Monday, August 30, 2010


I'm nurturing my inner science nerd with this new NPR blog that I discovered: Krulwich Wonders. Science fun in layman's terms. Makes me feel clever.

Wanna know what this picture is all about? Click here! Do it!

Saturday, August 28, 2010


I have this cute friend. Her name is Regina. Even her name is cute.

We're having a slumber party this weekend. Pillow fights and everything.

We also made muffins together. Gluten Free Blueberry Muffins. And we even came up with our own recipe because all the other ones we found either sucked, or included some outrageously expensive or hard to find ingredients.

We used honey in them, cause that stuff is good for you.

Gluten Free Blueberry Muffins
2 1/2 cups brown rice flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup honey
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups blueberries

  • Preheat oven to 325.
  • Line 12 muffin cups.
  • In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.
  • In a separate bowl mix the oil, milk, vanilla, honey and eggs.
  • Mix wet ingredients into dry.
  • Gently stir in blueberries.
  • Divide evenly among muffin cups.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes.

Friday, August 27, 2010


My sister came over for dinner the other night. I got to cook for her. I got to show her some of my skillz.

First I showed her how fast I can pop open a bottle of wine. Its really impressive.

Then I made her some food. I took a recipe from the book that we gave each other for our birthdays, Cooking with the Wines of Oregon. The recipe: Aramenta Hazelnut-Crusted Halibut with Beurre Rouge. I know, FANCY!

Hazelnuts are great. Very Oregon and very very delicious.

The wine gets cooked down to a syrup, then cream and butter is added. Wine+butter+cream=AMAZING. You didn't need me to tell you that. You already knew.

I didn't use halibut though. I used Sea Bass. It was on sale. And its a fantastic fatty fish with a lot of flavor.

Thursday, August 26, 2010


If I wasn't a Portlander before, its a sure thing now. The deal has been sealed. Its official. I'm making beer.

This is the second batch that I've helped Cory make. And it's quite a rewarding process, much like baking: the process, the smells, the sweet reward at the end of it all.

This batch we made an IRA, which stands for Imerial Red Ale, a combination between a Red Ale and an Imperial Pale Ale.

First we make a little tea with the grains. While wearing Chacos. Cause we're hippies like that.

The grains go out, the malt goes in. And then so does the hops. Beautiful, bright, fragrant hops. Three separate batches of them.

Then, when our mixture has brewed up real nice, we take it down into the man cave. Thats where it chills out for a bit. Till about 80 degrees or so.

It gets added to the carboy, along with some water. Then some big strong man picks it up and shakes it. Its totally sexy.

The yeast is added. And now its time to wait and let them feast and do their yeasty thing. And what a beautiful thing it is: this brew is forecasted to be a kick-in-your-pants 7%. I'm sure lots of other things will be looking beautiful after a few glasses of this stuff. Beer Goggle Ale? Yeehaw!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


Its been about three months now since I gave up my [mom's] car and made the switch to car-free.

I had no idea just what a positive change it would be.

First, there's the obvious health benefits. I hardly even break a sweat on the hilly climb up Glisan Street from work to home. My legs are more toned. I sleep well at night because I'm always getting enough exercise.

And then, the part that surprised me: feeling like a part of a community. Take, for example, my commute to work in downtown from SE Portland. As I get closer to the Hawthorne Bridge, a large group of fellow bike commuters begins to form. Suddenly there's a whole pack of us, turning together, hauling our butts up the on-ramp, avoiding cars:

It feels amazing to be a part of this group; getting from one place to another in a healthy and fun manner without a giant steel cage separating us from each other and our surroundings.

It also helped prepare me for last weekend when I rode my very first century, the Portland Century.

The ride included Portland's finest bike paths, some great hills, several rest stops with all the peanut butter and jelly you can eat and one with pizza(!), and some great scenery in between it all.

With much thanks to four very strong and kind men, I finished! At the finish line: a cute boy, salmon dinner, and beer garden! Could they even call it a Portland Century without a beer garden?

Monday, August 23, 2010


What a long and wonderful weekend! Posts to come about festivities once my legs feel a bit less like jello.

In the meantime, check out this article on NPR. Food cart fine dining? We knew that. Here in Portland, we've known that for a long time. Duh. But pretty interesting to see that chefs are choosing to go the food cart route straight out of culinary school.

Friday, August 20, 2010


I have this beautiful friend named Michaelene. She loves to cook and drink and host wonderful parties. And she's really quite amazing at all those things so it always comes together quite nicely. She's had Chicken and Waffle, Cinco de Mayo, Bastille Day parties... all wonderful.

But the party she held on Wednesday takes the cake. This little lady is Lebanese, and she held a St. Mary's Party. So much Lebanese goodness! Needless to say, by the time I left her place I had garlic coming out my ears.

She made hummus and lebneh, a strained yogurt cheese that is to die for.

She made dolmas. Is your mouth watering yet?

And feta cheese, with herbs, onions, tomatoes...

And for dessert she served a fried bread. She used chunks of stale baguette, fried them in butter and topped them with syrup. It was wonderful.

Thursday, August 19, 2010


I found a new cookbook to obsess over. Its called Tana's Kitchen Secrets. That actually sounds a little scandalous.

I found it at the library. Yeah, I'm a nerd.

Tana is celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay's wife. This book is really really beautiful.

I especially like the cute patterns that separate the sections of the book. I'm a total sucker for patterns.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


I made cookies. For a boy. Actually, I'll take any excuse to bake, so if you're a girl or a boy, in dire need of cookies, just let me know. I'll hook you up.

This boy was supposed to go on a backpacking trip. So I made Oatmeal Pecan Chocolate Chip Cookies. But the trip got canceled. So more time with the boy for me. :)

I'm totally hooked on that vanilla bean syrup I used in that ice cream last week. I think from now on I'll be using that exclusively, unless I'm going for a more subtle vanilla flavor.

Pecans are great in cookies. Mostly because I'm not allergic to them like I am walnuts.

It is extremely important when you are baking cookies for someone else that you try them. Instead of actually waiting for the cookies to finish baking, I decided to have some of the dough with that homemade vanilla ice cream. Delicious!

Oh yeah, they should be sampled after they're done baking, too. Just to be safe.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


I've been assisting some of my coworkers with their resumes. Some of them are lacking sufficient computer programs, computers, proper grammar, etc. So they've commissioned me and my marvelous resume writing and designing skills.

This is one I've just finished today. I created two versions: the pretty one (the one you'll see here), and the practical one, that can be easily edited and printed on a home printer.

I chose the all-caps, tall font in reds because I wanted it to look strong and bold. The sans-serif font in the body is easy to read and compliments the font used for the name.

Now, about that job for me...

Monday, August 16, 2010


Hello again. Its been a while.

I had another one of those weekends. Play, play, play, work, sleep, play, play, work, play. Something like that. Which leaves no time for checking e-mails or updating blogs.

Thats okay.

On friday we went to the wedding of some friends in the Dundee hills, which is definitely in my top 5 of most beautiful places I've ever seen. Needless to say the wedding was gorgeous. And fun.

And they let me design their wedding program. They're cute, about 1/4 of a sheet of paper, and they fold out like an accordion. Fun!

Friday, August 13, 2010


I CANT WAIT. And I plan on sneaking a giant piece of chocolate cake into the theater. Bwahaha.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


Anybody who really knows me knows I like ice cream. A LOT. Like, I used to eat it everyday, sometimes even twice a day. I know. Ridiculous.

So for my birthday I thought it would be fun to use my ice cream maker to make a recipe from The Paley's Place Cookbook: Honey Vanilla Bean Ice Cream.

I used local honey. And when I went to look for a vanilla bean, I found this bottle of vanilla bean paste. 1 bottle = 10 vanilla beans! Its like a syrup, brimming with vanilla bean seeds.

I also used all the real, good stuff: cream, sugar, egg yolks, and pure magic.

And it is delicious. Creamy and delicious. It tastes best with berries that your mom pick.
Happy Birthday to me!

Monday, August 9, 2010


I got to kick it with my Mom today. And my sister. And eat a big fat burrito for lunch. And a yummy crepe for dinner. And make honey vanilla bean ice cream. Today totally rocked my socks.

And while out exploring, we discovered this new-ish thing. Supportland. Clever.

Friday, August 6, 2010


I made Rosemary Shortbread Cookies today. They're awesome. And my apartment smells like rosemary now. Win!

First I chopped up rosemary with this fine little slicing tool that mama brought me from Alaska.

Then made the shortbread dough. Its easy stuff. Butter, sugar, flour. All very good for you['r soul].

Then I got out my cookie press. Cute, right?

Here they are. Melt-in-your-mouth-rosemary-goodness.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


Whats that? You need some sweet eye candy? Well I'm busy. Try this instead: I LOVE DUST.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


Yesterday I posted about packing lists. Last night I dreamt about traveling (and my fears about doing it alone, again). And today I found this website with photos from a cross country trip. They're so beautiful. I especially love the ones from Sasquatch at the Gorge.

Is this a sign? I sure hope so.

Monday, August 2, 2010


I stumbled upon a great time and stress saving tool today: customized packing lists! Just input the type of trip you are going on, temperature, and other pertinent information, and it generates a customized packing list.

I should plan a trip so that I can use this nifty tool. Or crack open a Corona. Sure, its 3:00 on a Monday, but its my day off. :)

Sunday, August 1, 2010


On this nice, overcast first morning in August I am eating a mango and listening to Unchained Melody. And making breakfast cookies. They're the best.

They have shredded carrots and granny smith. Its good stuff.

They also have oats, chocolate chips, peanut butter, coconut and cinnamon. See? These cookies are good for you.

But I like to pretend like they're not... Cookies for breakfast!!!