Lemon Poppy Seed Loaf for a Birthday

Posted on: March 23, 2014

Lemon Poppy Seed Loaf | Jessica's Dinner Party

It was my sister’s 30th birthday a few weeks ago and per tradition I baked something for her. Ideally, I would’ve liked to make a rich, creamy cheesecake or something more unconventional with hints of lemongrass and tropical fruit, but delicacies of that sort don’t fair too well during transpacific journeys. You see, my sister lives in New York and me Seoul. It’s been years since we’ve lived in the same city, but we’ve managed to stay close and be involved in each other’s lives (including this site!).  We’re actually closer today than when we were living under the same roof, haha. It’s a bit disappointing to be so far on away, especially on such a milestone of a birthday like 30, but I know my brother-in-law did something very special for her (the after maths of it which I am subject to ie. lots of YouTube videos of Phantom of the Opera…good thing I like musicals too!).

A Tea Class in the Spring

Posted on: March 16, 2014

A Tea Class in the Spring | Jessica's Dinner Party  A Tea Class in the Spring | Jessica's Dinner Party

Last November, I had the opportunity to host a tea seminar for work.  Even though it was for my job, it felt more like a personal project to me, one that I put a lot of heart and soul into.  I was satisfied with the outcome, but because it was my first time organizing and running an event there were things I could have done better and lots of room for improvement.  I wasn’t sure if I would ever get the chance to plan another class (at least at this job), but another opportunity sprung up randomly and the last two weeks were frantically devoted to putting together another tea class.

(Pictures courtesy of my coworker)

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The Winning Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Posted on: March 7, 2014

The Winning Pineapple Upside Down Cake  | Jessica's Dinner Party

And the winner is…

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Pineapple Upside Down Cake Showdown

Posted on: March 5, 2014

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Showdown | Jessica's Dinner Party

Recently at work we’ve been brainstorming new cake ideas.  One dessert that has come up as a possible contender is pineapple upside down cake.  Everyone liked the look of the cake, but no one had really tasted it before.  While common in the U.S., pineapple upside down cake is not that well-known in Korea.  In fact, I’ve only encountered it one time over here.  It was at a trendy restaurant and their take on it was awful to say the least.  The R&D pâtissier was also whipping up his own bizarre version of it, so I decided to take the matter into my own hands and give everyone an authentic, or at least a tasty rendition of this classic.  The only problem was that although I had eaten a good amount of pineapple upside down cakes, I had never made one before!  Uh oh…I immediately got busy and started searching for recipes.

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Lemon Berry Tart à la Coconut Oil

Posted on: February 26, 2014

Lemon Berry Tart à la Coconut Oil by Jessica's Dinner Party

Last weekend we had planned to host a dinner party for family friends, but unexpectedly had to postpone when one of our guests became bedridden with pneumonia. I was totally bummed we had to cancel…obviously because our family friend was sick…but also because I was really looking forward to making this tart.  The lemony crème pâtissière topped with fresh berries is perfectly balanced: not too sweet or cloyingly acidic. I made it on a whim last year and it was one of the most memorable desserts I made in 2013.  I was about to resign to the fact that I would have to write about it another time when I thought, why not make it anyways? Dinner party or no dinner party, everybody could use a sunny pep right now. We’re approaching the last bit of winter but spring could use a little beckoning with this zingy dessert.

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