Sea buckthorn torte

This cake is my homage to sachertorte. For those of you unaware of what that is, sachertorte is a Viennese chocolate cake that has a thin layer of apricot jam inside of it, and it is covered in a beautiful chocolate glaze. It is a highly technical and iconic cake to Austria, to the point…

Almond-cherry-chocolate layer cake

Whenever summer rolls around, some of my favorite ingredients to work with include lychees, peaches, rhubarb, and cherries. I wanted to make a dessert that showcases fresh cherries, but I did not want to make another cherry tart, since I spent an entire summer making way too many of those. So instead, I went the…

Devil’s food-tangerine choco-pies

While I was in quarantine, I wanted to continue to bake things that either hybridized two things, or touched upon my childhood nostalgia. In this case, I made something that touched upon the latter. Growing up in a Taiwanese/Chinese-American household, I have distinct memories of going to the Asian grocery stores and getting these chocolate-covered…

Dark and ruby chocolate layer cake

So my sister recently purchased a stand mixer for herself so that she can pick up baking as a hobby. Well, that and she makes a ton of bread at her house, and she is tired of kneading it by hand(I do NOT blame her, kneading bread makes my arms four times as sore as…

Love yourself: a plated dessert

I feel like whenever I make a chocolate cake, I’ll always be remembered for the one I made on MasterChef. Which is fair, since it was a pretty iconic moment for the show(and my life), but it’s important for me to move on and make better things than that with every dish or dessert I…

Devil’s food chocolate cupcakes with chocolate-cheesecake frosting

Whenever I think of the first cake I ever baked, I remember the vegan chocolate cupcakes I made in high school. Cupcakes were really where it all began for me, specifically, from binge-watching Cupcake Wars and practicing from the recipes from the show that would get posted online. Since chocolate cupcakes was where it all started,…

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…

“Shines Forever”: my signature malted chocolate cake

This chocolate cake recipe is the very same chocolate cake that actually won me my white apron in season 10 of the American version of MasterChef! During the casting process, we had to submit four signature dishes that we could make in 45 minutes, and this was the one I had practiced the most (before…

Driftwood cake: a chocolate and caramel layer cake

The inspiration for the cake came from an accident: I was attempting to make tarte tatin, but I kept screwing it up. So instead, I took my leftover shortbread dough, kneaded in some cacao powder, and formed it into branches to go onto a chocolate cake. When in doubt, make a chocolate cake. That’s my…

Chocolate Arc-En-Ciel Cake

Arc-En-Ciel is just French for rainbow. This cake, it literally is a chocolate rainbow, split by different shades of chocolate brown. I wanted to make this cake because I love ripping off of Lady M’s menu, since their cakes, while gorgeous and delicious, are too damn expensive. I am NOT going to pay $65-90 for…

7 layer chocolate-raspberry cake

This was a behemoth to table. Mostly because for whatever reason, the cake starting leaning the moment I stacked on the mini cake. It was probably because I used chiffon cake as a base, which is super fluffy, so I recommend using dowels (or boba straws that are cut down to the height of the…

Red wine-chocolate cake with namelaka cream and chocolate ganache

“Am I going to die?” – My sister’s reaction to eating/hearing about namelaka cream for the first time when eating this particular dessert Since this needs to be established first and foremost, no, you cannot die from eating namelaka cream. Unless somebody has poisoned it or tampered with it or you choke on it, or…

Vegan chocolate-raspberry cupcakes

I was going on a Cupcake Wars binge on YouTube the other day and I was watching arguably the best episode in the series, the Tournament of Roses episode. It featured four returning winners competing again, including the very baker who inspired me to bake, Chloe Coscarelli. Seeing her gorgeous vegan creations again made me…

Malted chocolate campfire cake

I love malt balls. They are crunchy, chocolate-covered, and taste of childhood. Sickly sweet to the point where it’s painful. I wanted to take that candy and transform it into a delicious, decadent chocolate cake, so that’s exactly what I did. I made a chocolate cake batter using the malt balls, melted down into ovaltine,…

Orange-chocolate poundcake

I keep watching these Korean baking videos, and even though I am not Korean nor do I understand the language, I can still figure out what the ingredients they use are and what techniques were because yes, it really can be that simple. I wanted to do a dessert that just embraced the orange-chocolate combination,…

Let it grow: mint-chocolate succulent cake

I’ve seen a ton of succulent cakes on the Internet lately, and I wanted to give it a whack myself. However, my policy on buttercream, which seems to be the thing that everyone is making them out of, is a huge no-no. If I am given that much butter, that much sugar, and that much…

Angel and devil cake

This was a cake I made in dedication of my (now ex) co-worker Karen, who was celebrating her husband’s birthday. She is a very sweet person who works really hard, and tries her hardest to make things easier for everyone around her, so naturally, I just wanted to help her when she said that she…

Naked German chocolate cake

I just love chocolate cake. And this chocolate cake, no exceptions. I layered devil’s food cake with salted caramel-pecan milk bavarian, coconut-chocolate cremeux, and coconut-pecan macarons to make for a fun, delicious, and semi-interactive eating experience. For the pecan milk 1/2 cup pecans 1 cup water Bring pecans and water to a simmer for 15…

Chocolate-bourbon-coffee cake

I dub this cake my “adulting” cake because it consists of two things I often need or want in my life: coffee and booze. I also made the cake look really drab and compact, to symbolize how being an adult is not as wonderful and exciting as people would expect. It’s honestly boring. Is that…