Beef and Broccoli Revised: a plated dish

On the back of that wedding challenge, the elimination that followed was a freaking outdoor grilling challenge, in the patio where we all stood during the helicopter intro! It was crazy! The contestants on the losing Red Team had to choose from a huge variety of steaks and grill a dish in an hour. Which…

Above and beyond: a galaxy cheesecake

Truthfully, I have done a galaxy entremet before. But this one is slightly different in that the filling is made with cream cheese, and it’s a little less ficklesome. That and I topped it with zefir, a Russian marshmallow made with apple puree, but instead of apple, I used cherimoya, aka custard apple. Why? Because…

Blood orange-mascarpone cake doughnuts

These literally just came from an experiment where I wanted to make doughnuts, but I didn’t have any yeast, and I was too lazy to buy any/I had no patience to wait for yeast to proof anyways. I knew that you could make cake doughnuts, which would not require yeast, and I decided to go…

O-parts: a plated dessert

I am obsessed with Oreo cereal. Even as a kid, Oreo O’s were one of my favorites. I don’t know if it’s because I have early childhood memories of buying them from Taiwanese 7-11’s and dunking them into milk or whatever, but I knew for a dessert called “O-parts”, oreos had to be a focus….

Sunny-Joy Lemon Tart

This was a signature dessert from the now-defunct baked goods delivery service I ran with my friend, Joy. The name was inspired by our two Chinese names, mine being “sun” and hers literally being “joy”. The tart itself was a pate brisee that had panko bread crumbs and goat milk powder in it, just to…

Liz’s banana-chocolate tarte tatin

So this dessert goes out to a very special lady, Ms. Elizabeth Linn. She blew us all away during the tarte tatin challenge(the same one I’m probably never going to fully live down), when she made a banana tarte tatin with chocolate crème anglaise. I remember when we were planning our tarte tatins out, she…

Mixed Berry Opera cake

I made this cake with my friend Adrienne just because I’m still trying to convince her to audition for season 11 of MasterChef and I wanted to see how quickly she can pick up arguably a tricky cake to make. Ever since my first Opera cake, I wanted to do another rendition, but using more…

your silver garden: a plated dessert

This dessert was named after a song by Kalafina, a Japanese music group known for their slightly edgier songs. However, “your silver garden” honestly sounded more like a nursery rhyme, at least compared to some of their darker songs like “Magia” or “heavenly blue”. So I went with that name to symbolize a mint-chocolate dessert!…

Making my way: a plated dessert

As I do have a habit of naming my desserts after songs and lyrics, it is very easy to assume I named this one after “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton. And I don’t blame you if you think that, because that is a touching song and it reminds me of White Chicks, a movie that…

Stronger than you: a plated dish

For this dish, it was my chance to redeem my horrendous performance with the Latin America brief. Being a panicky idiot, I had no clue what to make. So I opted for the snapper, made a yucca puree that was wallpaper glue(fun fact, yucca should NEVER go into a food processor, because the starch content…

Phoenix in the Hawker Stall: a plated dish

So continuing on with my experiences in the lovely, most amazing MasterChef Kitchen (I hope I had enough adjectives there), there was actually a challenge where we had to cook with chicken. This challenge, not to brag, would have been a cakewalk for me, because I practiced breaking down chickens regularly in college (mostly because…

“Friends in my heart”: a plated dish

This dish was inspired by my MasterChef journey (only the season 10 part, not the very short-lived seasons 8 or 9 parts LOL). I had met two people I became extremely close to, being a young lady from Texas named Mollie, and a guy from Sacramento named David. After I got a certain stage in…

it’s my life: a plated dish

Now you might be saying, if you somehow managed to read through ALL of my blog posts, that I had already made something with this as the name. That was a dessert. This is a savory course. I’m allowed to have a dessert and a dish share the same name, since they can be different…

One Day Afternoon: a plated dish

For the first Mystery Box of my MasterChef 10 experience, the people who were not saved during the mise en place challenge had to cook with British ingredients and make a dish inspired by Gordon himself! It was a really interesting challenge, and I was actually kind of bummed that I didn’t get to cook…