Thursday, October 27, 2011

It's almost the end of the year!

I've been bad. I haven't blogged like I intended to do every other day. Life took over and I got really busy. During the process of having a busy life, I got ENGAGED! That's going to be the topic of many posts now as well as cooking. Here's one of the crafty items I started last night. It's simple and to the point. I love it!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

New piece of technology

I've been a bad cook lately. Not really finding anything for inspiration and just "stir-frying" things together in my fridge. BUT I have something awesome that will get me motivated now! Daniel got me a NOOK color so that I can read in bed without a lamp AND best of all, read recipes without leaving crumbs in my keyboard. He surprised me with it after hearing me say, "Wouldn't it be great to have one of these in the kitchen to read and reference recipes with the swipe of your finger?" This is proof that men can be great listeners sometimes ;)

Coming up:
- Zuppa Toscana copycat recipe
- Steak marinade

Friday, August 19, 2011

Happy Friday!

I can't believe the week has already come to an end! It's not that I don't look forward to the weekend, it's just where did all that time go? I think my one too many extracurricular activities has gotten me into a routine that makes the week fly by with a blink of an eye. I didn't really have any real cooking adventures this week as I decided I would try Taco Tuesdsay in the OC. We went to Taco Mesa in the City of Orange. While I was excited to see that they had quite a selection of $1 tacos, I was a little disappointed as they over saturated their meet in sodium and grease. Le sigh. I shall find a good taco place soon!

Here's to the weekend!
- Seeing my familia
- Planning my Big Bear and Oregon trip (only 20 some days left till we go)
- Resting it up!

Hope you have a fabulous one ;).

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Summer fruit lovin'

Last summer, I went on quite a strawberry kick after we went strawberry picking. This year is no different. Instead of picking them from the patch, I bought the four pound box at Costco. Note to self, one should never buy food/fruits at Costco for a household of two. With this box, I made a few strawberry banana smoothies, ate a ton of them as a lunch snack and kept thinking of ways to incorporate them into a baked good. I was planning on making jam but decided that it would be of great use on a fruit tart. I was researching the variety of recipes there are on the web and came across Paula Deen's recipe. While I was ready to make her recipe, I found that I didn't have enough time or the energy to gather some of the items she requested (about ten sticks of butter and a can of limeade). Instead, I went my own way on this recipe. That is quite the leap for me as I don't usually like to stray from recipes. I get anxiety as I fear that it might come as a huge goop of something people don't want to eat. That would be a shame to toss away something that could have been edible. On to my version of the fruit tart (with bits and pieces of ideas from other sites):

- Fresh fruits (kiwi, strawberries, nectarines, plums, blueberries and more)
- Apricot jam
- Frozen pie crust
- Cream cheese
- Sugar

1. Prepare the pie crust as directed on the box.
2. Allow the pie crust to cool after baking. As it cools off, cut round fruits into slices and place them on the side.
3. Take about 1/2 cup of cream cheese and mix in 3 tbsp of sugar. Keep stirring until the sugar is mixed in really well.
4. Spread the cream cheese mixture on the pie crust.
5. Arrange the fruit on top of the cream cheese mixture as you like it.
6. Take about 1/4 cup of apricot jam and half 1/4 cup of water and simmer it on medium low until the jam starts to become liquidy. If the jam is still separated from the water, take a spoon and whisk the water and jam together until it combines. Once it's well mixed, take a brush and brush the jam mixture on top over the fruit. Voila! Enjoy :)

Other accomplishments this weekend:

I made a birthday banner that I can use year round for everybody's birthday. I had a blast going to Jo-Anns to pick out the fabric though it was quite a difficult choice to make.

Being put to use outside at the bbq birthday party we hosted!

I went to a really great flea market in town to see some furniture that could country-fy my home to change it from the modern home it is today. I was so glad that I didn't carry more than 20 dollars in cash or else I would have gone home with more than I could handle. What I had in mind was a wagon for my garden, a pitcher to hold my fresh cut flowers and new vintage type furniture. I went home with a great wooden red wagon (to be pictured later), a pitcher and a picnic suitcase. All of these great finds added up to $12! Woo hoo!

Pitcher in use :D with my to be made table runner underneath it.

Here's to more crafty weekends to come!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Holy smokes...

It's been about 8 months since I last posted. I'm quite disappointed in myself for not following through with my goal of blogging at least once a month. Well it's time to move on. No time to dwell. There's plenty of time for me to start blogging again and I'll start with today. I've been pretty busy this summer - moving into a new place/city, taking the time to make it a home, finding ways to make new friends and starting a new job. Now that I've taken care of a majority of these tasks, I can start focusing on taking pictures of my dishes, posting my recipes and writing about my other interests. I've become quite interested in sewing, reading more blogs, gardening, building and decorating. Hopefully, you'll start to see some posts about the small projects I'm working on. I'm so fixated on food that it's time to start releasing that energy/motivation to other areas such as crafting which I haven't shared much of on this blog. Here's a preview of one of the projects I'm going to start working on:

I'm going to make you proud Martha Stewart!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The quest for 100 soups continues...

The winter here has been a quite harsh this season. It's been so cold that I actually use the space heater, wear my Snuggie (don't judge), wear socks to bed (usually don't), layer myself in three or more blankets and I have no urge to go out let alone go outside (what can I say, I have sensitive skin). The best remedy to get through the Winter blues is by making more soup. So far this year, I've made three. This is quite the accomplishment considering hat we are only on day 13 in 2011. Let's hope that this momentum continues throughout the year. Anyway, I don't know why I made this soup especially since I'm not the biggest fan of tomatoes. Oddly enough, I do have a soft spot in my heart from tomato bisque,V8 and salsa. Tomato bisque and grilled cheese sandwiches with sourdough bread ... I'm in heaven. This definitely is the COMFORT meal of the month!

Roasted Tomato Basil Soup (6-8 servings)

- 3 lbs ripe plum (aka Roma) tomatoes cut in half lengthwise
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp salt
- 1 1/2 tspn black pepper
- 2 cups chopped yellow onions (about 2 onions)
- 6 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/4 tspn crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 (28 ounce) canned plum tomatoes with their juice (I used regular diced tomatoes in a can)
- 4 cups fresh basil leaves
- 1 tspn fresh thyme leaves (I left this out)
- 1 quart chicken stock or water ( I used chicken stock)

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Toss the tomatoes with1/4 cup of olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread them out on a baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes.
3. 15 minutes before the tomatoes are done roasting, saute the onions, garlic, 2 tbspn of olive oil, butter and red pepper flakes in a large stockpot for 10 minutes over medium heat. Once th onions start to turn brown, add the canned tomatoes, basil, thyme and chicken stock.
4. Remove the roasted tomatoes from the oven and add it to the pot. Also add any liquid that is left on the baking sheet into the pot.
5. Bring the pot to a boil and allow it to simmer uncovered for 40 minutes.
6. Take the soup off the food mill and use the coarsest blade. I don't have such equipment so just took a fork and stabbed all the tomatoes until they were broken up into smaller chunks. It made the soup less chunky but still chunky enough. You can probably also put it in a blender.

7. Get some tasty sourdough bread and American cheese and grill it on the skillet. Cut it diagonally across and serve it with a bowl of soup. Sandwiches taste better when they are cut diagonally :) Really!


This soup is so good!!! The one thing downside of it is that it is a bit acidic. It lingers in your mouth just a little after sipping the soup and I think this is because of the tomatoes' acidity. Not really sure how one can make it less acidic but I would suggest eating more bread or grilled cheese sandwiches because more carbs are awesome anyway.

Updates on my goals:
- I baked for the first time in forever. I didn't even break out the whisk this Christmas! Oh the madness! The recipe is from Joy the Baker. If you go to her link (below), please excuse my poor decorating skills here. She did an amazing job with all the sprinkles and perfect glaze. You must know, I am just learning how to make glaze. :l

- Lethal legs class numero uno kicked me in the butt today but I shall survive! Lunges and squats are not a girls best friend.
- I ran for ten minutes last night. Yes 10. That's good enough for me :)

Life's good!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Dear Lazy,

This is a new year. With a new year usually comes the new years resolutions. So cliche but much needed. Here are your goals:

- Blog more
- Bake more
- Cook more for yourself
- Enjoy your final months in San Diego with friends
- Enjoy your new home with your fabulous boyfriend, family and friends (who will hopefully realize that San Diego is only a hop skip and a jump away)
- Stop and smell the roses.
- Stop and dance when you feel like it
- Run a 5k and become more active (closely getting there with my Lethal Legs class)

Remember, you can do it.

Your new and improved lazy self ;)