Friday, December 31, 2010
Thursday, December 30, 2010
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
My cholesterol has always been high (runs in the female side of my family and does not change with diet so I have been on meds for condition for a long time ... and no I am not that old yet) so I usually try to avoid foods that are considered further elevating HDL but occasionally you have to give in - no?!!!
So today after getting a little agitated about the fact that my drive way is still not cleaned from the snow (even though we pay a sh..-load of money to have it done) I needed a treat. In trying to be not too bad I made up my own egg salad recipe which turned out to be really yummy (if you wonder - no, I did not finish it all in one setting... my day hasn't been that bad):
3 hard-boiled eggs peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon of low fat mayo
2 tablespoons of Greek yogurt
salt to taste
pepper to taste
2-2 pinches of Paprika and Cayenne pepper each
1.5 teaspoons of chopped dill
Mix mayo, yogurt and spices - carefully fold eggs in: DONE!
Enjoy on fresh baguette or nice crunchy toast.
Sunday, December 26, 2010
Brownies are one of the items that you can easily dress up and here is one version that I made yesterday as a little self-made take along Xmas gift for my friends that they can indulge on when the blizzard hits later today.
What do you need?
Box of Brownie mix - I prefer real dark chocolate brownie mix
1/3 cup of neutral oil (or whatever your mix calls for)
1/3 cup of rum (yes, you are reading that one right... replace water by rum!)
Tablespoon of good vanilla extract
Shot of coffee or teaspoon of espresso powder
Teaspoon of good orange extract (if you like nuts substituting with almond or hazelnut would surely taste great too)
Prepare brownies according to instructions, pour in well greased baking dish (I prefer 8"x8" to have a thicker brownie), and bake at temperature mentioned on box BUT slightly under bake them (I cut off about 8-10mins from recommended time), take out of oven and cover with thick towel. Why you might ask - this gives you the most chewy brownie with just the right amount of crust.
Give it a try - the small changes/additions in ingredients make everybody think you sweat in the kitchen measuring ingredients for hours.
Share and indulge!
Friday, December 24, 2010
So here I am in the US thinking of the good ol' times and it makes me all warm and fuzzy feeling - I don't have my family around but tomorrow I am going to see some of my best friends and we will spend a lovely day of exchanging gifts, eating and being merry all over again... so what do I want to say with this - you can find happiness and warmth wherever you are!
Wishing you all a very Merry Holiday season! Be Happy and Enjoy!
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
It's meatless too; however, I did not miss the meat at all (OK, that does not mean that much as I often skip meat).
First I whipped up a quick raw fennel salad with orange & pistachios - yum. Thinly sliced fennel (one bulb - don't forget to take the core out as it is really tough), orange slices (1-2 oranges depending on how citrusy you like it) and a good handful of pistachios. Dressing - very simple white vineyard of your choice, orange juice and zest, pepper & salt ... that's it. You can add Greek yogurt if you like a creamier dressing. I am a sucker for pistachios if you are not - walnuts are perfect in this salad as well.
Then I thought - crispy potato cakes would go great with the salad. If you are really pressed for time you can use ready bought or a mix but freshly made they are even better. Potatoes (2 Idaho), 1 onion, flour, 1 egg, salt and pepper is all you need - coarsely grind in food processor or hand grinder (let the potatoes sit for a while and discard the fluid that collects), mix it all together (as usual don't over mix) and bake in canola oil on medium-high heat... enjoy with salad :-)
Saturday, December 11, 2010
Thursday, December 02, 2010
Sunday, November 28, 2010
Pumpkin soup & Three Pepper Shrimp
My personal recipe for the shrimp - nothing new or unique but so easy and quite tasteful if you want to try:
5-6 medium to large shrimp per person
Black, white, green pepper (I grind them fairly coarse)
Olive oil and grape seed oil
Salt and Red Pepper flakes
Toss shrimp with good dosing of olive oil (you can use a neutral oil if you don't like the taste of Olive oil) and 1/2 - 1 tbs of pepper per serving. Let marinate for about an hour.
Heat non-stick skillet on medium heat with little bit of grape seed oil; grill shrimps in batches for about 2 minutes on each side (don't overcook or they get rubbery).
Salt and add Red Pepper Flakes to taste (this is spicy version, you can skip Red Pepper and it still taste great)
Can be enjoyed warm or at room temperature. Bon Appetit!
Thursday, November 25, 2010
I am very lucky today as I will be spending time with friends and their kids - nothing fancy or formal just a relaxed afternoon with yummy food and great company and chats :-)
Something to be thankful for!
Wishing you all a very Happy Thanksgiving and time to reflect on the good things in your life.
Sunday, November 07, 2010
Saturday, October 23, 2010
The pattern has instructions for matching scarf & fingerless gloves and I tested the scarf:
The scarf consists of 8 row repeat - easy to memorise which makes this project an easy take-along project. Pattern is also written in a very clear way. As I love how the scarf turned out I plan to make the fingerless mitts as well.
Bottomline: If you are looking for a charming fingerless mitts/scarf set I really recommend this pattern.
Saturday, October 16, 2010
But today I am telling a totally different story of Italian men being great gentlemen and putting me in some trouble because of it.
I was on a fairly long business trip in EU and therefore took a much bigger suitcase than normal. Yesterday I finally came to Rome airport to fly back to the US... so far so good.
Stayed at airport hotel - short walk from Terminal 3 (T3). When I got there I could not locate any reference to my flight... so curb-side I checked if I may be at the wrong terminal. Some lovely Italians informed me that all flights to US leave from Terminal 5 (T5), short bus ride away and that I was in the right place to board the bus. I was still not quite convinced that my assistant should have gotten the terminal wrong so I continued checking with one of the gentlemen... while another loaded my heavy suitcase on the bus.
Problems with that 1) I did not realise that my suitcase got loaded on bus to T5 2) bus took off with my suitcase but NOT with ME AND my SUITCASE 3) it turned out that my flight on Alitalia would actually go from T3 so no need to go to T5.
Here I am @ T3 already little late for check in and my luggage travelling all by itself to T5... what to do???
Plan A - check if bus comes back on round-trip so that I can just stay put and wait for it to come back... sorry, m'am not this particular bus.
Plan B is needed fast - convince Italian gentlemen to page their colleagues at T5 to pull my suitcase off bus and keep it save for me - me jumping on next bus to T5 (two pairs of new shoes in my suitcase so I am very attached to it!!!), grab suitcase (actually nice Italian gentlemen again loading it on bus - this time with my knowlegde!!), ME AND SUITCASE taking next bus back to T3 and run to check-in & make last call to board my flight. Phew - talk about cutting it close.
Learning: It's OK and fun to flirt with nice Italien men but keep a close eye on your luggage :-)
Sunday, September 19, 2010
The pattern will be part of a larger collection and I will update my blog when it becomes available.
Saturday, September 18, 2010
Cast on 9 stitches, continue in in garter for 2 inches, bind off middle 5 stitches in middle of next row and directly cast these 5 stitches back on the next row (creates a hole to slip the other end of the scarf through to keep it snug around your neck) and continue in garter until you run out of yarn.
Easy-peasy mini-scarf that can be finished in less than an hour.
Friday, September 17, 2010
Saturday, March 13, 2010
To ease my pain I am going to have "Blood Orange Royal" - yummy:
So easy to make but really delicious.
Bring 1/2 cup of sugar with 1/4 cup water, 1/4 cup blood orange juice and orange peel to a boil until sugar is dissolved. Let cool and strain through fine sieve.
1 part blood orange syrup to 4 parts Champagne - voila: "Blood Orange Royal"
Friday, March 12, 2010
Maybe my expectations because of that were sky-high... I did not get the vibe at all!!! It was hot and humid (I know to be expected) and other than that it was just another big city with nothing that really caught my eye. I actually think that the issue was that it is so nice and clean - no edge to catch your eye; nothing that made it stand out in a unique way.
Oh well, likely it's me as I had the experience before that for some bizarre reason I like cities better that are a bit less orderly (Barcelona, Rome, Berlin, NYC,...).
Off to Lima in a couple of weeks ... that may be the other extreme ha-ha.
Saturday, March 06, 2010
Sunday, February 28, 2010
Friday, February 26, 2010
Please, please, please where are the spring flowers.
Saturday, February 20, 2010
The title of my blog will likely make some of my friends and my mom laugh really hard because my work regularly spills over into my private life… and frankly sometimes takes it over. I could have made a resolution this year to change that… but we know how long resolutions last – at least for me. So I will be honest with myself and just take it a day at a time – there will be days I will do very well with having a life outside work and other days I will stink at it. Just like real life.