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These rhubarb and blueberry oatmeal bars are absolutely magical with the addition of cacao nibs and dried rose petals, yet they are really easy to make! (Jump directly to the recipe.)

Rhubarb & Blueberry Bars w/Cacao Nibs and Dried Rose Petals. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love

“This flavor combination is magical!” said my friend Alanna after she took a bite of my rhubarb blueberry oatmeal bar with cacao nibs and dried rose petals. I can’t take all the credit for it, as my friend Lily (of Kale & Caramel) had sent me a small jar of rose and cacao nibs along with her fabulous new cookbook Kale & Caramel (<–affiliate link). I have been saving the jar to sprinkle on something special and these bars were the exactly that. The cacao nibs in the jar inspired me to add them to this fruit oatmeal bar, elevating them from pretty great to magical.

Rhubarb & Blueberry Oatmeal Bars with Cacao Nibs and Rose Petals. Recipe and photo by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

I met Lily for the first time in LA a couple of years ago. We met up for ice cream in a shop out in Los Feliz, which is nowhere close to where I usually hang out when I go to LA. But I was willing to drive across town to meet up with the woman behind Kale & Caramel. Lily showed up and proceeded to amuse us with a hilarious story about the date she was going on (or already went on?) with a Catholic priest. Hanging out next to us were Lauren Graham (of Gilmore Girls and Parenthood) and Mae Whitman (of Parenthood and Arrested Development) and I probably never felt so LA in my entire life because when I usually hang out in LA, I eat Thai food with my local friends and never see celebrities. To this day, I occasionally random turn to AJ and say “remember the time we got ice cream with Lorelei Gilmore, Bland and Lily?”

Rhubarb & Blueberry Oatmeal Bars with Cacao Nibs and Rose Petals. Recipe and photo by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love. [click to continue…]

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This easy-to-make marbled Meyer lemon matcha cake is a blend of fragrant Meyer lemons and Matcha green tea and would be perfect with coffee or tea. (Jump directly to the recipe for Meyer Lemon and Matcha Green Tea Bundt Cake.)

Meyer lemon and matcha green tea bundt cake. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

This post was sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Macy’s; however all thoughts and opinions are my own.

I’m an odd mix of Asian heritage coupled with Midwest roots and California cuisine sensibilities. I grew up in St. Louis where my Taiwanese mom cooked every meal for us, often something Asian inspired. My Thanksgiving dinner was a mix of traditional Midwest American dishes like roast turkey, Stove-Top stuffing, and those instant mashed potatoes that came from a box, as well as Asian dishes like sticky rice casserole and napa cabbage with dried shrimp. After college I moved to San Francisco where I quickly adapted to the fresh, local and seasonal food movement that is so pervasive here (thanks to Alice Waters). Even celebrated food writer John Birdsall noticed it when he bought my recent cookbook Marbled, Swirled and Layered and commented on Facebook. “The recipes are all polish and rustic edges. They apply fruit and other produce in a way that marks them as Northern Californian, part of a tradition.”

Meyer lemon and matcha green tea bundt cake. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

So I’m thrilled that I’ll be at Macy’s Basement in San Francisco Union Square on Thursday, May 25th at 6pm for the celebration of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month! I’m even more excited about this event because I’ll be interviewing and talking to Top Chef winner Kristen Kish about her Asian heritage and how it has impacted her life. If you’ve watched the show or know Kristen at all, you know she has an interesting heritage similar to mine, born in Korea but adopted and raised in Michigan. I can’t wait to chat with her about her own story and Asian heritage. There’ll be some tasty Korean samples there, as well and a chance to get a photo with Kristen! I might even have a few cookbooks to sell there (or you can just bring a copy of a cookbook you already own and I’ll sign it). You can find details about the event at the Macy’s website or follow along with the hashtag #MacysAPAHM.

Macy's Asian Pacific American Heritage Month 2017. [click to continue…]

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This unique lemongrass and rhubarb cheesecake is beautifully fragrant with infused grassy citrus lemongrass and a stunning red rhubarb streak inside. (Jump directly to the recipe.)

Lemongrass and rhubarb cheesecake. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

About 15 years ago my brother called me up asking for a favor. He had moved from Missouri to do a fellowship at UC Davis in forensic psychology. It was suppose to be a two-year temporary move, after which he was planning on moving back to Missouri to be with his then girlfriend (now wife). At the end of the fellowship, he had a graduation dinner with his advisor and his girlfriend was scheduled to fly out to join him. Disaster struck when his girlfriend’s car broke down on the way to the airport (she lived in the middle of the state, about 2 hours away from the closest major airport). She couldn’t make it to his dinner.

Lemongrass Rhubarb Cheesecake by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

My brother called me up last minute and told me he had plans at a fancy restaurant but since she wasn’t able to make it, could I come in her place? The restaurant was a little farther away, in Napa, so I might have to borrow or rent a car. But he didn’t want to just bring anyone since it was a fancy restaurant and a graduation celebration. I would have to figure out what to wear a suit as well as there was a dress code at the restaurant. I said I was happy to join him. What was the restaurant? He replied back “I think it’s called French Laundry? Something like that.” I told him I’d go with him but he owed me big time for the last minute filling in.

Lemongrass and rhubarb cheesecake. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love. [click to continue…]

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These easy-to-make ham and Parmesan waffles are a great special occasion (or really any day) breakfast or brunch on the regular sweet waffles. (Jump directly to the savory waffle recipe.)

Ham and Parmesan Waffles (with a fried egg on top). Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin

This post was sponsored by Bisquick. I’m teaming up with Bisquick to bring you fun and innovative recipes using Bisquick. I was compensated for this post and for developing the recipe. However all opinions below are completely my own and not endorsed by Bisquick.

Lately I’ve been trying to get my waffle maker out more. It’s one of those pieces of kitchen equipment that takes up a lot of room and we keep it stored away in the back of the pantry. But if I had my way (and enough room) I’d keep it out on the counter to use more often. As it is I feel like I need to take it out more because if I own it, I should use it. Otherwise it’s just taking up valuable real estate in my tiny apartment (even if it it’s stored away). Thankfully I’ve recently discovered the joys of the savory waffle, which lead me to create these ham and Parmesan waffles.

Ham and Parmesan Waffles (with a fried egg on top). Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin

Ham and Parmesan Waffles (with a fried egg on top). Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin

Certainly I am not the first person to discover or create savory waffles. The combination of sweet and savory (with waffles) is evident in the popularity of chicken and waffles. But the waffles often served with friend chicken is the usual sweet waffles, often times served with maple syrup or encrusted with Swedish pearl sugar (the crunchy white sugar chunks and flakes that I adore). But a true savory waffle, like my ham and Parmesan waffles only has a hint of sweetness, which comes from the touch of sugar in the Bisquick mix and the glaze from the ham. To push it truly in the savory direction, I serve these waffles up with a fried egg (over-easy) and let the runny yolk act as the sauce for the waffles.

Ham and Parmesan Waffles (with a fried egg on top). Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin

Ham and Parmesan Waffles (with a fried egg on top). Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin [click to continue…]

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This super easy to make Meyer Lemon Shaker Tart is a simple adaptation of the classic lemon shaker tart with the addition of strawberries and rhubarb. (Jump directly to the recipe.)

Meyer Lemon Shaker Tart with Strawberries and Rhubarb. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

I hadn’t seen my friend Angela in forever. Or at least for a couple of years, which is insane because we only live a few miles away from each other. But that’s how San Francisco works. If you don’t live in the same neighborhood or adjacent neighborhoods, it’s like you live across the country. I see friends in LA more than I see folks that live here in San Francisco.

Strawberries and rhubarb and Meyer lemons! Photo by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

Meyer Lemon Shaker Tart with Strawberries and Rhubarb. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

Of course, once we got the ball rolling and scheduled a breakfast, she had to reschedule and then I had to reschedule. It the dance of the San Franciscans, and I know folks who have actually moved away from here because of this exact reason. Life gets in the way of life I guess. But that doesn’t mean we keep on trying. And this year, 2017, I am determined to make it happen more. I want to see my friends more and I want to get my life back.

Meyer Lemon Shaker Tart with Strawberries and Rhubarb. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

Meyer lemons soaking in sugar. Photo by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love. [click to continue…]

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Savory Sweet Potato Waffles [Sponsored Post]

April 7, 2017

These Savory Sweet Potato Waffles with Garlic Crème Fraîche make an incredible breakfast or brunch item for Easter or anytime of the year! (Jump directly to the recipe.) This post was sponsored by the California Sweetpotato Council. I’m teaming up with the California Sweetpotato Council to create an awesome sweet potato recipe. I was compensated […]

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Mushroom Braised Chicken

April 3, 2017

These wild mushroom braised chicken thighs are incredibly flavorful but are also incredibly easy to make. The secret is the long roasting time in the oven. (Jump directly to the recipe.) “Are you having a party?” asked the woman who waiting in line after me to check out at the big warehouse store. I looked […]

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Chocolate Hot Cross Buns

March 27, 2017

These chocolate hot cross buns are stuffed with dried cherries and chopped dark chocolate – a fun chocolate twist on the classic treat eaten on Good Friday! (Jump directly to the recipe.) I’ve been tinkering with a hot cross bun recipe for some time now. It’s a strange little baking project for me, a Taiwanese-American […]

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Bacon and Cheddar Biscuits and Gravy Recipe [Sponsored Post]

March 20, 2017

This easy biscuits and gravy recipe uses bacon and cheese in the biscuits along with sage and thyme in the sausage gravy, making it a great brunch dish! (Jump directly to the recipe.) This post was sponsored by Bisquick. I’m teaming up with Bisquick to bring you fun and innovative recipes using Bisquick. I was […]

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Carrot Honey Cheesecake with Almond Cinnamon Crust

March 13, 2017

This Carrot Honey Cheesecake inverts the classic carrot cake and cream cheese frosting into a creamy honey cheesecake with beautiful carrot spiced swirls. (Jump directly to the Carrot Honey Cheesecake recipe.) “So are you off of grains completely?” I asked my friend Tina. She had just celebrated a milestone birthday and my friend Peter was […]

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Salted Caramel Bars with Bourbon Ganache [Sponsored Post]

February 27, 2017

These salted caramel bar have an adult twist with a kick of smoky Kentucky bourbon in the dark chocolate ganache! “CONGRATULATIONS!!!” said the text from my friend Shauna. I hadn’t a clue what she was congratulating me on but anything that merits three exclamation points must be exciting. This was not the first time that […]

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Lemon Lime Bars with Pistachio Crust [Sponsored Post]

February 20, 2017

These easy-to-make sweet and tart lemon lime bars have crushed pistachios in the crust and will give you a huge smile when you bite into them This post was sponsored by Bisquick. I’m teaming up with Bisquick to bring you fun and innovative recipes using Bisquick. I was compensated for this post and for developing […]

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Strawberry Coffee Cake with Pistachio Crumb Topping

February 13, 2017

This easy-to-make strawberry coffee cake has a pistachio crumb topping and is not too sweet, making it perfect for afternoon coffee or tea. If you’ve ever been to my apartment, you know that I am not a tidy person. My partner AJ, however, happens to be extremely tidy. After living together for 15+ years, we’ve […]

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Mixed Berry Galette with Chocolate Crust [Sponsored Post]

February 6, 2017

This individual mixed berry galette with chocolate crust are pretty enough for a celebratory dinner but easy enough to make for a casual meal. I’ll be honest when I tell you that AJ and I don’t really celebrate Valentine’s Day that much. It’s not that we aren’t romantic (a friend of mine once called AJ […]

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Spicy Cajun Fried Chicken Wings [Sponsored Post]

January 30, 2017

The Spicy Cajun Fried Chicken Wings are super easy to make because they use Bisquick as their coating! (Jump directly to the recipe.) This post was sponsored by Bisquick. I’m teaming up with Bisquick to bring you fun and innovative recipes using Bisquick. I was compensated for this post and for developing the recipe. However […]

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Roasted Mushrooms on Toast from Small Victories

January 9, 2017

Roasted mushrooms on toast is an easy to make but elegant to serve appetizer for any dinner party! I’m late to the party but things have been hectic in the Eat the Love household what with my book promotions and the holidays. But one of the cookbooks that I’ve been obsessing over (other than my […]

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Happy New Year, 2017!

January 1, 2017
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