Tomorrow I have a book signing at Anthropologie in Santa Monica from 2pm to 4pm. There will be cookies! After that I have to race home, change clothes into something fancier and a lot less cozy and head to my friend Teri’s wedding. Phew!
This past week has been HOT HOT in LA. And last weekend I was in Atlanta and it was hot there, too. And this past week it was v v warm in NY. I don’t know where fall is but I’ve been craving something super refreshing yet still very autumnal. For this post, I teamed up with Truly Spiked & Sparkling which is a new-to-me spiked sparkling water.
When I was away over the weekend, Josh told me that Amelia was sleepy and calm, which she never is. He blamed me. He said that I was her spirit animal.
It’s sort of true. We both humor and entertain and keep each other company every single day. She is my best friend.
We go everywhere together (Target, Home Depot, World Market, Michael’s) and are rarely not around each other. Since I work from home, Josh knew we’d be good for each other.
It’s Amelia’s birthday! She’s one year older but oddly not less puppy-like. She still plays ALL THE TIME. She still chews your hand when she gets excited. She still steals my socks and won’t give them back. She still barks at cakes and roast chickens and anything else she feels like she deserves.
I just got back from Atlanta where I spent my Saturday at Create + Cultivate speaking on a panel about food in the digital space with some women I admire a whole lot.
It sounds a lil’ cheesy but I left Saturday feeling so ridiculously inspired and really excited to try harder, try new things and all at the same time super grateful for everything. I also realized that while I love men, my favorite is women company. I work with mainly women, most of my friends are women and I really like it that way.
When I got back last night from traveling—which actually was pretty easy–all I wanted was a big bowl of autumn-like comfort. I didn’t have this in front of me because of course I made this a week ago, but I wanted it to be!
Hiiiii from high in the sky. I’m on my way to Atlanta to speak at Create + Cultivate. But first, I wanted to tell you about this little brunch I threw last weekend.
Growing up part of my childhood in South Florida, Cuban culture was ever-present. At family parties, Celia Cruz was always playing. As a teenager, my friends and I always went to Calle Ocho–which if you’ve never been–is so much fun and mayhem all at the same time. And most Sundays, mass was usually followed by brunch at this little Cuban restaurant down the street from our house.
So when Nespresso got in touch with me about throwing a Cuban-inspired brunch to celebrate their release of Cafecito de Cuba (the first ever Cuban coffee to come to The United States in over 50 years), I was like YES PLZZZZ.
If you’ve never had a cafecito, you’re in for a treat. Cafecito traditionally has a bit of raw cane sugar added to the first drips of hot coffee. This Cafecito de Cuba did not disappoint. It’s slightly sweet, intense, and strong—it wakes you right up! The flavor of the coffee is amazing; the texture is smooth and velvet-like.
I’ve been really inspired by Cuban interiors lately. (You’ve probably seen a ton of them on the Instagram, too). I love the range of colors; my favorite being green and pink and peach. I love the fruits like bananas and papayas and guavas.
It is fall!!! FINALLY. I know it’s been fall all over the entire country for a few weeks now, but not in LA. Yesterday I wore a sweater and didn’t sweat! And Josh made homemade tortallini stuffed with chicken confit, while I made one of those pumpkin loaf mixes from Trader Joe’s. If you’ve entered a TJ’s recently, you know that it is bursting with pumpkin stuff. The mix wasn’t half bad but I kinda wished I made it homemade, from scratch because we have a huge surplus of pumpkin puree because it’s Amelia’s favorite.
These were inspired by the Jerusalem bagels Molly had on her adventures to Israel where apparently zaa’tar comes in drug bags?!?!? Cool.
This recipe comes from her new book, Molly on the Range, which is so fun and cool and special. If you read through it, you’ll know very random things about Molly that will make you feel a little like a stalker, but she won’t mind, like…:
This is a cozy carb-fest in a cast iron skillet. Just how I like it!
This weekend I’m headed to HOTLANTA where I’ll be speaking at Create + Cultivate about digital media and food. I’m also so stoked to be going back to the south where I can order half sweet tea/half unsweetened tea like the almost-southerner I am and eat all the biscuits I want.
I was born in Atlanta and lived the first three years of my lil’ life at The Georgia Tech family dorms while my dad finished up college. I’m excited to pass by and look at the playground I used to play in. (I’m pretty sure it’s another math lab now, but whatever.)
In preparation for this trip, I wanted to pull together another fun, appetizer-like carb fest for you all. The best part about this entire thing is that you can totally use store-bought pizza dough (s/o to Kenji Lopez for the inspiration).
I teamed up with McCormick and their new herb grinders. They’re super simple to use and for this recipe I used two, actually: the Italian blend (it went inside the butter mixture) and the basil (for the top).
The recipe starts with all sorts of stuff being mixed with butter. There’s salt, the McCormick Italian blend, crushed red pepper, Parmesan, lots of fresh garlic and olive oil. The knots are knotted, stuffed with chopped Spanish green olives and then dunked in butter.
It is official birthday season around these parts! Today is my birthday. And then next week is Amelia’s birthday (we’re both Libras, whatever that means). And then my brother’s birthday is the week after. YAY!
This means that my Abuelita calls me constantly hoping I got her card filled with a money order. When I was a bratty child, I would sort of roll my eyes but now as a very grown adult, I am so pumped to get her letter with a money order. I think it’s the cutest thing ever AND I love to say her name, how she signs it, in rapid Spanish, “Abuelita Margarita Maria.” It flows nicely.
SPEAKING OF THE YEAR OF COZY…do you live in Orange County? Do you not have a job…or at least a job that allows you to leave in the middle of the day for fun excursions? IF SO, come and meet me at Anthropologie at Fashion Island for a book signing.
Also Meghan from Real Housewives of OC has a candle shop in there and am excited to stop by. Haha.
When Josh and I first started dating, everything was about where we were gonna eat. Most of it was not fancy stuff. We went on excursions trying to find where to get the best tacos in LA or where to get the best cemitas or even where to get the best BBQ. We were always getting in our cars and going to places we had never been to, together.
One of the places for burgers we went to was Pie ‘n Burger. It was my first time but Josh grew up right down the street so he was super familiar. He always came for breakfast foods (the pancakes are his favorite).
I’m not going to lie to you and tell you this is one of those easy recipes that you can throw together on a whim…because it’s not.
It’s one of those things you make when maybe you’re feeling angsty and need to get lost in the process for awhile. You need to be a patient person. Maybe someone who likes to listen to music and think about their life…
If you are, then this is for you.
It also helps tremendously if you make the pistachio butter and pie crust the night before. And I’ll even go far as to say that you can use store-bought pie crust, too because this is a good amount of work.
Some people on the Instagram said they tried to make roses out of apples already and their apple slices kinda snapped and wouldn’t roll correctly.
Here are some tricks I found:
1. First step – Use nice crisp apples. I used a combo of Granny Smith and these fancy Pink Pearls Josh found at the market.
2. Send step – Get you a mandolin. You can’t do this without one.
3. Third step – Mandolin the slices thinly, until they’re bendable. This will depend on your apple. Test a few slices, see if you can roll them up, if not, then they need to be thinner.
ALSO, the thinner they are, the better they are to use at the start of your rose. I found this was key. The thicker slices can be used at the end when they don’t have to be so bendable. Does this make sense?
4. Get other people involved – This goes much quicker if there’s more than one person involved. Obvious advice, I know, but seriously get some helpers!