After the dinner party and going to downtown sj for South First Friday, I took most of the weekend to have some downtime. I finally had some time to complete a recipe I found on TheKitchn.com, and try my hand at making ginger ale, which I have yet to try.

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A wonderfully rich mushroom sauce with chicken broth, white wine and some herbs… I didn’t have sage on hand so I tried using basil, it came out a little bitter but next time I’ll reduce the sauce more. The parmigiana cheese added that extra something something. Also, who doesn’t love bow tie pasta? I’ve been in love since I was a little girl, when I used to think boys couldn’t eat it… How sexist of me.

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My ginger ale sitting comfortably by the window… We’ll have to see if this turns out, I’m afraid it will be a fail, but it literally costs like a buck to make a liter each.

September 8, 2010 Uncategorized No Comments

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The past few days I have been celebrating birthdays, one including going out for a drink at Singlebarrel in San Jose, CA. This bar does it a little differently, you go up to this guy at a door dressed like a newsboy and he lets you in down to this speakeasy style bar. The bartenders inside ask you what kind of flavors you want in your drink, and they make you one of their specialties. I had a lot of fun, as it was a very chill place… The price was stiff ($10 a drink) but it was worth checking out.

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I got an English Cosmo… from what I remember he muddled cucumbers together and added some sort of liqour (I believe gin) and some lime and simple syrup. I wish I was paying closer attention, because it was DELICIOUS!

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Yesterday I cooked a feast for a bunch of my friends, as it was Trevor’s 20th birthday. I had given him a list of different restaurants to go to but last minute offered to cook. He chose that, and then we decided on a traditional steak dinner. A big thanks to Joe and Alyssa for helping prep! (and thanks to Chris as well for helping move stuff around)

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this ciabatta bread from costco was really cheap, and it saved me while I was broiling the steaks… that +oliveoil and balsamic make a good appetizer while your guests are waiting! Super cheap as well!

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The MONEY SHOT: Homemade Cesar Dressing + Romaine, Corn with oven roasted tomatoes, caramelized onions and goat cheese, the steak, and a roasted garlic mash.

I asked everyone to help me out with the groceries (as we’re not all made of money) and all of that food (plenty of leftovers that I gave to the Birthday Boy!) cost only $7 a person! Thank you Costco and Trader Joes for making my life easier.

Obviously later in the year I won’t have as much time cooking, but I had a lot of fun even though it was a lot of work. Good food and good company really make a great party, can’t wait to do another one!

September 3, 2010 Uncategorized No Comments

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On friday, I reunited with a few of my dearest high school friends, of which I’ve known since elementary or middle school. We had a lot to catch up on, and had many stories to tell so I chose Lovejoy’s Tea Room in San Francisco since one of my friends Teresa had been there before.

It was the perfect spot, as we each got bottomless tea and welcoming service. We were there till closing, catching up on everything. We ordered the High Tea service, which came with sandwiches, salad, coleslaw, scones and tea biscuits. We also decided on petit fours to end our meal. I would recommend this to anyone who wants to sit and chat for a few hours with a friend. It has such a homey welcoming feeling. For around $25 including tax and tip, the service, food, tea and experience made it worth it!

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We ordered an assortment of different sandwiches, each choosing two kinds. I chose chicken apple walnut and cucumber and cream cheese. I decided on pomegranate green for my tea.

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August 29, 2010 Uncategorized No Comments

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Today I had hard boiled eggs with fleur de sel and pepper on top. I think I’m going to buy more gourmet salts now, because it just adds a little something special to my meals.

School begins tomorrow, which means more posts about working around my school budget, and more posts with my not so great camera phone! Here is the last of being spoiled with great food at home:

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Chai Cola – It reminded me of root beer, but was much more tolerable (I despise Root Beer!) with amazing notes. I want to try the other flavors, like this mint mojito soda.

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tabbouleh, hummus, mini pitas and dolma (stuffed grape leaves) I was trying to be healthy at whole foods… Greek food is amazing and tasty full of nutrients.

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Went to sideboard (again) with my mom for breakfast. (Huevos Rancheros, French Toast with chantilly cream, croque madam sideboard style with a bacon cheddar scone, ham, eggs and gruyere.)

August 25, 2010 Uncategorized No Comments

I was emailed about the herman miller summer series in which they conducted a few lectures on their design. It was an interesting lecture, albeit geared more towards interior designers but the showroom made up for it. It was a designer’s playground!

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swatches

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inspirational color combinations, drool worthy chairs by The Eameses, great attention to detail, a great way to end the summer and start revving my engines to start school again.

August 21, 2010 Uncategorized No Comments

Since my brother Kevin is a special kid, his body is proportioned differently because of the way the disease moya moya has affected him. Because of his circumstances, he has braces that are given so he can wear them and ease his walking.

A lot of times I am given his clothes to hem since he is much shorter then the pant lengths that he fits into. My parents, and Jenny who is Kevin’s caretaker have worked around these circumstances not only with clothes but with his everyday activities. We are always constantly on the search for the perfect products to help ease his life.

Here is one of the very small things that I have had to alter for him: Because of his circumstances, he has braces that are given so he can wear them and ease his walking. We decided to buy him these new balance sandals for the summer time, so that he can get more breathing room since the braces can heat up his feet. The velcro strap would not stay on with the brace, so I decided to sew a new velcro strip so that the “N” logo wouldn’t just hang off, making the product look nicer and help his shoes stay put.

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Velcro Strapped normally (on right) Velcro Strapped to fit brace (on left)

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Its great to be able to get creative and utilize the products available in small ways for my brother’s needs.

August 21, 2010 Uncategorized No Comments

While visiting my cousin Julie Mae in seattle we went to this gastropub in Capitol Hill called Quinn’s.
I was inspired by their amazing roasted bone marrow that they had so I recreated it at home for the family.

It was incredibly easy, albeit the bone marrow was hard to find, I am going to try checking out the filipino seafood city, as bone marrow is most common in asian markets.
I ended up at whole foods, I had to ask the butchers for it, and they cut it for me length wise.
The bone marrow itself is very cheap, and even at wholefoods it cost me $3.50 for the three pieces I bought.

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I roasted the marrow for about 15 minutes in the oven at 450 degrees, then sprinkling the top with fleur de sel and lemon juice to add some acidity to it. It was servied with sliced sourdough.

To eat, you take a piece of bread and use a butter knife to spread the bone marrow. It is so rich, it is known as “God’s butter”. Another random fact is, it is what Anthony Bourdain would have as his death row meal. I can taste why ;)

I learned a few lessons from this, I will next time clean the bone more throughly for a better presentation. I want to buy a fig jam for it as well, maybe it’ll have a sweet and savory side.

August 19, 2010 Uncategorized No Comments

Sideboard in Danville, CA is slowly becoming one of my favorite places in the east bay.
Local and Organic food…they serve Blue Bottle coffee, which I have yet to try but I hear is on par, though Philz is dear to my heart.
This is my third time this summer coming here, finally showing my family how wonderful it is!

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fried brussel sprouts with a lemon aioli

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shrimp ceviche – light and lemony with beautiful red and yellow grape tomatoes

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wild mushroom pasta with italian sausage – fresh mushrooms

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mozzerella, basil pesto and heirloom tomato panini with housemade chips

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i finished the meal with this amazing watermelon mint cooler. so freshing! reminded me of cantaloupe juice.

great ambiance, comfy chairs and amazing organic local food with a sort of rustic feel, in my top east bay restaurants by far!

August 19, 2010 Uncategorized No Comments