SMiLes by Meg

Baklava

Baklava is one of those recipes where you think it must be super complex (there are so many layers!), but when you actually make it, you realize there aren’t that many ingredients, and the process is fairly simple. I wouldn’t have believed any of this, but Sandy, whose recipes have appeared on my blog in the past (Trout Farm Apple Pie, Mud Pie, Oh Henry Bars), gave me a pan and her recipe for Christmas. So obviously I had to give it a try. Now, to be honest, this was actually my second attempt at Baklava. When she first gave

Mocha Bundt Cake

Guys, I had a WEEKEND. I’m sitting in Duxbury now, but it has been a journey to get this far. On Friday night, Molly and I drove up to Vermont for our annual college mini-reunion trip, which this year turned into a girls’ trip with me, Molly, and Marj. We arrived at the AirBnB, after driving through some pretty harrowing wind/snow conditions, at around midnight. We then proceeded to unload the car and go into the house. Five minutes later, Molly saw some motion out of the corner of her eye, and there was a crash. She then beckoned me

Spice Cake

Now that it’s January, it’s time to turn away from Christmas cookies and move on to bigger and better things – like continuing my quest to be featured on Yotam Ottolenghi’s instagram feed and using all of my Christmas presents. Those two goals come together in this week’s post: Spice Cake out of Ottolenghi’s Sweet cookbook. When I opened Sweet this week to find a recipe, I wanted something that would be baked in a loaf pan, since Sylvia, Erik’s mom, got me a beautiful yellow Emile Henry one this year (thanks!). Also because a loaf pan cake is a

Hazelnut Crumble Cake

This weekend, I’ve reached the end of my funemployment traveling and am spending some much-needed time with my college roommate, Cate, her partner, Jonathan, and their corgi puppy, Giles. Cate was a baker before I ever thought to start this blog, and last time I was visiting her I gave her the cookbook Sweet by Ottolenghi, which we baked out of together. At that point in time, we were hosting a brunch and wanted to make a Rum Raisin Cake. I asked Cate if she had everything we needed to make it, and she assured me that she did.

Clafoutis

Explaining what exactly Clafoutis is is a difficult thing. I’ve compromised and categorized it as both a pie and a cake, but the dessert itself is somewhere between a souffle, crepe, custard, and pancake. A little light, a little eggy, a little cakey, kind of creamy – you won’t really know what I mean until you try it for yourself. Fortunately, if you started right this second, you could have a piece in an hour.

Flourless Coconut Cake

This post is going to be a buzzer-beater. I made it yesterday, finally at home in Duxbury enjoying summer vacation, and then spent today moving into a new apartment with my mom’s help. There is nothing like moving into a new place – full of fresh starts and exciting decorating opportunities. And, of course, a new kitchen! But in all my excitement, I definitely was a bit rushed in baking this last night. And maybe had a pretty catastrophic baking fail. I do not blame the recipe – this one was all me. So if you do try this post,

Walnut Halvah Cake

Fun fact for my Instagram followers (@smilesbymeg): while 76 of you took the time to watch my Instagram story in which I made this cake, only 24 of you could bring yourselves to like the post itself. I’m not really sure what that says about my respective video/photo editing abilities, but I think it means I have to work on my food photography. Also, despite now having posted 7 different Ottolenghi recipes, I still haven’t been selected in his #IBakedOttolenghi compilations. Further proof that my food photography needs work. Looks like I have my project for post-bar-exam life!

Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes

This week the humidity finally broke, meaning mornings and nights were once again bearable for baking. To take advantage, and because I had promised a friend I’d bring dessert to dinner on Friday (hi, Josh!), I decided to make something from my pre-blog life that I was actually astonished I hadn’t posted before: Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes. These cupcakes were a team dinner staple at the Baran household in high school (hi, Jen!), and I always had at least two. I made them once or twice in college, but college was pre-SMiLes by Meg, and I have no idea why

Icebox Cake

Happy Father’s Day to the best dad a girl could ask for! Today, I spent an absolutely wonderful day with my dad, reading at the beach, kayaking/paddle boarding, and generally enjoying South Shore life. And, because it’s his day, I made a recipe this week that is one of his favorites: Icebox Cake. Icebox Cake is good for a number of reasons. It only has three ingredients. You don’t have to turn on the oven. And the finished product kind of tastes like Oreos but better.

Amaretto Cupcakes

Barrister’s Ball (aka Law School Prom) feels like the beginning of the end of law school. We have one more week of classes, then exams, then we graduate, and I’ll never be a student again. Which is pretty crazy. I’ve made it almost 27 years into my life by being an almost perpetual student. So you’ll forgive me for getting sappy over the next couple of weeks.