One of Those Days

27 Dec


Today was one of those days. You know the kind, where you’ve eaten a few too many christmas cookies, sit in traffic for an hour only to miss your bus, lace up the shoes for a walk but see rainy skies, and come back home to a hole in your kitchen ceiling.

What, you didn’t have a day like that? No? Huh.


On days like today, this massaged kale salad brightens up my world. It’s chewy and flavorful, showing off all the crazy curves of the kale. The feta adds a kick while the avocado keeps things creamy, and the pomegranate makes the salad downright sexy.


After the adventures of the day and kale for lunch, I came home to bake more holiday cookies (just because Christmas is over doesn’t mean I have to stop stirring up those wintery flavors, and hey I’m Jewish anyway). I’m baking up some care packages for some friends across the US, and decided to try out some new vegan cookie recipes (recipes coming!). Midway through baking I turned my back for a moment, then CRASH. I turned to find my hand mixer dangling sadly off the counter, a glob of coconut oil and applesauce plopped beneath it. It’s been one of those days.


(please ignore the state of my floor…)

It’s a good thing kale has magical powers.



Upside-Down Apple Pie for the Family

26 Dec


My Christmas was spent cooking. Big surprise, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

In fact, I’ve barely left my kitchen since I got home nearly a week ago. There’s flour in every corner, behind the fridge, and imbedded into the kitchen tiles. My poor mother has spent more time cleaning the kitchen in this week than she’s had to the entire time I was gone.

crust1   peels1

This morning was no different, and I left for Christmas dinner with a kitchen looking as though a tornado had hit it but triumphantly carrying my favorite kale salad in one hand in this pie in the other.


Let me just say, it was worth it. This pie is INCREDIBLE. I’m already an apple pie lover, but oh my lanta my head nearly exploded when I tasted the sticky, crunchy layer of pecan caramel that covers this one. The pie is impressive but super easy, and more than a few of those gooey pecans wound up in my belly before we even made it to the Sweet Pickled Grandparent’s place for dinner.


I used this recipe, but I added in two more apples and made my own pie crust (stay tuned for my favorite recipe!). It’s not strictly necessary, but I can never resist working with that butter and flour.

Merry Christmas everyone!


Dr. Seuss Cake

15 Dec


Though I cannot believe I am saying it, my first semester of college is drawing to a close. My final exams end Monday, and Tuesday afternoon will find me flying across the country back home to the Bay Area.

After four months of emails, facebook messages, and phone calls I’ll finally get to see my old friends again. After so much time apart, I have no doubt there will be an torrent of hugs, giggles, and feverish recounting of campus adventures.

I made this cake to celebrate the birthday of a friend whom I have known since kindergarten. We grew up together, battling dragons in the river running through her backyard, stuffing blackberries into our mouths until the sweet juice dribbled down our chins, and spinning out fantastical worlds into velvety night air on late-night sleepovers.

This cake is as sweetly ridiculous as our friendship. It has layer upon layer of tender chocolate cake, silky chocolate fudge, and gooey toasted marshmallows. The recipe is the brainchild of Christina Tosi of the Momofuku Milk Bar. When I first read it though I had no knowledge of Tosi’s baking prowess; I only saw the sheer absurdity of the cake. My friends and I fondly dubbed it a Dr. Seuss cake: it was beautiful because of its absurdity

Today 20 children lost their lives. I didn’t intend to address such a heavy topic in my first post on this blog, but in this moment I cannot ignore it. Writing about the eccentricities of my own childhood forces me to recall the childhoods that those 20 souls will not experience.

I urge you all to make this cake today to honor those children killed in the shooting. Return for a moment to the experience of childhood, breathe in the beauty of the absurd, and honor the lives lost.

Click for Dr. Seuss Cake recipe

About Me

13 Dec


My name is Raizel, and I’m head-over-heels in love with the alchemy of butter, sugar, and chocolate. My home is the wacky Berkeley, CA, where I spend much of my time in my cramped kitchen covered in flour. I’m currently a freshman in a liberal-arts college in rural Massachusetts, missing my kitchen but loving New England small town life.

I love to bake sky-high cakes, delicate pastries, gooey cookies, and anything in between. I’m also interested in healthy eating, and like massaged kale salads and kabocha squash almost as much as chocolate.

When I’m not in the kitchen, I love to hike and run outside, do yoga, and sing. I don’t yet know what my major will be; for now I’m soaking in everything that college life offers.

Join me as I explore the world through baking!


11 Dec

Welcome to my blog! Join me as I bake my way through the world and share my life, full of the sweet, salty, and strange. 

La Fuji Mama

Bringing world flavors to the family dinner table.

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Marathon Half Marathon Running Diet

Chocolate Covered Katie

The Healthy Dessert Blog


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