Oh Joy

cap'n crunch chocolate chip cookies... 31 Mar 2014

Cap'n Crunch Chocolate Chip Cookies

Our friends over at Black Hogg here in Los Angeles recently started serving some amazing sandwiches for lunch. The restaurant is right by my house so I'm pretty addicted to their sandwiches and their homemade chocolate chip cookies (which blow my mind and are currently my favorite cookie of choice). Made with the addition of Cap'n Crunch cereal and peanut butter chips on top of regular chocolate chips, it's a chewy crunchy protein-packaged cookie I can't get enough of. I begged them to share the recipe, and they kindly said yes!

Cap'n Crunch Chocolate Chip Cookies

Cap'n Crunch Chocolate Chip Cookies 
(makes 6 large cookies or 12 small cookies)

You'll need:

8 oz softened unsalted butter (= 1 cup)

3/4 cup light brown sugar

1/2 oz Glucose (which makes cookies chewier than regular sugar) (= 1/16 cup)

1 medium egg

1/2 tsp vanilla

1 1/2 cup flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp kosher salt

2-1/2 oz chocolate chips (= 1/3 cup)

2-1/2 oz peanut butter cups (chopped) (= 1/3 cup)

1 oz rolled oats (= 1/8 cup)

3 cups Cap'n Crunch cereal

1 oz chopped hazelnuts (= 1/8 cup)

Cap'n Crunch Chocolate Chip Cookies

Here's how:

1. Mix sugar, glucose, and butter for 1 minute with a handheld or standing mixer.

2. Add egg and vanilla, and mix for 1 more minute.

3. Add flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix together for 1-2 minutes.

4. Add chocolate chips, peanut butter cups, oats, cap'n crunch, and hazelnuts and quickly mix it all together for 1 minute.

5. With a 3 oz ice cream scoop, scoop dough onto a greased cookie sheet. Cover with parchment paper and press down each cookie with a flat object like a plate. Freeze for 1 hour.

6. Bake at 350 for 5 minutes, rotate pan, and bake for another 4-5 minutes. Remove and allow to cool.

You'll get chewy, crunchy, caramelized cookies that are unlike anything you've had before. Thanks so much to Eric and Jon at Black Hogg for their amazing food and for sharing this fun recipe with us today! 

UPDATE: Sorry you guys for any issues you had with the recipe. There were some miscalculations when we converted it from restaurant portions to at-home portions, and I apologize! The recipe has been corrected and updated as of April 8, 2014 and is now correct.

{Photos by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy}

currently snacking on... 24 Feb 2014

Bo Nuage Los Angeles

Sometimes you just want a dessert that doesn't make you want to fall asleep afterwards. I recently had these beautiful meringue cloud cakes from Bo Nuage in West Hollywood. Whipped cream is sandwiched between layers of meringue, then covered in shaved chocolate. With flavors like dark chocolate, salted caramel, passionfruit, and almond, they make for a sweet afternoon treat with a cup of coffee or tea...

{Photos by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy}

currently snacking on... 11 Feb 2014

Bramble Bakeshop in Echo Park, Los Angeles

Bramble Bakeshop in Echo Park, Los Angeles

After yesterday's announcement, I seriously cannot thank you guys enough for your support and excitement! Short of my wedding day and the day Ruby was born, it was one of the best days ever.

Now back to regular programming...I'm not vegan, but living in LA I've come across more and more vegan bakeries that are surprisingly good. There's a new bakery in Echo Park called Bramble Bakeshop who makes the prettiest vegan baked goods I've ever seen. My favorite are these lemon linzer cookies—tart, sweet, and crunchy—they're like a lemon pie all scooped up in a perfect little cookie. And these smoked almond brownies which are so fudgy and delicious...

{Photo by Oh Joy}

{oh joy eats} breakfast at république... 27 Jan 2014

Oh Joy Eats / République in Los Angeles

Oh Joy Eats / République in Los Angeles

It can be really hard to find good breakfast spots that are open during the week. So when the new L.A. hot spot, République, decided to offer breakfast in addition to dinner, I had to see what it was all about. And, guys, I am hooked. While they don't serve savory breakfasts yet, the sweet breakfast they offer is off the chain. These are some of the best pastries I've had in Los Angeles. Period. Crème brûlée donuts, canelés, cookies, éclair, homemade breads...all so fresh and melt-in-your-mouth good. Get ready to drool...

Oh Joy Eats / République in Los Angeles

Oh Joy Eats / République in Los Angeles

Oh Joy Eats / République in Los Angeles

Oh Joy Eats / République in Los Angeles

Oh Joy Eats / République in Los Angeles

The space itself is gorgeous, too. It's light and airy and full of beautiful, architectural details...

Oh Joy Eats / République in Los Angeles

Oh Joy Eats / République in Los Angeles

Oh Joy Eats / République in Los Angeles

They also have some of the most comforting morning beverages like Hong Kong Milk Tea, Vietnamese Coffee, and a slew of others that aren't your everyday coffee and tea selections. I've been there twice in the last week if that says anything...

République | 624 S. La Brea Avenue | Los Angeles, CA 90036 | 310.362.6115

{Photos by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy} 

party portraits with art/mo... 24 Jan 2014

Art/Mo Project Portraits

Last year, we were part of the first Art/Mo Project where photographer Jennifer Young and balloon artist Jihan Zencirli of Geronimo take these amazing and fun party portraits. They're having another session next week in LA and had to share this opportunity with you guys for those who are local.

Art/Mo Project Portraits

Here are a few images from our session as well as some of my other favorites. The next one will be this coming Wednesday, January 29th-Friday, January 31st in Echo Park at the Geronimo Studio. Each session is $200 and will be around 20 minutes. Participants will receive 10-15 hi-res images that will be available for online download. Anyone interested can email artmoproject@gmail.com with what day you are interested in scheduling a session.

It's so much fun! Ruby has a ball running around in all that confetti!

{Photos by Jennifer Young}

my favorite lobster rolls in {los angeles}... 15 Jan 2014

Son of a Gun lobster roll

Lobster rolls are probably my favorite kind of sandwich. It can be really hard to find a good lobster roll on the West Coast, so once I find a good one, I keep going back for more. Here are a few of my favorite lobster rolls in L.A. right now...

The tiniest lobster roll in all the land is from Son of a Gun. It's bite-sized, buttery perfection and should not be shared.

Son of a Gun | 8370 W. 3rd Street | Los Angeles, CA 90048 | 323.782.9033

Blue Plate Oysterette lobster roll

I tried the lobster roll from Santa Monica's Blue Plate Oysterette at a lobster roll showdown called the Lobster Rumble a couple months ago, and they had my vote for best lobster roll that night. The roll has the perfect mix of butter, salt, and creaminess with just the right touch of herbs and spices.

Blue Plate Oysterette | 1355 Ocean Avenue, Santa Monica, CA 90402 | 310.576.3474

Salt Air lobster roll

Finally, a great lobster roll to share is this bun of goodness from Salt Air in Venice. It's a pure and simple lobster roll that tastes fresh, light, and just creamy and buttery enough. Get it with the mushroom toast, and you'll have a meal that's seriously legit.

Salt Air | 1616 Abbott Kinney Blvd. | Venice, CA 90291 | 310.396.9333

So, are you guys drooling yet? Do you love lobster rolls as much as I do? And if so, what are your favorites where you live?

{Photos by Oh Joy}

{oh joy eats} hinoki & the bird... 7 Nov 2013

Hinoki and the Bird | Photo by Bonnie Tsang

Hinoki and the Bird | Photo by Bonnie Tsang

Hinoki and the Bird | Photo by Bonnie Tsang

Living in a great food city with new restaurants popping up weekly, it can be tough to keep up with what's hot and new here in Los Angeles. While I'd love to visit a new place every weekend, life takes over and it's just not possible. I've been wanting to have dinner at David Myer's new restaurant, Hinoki & the Bird, since it opened earlier this year but reservations aren't easy to get or the only reservations times available are just not doable (dinner at 10pm—no thanks!). My solution is to go at lunch instead—it's less busy, a great sampling of the dinner menu, and so much easier to get in!

So Bonnie and I went to have lunch at Hinoki & the Bird to see what all the buzz was about. My favorite dishes of the meal included these two appetizers (above)—a lobster roll with green curry and Thai basil and the chili crab toast with spicy cucumber and coriander. Each bite was full of Asian-inspired flavors, yet light and savory.

Continue reading " {oh joy eats} hinoki & the bird... " »

family-friendly spots in los angeles... 16 Oct 2013

Oh Joy | Family-Friendly Los Angeles

When I first moved to Los Angeles, someone told me, "L.A. is what you make of it." The city is rich in so many different things—food, culture, music, shopping, nature, etc. that it really can be whatever you want it to be. For me, I've made L.A. into a town full of great eats, amazing local and indie designers, and a place where my daughter can learn and thrive from all the things L.A. has to offer. Today, I am sharing four of my favorite family-friendly spots in this city—all of which are free or inexpensive to enjoy.

Oh Joy | Family-Friendly Los Angeles | LACMA

Oh Joy | Family-Friendly Los Angeles | LACMA

Oh Joy | Family-Friendly Los Angeles | LACMA

Oh Joy | Family-Friendly Los Angeles | LACMA

LACMA (Los Angeles County Museum of Art) | While I love art, I find so many museums to be too precious and too quiet. I need to be able to take my family to a place where kids are allowed to roam free and enjoy their surroundings just as much as the adults do. Ruby loves the giant noodle exhibit at the LACMA so we often find ourselves going there to visit that exhibit. They offer free art classes every day in the children's gallery. And on Sundays, the LACMA has Family Day where families can tour the museum for free.

Oh Joy | Family-Friendly Los Angeles | LACMA

Oh Joy | Family-Friendly Los Angeles | LACMA

Afterwards, we love getting a bite to eat at Ray's at Stark Bar. It's fresh, healthy, delicious, and has items that feel fancy yet still totally kid friendly.

Oh Joy | Family-Friendly Los Angeles | Griffith Park Merry-Go-Round

Oh Joy | Family-Friendly Los Angeles | Griffith Park Merry-Go-Round

Oh Joy | Family-Friendly Los Angeles | Griffith Park Merry-Go-Round

Oh Joy | Family-Friendly Los Angeles | Griffith Park Merry-Go-Round

Griffith Park Merry-Go-Round | Griffith Park is full of so many amazing little adventures. As you may have seen from our trip to Paris, Ruby loves merry-go-rounds, so we love bringing her here. It's only 10 minutes from our house and such a nice change from our usual afternoon playground trips. They also have popcorn and treats a plenty to add to the fun.

Continue reading " family-friendly spots in los angeles... " »

{field trip} olive & june... 16 Sep 2013

Oh Joy | Olive and June Nail Salon

Oh Joy | Olive and June Nail Salon

Oh Joy | Olive and June Nail Salon

My last few field trips have been to textile shops or companies where their customers shop for beautiful textiles or home goods. Today's trip is all about merging beauty and pampering into one. I visited the recently-opened Olive & June nail salon in Beverly Hills and was blown away with the beauty of the space. I mean, have you ever seen a nail salon that looks like this?!?

Oh Joy | Olive and June Nail Salon

Oh Joy | Olive and June Nail Salon

Oh Joy | Olive and June Nail Salon

Founded by Sarah Gibson Tuttle, a former Wall St. exec who left her fast-paced job to open a business she felt passionate about, Olive & June has just the right mix of warmth and design. I love the bright, airy, and modern space mixed with the natural and organic materials used in the decor. The tiny kids chairs that the nail technicians sit on are crazy cute and so chic. It was seriously so relaxing and a great place to take an hour out of my day to just relax...

Olive & June | 430 N. Canon Drive | Beverly Hills, CA 90210 | 310.247.0500

P.S. More retail space inspiration...

{Photos by Oh Joy} 

adventures close to home... 5 Sep 2013




We've had a very low key summer trying to do as many free activities as possible to save up for our big trip to France next weekend! So for this past long weekend, we wanted to keep cool with activities near the water and went to two of our new favorite spots within 10 minutes of our home. The newly re-opened Echo Park Lake is beautiful! They recently added a boat house where you can rent paddle boats to ride around the lake.



They also have a great playground for kids, vendors with ice cream and popsicle carts, and fruit stands a plenty. With a little cafe nearby and beautiful scenery, it's probably my newest favorite spot to go. 




We also love Grand Park in Downtown Los Angeles where we had Ruby's 1st birthday party last year. There's an area with a wading pool that kids just cannot get enough of. With our crazy heat wave over here, Ruby absolutely loves it. And we love having a happy and cool baby.

Do you guys have little gems like this where you live? Finding free and fun things to do is kind of like hitting the jackpot to me...

{All photos by Oh Joy}


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