April was an incredibly busy month for me. I’ve finally started catching up with old friends again (and getting amazing desserts like the Caramel Cornflake Sundae you see above). I’ve also been playing around with TikTok a LOT (see more below). I’ve been sharing baking tips, recipes, and even trying out and reviewing different store-bought desserts. While it’s been fun, I can already tell that I can’t keep up the crazy pace and need to slow down.
Which is why I’m especially excited about my upcoming vacation to Berlin at the end of the month! Erlend and I will be heading to Germany for a week with two of our good friends. This vacation will mark the first time I’ve left the North American continent (not the country—I did go to Canada last month, after all) since early 2020. Wild, right?
And unlike other vacations, we don’t have too much planned for trip yet. So if you have any good restaurant, bar, or general recommendations in Berlin, send them my way!
In Case You Missed It: New Recipes and Posts on Hummingbird High
I mentioned earlier that I’d been experimenting with a lot of TikTok content. I did a handful of “deep-dives” on the app, in which I shared some of my best baking tips for making chocolate chip cookies, pie, and more. Check them out below!
A Deep-Dive Into Chocolate Chip Cookies
- The Best Chips for Chocolate Chip Cookies (Watch on TikTok and Instagram)
- Baking Chocolate Chip Cookies On Dark Versus Light Baking Pans: It Matters! (Watch on TikTok and Instagram)
- Cookbooks With The Best Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipes (Watch exclusively on TikTok)
- How To Customize The Size Of Your Cookies (Watch on TikTok and Instagram)
- What Different Types of Chocolate Look Like In Chocolate Chip Cookies (Watch on TikTok and Instagram)
A Deep-Dive Into Pie Crust
- How To Crimp Pie Crust Edges (Watch on TikTok and Instagram)
- How To Move Pie Dough Into A Pie Pan (Watch on TikTok and Instagram)
- The Secret To Crispy Pie Crust (Watch on TikTok and Instagram)
Baking Lessons and Tips
- An Easy And Mess-Free Way To Stop Parchment Paper From Rolling (Watch on TikTok and Instagram)
- How To Slice Butter Into Cubes (Watch exclusively on TikTok)
- The Secret To Good Bread Knives (Watch exclusively on TikTok)
- The Easiest Way To Mash Your Bananas Without A Fancy Tool (Watch on TikTok and Instagram)
- The Secret Behind Crispy Roast Chicken Skin (Watch exclusively on TikTok)
- A Cute Way To Hold Parchment Paper In Place When Baking (Watch on TikTok and Instagram)
- A Lazy Girl’s Guide To Freezing Bananas For Baking Projects (Watch exclusively on TikTok)
Store-Bought Dessert Reviews
- Ikea Vårkänsla Self-Assembly Milk Chocolate Bunny Review (Watch exclusively on TikTok)
- Vienetta Ice Cream Cake Review (Watch exclusively on TikTok)
- Taste Testing Box Mix Brownies (Watch on TikTok and Instagram)
And in case you missed it, I published the following new recipes and posts on Hummingbird High. Here’s a round-up of everything I posted:
New and Updated Recipes
- Fizzy Konjac Jelly Recipe (Watch exclusively on TikTok)
- Vietnamese Egg Coffee Recipe (Watch on TikTok and Instagram)
- My Best Easy Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe
- Choose-Your-Own-Adventure Savory Quiche (This recipe is exclusive to Patreon supporters—learn more below!)
- Traditional Filipino Cassava Cake (This isn’t a brand new recipe, but I did update the recipe with more relevant tips and techniques. I also included a fun little intro to cassava cake video for both TikTok and Instagram!)
- Ruby Chocolate Blondies
Developing and updating these recipes requires financial resources from ads on my website and paid partnerships with brands. Unfortunately, because of the pandemic, many brands have limited their advertising budgets and cancelled sponsorship opportunities. So if you are able to financially support my work, please consider becoming a Patreon supporter. You can learn more about why I decided to start a Patreon in this far too emotional and confessional essay (lol).
However, the TL/DR is this: in addition to enabling me to keep developing more customized recipes suited to your needs, Patreon supporters help shape future recipes on Hummingbird High. Patreon supporters get access to exclusive recipes and Instagram Story tutorials like Small Batch Blueberry Scones, Very Small Batch Yellow Sheet Cake, Small Batch Cinnamon Rolls, and more.
This past month, I also spent a LOT of time thinking and reading about food beyond the baking recipes you see on this blog. Here are the ideas and issues that resonated with me:
- “Join For The Recipes, Stay For The Drama” in Eater. This article cracked me up in its perfect description of the petty drama that comes with sharing recipes on Facebook. Let’s be real though—The Internet, especially Facebook, is The Bad Place.
- “Food Businesses Lose Faith in Instagram After Algorithm Changes” in The New York Times. Speaking of Facebook and all its ills, this article discussing Instagram’s ever fickle algorithm destroying small indie food businesses is eye-opening and heartbreaking. I also feel these same issues as a food blogger/content creator—it all sucks.
- “The Potential Dangers Of The Himbo Food Influencer” in Buzzfeed News. You probably already know about Brad Leone of Bon Appetit‘s botulism scandal from this past month. If you missed it, Gawker has a great explainer discussing how Brad’s video recipes put the makers at great risk for botulism. But the Buzzfeed News article is worth reading, too—they interview a ton of experts, and discuss Brad’s mistakes in the context of what it means to be an influencer in the food space.
Recipes and Resources To Save
Here are the recipes and resources I saved for myself in the last month:
- “”Every Recipe Tells You This, But I Never Do It:” People Are Sharing The Cooking “Rules” That They Unapologetically Break” in Buzzfeed. While I don’t agree with 100% of these, I think some of them are definitely worth trying!
- Almond Clementine Swiss Roll Recipe in Eat Cho Food. Kristina is one of my favorite recipe developers, and this swiss roll cake of hers is stunning. The whole clementine in the center is *chef’s kiss*!
- “Tools and Tips for Freezing Food So Nothing Goes to Waste” in The Wirecutter. Since you guys loved my freezing Costco croissants hack so much, I thought you’d appreciate this article, too!
New Cookbooks To Try
This month, a handful of friends and acquaintances published their cookbooks! I was lucky enough to receive copies of their works and was impressed by it all. Here’s everything I got:
- Korean American: Food That Tastes Like Home by Eric Joon (This technically came out last month, but I’ve been cooking from it SO MUCH that I’d be remiss if I didn’t post about it again!)
- The Modern Proper: Simple Dinners for Every Day by Holly Erickson and Natalie Mortimer of The Modern Proper
- That Noodle Life: Soulful, Savory, Spicy, Slurpy by Mike and Stephanie Le of one of my favorite savory cooking blogs, I Am A Food Blog
- Snackable Bakes: 100 Easy-Peasy Recipes for Exceptionally Scrumptious Sweets and Treats by Jessie Sheehan of Jessie Sheehan Bakes
Finally, On A Lighthearted Note
- I know I’ve been pushing TikTok down y’alls throats (especially in this post), but this TikTok from @beachsidekitchen really resonated with me. Seriously—why are y’all making banana bread when you hate bananas?! Nuts!
That’s all for now, folks. I hope you all are staying safe and healthy! Please let me know how you’re doing in the comments below, and feel free to share the ideas and issues that are floating around in your heads, too.
NEVER miss a recipe
NO TIME TO BAKE?!
Over the past several years of running Hummingbird High, I kept a crucial aspect of my life hidden from my readers: I had a full-time, extremely demanding job in the tech world. In my debut cookbook, Weeknight Baking, I finally reveal the secrets to baking delicious desserts on a tight schedule.