Dessert Recipes

Chocolate Cookie Dough Oatmeal Pancakes

Chocolate Cookie Dough Oatmeal Pancakes

A great way to start our morning always begins with a well made cappuccino. Inspired by Lindsay of Love and Olive Oil, we made this morning even better by adding a stack of pancakes stuffed with cookie dough. Now, how is it that a few balls of cookie dough added to pancakes can take a breakfast to elevated perfection? Chocolate.

The answer: Cookie dough stuffed with chocolate chips, stuffed inside a stack of pancake-goodness is the best way to treat someone on Valentine’s morning.

If »

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Chocolate Bourbon Balls- Three Ways

Chocolate Bourbon Balls- Three Ways

Diane was initially going to write this post, but after 1 bourbon ball she quietly passed out on the couch. Silly Asian, they aren’t that alcoholic. Although I think she may be faking to get out of writing a post.

I’ve always loved a good rum ball. Actually, the love extends to just about any dessert with a hit of alcohol. I’ll macerate just about any dried fruit going into a dessert just to give it a little punch. Serving trifle, tiramisu… “Seconds Please.”»

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Dark or Milk Chocolate?

Dark or Milk Chocolate?

Hi everyone. We’re working on a project and need your assistance. A few weeks ago we asked our readers on our Facebook page but we also wanted to survey our blog readers too. Can you help us out?

What type of chocolate to you prefer? Dark or milk chocolate? And you can’t way white chocolate because that doesn’t count! lolll.

thanks a bunch for your help!

hugs,

diane and todd»

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The Blue Bottle Craft of Coffee Cookbook Video & Vanilla Saffron “Snickerdoodles”

The Blue Bottle Craft of Coffee Cookbook Video & Vanilla Saffron “Snickerdoodles”

Nearly anyone familiar with the San Fransisco coffee scene knows of Blue Bottle Coffee. It began as a minuscule operation by self-confessed coffee lunatic James Freeman, and then after the word started spreading it quickly turned into a cult favorite.  Now nestled throughout unique crannies in California and New York, Blue Bottle has roasted and brewed its way into hearts coast to coast.

As many of you know, we are slightly obsessed with extraordinary coffee. So when Ten Speed Press contacted us about possibly doing »

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Dark Chocolate Gingersnap Cookies with Holiday Stencils

Dark Chocolate Gingersnap Cookies with Holiday Stencils

For the first time in my life I think I had a chocolate hangover. Maybe it was eating three additional pieces of See’s candy before I went to bed that threw me over the edge. I’m the savory-girl. The girl that hovers over the holiday buffet table where the cheesy dips are displayed and quietly dips my crackers in the pool of yummy calories in between conversations. But to make it clear, I’ll never double-dip. My table side manners are always in-check.

Offer me anything »

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Coffee Toffee from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook

Coffee Toffee from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook

Diane would like to apologize in advance for anything I am about to say. She says I’m a coffee snob.

I don’t know whether to respond with a “Duh!” or a “Phbbttt!”- or however you spell sticking your tongue out. After all, she did first meet me in a coffee house almost 17 years ago.

Snob may not be the right word. I mean, I do love my coffee but I’m still polite about it in public. I’m not going to lambast someone for their »

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Brown Sugar-Butterscotch Slice-and-Bake Cookies

Brown Sugar-Butterscotch Slice-and-Bake Cookies

When we shared Nancy Baggett’s latest cookie cookbook that we photographed, Simply Sensational Cookies, many of you have shared with us that you bought the book and are excited to start baking from it. Thank you so much for that you guys and ladies! And one of the cookie photographs got many of you extra hungry, curious and asking for it’s identity. It was the above photograph and it is the brown sugar butterscotch slice-and-bakes. We’ve eaten many of them and they’re just beyond- amazing.»

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One-Pot Honey Oat Cookies from Simply Sensational Cookies Cookbook

One-Pot Honey Oat Cookies from Simply Sensational Cookies Cookbook

This giveaway has ended. We asked facebook to choose the winner. Congrats to commenter #52 Nichole and #77 Alice . Each of you won the book!

Hello everyone, we’re happy to be sharing this cookie cookbook with you.  It’s now available! Nancy Baggett’s Simply Sensational Cookies cookbook is out and we photographed and styled all the recipes. Did we gain any weight during the shoot? Absolutely yes. How much did we gain? We’re not supposed to share because we signed a super duper secret contract »

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Brown Butter Apple Hand Pies

Brown Butter Apple Hand Pies

When in comes to baking, I tend to get a little obsessed. Case in point; last night Diane is flipping through a recent Sunset magazine and sees a recipe for the “Easiest Pie Dough”. The pictures look great of course, all flaky and butter, and the recipe says the dough is thrown together in 10 minutes.

We both have a bit of professional skepticism. It has been known for food stylists to fudge a flake to get that money shot, but this is Sunset magazine. »

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Fig Pecan Sticky Buns. And our guardian tree

Fig Pecan Sticky Buns. And our guardian tree

The first tree that meets your eye when you enter our garden is a huge thirty foot high silver oak tree. We call it our first guardian tree because it nurtures us with shade throughout the year and its staggering presence makes us feel safe, protected.  It’s the tree that greets visitors with it’s evergreen grandeur and lacy, whispy leaves. Now that the garden has matured over the last ten years, the second largest tree is our fig tree, which is quickly becoming our second guardian »

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Pistachio Olive Oil Mini Tea Cakes

Pistachio Olive Oil Mini Tea Cakes

Ever buy yourself a little treat, something that sounded perfect and tasty, but after biting into it disappointment ensued. Maybe the bakery wasn’t as skilled as you hoped, or perhaps the pastry had been waiting a little too long for someone to come by and savor its original deliciousness. Whatever the case, you were left with the “wha waa” feeling.

It happens occasionally. Sometimes even from a good bakery. Like so much in life, these moments can be cause for a little bitch and moan »

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Butter Rum Apple Crisp Tart & Pink Pearl Apples

Butter Rum Apple Crisp Tart & Pink Pearl Apples


Stumbling onto new varieties of apples is always such a wonderful treat. We keep mental notes of unique heirloom apple varieties, but because these varieties are often so difficult to source, we don’t often expect to find them even at our local farmers market. I’ve always had pink pearl apples on top of my wish list since I saw them featured in a magazine article long ago. Their pink flesh, delicate, pearly skin always reminded me of a fairy tale apple and I often find »

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Chocolate Triple-Berry Slab Pie

Chocolate Triple-Berry Slab Pie

The first attempt at this slab pie recipe I had one immediate reaction, “Holy crap this is a big pie!”

You’d think I’d intuitively know that based off of a couple factors:

  • It’s name is a “slab pie” – generally you wouldn’t associate that with something marginal in size.
  • It was filling an entire 1/2 sheet pan – baking cookies on a half sheet gives you a nice amount, but there is a majority of empty space between the cookies. This was FILLING the entire
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Peanut Butter Cocoa Cookies with Jam & Life Altering Moments

Peanut Butter Cocoa Cookies with Jam & Life Altering Moments

There are only a handful of things you come across in your life which change how you live everyday. An extraordinary person. Discovering a dream job. Having a baby or in our case, bringing home a puppy for the first time. Maybe a life altering moment which sends you in an unforeseen direction.

Or maybe it was something less dramatic. Something you picked up as a hobby or started learning for any number of reasons, but you found yourself deeply drawn into it. It quietly »

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Marionberry (Blackberry) Mojito Ice Pops

Marionberry (Blackberry) Mojito Ice Pops

“Hey Boo! Boo! Check it out!”

Diane makes her way down the isle as I proudly hold up my find. A frozen bag of berries.

But not just any berry. Marionberries.

Here in the land of amazing farmers markets and with a garden teeming with fruit trees, herbs, and other delicious things, it isn’t too often that a frozen bag of anything gets us excited. But marionberries are special and are something which is nearly impossible to find in Southern California.»

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Blood Orange Pops from Bi-Rite Creamery Sweet Cream & Sugar Cones

Blood Orange Pops from Bi-Rite Creamery Sweet Cream & Sugar Cones

Certain foods bring back fond memories of childhood and often times it’s simple sweet treats that trigger big smiles. These blood orange Popsicles bring back moments of summer days when we’d reach in the freezer for a cool treat. As adults these blood orange pops made us so excited to indulge in Popsicles again because they are so good!!

Seriously, this blood orange pop recipe is so simple with just 3-4 ingredients but it’s packed with bright flavor from the fresh squeezed juice.  The challenge »

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Banana Cake with Butterscotch, I Wanted a Cake

Banana Cake with Butterscotch, I Wanted a Cake

We entered the convention center’s ballroom to find two women sitting on the stage. One in her 30′s-40′s, chef jacket attired with a professional’s serene gaze. The other – a bubbly, plump Southern Grandma with short cropped hair, her enthusiasm barely contained. That woman was Shirley O. Corriher and over the next 45 minutes she would become one of my heroes.

It was the 2011 IACP conference in Austin, TX and Diane and I had just given a talk on food photography. With our duties »

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“Sweet Confections” book we photographed & Pina Colada Truffles Recipe

“Sweet Confections” book we photographed & Pina Colada Truffles Recipe



Sometimes a sweet treat is all it takes to boost the spirit. We know this well, the power of a great piece of candy to make us feel like a kid again. Normally, we don’t eat much candy but when fresh, homemade candy is put in front of us, we’re definitely ready to indulge.

Last year we were asked to photograph and style Sweet Confections candy cookbook written by amazing Nina Wanat. The 5 day shoot was such a treat to be surrounded by homemade »

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Doughnuts with Burnt Caramel and Sea Salt

Doughnuts with Burnt Caramel and Sea Salt

I have a bit of an obsession lately. Actually, most of this whole year it is a topic frequently brought up between Diane and me. The culinary practice of charring. Pushing the cooking of something to it’s limit.

Go just a little too far, and the dish is ruined.  Game over. Hit the restart button and begin from scratch.

But when pushed to that limit, it develops an extra level of flavor and texture that only the daring can achieve. We find ourselves drawn to »

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Love. Craft. and Honesty. An Apple Galette with Brown Butter

Love. Craft. and Honesty. An Apple Galette with Brown Butter

It has been coursing through my blood lately. It happens to many of us this time of year. The air grows cool and crisp, Halloween is just around the corner, and the desire for autumn’s comforts fill our bones. And the top of the comfort list lies the glorious apple. I’ve got to get my apple mojo on.

For me the apple craving began about a month ago. We had a shoot for one of Whole Foods local apple farmers. Few things compare to picking »

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