Pumpkin Bread

Pumpkin Bread- My favorite pumpkin bread recipe. It’s a moist cake bread with just the right balance of spices.

The final dessert I made for Thanksgiving was my favorite pumpkin bread. This is my “go to” recipe and everyone always seems to enjoy it. I’ve had pumpkin breads that have too much cinnamon, too much cloves, etc. I think this recipe has the perfect balance.

Last year my sister got me this gorgeous pumpkin patch loaf pan.


Chengdu Taste has been one of the buzziest new restaurants in the San Gabriel Valley since its opening, with lines out the door at all hours. It got even more popular after being reviewed by Jonathan Gold.

After seeing my brother’s photos from his visit to Chengdu this summer and recommendations from friends, I decided to give it a try on my last visit to Los Angeles.

We went pretty early, arriving at 4:30 pm, and there was already a wait. Luckily for us, the wait wasn’t too bad. The restaurant also takes reservations, but even with a reservation there is usually a wait.

We noticed that almost every table had ordered a bottle of plum juice, so we did the same. Sour plum juice is an acquired taste. I personally enjoy it and we found that it did a better job than water at relieving the heat from some of the dishes.

Mung Bean Jelly Noodle with Chili Sauce

It was pretty interesting to see mung bean made into noodles. They are pretty soft, softer in texture than I enjoy, though I realize it is just the nature of this dish.

Toothpick Lamb with Cumin

This was a really fun dish to eat and one of my favorites. It’s also one of the restaurant’s most popular dishes. I imagine it probably wasn’t fun for the people putting the lamb onto the toothpicks.

Peppermint Chocolate Mug Cake- a minty, chocolate microwave cake perfect for winter. Best eaten warm during these cold months.

I’ve been on a peppermint crushing kick lately. Smashing the little peppermint candies with a meat mallet is pretty fun. Of course, I need an excuse for crushing them. So I’ve been making peppermint flavored desserts- like this peppermint chocolate mug cake.

Five minutes is all you’ll need to assemble this cake. It cooks in one minute and then it’s ready to eat. I love warm chocolate cake, especially with the chilly weather.