Just around the corner from The Chalkboard HQ, farm-fresh breakfast-seekers and from-scratch pastry-lovers spill out onto the sidewalk every morning from Huckleberry’s double french doors. L.A. is a city filled with sidewalk cafes, but few are more charming than Josh Loeb and Zoe Nathan’s Huckleberry Bakery and Cafe.

Josh and Zoe have transformed this L.A. neighborhood with knock-out concept restaurants like Milo & Olive, Rustic Canyon, and Sweet Rose Creamery (read more in our very first Neighborhood Guide), but to us, a morning spent inside this homey cafe, complete with a map of local farms used to build their epic veggie salads and quinoa bowls, is the perfect Santa Monica experience.

With Zoe’s very first cookbook hitting shelves next week, we seized the opportunity to cozy up at home with one of our favorite local chef and bakers. In Huckleberry: Stories, Secrets, and Recipes From Our Kitchen, Zoe is dishing out over 100 sweet and savory recipes using whole grains, natural sugars and from-scratch methods. There are even a few gluten-free options tucked in there.

Peek in on our morning with Zoe, pop over to get her chai tea latter recipe, then pop back to bookmark this pancake recipe for later this weekend!

My alarm is set for…

Baby o’clock.

On the best mornings I…

Get to sleep until 7.

Favorite morning beverage is…

My favorite moment in the morning is…

When Milo first runs into the room.

I start working by…

7 a.m. or 7 p.m., depending on the day.

Morning are normally filled with…

Kids, kids and then lots of baking.

I get my creative juices flowing by…

Recipe testing, failing and failing until something tastes right.

Daily uniform this fall…

Jeans and a white T-shirt

Healthiest daily habit…


My favorite morning distraction…

My kids, or if at work, some gossip from one of my bakers.

I’m most obsessed with this currently…


I’m usually listening to…

Regina Spektor.

My current mantra:

It’s all good, because it really is all good.

Zoe’s Brown Rice Quinoa Pancakes
makes 15


1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
5 Tbsp cornmeal
2 Tbsp rolled oats
1 Tbsp flax meal or wheat germ
2 tsp chia seeds or poppy seeds
1 Tbsp millet
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp kosher salt
2 cups buttermilk
8 Tbsp unsalted butter (1 stick), melted
3 eggs
1 1/4 cup cooked brown or wild rice
1/2 cup cooked quinoa


Place the whole-wheat flour, cornmeal, oats, flax meal, poppy seeds, millet, baking soda, brown sugar and salt in a large bowl.
Add the buttermilk, melted butter and eggs. Whisk to combine.
Stir in the rice and quinoa.
About 5 minutes before you’re ready to make your pancakes, preheat a greased griddle or skillet over medium high heat. But once warmed, turn the heat to medium.
Drop 1/3 cup batter onto the hot griddle. Once bubbles set on the surface and bottom is golden, flip and cook for about 1 minute longer.
Serve immediately, while hot, since they’re best the moment they leave the griddle.

Bottom banner image
From our friends