Chris, my amazing and supportive boyfriend, has finally posted his ABOUT page! Yeehaw! Check out his details here.
Bobby Flay says, “The best part about Thanksgiving is the day after because of all the leftovers” and I wholeheartedly agree. This morning was a great excuse to throw in some leftover turkey into breakfast, which was enjoyed by Chris, my mom and I. Chris made his rendition of Thanksgiving Hash, which was a medley of potatoes, sweet peppers, egg, spinach and turkey. Then he slapped on (what else) bacon to finish the dish. Bon appetit!
PS: I captured him cooking this morning on my Flip camera, so I plan on editing and posting a video very soon! Stay tuned.
So how stoked am I??? We have a brand new Canon digital camera in the house! Yep, Chris purchased one so he’d be able to capture 2009 Thanksgiving memories – yay! With that being said, let’s move on to the most important topic: the food. I’m not going to dilly dally over the prep work that went into it, so I’m just going to skip ahead to the end product of what we indulged in.
Chris’ mom made some light and healthy apps (she found the recipe in Sunset Magazine): endive leaves topped with white beans and some herbs.
Cranberry from the jar. Chris’ mom also made her own (not pictured)
Gobble gobble. The turkey was stuffed with onion, rosemary and sliced lemon. I opted for the breast…and only had a little bit of it. Nice sepia filter on the picture, eh?
Here’s my plate at the table: a tiny bit of turkey, braised ‘n glazed carrots, sweet potato mash, a whole wheat roll, UH-mazing stuffing with mushroom and heavenly goodness, and a dollop of homemade cranberry sauce
Dessert was by me! Brioche bread pudding with raisins. I was way too lazy to make the recipe as it was stated so I eyeballed it which I know is (gasp!) a big no-no to eyeball when baking but you know what? It turned out soooo good. I also had it for breakfast this morning hehe
Get outta here and enjoy the rest of your holiday!!
If I were to choose between regular water and carbonated water, I would pick the fizzy H20 any day. There is something about fizz that makes water taste extra yummy (personally, I find water to be very boring unless it’s chilled to perfection with lemon juice squeezed in it.) This week I’ve been experiencing the weirdest cravings: fizz and sashimi. The other night, I had a beautiful plate of raw ahi tuna, salmon sashimi, and yellowfin tuna for dinner along with another love of my life, the Samuel Adams Cherry Wheat Beer (yes, it’s called the Beer and Sashimi Diet.) And then just a couple days before that, I was craving fizz so bad, I popped open a mini can of Diet Coke and drank it chilled. The Diet Coke was disgusting and reminded me A) why I don’t drink soda and B) what chemicals taste like. Yuck yuck yuck! I don’t know how people can chug Diet Cokes all day…I guess it’s an acquired taste maybe??
So back to the Fizz. I was hanging out at my friend’s house last night and she offered me a can of club soda. Oh man. I know all the carbonation in club soda might not be good for you, but DAMN it was so delicious, I had a second can…and a third. And now I feel like I may be addicted because I woke up this morning craving a can of cold club soda. At zero calories, it’s a guiltless pleasure and gives me the same satisfaction I get out of drinking my Samuel Adams Cherry Wheat beer. Not too shabby!
I’m giving food a break because for my meals today, I honestly ate the weirdest bunch of snacks and it’s just not worth posting. Having said that (did anyone catch the Curb Your Enthusiasm finale last night?? If you did, you’d understand why I said what I just said), I might as well list what I ate: ginger chews for breakfast, string cheese for lunch, a spoonful of peanut butter, half a cup of yogurt, a small cheese/salami plate (which was UH-mazing! My mom got a ton of goodies from the famous Cheese Store in Silverlake, CA yesterday and we feasted Italian style), and sashimi from Bristol Farms. Oh, and I had a Samuel Adams cherry wheat beer for dessert.
So back to what I’m posting about: home styles! For your information, I live in a tiny studio in Los Angeles. Rent is so ridiculous out here in SoCal and it’s even more expensive when you get into the Brentwood/Santa Monica area where I live. Luckily, unlike other studio apartments I have seen, I actually have a full kitchen that is walled-off (gasp! unheard of in studio apartments!) and a nice-sized bathroom closet. Plus I get a parking space which is also (gasp! real hard to get in my neck of the woods. So many people have to park on the street and risk getting a ticket if they sleep in on street washing day.)
I came across this adorable studio apartment in NYC belonging to Thakoon wholesale director, Stacey Caldwell, who also runs a home decor blog called Caldwell Home. Talk about making the most of her space! I love the combination of white with the dark chocolate walls and the wood floors. Little feminine touches here and there make me want to move in ASAP. Oh, and how cute is her bicycle parked next to her bed Hey, not bad for a pint-sized pad! I’m going to start taking notes and applying them to my own little bachelorette.
There’s just something about the details in Julia Restoin-Roitfeld’s NYC apartment (she of Carine Roitfeld fame) that I love, especially the skull. Photos from theselby.com
Another home that is quirky yet chic belongs to Laetitia Crahay, accessories designer for Chanel. I’m oddly attracted to the mishmash hodgepodge of items she has scattered artfully about.
Well, I wouldn’t really call it breakfast but this is what I ate this morning around 10am and it really hit the spot. A whole tin of Chimes Gourmet Ginger Chews, which are perfectly spicy, chewy, gummy and yummy. They have just the right amount of spice and zing to wake you up in the office and keep you alert. If you’re a ginger fan, I urge you to try these. I know for sure that Bristol Farms and Cost Plus carries Chimes Gourmet Ginger Chews but you may be able to find them elsewhere.
This is going to gross some people out but I have an addiction to peanut butter. I have a jar of the 365 brand crunchy peanut butter from Whole Foods sitting on my desk with a spoon in it at all times. Every ten minutes, I take a teeny itsy bitsy amount and nibble on it. It’s sooo good but kind of disgusting at the same time (when you calculate how many calories I’m ingesting per hour.) I really need to mix things up by bringing in sliced bread and jam so I can have a toasted PB&J at the office.
I’ve never liked beer. Ever. If I had to get a drink at a bar, it would be a vodka tonic or tequila shot. I love wine during the week night but really only sauvignon blanc to be more specific. On hot weekends, I normally throw back a couple of homemade margaritas, which consists of tequila, fresh lime juice and some agave syrup. Or maybe a martini when it gets colder.
But beer? Nah, no thanks. It’s too filling, makes me bloated, and tastes gross. That was always what I thought.
I’m totally going to get bashed for this but I LOVE SAMUEL ADAMS CHERRY WHEAT BEER. I first tried it a couple weeks ago when an office mate brought it to me at work (um, yeah, we have something called “Beer Thirty” when we bust open a bottle around the 4:30pm to 5:30pm hour. Not bad, right?) I had a sip and instantly fell in love. So much so that I went out and bought it to keep a six-pack at home. It’s got this sweet, cherry aftertaste and somehow does not make me balloon up in the stomach. The downside is that if you have a boyfriend, he probably won’t like this but the good thing about that is you get to have it all to yourself!!
Oh and one more thing, apparently the Sam Adams Cherry Wheat only hits us for a limited time during the holiday season. So drink up and be merry! AND DON’T DRIVE (sorry, had to insert the safety statement there)
What do you do when you have leftover Kings Hawaiian sweet bread, a handful of chocolate chips, and cream? You make an individual-sized bread pudding dessert. I pulled together some measly scrapings of the bread that we had sitting over from burgers, whipped up an egg with sugar and whipping cream, tossed in a small amount of chocolate chips and let the thing bake in this pint-sized ramekin (small size = less guilt!) Serve with decadent vanilla ice cream and share it with a lover. (Blackberry photo below = poor image quality)
PS: speaking of photos, we sent one of the broken Canon cameras in and they quoted us $110 to fix. How ridiculous is that?! Might as well spend a little extra money and get a brand new one…which is exactly what we are going to do. Hopefully we’ll have a newbie in time for holiday season.
I had Fatburger earlier in the week and was inspired to make my own this weekend. I’ve been too tired to cook during the work week so I’ve been eating on the go recently: grilled cheese sandwiches, Fatburger, falafel wraps from The Hungry Pocket, tuna melts from Whole Foods…I’m about to exhaust all possible lunch options in my work neighborhood of Santa Monica soon!
I wanted to make burgers for lunch so I picked up ground beef with 10% fat content from Whole Foods (on sale for only $3.99/lb) and I got a small pint-sized roll for my burger and a larger panini roll for Chris. When eating meat, cheese and bread, I definitely try to exercise some sort of portion control. A good example is Fatburger, who offers something called the “Baby Fat”, a 2.5 oz burger that weighs in at 400 calories. Considering it fills me up for about 7 hours until dinner time, that’s not too shabby.
Back to my burger. I made the patties by combining 1lb of the ground beef with 1 egg, 1/2 cup of chopped onions, a handful of minced parsley, salt and pepper and a few tablespoons of Panko breadcrumbs. I formed patty rounds and grilled them on the stovetop for about 4-5 minutes per side.
To assemble the burgers, I toasted the rolls then slathered them with mayo, ketchup, BBQ sauce and layered spinach, sliced cheese, tomatoes and the burger patty on top. Such a tasty and filling lunch!
What better way to end Saturday night than with a few back-to-back episodes of Flash Forward, a couple glasses of merlot and a decadent dinner of juicy steak with blue cheese sauce and buttery braised carrots. I was in the mood for steak so early in the morning, I headed over to Whole Foods to check out the butcher section to see what specials were going on. I hadn’t been in this department in Whole Foods in so long, it all looked foreign to me. But Mr. Butcher Man was kind, and recommended a sirloin cut that was on sale for only $6.99/lb. Not bad, considering the normal price was $10.99/lb. I love sales.
“I like my meat well done. How should I cook this steak without it being too tough?” Sure, I’m eating meat again but it has to be cooked to the millionth degree, and I won’t touch chicken or turkey just yet. White meat still gives me the shudders. To all my carnivore friends, it’s baby steps! Let me start with the red meat…and maybe I’ll move on to the other stuff
“Sear it then bake it in the oven for awhile!” Mr. Butcher Man replied. “You can’t go wrong with that!”
After googling numerous recipes for a blue cheese sauce to accompany the steak, I finally settled on this INCREDIBLE one from The Pioneer Woman, which I have to say, is fast becoming one of my favorite blogs right now. Awesome photography, awesome pics (makes me want to buy a new camera right now and not waste another minute using the iPhone and Blackberry to take my crappy pics. Booooo!!) The sauce recipe was too simple: butter, onions, blue cheese, cream. Yeah, boy. You basically caramelize the onions, stir in heavy cream and cook it down so it thickens slowly, then add crumbled blue cheese.
Chris simple seasoned the steak with salt and pepper and took care of grilling, then baking it. As for the braised carrots, I followed another simple recipe from Mark Bittman of The New York Times. Rather than printing out the recipe, I just watched his video short, which you can view here for the “Braised & Glazed” carrots. Again, super simple: sliced carrots, butter, orange juice, and ginger.
The carrots smelled like nothing I had ever smelled before and tasted divine. It was somewhat sweet with a ginger tang and the butter added a rich, tasty, filling edge to the dish. We didn’t have dill (which the recipe called for) but a squirt of lemon juice at the end provided a refreshing citrus shot that cut through the butter and was the perfect complement. What can I say, butter is heaven sent. Check out the dinner below. It’s an iPhone picture, but kudos to Chris for trying to capture it in a more artistic angle.