Fortress: a plated dessert

This is sort of my take on a PB&J, with a Jordanian/Albanian spin, using summer produce! I wanted to feature the peaches since we are in peak peach season in the summer, while using white sesame just felt like a great pairing, because more light and delicate than the more robust and hearty black sesame….

Red bean doughnuts(an-doughnut) with roasted miso sugar

These doughnuts were inspired by an-doughnuts(red bean doughnuts) that I found in my local Japanese grocery store. The doughnuts that I purchased were a cake doughnut base with a chunkier red bean paste(called tsubu-an) in the middle, finished with granulated sugar around it. While I liked the concept of it, I felt like there was…

Sweet potato and salted duck egg Hiyoko manju

I have actually wanted to make Hiyoko manju since I was a high schooler. These little buns that are shaped like birdies(manju being a type of bun and hiyoko being the Japanese word for ‘chick’ or baby bird), they just looked so cute yet difficult to make. However, after getting as much wagashi and bun…

Calpico Kakigoori(shaved ice)

This is literally the simplest recipe I have put up in a while. Mostly because it was inspired by several aspects of my earlier childhood, better known as a time before I got into cooking(I literally only started to cook/bake when I was 15 onwards). I have a lot of fond memories drinking Calpico water…

Maritozzo buns with cream and Earl Grey tea

I have been wanting to make these buns for what feels like a century(in actuality, closer to 2 months). The idea of these fluffy buns with a perfect line of cream, it just sounds like eating a cloud! For those unfamiliar with what maritozzo are, they are Roman(Italian) bread buns that are stuffed with cream….

Chocolate covered banana roll cake

Whenever I think of quintessential beach treats, chocolate-covered bananas always come to mind. Mostly because of Arrested Development. I love the idea of taking nostalgic things like that, and recreating them in something more in my style. In this case, that would be a roll cake. Using a fluffy chocolate chiffon, blonde chocolate, and Korean…

Blood orange upside down cake

I have made this recipe before, but I think it was on TikTok, back when I actually had/used that app. This cake consists of a layer of caramel-laden blood orange slices that are sitting on top of a dense but delicious olive oil cake. It’s fairly straightforward in flavor profile, and pretty fun to make,…

Double decker buttermilk Fraisier cake

I do love myself a good fraisier cake, or a fraisier dessert of any kind, honestly! For those unfamiliar with the term, a fraisier cake is just a strawberry cake, usually featuring two layers of vanilla sponge with strawberries surrounding it and a vanilla cream between the layers. I have made a couple in the…

Rainbow dango(suama)

So I was brainstorming different rainbow desserts for Pride this year, and I literally came up with the idea to do these when I was walking through my local Japanese grocery store(which I frequent a lot these days), and stumbled upon Fugetsu-Do‘s rainbow dango, also called suama. For those unfamiliar, Fugetsu-Do is a highly popular…

Passionfruit chouquettes with passionfruit spun sugar

I made these chouquettes with a friend of mine, Sylvie, as a thank you for sowing up a couple of holes I had in one of my sleeveless hoodies, and one of my pairs of work pants. Sylvie loves passionfruit, and in exchange for agreeing to sow up my clothes like the talented seamstress that…

Meyer lemon basque cheesecake with Meyer lemon cream

Basque cheesecake will forever be that quintessential ugly delicious dessert for me. Well, that and worms and dirt. You can’t make worms and dirt look pretty, and that’s perfectly fine with me. With this particular basque cheesecake, I had a ton of Meyer lemons lying around, to the point where you’d think that they just…

Mixed berry chiffon cake

This cake was inspired from my favorite Paris Baguette item, which literally is named the same thing. Back in college, I was obsessed with the mixed berry chiffon cakes that they had, and it would be my go to order there all the time. Fluffy cake with cream and fresh berries, it was always a…

Red velvet loaves with whipped cream cheese

I will admit that red velvet is a guilty pleasure of mine. I love to talk a ton of crap about it being a red-colored chocolate cake, but I still go out of my way to order it whenever I’m at a bakery and want to buy more than just one flavor of cake or…

Mango lassi mille feuille

So with this dessert, I wanted to combine Indian flavors with Albanian and French techniques. For the pastry, I went with a homemade phyllo, brushed with ghee just to guarantee that beautiful browning on the dough. With the filling, I did a yogurt and cardamom namelaka, which is a ganache that is whipped. For this…

Chocolate, olive oil, and sea salt macarons

I just randomly had the urge to make macarons with this specific flavor combination one day. The idea of rich dark chocolate against grassy olive oil, and sea salt to just bring both together, it made a lot of sense to me. Kind of like a chocolate zucchini bread, which as weird as it sounds,…

Strawberry tiramisu

So I have made many a strawberry tiramisu in the past. Ever since I was a student in college, I just loved the idea of making tiramisu that were not traditionally flavored. Ever since I moved back to Los Angeles, I fell in love with the aesthetic of the tiramisu at Cafe Bora in Koreatown,…

Oatmeal (Rum) Raisin Icebox Cake

So I have feelings about oatmeal raisin cookies. Mostly of disappointment because it looks like a chocolate chip cookie from afar, and when you bite into it and realize that you have been deprived of your chocolate experience, only for it to be replaced with dried fruit, it’s infuriating. That being said, I wanted to…

Yuzu-white chocolate-macadamia pound cakes

I actually grew up eating tons of pound cake, but never really making it from scratch. I honestly did not even realize that what makes pound cake so unique is that while it is an American-style cake batter, it does not use any leavening! Typically, you would see French and European sponge cakes use eggs…

Tangerine and chocolate “snack cakes”

These were kind of my ode to a Hostess cupcake. A dark chocolate cake with a cream inside and ganache on top. Fudgy, delicious, and definitely a guilty pleasure of mine. For this rendition, I went with a chocolate cake that uses black cacao, which has this almost fruity quality to it from being an…

Cutie Honey Scoop Cakes

Originally, these were going to be honey tiramisu, but I felt like the term “scoop cake” just sounded a lot more cute and fun. So we’re going with that description instead. With these little cakes, we have layers of bee pollen infused castella(Portuguese/Japanese honey cake), chamomile tea and gelee, honey-bee pollen infused quark(German cheese yogurt),…