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. Below is a growing list of recipes.
spiced banana bread w sesame seeds and honey
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted (or, upgrade to brown butter)
1 cup (190 g) dark brown sugar
1 1/2 tbsp honey
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
4 medium bananas (about 379 g), mashed
1/3 cup (144 g) plain or Greek yogurt
2 large eggs
2 cups (260 g) all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp table salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds, plus more for topping
2 1/2 tbsp turbinado sugar
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line the bottom of a 9 x 5 loaf pan with parchment paper.
- Mix butter with brown sugar by hand or with a stand mixer and a paddle attachment, followed by the honey, eggs, and vanilla.
- Add the mashed bananas and yogurt to the wet mixture until combined.
- In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Once sifted, add the sesame seeds.
- Add the dry mixture into the wet until just combined. Don’t overmix here!
- Pour batter into the prepared loaf pan and sprinkle the top with turbinado sugar, followed by the sesame seeds. Cover the entire surface — this is the best part!
- Bake for about 55 minutes. It may take less time in your oven, so check after 50 minutes.
- After the bread is done in the oven, let cool completely before eating. Enjoy with some tahini and honey.
chocolate chip cookies w/ brown butter + praline
1/2 cup (112 g) white sugar
1 cup (220 g) dark brown sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 egg, 1 egg yolk
2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups (220 g) all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 - 3/4 tsp salt
heaping 2/3 cups (5.5 oz) chopped chocolate
for the praline (adapted from The Joy of Cooking)
This method for making praline is the most basic way I’ve found to do it.
You can certainly substitute store-bought praline paste, but if you have a food
processor and a kitchen thermometer, this is the way to go.
1/2 cup blanched hazelnuts
1/2 cup (112 g) white sugar
1/4 cup water
pinch of cream of tartar
- In a small saucepan, melt the butter until the foaming subsides, stirring consistently. The butter will become an amber color and smell delicious.
- Mix the butter in with the sugars until it’s a homogenous mixture. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla. Mix until it’s a thick syrupy texture. I do all of this in a standing mixer, but you can also do this with a handheld mixer or by hand.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Depending on what kind of salt you’re using, you may want to flex the measurements (ie: if your salt is saltier, lean on the 1/2 tsp side; or if you’re my roommate Sophie, salt it up).
- Add the dry ingredient mixture to the wet. Then, stir in the chocolate.
- Crucial step alert: this dough needs to chill! This allows it to come together and solidify fully, develop flavor, etc. I try to push myself to do this for at least an hour, but often I’ll leave overnight. That’s the best.
- for the praline: Combine the sugar, water, and cream of tartar in a heavy saucepan on medium heat. Stir until sugar is fully dissolved. Increase heat and bring mixture to a boil (no stirring!), until it reaches 365°F. Add the hazelnuts and stir. Once the hazelnuts are fully coated, turn them out onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper in an even layer. Let cool completely. Add to a food processor and pulverize until it becomes an even caramel-like paste (this may take giving your food processor a few breaks). Add to the fridge next to your dough to chill.
- to finally bake: Preheat the oven to 350°F. I usually like to make about 3 tbsp size balls of dough, halve them, add ~1 tsp of praline, and smush it back together. Put these balls a few inches apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and place on a middle rack in the oven. My oven seems a little weak, so I usually cook them for about 16 minutes, but you may only need as little as 12 minutes. Keep a watch out! At the end of the time in the oven, I drop the pan down on the rack to flatten the cookies (a trick I learned from the internet). Sometimes I do this several times to reach the desired flatness. This helps the cookies become crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, which is what we like.
- Once the cookies are done, sprinkle some flake salt, or whatever you’ve got around, on top. Let cool for at least 5 minutes.