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Thanksgiving Tools and Supplies

Gift Guides, Thanksgiving, The Holidays

I’m the last person that is going to tell you that you HAVE to have anything. I baked for years without a stand-up mixer, I’ve used a colander as a sieve (I don’t recommend it) and for a long time, I literally scooped out cookies with tablespoons I ate soup with. BUT, now I have a very well stocked kitchen and you know what, it makes my life easier! I move faster and I’m less stressed so here are some of my go-tos for cooking Thanksgiving dinner.

1. OXO Potato Ricer – This is the only proper way to make mashed potatoes. My post on mashed potatoes depends on it.

2. Kitchen scissors – I use these for cutting out the backbone of a turkey, I use it for cutting twine and I use them for cutting pie dough. I love kitchen scissors. They’re super sharp and are dedicated to food only.

3. Deli Containers – If you’re one of those people who loves to make things ahead of time, store mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, and everything else, in these deli containers. They’re also great for leftovers.

4. Kitchen/Meat Thermometer – I use this thermometer for everything. I never use a candy thermometer. This is the only one I use for taking a turkey’s temperature or making candy.

5. Half and Quarter Baking Sheets – I actually roasted my turkey on a baking sheet and it worked great AND it’s so much cheaper than one of those fancy turkey roasting pans.

6. French-Style Rolling Pin – I despise those heavy-handled rolling pins because they’re cumbersome and, um, heavy. I much prefer this style.

7. Baking dishes – I use these for making mac n’ cheese, cooking casseroles…I dunno, you name it and they’re pretty versatile.

8. Pyrex 9-inch Pie Plate – This is simple, glass pie plate. They’re super inexpensive and bake pies very evenly.

9. Spatulas – You need them, in all sizes. They make scraping out the rest of that pumpkin pie filling out of the bowl easier. I kinda like buying spatulas at TJ MAXX and Marshall’s–the best prices and varieties.

10. Vegetable Peeler – For all those potatoes and apples!

11. Glass Nestled Prep Bowls – I have this exact same set and use them for everything. They’re great for all the things.

Best Fall Cookbooks 2017

Adventures, Gift Guides

1. Fearless BakerErin Jeanne McDowell. If you follow Food52, then you might’ve fallen in love with Erin’s work already. She is a master baker and I love her bubbly personality and interesting yet classic recipes. I can’t wait to bake from this.

2. Guerilla TacosWesley Avila. A true love letter to Los Angeles. No lie, their tacos are some of my favorites in LA. AND, their catering is incredible (we rented them for Josh’s dad’s birthday party last year). This book is beautifully shot (by Dylan + Jeni) and I can’t wait to try some of the taco and salsa recipes.

3. Erin Bakes CakeErin Gardner. This book is SOOOOO fun. If you want to have a fun life baking stuff, this cake is it. It’s amazingly well done with beautiful step-by-step photos showing you how to accomplish these ambitious cakes.

4. Sweet – Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh. A collaborative effort between Ottolenghi and and pastry chef and product developer, Goh. I’m SO pumped to bake through this book. It looks so ridiculously beautiful. I actually bought it and it arrived yesterday. I can’t wait to read and bake everything.

5. Holiday Cookies – Elisabet der Nederlanden. This book stopped me dead in my tracks at World Market. I was there picking out cookie cutters and got distracted by the cover—it’s that beautiful. I haven’t tried any of the recipes but the photography and holiday baking ideas alone are worth a purchase.

6. Brave Tart – Stella Parks. I love classic American recipes. They make my heart swoon and Stella’s recipes all look and read like gold. If you’re unfamiliar with her, she is the in-house baker and writer at Serious Eats and her work is LEGIT.

7. Weekday WeekendEmma Chapman and Elsie Larson (from A Beautiful Mess). An idea that I use all the time: during the day I try to eat modest and mostly healthy and on the weekends I go a little cray. It’s about balance!

8. Smitten Kitchen Every DayDeb Perelman. I don’t think Deb needs an intro, especially to us food blogging peeps. She is GOD. And truth: she is one of the reasons I started my blog. I wanted to be just like her. Her recipes are always clever, classic and delicious; I can’t wait to cook from it ALL fall long.

9. Baco – Josef Centeno and Betty Hallock. True story: Josh and I met at Baco Mercat downtown. And Bar Amá (Centeno’s other restaurant) is one of our favorite restaurants in Los Angeles. I can’t wait to recreate some of our favorites at home.

10. The Chef and the Slow Cooker – Hugh Acheson. Not gonna lie, I’m not really a slow cooker type. I own one but it’s in a box collecting dust. Hopefully this book will encourage me to break it out and make some slow-cooker easy dinner.

Summer Props I’m Loving!

Adventures, Gift Guides, Summer

1. Pineapple Glasses – These pineapple glasses are so beautiful to me. They’re so tropical and fun. I don’t like to buy these that are too seasonal but I think these would look beautiful for fall, too. (Yes, fall is coming soon. I am not ready.)

2. 3-Piece Marbled Mixing Bowls – You’ll notice a lot of my favorite things come from CB2. That’s because they make SUCH pretty and affordable things. I love this set of mixing bowls. I’m pretty firm on having just simple glass ones but they’re not super photogenic. And sometimes it’s nice to go from mixing bowl in the kitchen to just straight to the table.

3. Pink Farren Tumblers – Sale alert! These are on sale right now and I just scooped up a few because I think they’re gorgeous and perfect for a big, tall glass of lemonade or iced tea.

4. Colorblocked Cotton Napkin – I love this color green. I’m going through a green phase right now where everything in my life either needs to be green or pink or mauve or brown.

5. Pink Powder Jug – Is there anything prettier to put cream in? I think not. I still swoon at all of these glaze colors. They’re just gorgeous.

6. Jupiter Pink Marble Board – I love this thing. I love pink marble—it’s so beautiful and kinda hard to find. I wanna put all the cheese and snacks on this.

7. Rose Leaf Nip Cup – Don’t ask me what a “nip cup” means. I dunno. But all I know is this glaze on this mug is gorgeous and I wanna hold that mug while I drink coffee every morning.

8. Waffle Weave Multi-Color Kitchen Towels – I have a lot of ugly kitchen towels. Mainly just plain white ones that have been stained into oblivion. I need a new set that’s photogenic and honestly just looks nice IRL, too. I have my eyes on this set.

9. Wood Handle Flatware Set – I love wood on flatware because it really warms up the space a bit. I’m drawn to a lot of modern plates and modern shapes so sometimes if my flatware is too modern, everything can feel cold. Obviously I’m the opposite of cold, I WANT IT TO FEEL COZY U KNO.

10. La Fourmi Steak Knives – Admittedly, I have a ton of dishes and stuff but one big thing I don’t have is a nice set of steak knives. These are just beautiful.

11. Pitch Dinnerware – These are Japanese-inspired plates that are simple and modern and minimalistic in the best way. I love the dark color and while I normally don’t shoot on black plates, I want to start injecting a bit darker colors into my work. I think these are an affordable way to start.

12. Vivienne Side Plate Set – I think this set of side plates is so beautiful. I dream of having colorful foods on them like melon wrapped with prosciutto, a variety of fruits and sautéed veggies. I think the neutral color is perfect for summer and fall.

13. Petrified Wood Serving Board – The edges of this serving board are SO beautiful. I love the rustic look of this board and I think everything from cupcakes to your favorite cheese would look gorgeous on it.

14. Floral napkin – I feel like the old me never would’ve liked something this classic but the new 2017 me is VERY into these rose napkins. They’re romantic and dark. I love ‘em.

Mother’s Day 2017 Gift Guide

Adventures, Gift Guides

1. Hello, My Name is Ice Cream: The Art and Science of the Scoop – Beautiful illustrations and photos with nerdy ice cream info.

2. Six Seasons: A New Way with Vegetables – I went to Ava Genes with my mom AND she loves vegetables so I’m excited to give her this book.

3. Pizza Camp – I’m going to be honest and say my home pizza game is decent but not strong. I want it to be GOOD.

4. The Year of Cozy – Give your mom the gift of me!

5. Tartine All Day: Modern Recipes for the Home Cook – Amazing gluten-free baking and cooking and an inside peek at what Chef Liz Prueitt makes for her family.

6. Ice Cream & Friends – Fun ice cream recipes from Food52 and friends aka some of my blogger friends!

7. The Book of Greens – I cannot wait to cook/bake from this book. The recipes look doable, delicious and incorporate greens of all kinds. By Chef Jenn Louis.

8. On Vegetables: Modern Recipes for the Home Kitchen – Rustic Canyon is one of my favorite restaurants in LA so it’s no surprise that this book looks so delicious. I haven’t had a chance to cook from it yet but I have my eye on the carrot cavatelli.

9. Kale & Caramel: Recipes for Body, Heart, and Table – Perfect for spring. Perfect for mamas.

1. Saturday Skin (Set of 5) Brightening Masks – My mom loves wearing masks that make her look like Freddie Kruger AND make her skin nicer.

2. Terracota Pot in Pink – Replant your mom’s favorite herb or flower in this pot and give it to her as a gift. She’ll probably cry!

3. Lumi Paula Wallet in Mint – Isn’t this color so beautiful? I feel like moms always have big wallets filled with lots of credit cards and photos of her children. This feels like a chic mom wallet.

4. New Balance 410 Casual Sneakers – These sneakers look comfortable and cute all at the same time. Good for long walks after dinner!

5. Paddywax Soy Candle – This candle looks so beautiful and is not $60! A plus!

6. Petal Multi-Use Oil – My mom has always looooved oils of all kinds. This one looks super pretty.

7. Heart Cleansing Sponge – The cutest sponge for mom.

8. BKR Spiked Glass Water Bottle – A lil’ edgy for mom. But this is for a mom that likes to say, “I’m not like a regular mom, I’m a cool mom.”

9. Lanolips Lip Balm in Banana – If your mom likes banana cream pie and fun lip balms.

10. Cluse Watch – I’ve been seeing these watches everywhere and this grey color looks so beautiful. And it doesn’t break the bank. A+.

11. Slip Silk Pillowcase – I’ve been meaning to buy a silk pillowcase (for wrinkles!) so I figured my mom would like it. Plus, it feels nice and cool.

12. Google Home – True story: my mom has a tough time “cutting and pasting” but she can use Snapchat like a 14 year-old. I have no idea how. I feel like my sort-of-technologically-advanced mom would love a Google Home.

13. Le Creuset 3.5 Round French Oven – I love the 3 1/2 quart. It’s the perfect size for me and I find myself using it everyday. OH AND THIS COLOR!

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Cozy Kitchen Things

DIY, Gift Guides

Ever since I cleaned up this blog and brought it from 2012 to 2017 (!!), I’ve also been on the lookout for new surfaces and props. I am that weirdo that has one plate of something I like vs. a set. I have lots of one-offs and usually I buy glasses in sets of two. Having a food blog can be weird, I admit, but also SO COOL.

Here are some things that have been catching my eye around the internets! I’ve purchased some, others are on my “make dat money to splurge” list.

Also, if you’ve been eye-ing something and want to share it, I think we’re all interested!

Herriott Grace             Farmhouse Pottery Bowl           Anthro Striped Simea Mug

I purchased two of the smaller bowls and one small bowl from Herriott Grace and they are BEAUTIFUL in person. Like, the most perfect matte, delicious velvet colors. Love them. I really wish they came in plates because I’d spend all my rent money on them.

Farmhouse Pottery is so simple and elegant. Their work really has the ability to bend with all sorts of styles: minimalist cozy (hi that’s me, I think), country-chic, farmer, etc. (you get the idea!).

Anthropologie Simea Mugs. I was watching Big Little Lies and I loved that they were drinking wine out of mugs. This is kinda something I could see myself serving in place of glass wine glasses.

Black Flatware             Two-Tone Pretty Pink Glasses             Anthro Mineral Mug

Matte Black Flatware. One thing I’m in constant search for are things that compliment mauve. That color is my blog 100% but using it over and over and over gets redundant and bores me so I like to edge it up a bit and I love how black looks with it. These are super awesome and relatively affordable (if you buy one to two sets).

Two-Tone Pink Glasses. These are so pretty and so spring! I thing these would be great water or rosé/white wine glasses.

Anthropologie Mineral Mug. I don’t need anymore mugs in my life but I want this one because it’s so simple and looks like something I’d actually want to drink out of in the morning (not just a pretty prop).

Little Casserole Dish             Lunch To-Go Bento Boxes       White Matte  Flatware

This casserole dish is 5×5-inches and I think that it’d be totally perfect for a roasting vegetables, making a gratin or baking a small batch of brownies.

Isn’t this tiered lunch box situation the cutest thing evrrrr! I wanna get a real job just so I can pack my lunch! (Sorta!)

Isn’t this Matte White Flatware the prettiest?!

Small Porcelain Bowls  White Ceramic Nesting Bowls   Pine Wood Pie Server

I’m really in love with these small porcelain gourds. I feel like they’d be perfect for soup or a scoop of ice cream.

These bowls are a bit of a splurge but I feel like I’d use them in every.single.blog post ever so I’m thinking about it. They look sturdy enough to be useful and function but pretty enough for photos.

I bought this pie/cake server and it is so beautiful in real life. I was super timid to use it because I thought frosting or fat would stain the wood but it hasn’t so far–it looks amazing and I’ve actually used it for cake!

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Gift Guide 2016

Adventures, Gift Guides, Winter

Cozy Gift Guide

1. Lime and Lemon Squeezer — All in one!
2. Benrier Mandoline — I love mandolines because I like things to all be the same size.
3. Wilton Piping Decorating Set — For your best friend who’s a baker!
4. Vitamix 750 Copper Blender — This is totally on my to-splurge list for myself. It’s so beautiful.
5. Chemex — How I make my coffee every morning.
6. Kitchenaid Mixer — What would I do without my mixer?!? I use it multiple times a day. And I love it in this color.
7. Dansk Butter Warmer — For me this is half prop/half useful butter melter.
8. Corgi Cookie Cutter — Need I say more.
9. Le Creuset Oval French Oven — I loooove this color. I use this size in the color PALM daily. It’s the most versatile pot I own. I would buy it for everyone I know if I could.

Cozy Gift Guide

1. The Del Posto Cookbook — The photos are stunning and the tiramisu is maybe the best I’ve ever tried. Definitely a splurge of a cookbook but worth it!
2. Molly on the Range — So fun and cute and will make anyone happy.
3. The Year of Cozy — Cozy season is here!
4. The Vanilla Bean Baking Book — I’m baking from this book in a few days and am super excited!
5. The Love & Lemons Cookbook — The most beautiful cookbook. And all the recipes I’ve tried are healthy and delicious.
6. The Edna Lewis Cookbook — The first biscuits I ever made were from her.
7. Alternative Baker — I’m trying my hardest to dip my toe into gluten-free baking. I’m starting here because look at that pie on the cover!
8. A Cozy Coloring Cookbook — The other night I colored for 2 hours straight, while I watched trashy tv and I felt so rejuvenated! Pair it with some awesome colored pencils.
9. Taste of Persia — Everything in this book looks SO good.

Cozy Gift Guide

1. Tinker Watch (in pink) — Mix and match to build a beautiful watch.
2. Butter in London “Fall in Line” — I’ve worn the third color on the right every single day for a month–I love it!
3. Acne Emoji ‘Adriana’ Shoes — I wear these almost every day. They’re my absolute favorite and the emoji plaques are the best conversation starter.
4. Mansur Gavriel Backpack — Another thing on my to-splurge list for myself. Basically I look at Gift Guides for myself. :/
5. Corgi socks — I currently own three pairs of corgi socks but frankly I could use a few more pair.
6. Dr. Jart Water Replenishment Mask — The best stocking stuffer. I love wearing them on flights and scaring everyone around me.
7. Donut mug — Basically the only thing I want for Christmas this year.
8. Softest sweater from Madewell — Also very into this one.
9. Prettiest Alarm Clock in Grey — I probably would still use my iPhone but it’s super cute to go on a side table.

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