Oh Joy

the cutest party foods for kids... 14 Jul 2014

Mini Grilled Cheese Sandwiches by Heirloom LA

When we threw Ruby's little ice cream social, I wanted to make sure the kids ate a healthy meal before filling their bellies with the special ice cream treat. So I called upon my crazy-talented friend, Matt Poley from Heirloom LA, to come up with healthy and kid-friendly foods to feast on. What he came up with blew my mind and gave me so much inspiration for future meal-making for Ruby.

Fruit and Cheese Skewers by Heirloom LA

Almond Butter and Banana Sandwiches by Heirloom LA

Mini Crudite

Mac and Cheese Nuggets by Heirloom LA

The menu included (from top to bottom): mini grilled cheese sandwiches (in heart and star shapes); fruit, cheese, and mouse melon skewers; baby vegetable crudités (with ranch dressing for dipping), almond butter and banana sandwiches topped with sea salt, and finally, mac n' cheese nuggets (shaped like kids!). I mean, have you ever seen food look so cute?! Even the parents were chowing down on these beautiful morsels of goodness.

Oh Joy Mini Ice Cream Social

Matt made these mac n' cheese nuggets for the first-time ever for our party, and they were such a hit that he has kindly shared the recipe with us today. Thanks so much to Heirloom LA for these amazing treats and for giving me a serious dose of kid food inspiration!

See below for the recipe...

Continue reading " the cutest party foods for kids... " »

a mini ice cream social... 9 Jul 2014

Mini Ice Cream Social

With a new baby on the way, we thought it would be fun to do something just for Ruby and her friends to celebrate summer before our lives change and our family grows in the fall. So when our friends at Carmela Ice Cream created a new space at their W. 3rd shop to use for an ice cream party, we quickly took them up on the offer to spend a little time inside away from the summer heat to cool down with a few bites of food and scoops of ice cream with Ruby, her besties, and their parents.

Mini Ice Cream Social

Mini Ice Cream Social

We certainly tested the patience and decision-making of two year olds, as they had to wait in line for their turn to get ice cream and then they could only pick two flavors out of the four that we offered them. It was fun to see what they decided on.

Mini Ice Cream Social

Mini Ice Cream Social

Topping time! Everyone's favorite part...

Mini Ice Cream Social

Mini Ice Cream Social

As much as I usually love outdoor parties, it doesn't work as well with melting ice cream. And it was just nice to have a space where the kids could play and draw and get out all that extra pre and post-ice cream energy.

Raspberry Rose Sorbet

We loved this raspberry rose sorbet so much that Carmela kindly offered the recipe for us today!

Raspberry Rose Sorbet
(serves 8)

You'll need:
2 cups purified water
1 1/2 cup cane sugar
1 Tbsp rose water
1 1/2 cups fresh raspberries
1 tsp fresh-squeezed lemon juice

Here's how:
1. Combine water and sugar in medium saucepan. Remove from heat once sugar fully dissolves. Set syrup aside to cool.

2. Once syrup is cool, blend with raspberries, rose water and lemon juice. Strain into a glass or stainless steel bowl. Let cool for 4 hours or overnight.

3. Freeze in an ice cream machine according to manufacturer's instructions.

4. To make a fun summer drink, combine a couple scoops of sorbet with sparkling water!

Raspberry Rose Sorbet Spritzer

P.S. We made sure to feed the kids, too, before letting them inhale all that ice cream. Stay tuned for some pretty fun, kid-friendly food coming next week!

{Photos by Bob Cho. Ice cream by Carmela Ice Cream in Los Angeles. Plates and decorations by Oh Joy for Target.}

{oh joy eats} hero shop in downtown la... 7 Jul 2014

Hero Shop / Los Angeles

Sandwiches are pretty much my jam, and it can be hard to find a really a good sandwich in Los Angeles (I am from Philly, afterall). So I'm always excited when a new place pops up that offers a fun alternative to the usual sandwich. Hero Shop in Downtown Los Angeles takes a twist on bánh mì sandwiches with really delicious fillings and flavors mixed with the traditional garnishes of the Vietnamese style sandwich.

Hero Shop / Los Angeles

Hero Shop / Los Angeles

Hero Shop / Los Angeles

Some of our favorites include the Spicy & Sour Chicken, Lemongrass Tofu, and BBQ Pork sandwiches. They mix a bit of spice and tanginess into a filling and satisfying sandwich that I'm craving more of already.

Hero Shop | 130 E. 6th Street | Los Angeles, CA 90014 | 213.265.7561

{Photos by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy}

parent's night out... 12 Jun 2014

Room Forty / Los Angeles

Room Forty / Los Angeles

Room Forty / Los Angeles

Before I became a parent, I said I would never become one of those people who doesn't get to hang out with my friends as much. But it totally happened. Life changes, you get busier, and you have to make a way bigger effort to maintain friendships—especially with other friends who have kids. Because, chances are, they've been too busy to make plans, too. Bob and I are usually pretty good about having date nights, but it's more rare that we get to see a handful of our friends all together in a kid-free and relaxing adult environment.

So I thought it would be fun to gather a small group of our friends who are parents together to have a nice dinner out all together at Room Forty's tasting room at The Fig House here in L.A. It was a way to have a private dinner that was cozy enough to feel like we were at someone's house without all the clamour and difficulty of a big reservation at a restaurant.

I chose a mix of friends who didn't all know each other super well but had a couple things in common in addition to being parents—everyone was creative in some way and at least one person in the couple was a self-employed business owner.

Room Forty / Los Angeles

Room Forty / Los Angeles

Room Forty / Los Angeles

To start off the evening, I thought it would be fun to have wrist corsages for the girls and boutonneires for the guys to really relive the days of our youth. It brought me back to my first date with Bob—the senior prom! Botany Flowers made some beautiful wildflower versions for each place setting, and we had our own "Bachelorette" moments pinning them on.

Room Forty / Los Angeles

Room Forty / Los Angeles

It's funny to hear what goes on in a dinner with ten parents—from labor stories to our shower habits to drooling over the food which was way more amazing than anything we'd be having at home.

Room Forty / Los Angeles

Room Forty's chef, Libry Darusman, created an amazing menu for us to enjoy which included these drool-inducing dishes:

-Gin agar noodles with green olive bolognese and blue cheese

-Fennel soubise, house-made tofu, compressed pear, regianno foam, and crystal flower

-Diver scallops, raw coco mustard, butter popcorn tortellini, and puffed black rice

-Black cod, beet duxelle, nicoise pain perdu, red wine butter, and tomato foam

-Gazpazzo consommé with smoked street cart fruit

-Rib eye cap, cheek pastrami, shitake tartare, smoked corn jam, carrot confit, and pea ice cream

Room Forty / Los Angeles

All topped off at the end with this S'mores made of graham soil, chocolate and coffee ganache, housemade marshmallow, and hickory smoke. I'll be sharing the recipe for this with you guys next week as it's too good not to duplicate at home!

Room Forty / Los Angeles

At the end of the night, we got to hear how the chef made various dishes (um, like the butter popcorn tortellini!) which is such a treat and something we never get to experience at a regular restaurant. There's nothing like getting a custom catered dinner on an intimate scale. With full bellies and refreshed minds, we all came out of it feeling like we had such a special night just for us and walked away with a stronger connection to everyone else we dined with that night. Catching up with friends over food is probably one of my favorite things to do ever. Thanks so much to Room Forty for the amazing meal and beautiful space to have our dinner.

I hope our night out will inspire you to make time for yourself and make a special night out to reconnect with your nearest and dearest.

P.S. As a catering company Room Forty's primary function is private events, but as big believers in community, they’ve opened up their tasting room for private dinners like the one I hosted. If you're in Los Angeles, it's a treat I hightly recommend.

{Dinner by Room Forty at the Fig House, flowers by Botany Flowers, photos by Ryan Haack.}

{oh joy eats} sweet rose creamery... 12 May 2014

Sweet Rose Creamery / Los Angeles

One of my favorite Los Angeles ice cream shops, Sweet Rose Creamery, has made its way to a more central location—hooray! Ice cream is literally one of my favorite things on earth, so shops that offer one-of-a-kind and seasonal flavors are always a must in my book.

During this visit, we got the cinnamon buttermilk sherbet with mandaquats and carnival sprinkles. It was creamy and tart with a nice touch of cinnamon as contrast, I couldn't stop eating it. In combination with the matcha green tea ice cream, it was a perfect and unexpected pairing.

Sweet Rose Creamery / Los Angeles

Sweet Rose Creamery / Los Angeles

Sweet Rose Creamery / Los Angeles

In addition to ice cream, they also carry a nice selection of pastries. We had the sticky bun with walnuts which was super light, buttery, and flaky—like a croissant—with the magical addition of the sticky caramel sauce on top.

We're expected to have a heat wave this week in L.A., so it just might be another excuse to go back!

Sweet Rose Creamery | 7565 Beverly Boulevard | Los Angeles, CA 90036 | 310.260.2663

{Photos by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy}

{field trip} twig & twine... 6 May 2014

Twig and Twine / Los Angeles

Twig and Twine / Los Angeles

Twig and Twine / Los Angeles

I love shops where you can just walk in and feel instantly inspired, refreshed, and walk away with the perfect gift for so many occasions. One of my favorites in Los Angeles is Twig & Twine.

Twig and Twine / Los Angeles

Twig and Twine / Los Angeles

Twig and Twine / Los Angeles

I love the mix of both flowers and gifts. The store has so many beautiful corners and vignettes that seem to tell a story all their own.

Twig & Twine | 716 N. Virgil Avenue | Los Angeles, CA 90029 | 323.660.4100

{Photos by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy}

{oh joy eats} eggslut in los angeles... 30 Apr 2014

Eggslut Los Angeles

One of my favorite things in life is an egg sandwich for breakfast. There is something so soothing, so filling, and so wholesome about having eggs in the morning. It feels like a somewhat healthy meal (even if surrounded by butter and crispy bacon). I've visiting the Eggslut truck before, but so happy they now have an actual location open every day of the week at Grand Central Market in Downtown Los Angeles.

Eggslut Los Angeles

Eggslut Los Angeles

And then this coddled egg over potato purée poached in a glass jar—it's like savory breakfast by the spoonful. If you're an egg lover or egg sandwich fan, you must go. They have one of the best egg sandwiches I've had (and I've had a lot of them).

Eggslut | Grand Central Market | 317 S. Broadway | Los Angeles, CA 90013

{Photos by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy}

the best tuna fish sandwich... 21 Apr 2014

Fancy Tuna Sandwich Recipe by Black Hogg

I have to admit, I love sandwiches. But I rarely make them at home because I feel like what I make at home is never as good as the sandwiches I can get at a really good sandwich shop. But sometimes, nothing is more satisfying and quick to make than a sandwich. Today, I want to show you how to make a variation on an often under-rated sandwich—a tuna fish sandwich. They're often seen as a default "cafeteria" sandwich, but when made well, it can be so good (and good for you!) full of protein, iron, and potassium.

Our friends at Black Hogg (who recently opened their new sandwich shop in Downtown LA called Hero Shop) showed us how to make their very tasty version of a tuna fish sandwich. And, it can even be made without mayo, for who want a lighter version. Here's how...

Continue reading " the best tuna fish sandwich... " »

currently snacking on... 14 Apr 2014

mini pies

Last week, I picked up these mini pies from Michael Mina's new Bourbon Steak restaurant that opened here in the Glendale area of Los Angeles. And because mini pies are my favorite kind of pie, I had to find some recipes to try and recreate them. Here are a few if you want to join me... apple rasberry pie, chocolate thin mint pie, and my own mini frozen key lime pie.

Any other mini pie recipes you know and love?

{Photo by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy}

{oh joy eats} pine and crane... 10 Apr 2014

Pine and Crane / Los Angeles

Pine and Crane / Los Angeles

Pine and Crane / Los Angeles

Pine & Crane is my newest go-to spot. I've been there four times in the last ten days. It's a casual, quick, and super tasty Taiwanese-Chinese restaurant in Silver Lake. I almost don't want to tell you about it in fear that it will get too busy, but you guys know I want you to eat well, too ;)

Pine and Crane / Los Angeles

Pine and Crane / Los Angeles

Pine and Crane / Los Angeles

Most of the produce is sourced from the owner's family farm, so everything is super fresh and local. Some of my favorites include the spicy shrimp wontons, the trumpet mushrooms, and the scallion pancake. Oh, they also have boba milk tea which is a rare find in Silver Lake!

Pine and Crane / Los Angeles

And by the way, it's super kid-friendly. I've gone with Ruby every time I've been there and our crew of friends that consists of both toddlers and tiny babies. Pine and Crane just feels like a spot you can just show up to and get an authentic and delicious Chinese meal. 

Pine and Crane | 1521 Griffith Park Blvd. | Los Angeles, CA 90026 | 323.668.1128

RECEIVE OH JOY POSTS VIA EMAIL

my latest video

oh joy! elsewhere...

recent favorite posts

blog courtesy

  • All layouts on this blog are created solely for the {oh joy!} blog. I enjoy sharing information and love when others enjoy my finds enough to post the links on their own sites. However, I ask that you do not use my exact layouts or designs without permission or without noting its origins on your post. All photos "by Oh Joy" must also be credited and linked to the original post.

    Any comments which are deemed inappropriate ~ including general spam, offensive comments or rude language, self-promotional spam, or other items unrelated to the post ~ will be deleted.

    Oh Joy!® is a registered trademark of Nantaka Joy®, Inc. All rights reserved.

disclosure

  • Oh Joy contains paid advertising banners and some contextual affiliate links. An affiliate link means that we receive commission on sales of the products that are linked to in my posts. So if you click on a link and make a purchase from an affiliate site, then I may make a commission from that purchase. I also work with affiliate links, on occasion, on my Pinterest page. The content of my posts or pins are all items, things, and experiences I genuinely like and will only work with affiliates that fit my aesthetic and brand.

    Any products which have been gifted or provided gratis to Oh Joy for review is noted with an asterisk (*) or c/o (courtesy of) at the bottom of the post and are only posted if a good fit for the Oh Joy aesthetic and content. Any sponsored giveaways or posts will be noted as such.

Blog powered by TypePad
Member since 09/2005

Federated Media Publishing - Home

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...