Lemon Ginger Drop Cookies - Martha Stewart

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Lemon Ginger Drop Cookies - Martha Stewart
Lemon Ginger Drop Cookies

I love lemon.
I love ginger.
I love cookies.

So much promise.

Lemon Ginger Drop Cookies - Martha Stewart
I made these Lemon Ginger Drop Cookies from the Martha Stewart empire. They use lemon zest and crystallized ginger. You drop them onto the sheet, bake for 7 minutes, pull them out and sprinkle with sugar before popping them back in for another 7 minutes. Easy peasy.

Lemon Ginger Drop Cookies - Martha Stewart
However, even though they contain lots of my favorite ingredients, they didn't knock my socks off. But I like my flavors strong, so you might like the subtle flavors in these.

Recipe:
Adapted from Lemon Ginger Drop Cookies from Martha Stewart website (Published in Martha Stewart Living, December/January 1995/1996)

8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1 large egg
1 tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest (I used Meyer Lemons)
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup diced (1/8 inch) crystallized ginger

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment.
2. Place 3/4 cup sugar in mixing bowl. Add zest and rub with sugar until fragrant and damp. Cream butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy (with paddle attachment), about 5 minutes, scraping down sides of bowl. Add egg; mix on high speed to combine.
3. In a bowl, whisk together flour, ground ginger, baking soda, salt, and crystallized ginger; add to butter mixture; mix on medium-low speed to combine, about 20 seconds.
4. Drop about 2 teaspoons of batter on baking sheet. Bake for 7 minutes. Pull out trays, sprinkle cookies with sugar, rotate sheets between oven shelves, and bake until just golden, about 7 minutes more. Slide parchment with cookies onto a wire rack; let cool 15 minutes.
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Coconut Tea Cake - Tuesdays with Dorie

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Coconut Tea Cake Bundt - Tuesdays with Dorie
Coconut Tea Cake

Recently, a friend of a friend started the marathon session of filling out the eHarmony questionnaire. I think applying for the Foreign Service or CIA is easier. How these 500 questions about music preferences, religion and bowel movements (towards the end I wasn't paying attention but I think they asked about regularity or something) will match you with your perfect mate on 29 dimensions of compatibility (for $50+ per month) is beyond me.

However, that got me thinking about "levels of compatibility" with food. My eFoodHarmony questionnaire will include: Bundt cakes, Thai Food, Green Tea/Matcha anything, Mochi, Hawaiian Shave Ice, Udon Noodles, Soon Tofu, Avocados, Carnitas and, of course, long walks on the beach with Lemon Curd.

And my "dimension of incompatibility"? You know....coconut strands (coconut flavor okay...but the strands and flakes have a dental floss texture that I don't hang with).

Coconut Tea Cake Bundt - Tuesdays with Dorie
For this week's Tuesdays with Dorie selection, Carmen of Carmen Cooks singled out Coconut Tea Cake on pages 194 and 195 of Dorie's book, Baking: From My Home to Yours.

Made in a 10-cup Bundt and a mini 4-inch cake. I skipped the rum and used a bit extra vanilla extract.

My hate of the coconut strands prohibits me from rating this. Co-workers said it was The Yum.

Coconut Tea Cake Bundt - Tuesdays with Dorie

Be sure to check out the other Tuesdays with Dorie bakers!

Recipe:
Carmen of Carmen Cooks' blog, or
Pages 194 and 195 of Dorie's book, Baking: From My Home to Yours
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Pot Au Feu Pho Restaurant - Garden Grove, CA

Monday, March 29, 2010

Pot Au Feu Pho Restaurant, Garden Grove, CA
My friend and I are always looking for places to eat near Disneyland (we have annual passes) so we stopped by Pot Au Feu Pho restaurant in Garden Grove. The large Vietnamese community in Orange County equals lots of yummy food.

Only 3 miles from Disneyland, Pot Au Feu Vietnamese restaurant is a world apart from the offerings at D-Land and so much less expensive!

Pot Au Feu Pho Restaurant, Garden Grove, CA
We split two main dishes. Here is Pho Tai Nam (#P4 rice noodles with filt mignon and flank) (regular size $5.75; large size $6.50).

Pot Au Feu Pho Restaurant, Garden Grove, CA Pot Au Feu Pho Restaurant, Garden Grove, CA
The pho broth was very tasty and I enjoyed this dish. I always add some sriracha sauce to my pho and pile in the bean sprouts, basil and lime.

Pot Au Feu Pho Restaurant, Garden Grove, CA
We also ordered Bun ga xao xa ot (#B7 vermicelli with lemongrass chicken and chili) $6.50.

Pot Au Feu Pho Restaurant, Garden Grove, CA
We got an order of Spring Rolls (#A4 goi cuon $4.50). These were my least favorite...the meat was a bit dry and I wasn't crazy about the sauce. I grabbed some of the Vermicelli fish sauce to dip the rolls.

Pot Au Feu Pho Restaurant, Garden Grove, CA Pot Au Feu Pho Restaurant, Garden Grove, CA
My friend got a Vietnamese coffee (ca phe sua $2.50) and that inspired me to make a gelatin creation I'll show you during National Library Week (April 11-17)!

If you are headed to the Magic Kingdom and want something other than the Rainforest Cafe or hamburgers in the Park, stop by Pot Au Feu! Here is the Yelp listing.

(Sorry the photos aren't that great...they are all from my Android Verizon phone)

Pot Au Feu Pho Restaurant, 11915 Euclid St, Garden Grove, CA 92840, (714) 636-3687 Closed Mondays
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Mocha Muffins with Chocolate Chips - Bon Appetit

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Mocha Muffins with Chocolate Chips (Bon Appetit)
Mocha Muffins with Chocolate Chips and No pecans

I started these muffins yesterday morning...until I realized that I forgot to replenish my espresso powder. Flash forward a few hours to work. I mentioned that I needed to go to Target for more espresso powder (yes, you can get instant espresso powder at Target)...and my co-worker says she has some in her desk and doesn't like it (as a drink...she's quite happy with it in baked goods). How perfect is that?! Thanks J for the espresso powder...and here it is in these muffins.

Mocha Muffins with Chocolate Chips (Bon Appetit) Mocha Muffins with Chocolate Chips (Bon Appetit)
I adapted the Mocha Muffins with Chocolate Chips and Pecans recipe from Bon Appetit. Ditched the pecans and upped the espresso. I also used Trader Joe's dark chocolate that I chopped up.

Mocha Muffins with Chocolate Chips (Bon Appetit)
I got 15 muffins out of the batter. The recipe says 12. Either they make big o' muffins, or I got bonus muffins. I'm going with the bonus muffins. Always love with you get a little bit free.

Mocha Muffins with Chocolate Chips (Bon Appetit)
I just had 1/2 a muffin and there is lotsa espresso. Our library will be the one with people bouncing off the walls.

Mocha Muffins with Chocolate Chips (Bon Appetit)

Recipe:
Click here for printable recipe

Adapted from Mocha Muffins with Chocolate Chips and Pecans (Bon Appetit, April 1995 via Epicurious)

1/4 cup hot water
1 1/2 tablespoon instant espresso powder (I used Medaglia D'Oro. Original recipe was 1 T)

1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup vegetable oil (I used canola oil)
2 large eggs (Always use room temp eggs for baking...sit in warm water for 10-15 minutes)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Penzy's Dutch cocoa)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips (I used chopped dark chocolate from Trader Joe's instead)
The original recipe has 1 cup pecans but I skipped.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Line muffin tin with liners. The recipe says it makes 12 muffins, but I got 15 muffins. Dissolve espresso powder in the hot water.

Wet ingredients: Whisk together the buttermilk, oil, eggs and vanilla in a medium bowl, then add the espresso mixture. Dry ingredients: Mix flour, sugar, brown sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add buttermilk mixture and stir just until combined. Mix in chocolate chips and pecans (if using). Do not overmix your muffin batter!

Pour into muffin pan. I use a scooper to dish out the batter. Bake until tester inserted into center of muffins comes out clean, about 20 minutes (recipe says 25 minutes but mine were done in 20 so check early!) Transfer muffins to rack and cool.
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Dulce de Leche Cookies - Tuesdays with Dorie

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Dulce de Leche Duos - Tuesdays with Dorie
Dulce de Leche Duos

For this week's Tuesdays with Dorie selection, Jodie of Beansy Loves Cake decided on Dulce de Leche Duos on page 161 of Dorie's book, Baking: From My Home to Yours.

Have you read California girl Jodie's blog? Always a fun read...although Jodie loves coconut (my arch enemy). Her decorated cakes are really cute!

Because I live in Los Angeles, canned La Lechera Dulce de Leche is easy to find for just a few dollars. Lots of TWD bakers made their own using their ovens, stove tops and crock pots. I just reached for it on the shelf and was happy with that. Opening a can of Dulce de Leche is lovely...the sweet caramel smell is intense and you just try your darnest to not throw a spoon in there and just start eating it!

Dulce de Leche Duos - Tuesdays with Dorie
These were delicious!
The cookie (made with dulce de leche) was soft and the dulce de leche in the center? Heaven.
They were GONE at the library. Gone.

Dulce de Leche Duos - Tuesdays with Dorie
I like the cookies on their own. They didn't need the filling...but I'm not going to pass that up either! ;)

Be sure to check out the other Tuesdays with Dorie bakers!

Recipe:
Jodie's blog, or...
Dorie's book, Baking: From My Home to Yours, page 161
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LA Marathon 2010 with Dave & Daveypops

Sunday, March 21, 2010

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
Congrats Dave on finishing the Los Angeles Marathon!

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
Team Dave with the Daveypop

My friend Dave finished the LA Marathon! After months and months of careful preparation, today was The Day for Team Dave

We had friends and family at:
Mile 7 (Mary the Food Librarian, Helen, Alison)
Mile 12 (Rod and Kris)
Mile 15 (Marilyn & Eric)
Mile 20 (Chris N, Rod & Kris)
Mile 22 (Mary the Food Librarian, Helen, Alison)
Finish Line (Rod and Kris)

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
Team Dave Members: Alison and Helen. We started the race at Mile 7 in Silverlake on Sunset Blvd. (This photo from our Brentwood stop)

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
We met this lovely family who were the first to hold our extra DaveyPops. The high school student (pink hair) has friends running in the race...we hope to see her next year!

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
My first shot of Dave approaching us at Mile 7! (That's Helen reaching out to give him a big hug). Alison excels at playing "Where's Waldo/Dave?" as she spotted him. It was crazy crowded and amazing. Seeing 25,000 runners pass by was incredible.

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
This woman was a fantastic new supporter. She works nearby and screamed, shouted and cheered all participants and gave Dave a big hug when we saw him.

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
More strangers who greeted Dave with our Daveypop! They found their friend in the race and we screamed for Dino! The sense of community was awesome.

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
This group of Angelinos were sooooo enthusiastic for Dave! It was awesome and I know Dave really appreciated the support.

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
After seeing a literal sea of runners go by, it is FANTASTIC to find your friend. Fantastic!

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
We passed Marathon street on our way to Mile 7. How perfect is that?!

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
There were some interesting costumes in the race!

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
After Mile 7, we hopped into the car and zipped off to Mile 22 outside the VA in Brentwood. Here is our view from the freeway. Traffic wasn't bad and we were very lucky to find parking in both places.

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
We positioned ourselves outside Whole Foods in Brentwood. These nice people held up the Daveypop for almost any hour! What nice strangers. Los Angeles, you rock!

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
Our friend Phil is recovering from knee surgery so he ran the last half of the marathon. He stopped by for a sip of juice!

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
Alison was able to spot Dave and Phil all three times! Dave was also on the look out for us, I mean, HIMSELF on these Daveypops. Here's Dave approaching Mile 22 in Brentwood.

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
More sweet Los Angeles strangers rooting on my friend!

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
He just ran over 21 miles and looks great! Dave said he never hit the wall and was so happy with his running and yoga preparation.

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
Omg. How cute is this couple! They were so excited to see Dave, and the woman kept her Daveypop as a souvenir!

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
This is me, the Food Librarian and Helen. I'm shy.

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
Team Dave toasting Dave & Phil on their accomplishment! (And yes, that is HP sauce on the counter...we were doing a taste test).

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
Ain't it pretty?! Dave finished in 4:16.

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
Team Dave decorated the lawn with Daveypops after the race. After Dave passed us and rejoin the race, a woman behind him said, "Oh, You're Dave" as I'm sure she saw Team Dave and our Daveypops along the route! :)

I can't tell you how exciting it was to see Dave in the sea of runners. We were filled with adrenalin and joy. Helen, Alison and I spent half the day shouting, "How great is this?!?!"

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
And would you believe, Dave and Phil hosted a BBQ after the race! We were treated to yummy chicken, veggies, potatoes au gratin, and lots of laughs. I brought a California strawberry shortcake and Thin Mint Cupcakes to the BBQ (yes, I only use seasonal ingredients...including Thin Mints). I'll post the recipes later.

LA Marathon 2010 - DaveyPop
Team Dave and Dave himself

Thank You Los Angeles Marathon organizers, volunteers, and weather for a wonderful day! I love Los Anglees and we don't have too many times when the community comes together, but today was a great day for LA. The new course is fantastic...a landmark every mile.

Dave and Phil: Great Job! Dave and I have been friends for over 20 years...you are a rock star, and I'm lucky to be your friend!

Check out Dave's Blog for more photos from Team Dave stops and follow his journey!
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Matcha Mochi Cupcakes - Happy St. Patrick's Day

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Matcha Mochi Cupcakes
Happy St. Patrick's Day from The Food O'Librarian

Today, I'm celebrating my Japanese and Irish roots.
What?
Yes, I may be 100% Okinawan, but somehow, my grandparents named my father Patrick!

My grandfather traveled from Okinawa, Japan to Hawaii in the early 1900's to work on the sugar plantations...as did many Issei (first generation Japanese Americans). Later, he went back to the little island of Okinawa and met my grandmother. They settled in California as farmers and began to raise their family of six kids. When son #3 came along, they named him Patrick. They were Christian (named the first two sons John and David), but not Catholic so I'm not quite sure where the name came from. However, I attribute this bit of Irish to my craving for some corned beef and cabbage every March 17th. And the McDonald's Shamrock Shake. :)

Matcha Mochi Cupcakes Matcha Mochi Cupcakes
Matcha Mochi Cupcakes
So, to combine the Irish and Japanese (hee hee), I whipped up some Matcha Mochi Cupcakes. Using matcha (green tea powder) and mochiko flour (sweet rice flour), these cupcakes are chewy and a bit dense. And they are such a pretty color of green! It is similar to my Blueberry Mochi Cake, Cherry Mochi Cake, and Matcha Mochi Bundt but it uses whole milk and oil instead of butter and evaporated milk. It is less buttery than the other cakes, and I enjoyed it a lot!

Matcha Mochi Cupcakes
Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Recipe:
Find the recipe here on my friend Azusa's blog, Humblebean. Check out all her beautiful photos and food! This recipe is gluten-free too!
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