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Desserts

Vanilla Doughnuts with Mirror Glaze

Desserts, The Holidays

I’ve wanted to make a mirror glaze for a really long time but was always kinda skeptical about the taste. It looks so fake-tasting! If you’re unfamiliar with mirror glazes, they became popular with Russian bakers and soon after, they were popping up everywhere on Instagram. The glaze is shiny and beautiful. And a lot of times, bakers will use it to make beautiful marbled designs.

When Estée Lauder reached out to me a few months ago about creating doughnuts to match their new liquid lipsticks, Pure Color Envy Paint-On Liquid LipColor, I knew it was time to give the mirror glaze a whirl. When I tried it the first time, I was blown away at how good it tasted—basically just like marshmallows. I color-matched the glazes to look exactly like their liquid lip counterparts.

The colors are:
Vinyl Candy Red (inspired by Envy Paint-On in Lava Flow)
Metallic Poppy Pink (inspired by Envy Paint-On in Lacquer Lover)
Matte Berry Purple (inspired by Envy Paint-On in Orchid Flare)

It took me about a million times to get the color right, but it was so fun playing with food coloring trying to get it right. And I maybe ate way too many doughnuts in the process. These are baked doughnuts but feel free to use this glaze on regular yeast doughnuts, too.

Their liquid lipstick is a really nice texture, it doesn’t feel too tacky or messy. It sits on the lips just right. And the colors are beautiful. Perfect for a holiday gift to yourself.

The recipes are over on Estee Lauder’s site. And here’s a link to the liquid lipsticks, which are so pretty!

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Earl Grey Tiramisu

Chocolate, Desserts, Holiday, Winter

Yowza, do you have your gift-giving situation all dealt with?

This year, if I’m being completely honest, I thought of doing zero presents. I know that this sounds sappy but I have everything I want with just the presence and health of my family and friends. Joshua and Amelia are all I need in this dark, dark world. Haha.

I didn’t really want anything, but then I realize people want to give you something so I wrote a short list of some jewelry I wanted. And then added some clothes. Like, if you’re gonna ask, I’m gonna tell you what I want haha. Josh is probably regretting asking me but you know \_(ツ)_/¯

One of the most popular recipes on this blog is this Chai Tiramisu. I’ve been thinking of making it with different types of tea and earl grey came to my mind because it might be one of my favorite teas next to chai. When I went to London a few years ago, I drank SO much of it and slept very little; the caffeine level is kind of intense.

Luckily this dessert doesn’t have THAT much caffeine in it so it’s definitely something you can enjoy and then have a nice night of sleep.

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Mint Chocolate Chip Marshmallows

Chocolate, Desserts, Holiday

Last week I woke up early and headed to the flower market, which is one of my favorite activities. While it’s always kinda chilly and damp at the flower market, it’s also beautiful and full of life, especially during the holidays.

I decorated the kitchen with a beautiful garland, I bought gorgeous little ceramic houses and mini decorative trees. But, as of like this last weekend, I still had my fall pumpkins at the doorstep. Lol. Life is busy and this season moves so quickly for me!

I’m glad I was able to take some time this weekend and decorate the proper way. I also spent some time eating these marshmallows in a warm cup of cocoa and let me tell you they are SO good.

For this post, I teamed up with KitchenAid® and their Artisan® Stand Mixer, which is one of the tools in my kitchen that I pretty much use every single day. For years, I baked without one and life was so much harder then. Why is a stand-up mixer amazing, you might ask? Here are some things that I love about it:

1. KitchenAid Stand Mixers are really good quality. You will buy them once and they will last you a VERY long time.

2. You can make a wide-range of things in a Stand Mixer. Remember my mashed potatoes? I mix all sorts of things in it. It’s not just for baking.

3. A lot of steps are now hands-free. If you’re creaming butter and sugar together (the first step in a lot of cookies), you can just let it do its thing while you get the rest of the ingredients together. It allows you to multi-task.

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Horchata Una Leche (Like Tres Leches but Different!)

Cakes, Desserts, Holiday

Hiiiii!

Now that work has started to slow down and I can concentrate on being festive AF, I have decided to list some of my favorite Christmas/Holiday movies. And then maybe you can tell me your favorites because for the next couple of weeks I am preparing myself to just chill and watch movies. And maybe bake a few things, sparingly.

1. Little Women – Winona Ryder at her best. Kirsten Dunst SO YOUNG. Annie McDowell love her!
2. It’s a Wonderful Life – I maybe know every word to this movie. Take a wild guess who currently reminds me of Mr. Potter? Lol.
3. Elf – I mean, it’s just a classic.
4. Home Alone – I still kinda almost cry at the end when he sees the old man in church.
5. Love Actually – Hugh Grant at his best—I miss him, wish he was still acting.

Am I missing any? I feel like I must be. Oh I was going to put The Christmas Story on there but honestly that movie always creeped me out. The dad and his creepy-ass obsession with the leg lamp; the mom washing out the kid’s mouth out with soap; and them having a depressing Christmas. That movie is a bummer. Maybe it’s more honest than most Christmas movies but I need some magic.

Anywayyyzzz, welcome to the post where I’m reorganizing the beloved “tres leches cake.” I like to think that maybe I simplified it with uno leche. Lol. The only leche that’s in this cake is the horchata. In case you are unfamiliar with horchata, I will break it down for you in a list (because I love lists):

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Brown Butter Pecan Snacking Sheet Cake with Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting

Cakes, Desserts, Holiday, The Holidays

As of yesterday, I’m almost (not yet tho!) done with work for the year. I cannot even tell you how happy this makes me. I’m celebrating by creating more stuff for this blog and I know that’s technically work but when it comes to holiday stuff, it feels more like fun. I really want to make a yule log with my friend Hourie. We made one years ago and it was SO fun and it ended up being beautiful.

I’m also obsessed with The Big Family Cooking Showdown on Netflix because it’s like The Great British Baking Show but with family drama–how fun! I’m also super excited to sit in bed tomorrow and watch The Crown!!

Okay let’s talk about this cake. I think it’s safe to say that 2017 was the year that I fell in love with the art of “the sheet cake.”

I first made this strawberry-rhubarb version. Then I moved on to this chocolate one (which btw would be perfect for the holidays, too). And then, in October, there was a pumpkin sheet cake with brown butter frosting. It immediately became the most popular recipe this year!! Crazy!

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Sweater-Weather Cranberry Apple Pie

Desserts, Pie, Winter

This past weekend Josh gave me his very cute cold so I’ve been trying to lay up in bed and rest. I got some good rest on Saturday AND also was able to decorate the kitchen for the holiday season. I can’t wait to show little glimpses of the kitchen because it’s almost all done and ready. I probably won’t be able to do that until January because we’re still waiting on a few pieces to arrive to get it up and fully running. I’m grateful that I can now make tea and dinner (on the stove-top only)—it feels so nice!

I baked this cranberry apple pie at my apartment and it was inspired by a cable knit sweater. Billy was like, the top should really feel like a sweater. And I couldn’t agree more but I didn’t really know how to do that. We settled on strips of braids and simple strips going only in one direction.

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Chewy Pistachio Oat Lace Cookies

Cookies, Desserts, Holiday, Quick and Easy

Leading up to Thanksgiving, your girl was exhausted. I’m so glad I took last Saturday to chill out and rest. There was a whole day where all I did was hide under a fluffy blanket and read articles online. I drank iced tea and did absolutely nothing and it was amazing! Highly recommend.

I know the holiday season can be wild and crazy. It tends to be whirlwind, as we drive quickly toward the end of the year. I try and savor it as much as I can. One thing I obviously love doing is BAKING!

YASSS! This holiday season, I have so many delicious recipes that I want to share with you all.

I’m also super excited to share recipes that are wide-ranging: ones that are easy to throw together; a few that are more like “baking projects”; and a couple dishes that are things you can make during the weeknight for dinzzz.

Monday I posted a weeknight recipe. Today (and yesterday) is all about a quick-baking recipe. These cookies are super simple—no mixer or fancy equipment required. These cookies travel well and are so delicious.

ALSO I made a baking playlist because it is cooking/baking season and we need music!

This is not your traditional Christmas music playlist, no. Sorry (tho I did include a few Christmas songs in it because why not!).

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Pie de Limón Cookie Bars

Desserts, Holiday, The Holidays, Winter

Holiday season, what is up?!?!

If I’m keeping it super real, I’ve secretly been tired of pumpkin, autumn leaves and anything Thanksgiving related for like a month haha. I think that’s the peril of my job: I celebrate the actual holiday way before it even arrives. I’m so glad to be freed into the land of Santa, red and snowflakes. Let’s do this!

Most years I’m not invited to THAT many holiday parties; I’m not throwing myself a pity party because I honestly love nothing more than to stay home with Amelia and watch movies, but this year I’m already on the books for four! I feel incredibly popular and special. A special thank you to my friends!

I’ve been jotting down ideas for items that we can bake and bring to our friends. Here is what I’d like from them:

1. Make ahead.
2. Easily transportable.
3. Drama-free baking.

For this post, I teamed up with Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk. This is a recipe for their UnCookie Exchange, a celebration of unfussy recipes and get-togethers. I’m for all of that!

These Pie de Limón Cookie Bars are super easy to throw together. You essentially make a cookie crust and bake it for about 10 minutes and while it’s baking, you make the filling. Everything in a bowl and mixed up—that’s it. Not too many ingredients either.

This dessert uses no sugar in the actual filling—just sweetened condensed milk!

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Cozy Night In with Fluffy Cornbread Topped Chili and Apple Cider Churros

Adventures, Desserts, Dinner, Fall, Quick and Easy, Soups

(This post is sponsored by the Martha Stewart Collection, created for Macy’s. Thank you for supporting the sponsors that keep A Cozy Kitchen cozy!)

I know I’ve been writing autumn love letters since like mid-September, but if I’m being completely honest with you, Los Angeles doesn’t even really begin to hint at fall until November. But now it’s November and I’m freezing! And I love it. My fluffy socks are on at all times, my favorite soft sweaters are out of storage and all I’ve wanted to do is break in the new kitchen with some cozy foods. The kitchen is almost completed and I was finally able to cook our first meal in it!

Since there are some things that need to happen (like trim, a coupe light, etc), I figured I’d start light with a little dinner party for four. I wanted to serve cozy food that wasn’t fussy.

For this post, I teamed up with Macy’s and Martha Stewart. The Martha Stewart Collection’s harvest dinnerware is SO pretty. I absolutely love these hatchcross, grey plates, along with the marbled pink plates. They are gorgeous. And I love the shape of Martha’s Enameled Cast Iron cookware . The handle shapes are sleek and simple and the colors are lovely! Check out the whole Martha Stewart Collection at http://mcys.co/2kIpJAv.

I used the small 2-quart white Enameled Cast Iron pot to make the best cozy dish ever.

This was the perfect size for four people. At the bottom is a vegan chili with a fluffy cheddar cornbread on top. I like to think of it like cornbread and chili all in one!

The vegan chili is spicy, made with kidney beans, and loaded with delicious things like diced onion, mushrooms, red bell pepper and lots of spices.

The cornbread on top is inspired by fluffier cornbread cake. It isn’t dry at all and it’s so soft and delicious.

It may seem like a small portion for four people but it’s so filling that it’s actually perfect. Especially when paired with a snappy, refreshing salad AND with dessert.

For dessert, I used the 6-quart Enameled Cast Iron pot (in beautiful white) to fry up apple cider churros and they were SO good.

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Marbled Chocolate Cheesecake Pumpkin Pie

Chocolate, Desserts, Fall, Thanksgiving

This pie is about survival.

I’m kidding and being very dramatic but no lie, this pie took us about twenty million tries to get right but it survived! Or more like, we survived. It was one of those recipes that went way past my “three-fail rule.” Meaning, if we fail three times when trying a recipe, we abandon it all-together. But that rule went out the window because I liked the idea and flavor so very much.

We finally got it working like a fine-tune machine. At first it was too thin and kinda watery. Then the chocolate swirl wasn’t the right texture. And then we changed the chocolate and that got messed up. There were a lot of variables going on and we kept changing them and we kept getting messed up results. But we finally got it working and it was 100% worth it!

This fine thing is like a pumpkin cheese cake and a pie had a baby…but with chocolate swirled throughout. The bitter chocolate is so welcome within the constructs of creamy cream cheese flavor. It’s so good.

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