Time for my annual lookback, where I review your favorite recipes and my favorite recipes. Ready for it? Here goes:

Readers’ Favorite Recipes of 2014

The following recipes are YOUR favorites from the year — that is, the most viewed recipes of mine from the last year. Looks like you guys are big cake fans; four out of the five recipes listed below are cakes of different varieties!

1. Blueberry Brownies

Classic chewy, chocolatey brownies with a flaky top… but with a seasonal twist of fresh blueberries sprinkled on top and throughout the batter. Perfect in the summer!

2. Chocolate Crème Fraîche Cake

I whipped up this cake to honor my mom on her birthday, and to date, it’s still one of my favorite cakes I’ve made. The most wonderful chocolate crème fraîche frosting sits on top of a perfect chocolate cake, ever-so-moist with a tender crumb.

3. Coconut Cream Crêpe Cake

Crêpe cakes are beautiful and look difficult to make, but really they’re easier than regular cakes. This cake has an Asian twist and is layered with kaya, a Singaporean coconut egg jam, and topped with coconut cream whipped cream. You guys have good taste 😉

4. Tres Leches Cake with Coconut Chantilly Frosting

Another coconut dessert, which is strange to me since I’ve always thought of coconut as a highly divisive ingredient — that is, some people really, really, really like it, while others hate it. This is a classed-up tres leches cake full of regular milk, cream, sweetened condensed milk, and coconut cream frosting.

5. Lemon, Lavender and Earl Grey Mini Cakes

Remember last spring when all the food bloggers were making mini cakes? This was my contribution to that craze — lemon and lavender paired with my favorite tea, Earl Grey. Delicious and adorable.

My Favorite Recipes of 2014

It was really, really hard to narrow it down to just five recipes that I liked the most. It was a great year for baking and I made a lot of recipes that I really liked and am keeping in my repertoire forever. I managed to narrow a long list of favorites down to just these five (though, if you pushed me, I could easily come up with another five that should also be on this list).

1. Key Lime Bars

This recipe didn’t seem to get a whole lot of love, which surprised me since it’s incredibly easy to make and oh-so-delicious. Key lime pie in a portable bar form, without the hassle of having to deal with plates and forks. Who doesn’t want that?

2. Rhubarb and White Chocolate Blondies

Oh yes, remember these bad boys? Brown butter blondies spruced up with fresh rhubarb. I’m pretty sure I ate half the batch in one sitting, they were that good. Not to mention beautiful too!

3. Salted Chocolate and Pumpkin Babka

I’ve never been the world’s most confident bread baker, so I was beyond delighted when this salted chocolate and pumpkin babka came out as beautiful and tasty as it did. It’s based on an utterly genius and foolproof recipe of chocolate krantz cake by Ottolenghi, and the only negative I could think of about this bread is that it went stale rather quickly (but quite frankly, it didn’t really last that long).

4. Homemade Funfetti Cake with Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting

Molly Yeh gets all the credit for this cake that I made for my blog’s third anniversary — she spent weeks researching and testing funfetti recipes, and came up with the uttermost perfect one there is. The only spin I had on it was that I used my out-of-this-world chocolate cream cheese frosting. And funfetti + chocolate cream cheese frosting = unforgettable. Make this cake NOW!

5. Olive Oil Citrus Cake

I use a lot of chocolate in my baked goods, so it was nice to have another ingredient come along and be the star. This cake was an absolute dream — so moist and flavorful from the olive oil and citrus. I suspect I’ll be using olive oil more in my recipes in the upcoming year.

Other 2014 Highlights
  • There were lots of amazing food events this year in Portland. My favorite two were Portland’s Taste of the Nation and Feast, which I was an official events photographer for. Check out my photos of the Sandwich Invitational and Night Market!
  • I remodeled my kitchen (I now have a dishwasher! A disposal! A range with a hood!) but since I’m the worst, I don’t haven’t done a before/after post yet. Here are some pictures from Instagram though. Yeah, sorry, I know I’m the worst. A fully-fledged post will hopefully come sometime next year? Maybe? 
  • Erlend and I eschewed away from traditional Thanksgiving food this year and had an Asian-style Thanksgiving. It was epic. I think we’ll be doing that every year from now on.