Togarashi-Walnut Mochi Brownies

I am a more recent eater of the mochi brownie, first having had one from my friend Ann, when she sold them at a pop-up in Venice Beach! And honestly, I am so annoyed that I never had one prior to 2020. Crispy at the edges, super gooey on the insides, it is the perfect…

Apple Crostata with Dutch Crust

I literally only came up with this recipe because I had a ton of apples I needed to use up. So. Many. Apples. And while I could have dumped all of my proverbial apple-eggs into one basket, and make one colossal apple dessert, that seems lame and kind of unoriginal. I would rather stretch out…

Malted miso and black vinegar chocolate cake: Season 10 Revisited

This is my updated take on the “shines forever” dessert that got Gordon Ramsay licking the plate clean. The main differences being the usage of black cacao powder to really intensify the flavor of the cake. I also updated plating style to be more in line with something I would present now, as opposed to…

Baklava layer cake

For the first half of March, my goal was to make as many green things as possible. This cake, while not outwardly green, has a green pistachio sponge hidden underneath a layer of spiced honey French buttercream. I love baklava, and wanted to translate the flavors, textures, and ingredients of it into a full-on layer…

Apple and pear crisp with gjetost cheese

So I actually made this recipe back in November for Friendsgiving, but I somehow managed to forget to actually write out the recipe, so here we are, writing it out in December. I was inspired half by the tarte tatin that will FIVE-EVER haunt my nightmares, and half by this pear and apple crisp I…

New Rules: a plated dessert

For me, this dessert was all about trying a couple of new things. Using gjetost cheese in a fonduta was a new idea, and playing around with more savory things like carrots and pairing that with mugicha, which is a barley tea. I also featured yuzu in this dessert as well, since the sort of…

Persimmon-gjetost-walnut cake roll

I love persimmon season so much. Mostly because the fruit itself can be used in a variety of ways. Persimmon are like the opposite of corn, where fresh corn is sugary and as it sits, those sugars convert to starch and the corn gets less sweet, but more creamy. With persimmon, it starts out starchy…

Imqaret with orange curd and honey mascarpone

So I have been studying a bunch of different Mediterranean desserts, mostly to help me broaden my range. Looking through Malta specifically, I came across a really curious dessert called imqaret(pronounced without the “q”). They’re basically these pastries stuffed with an orange blossom-date filling. Some use walnuts, others don’t. Most people fry them, but some…

Signal: a petit gateau

I was feeling a bit inspired the other day to try a new flavor of petit gateau. I saw so many geode cakes before, and this is my very loose take on that. I used kohakutou to garnish petit gateaus, but used a little bit of gold leaf as well to give them a more…

Counting stars: a plated dessert

I actually came up with this concept when I was testing a dessert recipe for an upcoming pop-up in Dallas. Unfortunately, the test run didn’t necessarily go as planned, but I didn’t want to throw away the ingredients, so I shifted gears, and went with a rice pudding instead. What I love about rice pudding…

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,…

Vegan baklava with pistachio ice cream

Baklava is one of my absolute favorite Middle Eastern desserts. Layers of flaky phyllo(or spelled filo as well, but same thing), with a toffee-like filling of caramelized nuts, and a delicious spiced syrup that soaks through everything and really brings it together. The really cool thing, for me anyways, about Middle Eastern desserts is the…

Good as Hell: a carrot cake

When it comes to carrot cake, I really love making them with a TON of grated carrots in them. While the concept of putting a root vegetable into a cake sounds a bit weird, that’s what the sugar and spices are for. It hides any savory notes of the vegetable and results in a cake…

Box of dreams: a mousse tart

With all of the Christmas baking going around, I felt like I had to do some more of my very own. For this particular dessert, I wanted to go with three different inspirations. The first was fruit cake, the second was eggnog, and the third was snow. I wanted to also make a box-shaped dessert,…

digging deep: a carrot cake

I actually quite like carrot cake. Ever since I started as a baker, carrot cake was one of those desserts that I came to appreciate, because it takes a lot of ingredients to transform a vegetable into a dessert, in my opinion. I really love the idea of making a carrot cake that resembles digging…

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…

“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…

Semolina-Tangerine Upside-down Cake

Honestly, this is one the simplest desserts I have ever made. In that it’s literally just a cake with cream. The only real pressure point here is maintaining the moisture in your tangerines, and even then, that ain’t rocket science. For the dessert, we have a semolina cake, tangerine syrup, a layer of tangerines, and…