february adventures

luckily my effed up valentine’s day cake experience didn’t dictate the tone for the other parts of february because i squeezed in so many fun adventures for such a bite sized month! i got to hug old friends, eat schnitzel with cool new ones, play loud music, and jump a whole delta airline status!!!! i like you, february. come back again soon. 

let’s make a list:

photos 1 & 2: i spent a whole entire weekend at the grand forks ice arena watching the synchronized ice skating sectionals competition and i only left to get jimmy johns across the parking lot. i got to cheer on my old team!! it was sooo fun! it was sad when they didn’t win but the team that beat them was from north dakota so i still got to kvell. eggboy joined me for a few of the divisions but he got a lil bored so he left and did taxes.

photos 3-14 &16: i went to canada! which is a thing that you can do quite successfully in february if you live in the north pole already. my first stop was toronto where i stayed at the *coziest* bed and breakfast, ate at fat pasha, gave a couple of tahini covered #mollyontherange demos with hillel students and at their palatial jcc, and made ras al hanout hotdish on the marilyn denis show. i tried to make a ketchup joke because i thought that canada was the land ketchup, but either i’m incorrect about that or my delivery sucked? come on, ketchup chips, ketchup on mac and cheese, right??

in montreal i stayed with my bb and lead monkey bread inspiration, talia, in an apartment filled with hudson’s bay stripes and st. viateur bagels. we ate poutine and smoked meat and wore patagonia quarter zips for a majority of the time. my friends from the wandering chew put on the most magical #mollyontherange dessert party at the museum of jewish montreal. so many wonderful humans came out and we all ate so much sugar so naturally we needed to disco it off after. also in my two days there we managed to have one of those late-night perfectly boozy meals at maison publique, followed by some thick babka and schnitzel the next morning at hof kelsten

photos 15 & 17: kittsona, the town boutique, put on a cookie decorating #mollyontherange signing. i substituted the almond flour for hazelnut flour in these cookies and they were so tasty.

photos 18-22: conrad is a beast of a pianist and the last time we performed together, he was seven and soloing with our youth orchestra and i was 13 and putting on lip gloss and waiting for my triangle note. so it took a while, but we managed to perform together again in aspen this month with the aspen music festival! i decorated dobos torte and made cheesy spätzle while he played beethoven and jason eckardt music. from now on i only want to listen to beethoven while being covered in chocolate frosting. 

photos 23-28: proud of myself for not exploding from happiness during my 36 hours in new york, but somehow the stars aligned and i found myself in selfie distance from my all-time favorite podcast hosts, my all-time favorite ice dancers, three of my all-time favorite college homies, and i made my all-time favorite food on the today show. i also acquired a pair of comfy cool shoes called blog. i also got to eat hummus with rob and brian and they didn’t even fart when i was in the room. such mensches they are.

photos 29-36: then i went to florida! my friends george and sam have a new music group that was playing a david t little quartet (and u know how i love the loud music of david t little), so i dusted off my vibraphone mallets and brute forced some notes out. it was such great fun. i also got to see my tampa family and my old roomie and eat some fresh tomatoes which are in season down there, which felt so weird but so awesome! 

not pictured: eggboy and i went to see the town choir perform in a warehouse, it was so hip, it was like we were in brooklyn! i made suuuuuuuch a good chicken and dumplings (here is the recipe, next time i’m going to start with 2 tsp salt in the stock and work my way up and maybe not use the whole 4 tsp that it calls for). i acquired a love of matcha lattes and neck scarves. ooh and i watched this lucius, over and over and over.

tomorrow i leave for kentucky for the iacp conference! i'll be leading a cake workshop, talking on a panel, signing #mollyontherange, and seeking out the best kentucky dance clubs!! see you there??

-yeh!

 

hawaii

we went on a vacation! we left home when it was 20 below and arrived in the magical land of hawaii, where it was 100 degrees warmer. it was sunny the whole time, as if mother nature had just set the weather on auto pilot and fell asleep. it was perfect hiking weather, perfect papaya-for-breakfast weather (squeezed with calamansi!), perfect sitting-by-the-water-turning-off-my-phone-reading-a-book-and-not-looking-up-until-a-man-rode-by-with-a-mai-tai-delivery-bike weather. we listened to the la la land soundtrack, ate donuts before supper, and sat on the beach with moses and alana with buckets o’ poke from the little kahuku superette.

it was exactly hawaii.

i acquired a new favorite hobby, floating. i learned the joy of lying in the water and looking up at the sky with no thoughts and fears aside from the possibility of my bum getting nibbled by fishies. and eggboy discovered the wonders of shave ice and haleakala. we watched the sunrise each morning with coffee and the newspaper and observed a nightly bedtime of like 8pm. we made a chinchilla friend in moses's mom's garden. i miss the spam musubi and the pineapple. i came home with a musubi mold though so watch out, i’m going to musubi everything. 

on the road to hana, instead of stopping to turn around where the road “ended” we just kept on going, and let our jaws drop at maui showing off. our phones didn’t work on that road, and the lighting was different, i felt like we were on another planet or in another time. the world could have gone all brigadoon on us and, nope, we wouldn’t have known.

it was such a wonderful trip. i'm officially one of the tannest humans in grand forks and i'm ready to get back to work but also counting the days until we get to go back to hawaii :)


here were some of the places we loved most on this trip (to add to the list of places i loved on my last trip to maui and oahu):

koko head cafe // an adorable brunch spot with dumplings, bibimbap, congee, and a french toast that we didn’t get but it looked so epic that i’m regretting that we didn’t get it.

diamond head market // the site of eggboy’s first spam musubi! and, ugh, their scones are sofa-king good.

rainbow drive-in // nothing prepared me for how good their plate lunch would be. we got the mixed plate. i couldn’t stop eating it. even though i’d just had a malasada. even though i knew it’d probably give me a belly ache. so good. 

surfjack hotel // a super cute hotel in waikiki where we stayed for the first few nights! it is really hip but not painfully hip. just right. especially for an afternoon of playing jenga with alana and moses by the pool.

royal kitchen // jade brought us some of their manapua. sooo soft and doughy and good.

four seasons at ko’olina // a dream. we screamed when we walked into our room and saw the view. the beds were clouds, the service was flawless, the pools and laguna made me love going in the water. and all of the food was delicious, especially the pandan mochi donuts at la hiki. and there were poolside cake pops! i want to go here again and again and again. a huge mahalo to kim for making our stay there extra special!!! 

kahumana farm // an organic farm that employs homeless families and people with disabilities and supplies produce and eggies to a bunch of restaurants on oahu. so many things grew there that i’d never even heard of, and they had an awesome aquaponics setup. 

haleakala national park // eggboy and i did a lazy thing: instead of waking up at 3am to join the crowds for the sunrise, we slept in, drove up to the summit in the morning sun (what a pretty drive!), and then hiked the day away on the sliding sands trail. it was quiet and stunning and lovely and we weren’t exhausted like we’d have been if we woke up for the sunrise, so 10/10 would recommend this. on the way back down we stopped in the cute town of makawao for a smoothie. note to self: next time go on a day when komoda's bakery is open! 

paia flatbread company // we went here for pizza night and looooved the pesto pizza. the place reminded me of our town pizza parlor. quirky and fun! 

old lahaina luau // our first luau! we loved it. 

hana ranch burger truck // tasty burgers on the hana highway!

the road to hana // would definitely recommend. and i have some tips: the rental car company tried to get us to upgrade to a four-wheel drive for it but eggboy rolled his eyes and was like really? which made me a little nervous but it ended up being 100% fine in our two-wheel drive. eggboy's a good slow driver though, so it was a smooth ride, free of car sickness, and yeah, some of my favorite parts were after the highway ends. past that, it's gravel-y and narrow at times, but it's not too bad. they tell you to really load up on snacks and gas in paia before hitting the road, so we pretty much cleared out the mana market as if we were gearing up for the apocalypse. but in reality, we went through about 1/3 of a tank of gas and there were taco trucks, farm stands, and barbecue stops the entire way to hana lol. i'm not mad because you know how i feel about cute road snacks, but just so you know for future planning, you're not gonna die if you don't fill your backseat with bread before you leave. 


-yeh!

#mollyontherange tour scenes

happy almost thanksgiving, friends!!! as the molly on the range tour winds down for the winter, i would like to take a mascara-less moment to be all verklempt and thankful for all of the wonderful huggable beans who i encountered these past few months all around the country. these wild months turned me into a person who purchases wellness shots of turmeric and wheat grass, but most importantly they were months that made my heart so full with warm fuzzies that it can only fit into metaphorical yoga pants these days. 

throughout my signings and demos, i collected new blogs to read, handwritten letters, gifts of custom sprinkle mixes and books and macaroni wall art (!!), and tips for new hotdishes to try. there were home cooked meals, potluck meals, and meals i would have never discovered were it not for local friends who showed me the way. and then there were the tofu macaroni t-shirt homies who i still can't stop giggling about. i saw so many old friends and made so many new ones that i think i started to build new muscles from hugging everyone so tightly (sorry if i was ever smelly). and with that i am packed with enough glee to last for a good long time. through this winter's hibernation at least. and ok maybe when it fades i'll write another book... is that how all of this works?

i am so so massively ginormously thankful for all of you who i got to spend time with during the molly on the range tour and i wish everybody the happiest, turkiest of thanksgivings!!! 

-yeh!!!! 


an extra special thank you to the photographers who captured the moments above:

photos 1, 2, 3, 19, 21, 23, 25, 29, 33 by 2nd truth photography with food styling + catering by quince mn at the pinch of yum studio for the motr + of a kind #akseverday event for // photos 6 + 30 by donny tsang at ellen bennett's #bennettbrunches series // photo 4 + 12 by liz clayman at the west elm + food book fair event with deb // photo 17 by donny tsang at the food52 motr launch party 

YONKERS ADVENTURE

contrary to what i believed this time last week, there are more than zero reasons to go to yonkers:

1. you get to ride the choo choo, and within a half hour of leaving grand central station, you can be in a cute little riverside town with bridges and a main street and a... 
2. seafood restaurant that is also a secret korean restaurant (!!!!)*. if you go there and disregard the seafood menu and smile and ask the owner for korean food, she will make you amazing korean food with black garlic and homemade kimchi. and she may even pour you a little cup of mushroom tea. everything about it is delicious and sweet.
3. line c3 might be there at a really awesome studio playing percussion music until the wee hours of the morning. and it is fine because you are fueled on thin mints and hot cross buns and yes, that korean food.

*ok, after further research, it doesn't look that secret, so here it is.

so if you're looking for a quick and easy little adventure out of the city {and your private jet is in the shop...} yonkers, i'd say, is a fun option!

 -yeh!