Photo Friday!

This past week, I walked around my neighborhood, saw lots of great nature and enjoyed the sunshine in the beginning of February. Usually, it is cold and rainy, but lately it has been quite spring-like.

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flower&buds

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purple_flowers

lands_end_sun

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For those of you on the East coast experiencing snow storm Nemo, I hope you enjoyed these sunny nature pictures. Maybe some of you are feeling inspired to come to California?! :)

Photo Friday!

It’s back! I intend to recap my week (or so) with photos every Friday. Since I’ve been “gone” for a while, this post will be longer than most. Enjoy!

pasta

We cooked a lot of dinners at home over the past few months. This includes some pasta and roasted veggies and a lot of brown butter!

roasted_squash roasted_squash&pasta

tofu_pork_stir-fry spring_rolls

and some Chinese inspired dishes: tofu & pork stir fry & spring rolls

honey_whole_wheat_muffins slice_smores_pie reverse_b&w_crinkle_cookies WinterSpice_granola choc_ginger_cookie_stencil pig_cookie_cutter

There were, of course, many desserts involved. This included, from top to bottom, honey whole wheat muffins, S’mores pie, a cookie swap that included reverse crinkle cookies, homemade granola, a New Year’s Eve party involving decorating cookies with homemade stencils, and some pig-shaped cookies (that I’ll tell you more about soon).

matilda_beer_vegas chicken_salad_vegas crepe_vegas choc_shake_vegas choc_cake_vegas

Lastly, we went to Las Vegas for my birthday (in November) and ate lots of food (and drank some beer) including that bottle of Matilda and a chicken salad-salad at Wolfgang Puck’s restaurant inside the MGM, some chocolate desserts at Max Brenner’s, and more chocolate (in cake form, with a macaron on top) from Jean Philippe Patisserie.

What I’m Reading Wednesday

I know that it has been, like, FOREVER since I wrote one of these posts, so I will try my best to catch-up on all that I’ve been reading lately.

First up (and if you see when this was written, you will see just how long it really has been) a note about remembering to indulge a bit every once in awhile. Just make it a good one.

An article about what makes a (food) trend a trend. Also, Americans (& Canadians) make some sake.

There are many ways of photo-sharing on the Internet these days, but what about the photos of you that you’ll never see?

And, because it’s Halloween, and I figure I should have something topical on here: a candy hierarchy. And, candy for an adult palate, because, you know, you can’t have bourbon in caramels for the kids.

Some recipes I have made and will talk more about in the near(ish) future: S’more Brownies & Addictive Brussels Sprouts Salad

Happy Halloween! I hope all are safe (from Sandy and other chaos) this year!

Photo Friday!

(As I have sat on my butt on my day off not made time to edit these photos, I apologize for what could be a post full of blurry photos for a short post, but I did not want to miss another week.) Enjoy the week in review! :)

First up, I made an apple tarte tartin for the first time.

It was made for this literal house party, consisting of only people who currently live in, have previously lived in, and frequently visit this house. (Ahem, that last part is there to include yours truly.)

Finished product. Half was finished at the party, half was finished at dinner that night.

Plum cake that was Mike’s contribution to dinner that night. This was the second time I had seen him make it and the second time I was not allowed to see or really know what was in the recipe or even stir any of the ingredients. I guess every relationship needs some secrets. ;)

The dinner that I keep speaking of was Rosh Hashanah dinner that I hinted at last time.

As an attempt to visit and know more about the city we call home, Mike and I decided to make it a habit to have brunch at a new neighborhood every weekend ’til we hit them all. This week was Hayes Valley.

I have become obsessed with the “latte art” or, since I only have hot chocolates, “steamed milk art”. This is from the same Blue Bottle cup from above.

My first time at Absinthe for brunch. I got the two eggs any style (mine will always be scrambled unless I can get over my fear dislike of runny yolks), with toast, sausage (house-made), and “the best potatoes” as quoted by Mike before we even got there. Notice there are three potatoes? I ate only one. MAYBE one and a half. Someone learned the “reach over to the other person’s plate” trick from my family (read: dad) a little too quickly for my taste. (Especially since this is before Mike met him!) I did get to try his duck hash, which was pretty good, too. :)

Lastly, a picture of the parts from the Lost Crates package from Joy the Baker last month. Cup 4 Cup gluten-free flour, and some vanilla beans and extract from Beanilla. Once I figure out what to make with all of that, I will post the recipe.

Photo Friday! {Summer Recap}

This summer was filled to the brim with trips and food and sun and sand and music and rainbows and more food. Which is why I have a lot of catching up to do (again). This week, I will be recapping the end of my summer fun.

Three weekends ago, (OMG has it been that long!) over Labor Day weekend, I went on a short trip to New York to visit the fam. There was a 3-day long reunion that included four generations of family! (Like, whoa!) It also included sand in my toes, beautiful sunsets, pizza, pasta, goat meat (from the farm, upstate) and more sand.

The week after I returned included this incredible (double) rainbow. I was so in awe with it, I took about a billion pictures of it. As soon as the rainbow/sunset had faded, I moved inside to watch a few awesome people play amazing music.

I know it is random, but I just had to share: I pass this mailbox on the way to work sometimes and it makes me laugh, thinking about the amped up mail inside.

Lastly, the boyfriend’s cousin and friends were in town and we all hung out in the Mission, eating tacos, of course.

And, yes, there was a Rosh Hashanah dinner that I went to this weekend, and there are pictures from that, but, well, I figured I should save those for next week. :) So enjoy the week and stay tuned!

What I’m Reading Wednesday

This week I do not have much to share because I have been reading articles about things for school research and not reading so many “for fun” things.

But here’s what I have read in my spare time that I enjoyed:

For starters, I think it is important to know where the letters come from.

I mean, how are you supposed to read anything before knowing that? :)

P.S. Did you know that Count from Sesame Street died recently? Ah, AH, ah. (That would be so much better if read out loud in your best Count voice, trust me.)

Now that we’ve moved on past the basics of letters and numbers, let’s get real.

I am sure you have all heard of “pop-up” restaurants like my favorite Rice Paper Scissors. And, you may have read my posts that mention the Underground Market, but have you heard of a pop-up restaurant that is literally underground?

Now that we are all on the same page about these restaurants, what they know about you.

That’s all the reading I’ve been able to do lately. I hope that’s enough to tide you over ’til next week! If not, I am working on editing my photos, and there will definitely be a post on Friday, and hopefully some more over the next few days.

Photo Friday! {Plus Foodie Pen Pal Reveal}

This week is another “just testing my camera” week because I am dopey and forgot to bring it to the restaurant we went to for dinner last night. Also, since I am writing this right before leaving for the airport, I have not edited any of these. This will truly be a test to see the quality of pictures my camera gives me. Forgive me for the blurriness in advance, won’t you? Next week should be chock-full of great (edited) photos from this weekend because I am going away to New York for Labor Day weekend!

Spaghetti and shrimp and peas for dinner this week. Easy and fast dinner I recommend you make for dinner one night.

I’ll give you one guess what I used these ingredients for. Hint: the title of these treats is on the blue box.

Found a leaf in my hot chocolate at Four Barrel this morning. So pretty!

Wait! Did you say hot chocolate? I don’t see that on the menu. That’s what you are thinking, right?  Well, I know about the “secret menu”. They make their hot chocolate with Dandelion Chocolate, who, by the way, have a new bar! Now you know!


Lastly, it is Foodie Pen Pal reveal time! I got all sorts of goodies this time. According to my pen pal this month, Sandra, they are all locally made. In case you can’t tell what it is I got, it is Tim’s Potato Chips, Annie’s Homegrown Macaroni and Cheese, Moonstruck Milk Chocolate, Propeller Chocolate chip Energy bar Mix, and Cary’s English Toffee. All good things.

Hope you have a great Labor Day weekend and extra day off of work!