Cookie crunch puff – Beard Papa’s

Cookie crunch puff - Beard Papa's
Cream puff with sugar cookie topping, filled with vanilla custard. $2.50
Beard Papa’s, San Francisco CA

Cookie crunch puff - Beard Papa's
Mmm, how I love Beard Papa’s cream puffs! I hadn’t seen this variety before so I decided to try it. The cookie crumble on top was actually really good, but these puffs are plenty good without them too.

Fort Funston
Fort Funston with Sutro Tower in the distance.

Ferrero indulgence sundae – Chocolate Spoon by Icebergs

Ferrero indulgence sundae - Chocolate Spoon by Icebergs
Vanilla and cookies ‘n cream ice cream, chocolate sauce, whipped cream, Ferrero Rocher hazelnut chocolates, cherry. 185 PHP
Chocolate Spoon by Icebergs, Manila PHILIPPINES

After a long day exploring Robinsons Place Manila, we needed a little treat to keep us going. This sundae did just the trick. I don’t think the ice cream was all that great, but I liked the overall flavor of the sundae.

Relief map of the Philippines
Relief map of the Philippines, Rizal Park.

Dessert plate – DADS Kamayan Saisaki

Dessert plate - DADS Kamayan Saisaki
Chocolate layer cake with strawberry frosting, lemon cookie, peach crepe with chocolate ice cream and chocolate sauce. Buffet
DADS Kamayan Saisaki, Manila PHILIPPINES

The cake and cookie were throw-away dessert, but the peach crepe was pretty good because they make it to order and it’s got ice cream on top. Ice cream makes any dessert better, duh! 🙂

AERA Memorial Museum
AERA Memorial Museum, Villa Escudero.

Lame attempt at hospitality – Hilton Garden Inn

Snacks - Hilton Garden Inn

We came down to the South Bay to attend a friend’s birthday and stayed at the Hilton Garden Inn because it was conveniently located to the party. OMG, this place was a disaster. The rooms are dull and boring and we were given a room with a view of their cooling system. They put out coffee and snacks in the lobby, but they don’t have any cream for the coffee and their lame oatmeal bars taste like cardboard and were as hard as a rock. I would suggest never staying here.
Hilton Garden Inn, Milpitas CA

Trashy room
Random trim that was left as a little gift on the desk. I guess the hotel is too cheap to hire maintenance people to they expect guests to install their own fixtures. *hand to forehead*

Frosted snowman cookie – Starbucks

Frosted snowman cookie - Starbucks
Hand-decorated shortbread cookie topped with white chocolate icing and a milk chocolate hat. $2.25
Starbucks, San Bruno CA

Merry Christmas everyone! I’m stuck at work today, but I hope that everyone has a wonderful day with family and friends. Remember, it’s not the gifts under the tree that makes this holiday special. It’s the quality time spent with loved ones. I can’t wait to get off work so that I too can share in the holiday festivities. Be safe and be merry! 🙂

Yellow mariposa lily
Yellow mariposa lily (Calochortus luteus, Liliaceae), Bon Tempe Lake.

Italian classic sandwich – Boudin Bakery and Cafe

Italian classic sandwich - Boudin Bakery and Cafe
Italian salami, mortadella, provolone, lettuce, dijon mustard, mayo, sourdough baguette. Served with chips and a cookie. Boxed meal $10.99
Boudin Bakery and Cafe, San Francisco International Airport (SFO)

Uh, this was NOT the sourdough baguette I was expecting. It was really thick and dense, and totally threw off the bread-to-filling sandwich ratio. I actually had to carve out some of the bread from the top bun! Basic sandwich, little payoff.

Chips and cookie - Boudin Bakery and Cafe
Tim’s Cascade sea salt and vinegar potato chips and a chocolate chip cookie.

Flourless chocolate walnut fudgie – Flour Craft Bakery

Flourless chocolate walnut fudgie - Flour Craft Bakery
Huh, I wasn’t a fan of this cookie. It was too dry and crumbly. You’d expected that with something called a “fudgie” it would not only have a rich chocolate flavor, but also a dense chewy texture. This cookie had neither. I’ll stick with their regular cookies next time. Each $2.25
Flour Craft Bakery, San Anselmo CA

Orange flame poker plant

Orange flame poker plant (Kniphofia galpinii, Xanthorrhoeaceae), Kentfield.

Salted butter chocolate chip cookie – Flour Craft Bakery

Salted butter chocolate chip cookie - Flour Craft Bakery
I haven’t had a lot of gluten free cookies yet, but I enjoyed this one. My constant fear for gluten free cookies is that’ll be too dry or have a weird aftertaste. This cookies was still very moist and tasted great! $1.75
Flour Craft Bakery, San Anselmo CA

Shortbread cookie - Flour Craft Bakery
Shortbread cookie. Complimentary
Pretty tasty and free with purchase!

Powder-puff pincushion cactus

Powder-puff pincushion cactus (Mammillaria bocasana var. multilanata, Cactaceae), Kentfield.

Paleo recipe: Bacon chocolate chip cookies

Bacon chocolate chip cookies
Version with bacon, roughly chopped fruit/nut/chocolate mix, and topped with a dollop of hazelnut chocolate spread.

Mmm, I love these cookies! The original recipe is from Make it Paleo by Bill Staley and Hayley Mason. I’ve made the recipe several times and really love the cookie dough batter. I’ve subsequently played with the add-ins and have decided that the cookie pictured above is my favorite so far!

Original Recipe:

5 slices nitrate-free bacon
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
3 cups blanched almond flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 eggs
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup coconut oil, unrefined
1.5 cups 72% dark chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to bake at 350’F.
2. In a medium size mixing bowl, toss bacon in 1/4 cup maple syrup.
3. Lay bacon on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
4. Bake for 20 minutes.
5. Remove bacon from oven, and allow to cool.
6. Crumble candied bacon for cookie batter.
7. Heat oven to 375’F.
8. In a medium-sized mixing bowl combine dry ingredients.
9. In small mixing bowl beat eggs, 1/2 cup maple syrup, and vanilla extract with a hand mixer.
10. Pour wet ingredients into dry and beat with hand mixer until combined.
11. Add melted coconut oil into batter, and continue to blend until combined.
12. Stir in chocolate chips and candied bacon.
13. Drop balls of dough on parchment-lined baking sheet, about a tablespoon in size.
14. Bake cookies for 15 minutes at 375’F.
15. Let cool and serve.

My Notes: I’ve never done Steps 2-6. I think that candied bacon is too much for these cookies especially since there’s already maple syrup in the batter. If I do include bacon, I just chop up a few strips and fry them until most of the fat has been rendered out. I love these cookies, but it’s good to reduce the fat content where you can!

Baking these cookies for only 15 minutes keeps the cookies soft and moist. I’ve also baked them longer and they turned out crispier and flakier (if that floats your boat). I think the ingredient that I keep adding every time are chopped dried plums (prunes). They really make the cookie!

Bacon chocolate chip cookies
Crispier version with bacon, chocolate chips, chopped dried plums, and almond slivers.

Frida Kahlo sidewalk stencil
Frida Kahlo sidewalk stencil, The Mission.

Chocolate chip cookies – DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel

Chocolate chip cookies - DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel
This place gives you complimentary cookies when you arrive, mmm!
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, San Diego CA

Chocolate chip cookies - DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel
Perhaps I would have prefered a complimentary bottle of champagne but I guess cookies will have to do, hehe.

Coffee machine - DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel
Hotel room coffee machine with Wolfgang Puck coffee. Because cookies always taste great with creamy coffee!

Downtown San Diego
View of downtown San Diego from the hotel room.

Semi-sweet chocolate chunk cookie – Specialty’s Cafe & Bakery

Semi-sweet chocolate chunk cookie - Specialty's Cafe & Bakery
Mmm, these are SO frickin’ good! I think they cram a pound of butter into each cookie which makes them so soft and delicious, lol! Their website even has a Warm Cookie Radar map which shows you the location of the nearest bakery with fresh out-of-the-oven cookies. Genius! $2.39
Specialty’s Cafe & Bakery, South San Francisco CA

South San Francisco Bart station platform

South San Francisco Bart station platform.