Christmas is for family traditions.



It wouldn’t be Christmas without a massive cooking extravaganza and that’s just what it was this holiday season. I was able to have time time off from teaching to just work on tamales and pozole and hang out with my family and enjoy every minute of my time with them. I truly cherish these memories with all my loved ones and the time I was able to spend with my nieces as they enjoyed our holiday traditions. It’s completely amazing. Holidays can be a bustling time of the year, but I truly stayed present to the fun, giving, loving, community-inspired essence of the holidays that I absolutely love so much.





I have been making tamales every year since 2008. It’s a nice way for me to work on some of the bits and pieces of my recipes and come out with a really solid tamale that my family and friends love. This year I got a beautiful new mixer from Brandon, which helped tremendously because my old one was completely worn out.  My mom had a chance to put some together herself this year and I can say that I’m pretty quick when it comes to assembly. The stocks, braising meat, making the salsa, rehydrating chiles, roasting chiles and tomatillos and everything else that goes into tamales is a labor of love. So when you taste a really good tamale, remember that it probably wasn’t fast food and take some time to truly enjoy it.








We went to visit my great-aunts and great-uncles at my grandma’s childhood home. Of course, I couldn’t go there empty handed, so this year I brought them a pot of my pozole. I have to admit, the pozole was rather delicious this year, with just the right amount of spice. pozole is another recipe that is a labor of patience and practice. But soup is a soul food and it truly is a nourishing dish. There is nothing like a hot bowl of pozole with all the right toppings on Christmas morning.





I hope whatever traditions you and your family and friends have, they are something to keep passing down to the people you love and sharing the things that make you happy, grateful and inspired. I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season and happy New Year! Stay tuned for my Japanese New Year annual Oshogatsu post of osechi ryori.






Not A Baker

But I bake on Occasion…

I’d sell a bulldozer of sugar for salt any day of the week…

But of course with the season were in I can’t get myself away from it. I’m tired of dry boring cookies out of the package or even homemade so I wanted to make some that I’d actually enjoy eating not like i really need to be eating cookies but who gives a fuck. I’m gonna post the recipes cause I’ve been writing them myself. But i need to actually sit down and figure them all out so this is the visual entry and we’ll get to the recipe as soon as i can sit down without cookies burning.

I love the science in baking. Manipulating the fat content with sugar and leavening is fascinating to me. I’ve produced some pretty rad cookies.

I hope every ones enjoying the holidays. Its pretty rainy here in So Cal

White Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies

Peanut butter Butterstochies half dipped  in dark chocolate

Zesty Lemon finger prints with Apricot and Raspberry preserves

Soft Clove Sprinkled Molasses Gingerbread