Month: May 2011

Apple Cobbler for you, my sweet.

Apple Cobbler for you, my sweet.

Cobbler is something I’ve been baking for years, but don’t make very often, because I feel that it’s too special.  It’s like going to the Griffith Observatory, I don’t make my way there all the time, but when I do I’m in awe of the views, remember my love for science, and blanket myself in the night sky!  That’s my relationship with cobbler, everytime I bake it I swear OFF all other desserts!  Why wouldn’t I?  It’s cosmic, it belongs to the STARS!

All photos taken by: Nicole Presley

Ingredients for Apple Filling:

6 – cups sliced apple (you’ll need about 4 apples, I use granny smith)

1/2 – cup water plus 3 tablespoons

1 – cup brown sugar

1 – teaspoon cinnamon

1 – teaspoon vanilla extract

2 1/2 – tablespoons corn starch


In a big pot over medium high flame, add 3 tablespoons of water, sliced apples and brown sugar.  Mix to combine, then let cook for a minute or so.

Then add cinnamon and vanilla.  Give your apple mixture a nice stir, and let it cook for 5 to 10 minutes. It will look like a nice brown syrup is sitting at the bottom of all the apples.

Continue to let it cook, until it starts to boil. Then take a small cup and add 1/4 cup of water and cornstarch. Mix to combine, then slowly add it to the apple mixture. Mix constantly and once a thick gel forms around fruit then add additional 1/4 cup water and continue mixing.

Once apple mixture is well combined. Turn off flame and set to the side.

Time to preheat the oven: 350 degrees fahrenheit.

Ingredients for cobbler cake:

1 1/8 – cups sugar

3 – cups flour

1 – teaspoon baking soda

1- teaspoon baking powder

1/2 – teaspoon salt

1 – cup cold butter (2 sticks)

2 – large eggs

3 1/2 – tablespoons half and half

1 – teaspoon vanilla

1 – cup sour cream


In  a large bowl mix all dry ingredients (sugar, flour, baking soda and powder, salt) together.  Then add in cold butter, and with two butter knives start to cut in butter into the flour mixture in a criss cross motion.  This will take about 10 minutes. Flour mixture will eventually become crumbly with the butter pieces the size of peas.  Set to the side.

In a medium bowl add eggs, half and half, vanilla, and sour cream. Then take a fork and as DEVO would say… WHIP IT! Whip it good.

Now add egg/sour cream mixture to flour mixture and mix with a wooden spoon until combined/moistened. Divide cobbler cake batter in half.

In a 9 x 13 inch greased metal baking pan, add half of the cobbler cake batter, and spread evenly across.

Now take your lovely apple filling and slowly spread across the top a little at a time until completely covered.

Now add remaining cake cobbler mixture to top in big drops to try and cover top, leaving some apple filling exposed.

Ingredients for cobbler topping:

1/2 – cup sugar

1/2 – cup pecans (chopped)

Lastly take cobbler and sprinkle with sugar and pecans!

Bake for 60 minutes or until tester toothpick comes out clean. Your cobbler will be golden and your kitchen will smell sweet.

🙂 Cobbler Tip: I like to eat mine warm with ice cream on the side, and let it melt a little.

Apple Cobbler for you, my sweet
For Max, with Love!

Nibbles & Feasts features Presley’s Pantry Egg Rolls!

Nibbles & Feasts features Presley’s Pantry Egg Rolls!

What a fun day! Ericka my twitter bestie is featuring my egg rolls on Nibbles and Feasts! Kill two birds with one stone…. get the recipe and check out her amazing blog while your at it.

Indian Food Review: Ma Jasmin’s

Indian Food Review: Ma Jasmin’s

I love exploring at the farmers market.  I walk around looking at all the vegetables imagining what new dishes I could make and how to incorporate the fresh crop.  But most of the time all that walking, shopping, and reflective thought leaves my tummy hungry.  A few weeks ago, I stumbled across Ma Jasmin’s.  I was greeted by a lovely husband and wife team who were busy getting their goods out to the long line of hungry patrons.  The smell of the grill was hypnotizing.  The light scent of coriander cemented me in the queue. I looked over the menu and couldn’t decide.  It all sounded delightful.

With a giddy tone in my voice, I ordered the Madras Chicken Kebab!  Remembering all the delicious kebabs I had gobbled down in London, I waited with great anticipation. Turns out it was one of the best I had ever tasted.  Thank you Indian food gods for bringing Ma Jasmin’s into my path!  I’ll never have to wish I was overseas to satisfy my kebab cravings again!

Since then I have been back a few times, trying out all the flavors MJ’s has to offer. Making my rounds through the produce of the farmers market, but really there with the intention of having more gourmet Indian cuisine.  As luck would have it, I found several dishes that were unbelievable and pleased my palate to no end.  The Beef Samosa Rolls were a HUGE hit with my family.  Even an hour and a half after we had savored our meal, they were still the topic of conversation.  Couldn’t get them off our minds!

My mom is a vegetarian, and I live to make her happy, so I was thrilled to see that Ma Jasmin’s offered a couple of veggie dishes.  Two on the hot menu, but many more on the cold menu.  Mommy ordered the Tandoori Paneer Skewer wrap.  She’s hooked, and upset that she can only enjoy the wrap twice a week, when MJ’s shows up at the farmers market.  I tell her it’ll taste that much better! 🙂  The proof is in the tandoori…. it left us wanting MORE!

Here’s a picture of Sage and Sonny Sehmi, the genius creators behind Ma Jasmin’s!

Find them at:

LAMC Farmer’s Market at Barnsdall Art Park

4800 Hollywood Blvd. Los Angeles, Ca 90027

Wednesday 12p.m. to 6p.m.


Alhambra Certified Farmer’s Market

60 S. Monterey Street. Alhambra, Ca 91804

Sunday 8:30a.m. to 1:00p.m.

All photo taken by: Nicole Presley

You won’t be disappointed!

In the SNACK of time: Cakewich

In the SNACK of time: Cakewich

All photos taken by: Nicole Presley

Snackas of the day: Raspberry Red Velvet Cakewich by Cake Monkey.  Raspberry cream filling sandwiched by two pieces of heavenly red velvet cake, then dipped in chocolate.  It’s no joke.  I had these little treasures for the first time while I was pregnant with my son.  Cake Monkey had a pop-up store in Silverlake, and a girlfriend and I went on a rummaging hunt to find them.  It was well worth the hassle, and we nearly bought out the entire menu…. couldn’t help it, we were excited!  Since then I have sampled many of their sweets, but find myself going back to the Raspberry Red Velvet Cakewich.  It leaves me for a loss of words.  Speechless.  I don’t want to think while I’m eating this cakewich.  I just want to lose myself in the divine world of Cake Monkey!


Here’s a picture of the packaging:

Donut Poppity Pops!

Donut Poppity Pops!

I celebrate life everyday, but when there is a party to behold not only will I be there with bells on, I intend to have a BALL!  This past weekend one of my cousin’s turned 25, and held a theme party (hence the pink Marie Antoinette wig).  I wanted to make something sweet, simple and fun since she was having a candy bar along with a tribe of other sweets that included cupcakes and cookie sandwiches.  Donut Poppity Pops…  You are the winner!  The perfect hybrid between a lollipop and something cakey sweet!

Photos taken by: Nicole Presley and Mando Lopez

Ingredients for Donut Pops:

24 – glazed donut holes (I used Winchell’s)

24- small marshmallows (I use Kraft)

24 – lollipop sticks

1 – 11.5 ounce bag of milk chocolate chips or white chocolate chips or both (I use Nestle)

1 – cup dyed coconut…. any color you like

candy sprinkles

Take a small marshmallow and push it an inch down lollipop stick then place/push donut hole on top.  Repeat until all donut holes are prepared.  Set to the side.

In a double boiler, or in a pot with boiling water and a metal bowl sitting on top, add chocolate chips and wait until they get shiny, then mix with a rubber spatula.  Mix constantly until chocolate is melted smooth.

Then take a donut pop and dip it into the melted chocolate.  Then hold chocolate covered donut pop over a plate and decorate with candy sprinkles or coconut or whatever else your heart desires.


Line a flat surface with wax paper and place decorated donut pop down for chocolate to dry/harden.  Continue making the next one and so on.  Let dry for 3 hours depending on weather.  If it’s super hot in your kitchen place in refrigerator.

That’s it…your done!  Take them to a party or enjoy your Donut Poppity Pops at home!


Enchiladas de papa con chorizo or soyrizo with a huevo on top, New Mexico Style.

Enchiladas de papa con chorizo or soyrizo with a huevo on top, New Mexico Style.

In my dream last night, I was the lead vocalist for a mariachi group that solely showcased at a drive-in theater.  I remember my outfit had to be immaculate, and shining bright because I was going to have Luis Bunuel’s “Los Olvidados” playing as my backdrop. Flickering in my memory all the headlights from the cars were blinding my view, it was like a thick fog that I couldn’t reach through.  I sang “Por Un Amor” over and over again. It was the only song we were hired to play, and even when we took requests, it was the only song people asked for.  By the time I made it home my shoes were torn and my trenzas were ragged, the drive-in must have made a prisoner of me.  But here’s the highlight of the dream…. When I arrived home there was a big platter of enchiladas wrapped in plastic waiting for me at my doorstep, my mouth watered, I sniffed over the plastic wrap trying to detect their scent.  I stumbled over my own feet giving all my concentration to the glorious plate, as I was about to sit down and enjoy my cheesy surprise…. I WOKE UP to my son holding my ear in one hand and touching my cheek with the other.  I couldn’t go into my day without fulfilling my craving.  I HAD to have those ENCHILADAS that I was about to ravenously devour in my sleep!

All photos taken by: Nicole Presley

Ingredients for Enchilada Sauce:

1 – large onion peeled

3 – garlic cloves peeled

3 – ounces new mexico dried chile

3 – ounces california dried chile

1 – large dried passilla chile

3 – tablespoons salt

7 – cups water

In a big pot add water, 2 tablespoons of salt, all chiles, onion, and garlic cloves. Bring to a boil.  Boil for 20 minutes. Water will turn dark brown.

Remove chiles and garlic cloves from water. Discard onion. Do not discard water, you will be using it in the next step. Remove stems from chiles, then add to a blender along with 2 cups of water from the pot, garlic cloves, and a tablespoon of salt.  Blend for 2 minutes.

Once blended get a big bowl and add 1/2 cup of water from pot into the bowl, then take the blended chile and put through a strainer. It will be thick. Add a little bit of water from pot to chile strainer and scrape with a spoon. Use up to 3 cups of water for the entire process. It’s time consuming but your enchilada sauce will be clean and super tasty. Set to the side.

Enchilada Ingredients:

1 – cup vegetable oil plus 3 tablespoons

2 – medium sized Idaho potatoes (peeled and cubed)

black pepper for seasoning to your liking

1 – cup onion (diced small)

6 – ounces pork chorizo or soyrizo (remove casing before cooking)

1 – pound grated colby jack cheese ( I use Tillamook)

2.25 – ounces Lindsay sliced black olives

10 to 12 – king size corn tortillas ( I use Guerrero)

6 – Eggs (I use Horizon Organic)


Preheat oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit.

In a large frying pan, over medium high flame, add 2 tablespoons oil. Allow to get hot and add cubed potatoes. Season with black pepper to your liking. Fry Idaho potatoes for 10 to 15 minutes. Then add 1/2 cup of chopped onion and fry for 3 to 5 minutes. Then add chorizo or soyrizo. Remember to remove casing. Break up chorizo/soyrizo with a spatula, and mix into Idaho potato onion mixture. If you are using chorizo, fry for 10 minutes. If you are using soyrizo fry for 5. Then take off flame and set to the side in a bowl.

Take two large frying pans.  Fill one of your frying pans with 1 cup vegetable oil and heat over a med-high flame.  Allow to get hot. In the other frying pan, fill with 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil over a medium flame and wait till it gets hot, then pour in 3 to 4 cups of your enchilada sauce. Let the oil and chile combine then lower your flame very low, so that your chile will simmer.

Dip your corn tortilla into the (Oil) frying pan, and let it fry on each side for 30 seconds. You don’t want your tortilla to be too hard that it ends up looking like a tostada, but you don’t want it to rip in the rolling process either. What you’re looking for is a tortilla that is slightly hard but still bends.

Then with tongs… take your fried tortilla and immerse it into the enchilada sauce.

Then take it out and place it on a plate to fill with the fillings.

Start with a tablespoon of the Idaho potato chorizo/soyrizo mixture and a small spinkle of onions.

Then add a few Lindsay olives and a small handful of cheese.

Gently roll into a tube shape.

Then place in a 9×13 baking dish. Then start the frying process all over again until you fill your baking dish with as many enchiladas as you can.

Once they are all settled in, take remaining enchilada sauce from hot pan and spoon over top. Then sprinkle cheese and a few Lindsay olives on top as well.

Place in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until cheese on top is melted and slightly crunchy!

🙂 For estilo New Mexico, fry an egg sunny side up and place it on top of two or three enchiladas. In my opinion…. that is absolutely worthy of a dream!




In the SNACK of time: Cookies and Milk

In the SNACK of time: Cookies and Milk

Snackas of the day: Eleni’s “Beyond Butterscotch” cookies with a tall drink of milk.  What grabbed my attention initially to these cookies was the packaging.  I thought it to be super adorable and clever.  Once I tasted the actual cookie the packaging became secondary.  This little snackas holds the perfect blend of butterscotch with a twist of coconut.  It’s not a soft cookie, it’s the kind you dunk in milk or coffee!  Just as a warning, it will be incredibly hard to keep them in the house for longer than a day.  They will be GONE in no time!

Here’s a picture of the packaging: side view

A look up top….