Thursday, December 30, 2010

My website

So how many of you after reading my last blog went and checked out my website?

Anyone?

No One?

:(

Well... it's okay... But go check it out, just to make me happy. I've even added a blog section so you guys can get hair tips and techniques... ya know??? Check it out.

House of Style

Thanx.
~M~

Monday, December 27, 2010

You win some, You lose some.

EPIC FAIL - My 30 day challenge.


My Christmas Eve Fit

 Sweater: Express
Jeans: Express
Boots: Parisian
Scarf: Gifted


Christmas Day Fit

Shirt: Thrifted
Belt: Body Shop
Skirt: Express
White Tights: Walmart
Grey Fishnets: Forever 21

And that is the last you'll see of my "30 day" challenge. Yes... That was only 4 outfits. FAIL FAIL FAIL. I'm so disappointed in myself. It's not that I couldn't stick to 30 pieces of clothing. It's not that I couldn't come up with fabulous oufits. No... my dilemma is just a little different. For 21 out of the 30 days I'm officially on Christmas Break. That means, no school. And somehow, I haven't managed to leave the house more than 3 times in the past week and 1/2 except to work. And I'm a security guard so no fashion debut there. Just simple security guard uniform day in and day out. So, I regret to inform the masses that I am discontinuing my 30 for 30 wardrobe remix challenge. for now. :(

BUT...

For the win!!!

I finished creating my website for my business. YAY ME. Check it out y'all. House of Style. No.. It's not fashion. I'm a hairstylist by trade. (or so says the 1000's of dollars I paid for my education and licensing. lol) I have decided that there is no more sitting on skill and letting my hard earned dollars go to waste. So I'm marketing my services and stepping out on faith that my business will flourish. But for now, step one: Hurdle-off-your-behind is complete. So again... YAY ME!!!

Like I said. You win some, you lose some.

~M~



Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Lies and Deceit

Try it! Almost any pancake recipe you look at will tell you that the first pancake will be the "sacrificial lamb" of sorts. And anyone that has made pancakes knows that usually the first one doesn't come out right. According to the food experts, the first pancake just can't come out right.

BOLDERDASH!!!!

I made pancakes this morning that were DELISH! And guess what? No sacrificial lamb. The first pancake was just as fluffy, and perfectly cooked as the last. I even took a picture of it to show you how good it looked!

Anyone that would dare through that pancake away needs to be locked away and have the key thrown out. that's a good pancake right there!!!


Simple Pancakes
(adapted from Pancakes I at Allrecipes.com)

1 cup of flour
2 TBSP sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup milk
1 egg
2 TBSP olive oil
1 tsp almond extract
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

VERY IMPORTANT!!!!

The ingredients aren't what's important to make these pancakes, the procedure is. So follow it! You can adjust the flavorings to your taste. If you like more or less sugar, that's fine. Omit extracts if you'd like or sub different flavored ones. But FOLLOW THE PROCEDURE!!!

Dry Ingredients

Step 1: Measuring flour.

Don't take your one cup measuring cup and scoop out a cup of flour. This makes for a heavy batter. Rather, get a small scoop and spoon the flour into your one cup measure, making sure not to tap the flour down. What you what is light and airy. Say it with me... LIGHT and AIRY... Level the flour off with a straight edge and pour it into your sifter.

Step 2: Measure out level spoons of following dry ingredients and pour all into your sifter.

Step 3: Sift Dry ingredients into medium sized mixing bowl and set aside

Wet Ingredients

Step 1: Measure your milk in a liquid measure measuring cup. Pour into large mixing bowl.

Step 2: Separate your eggs!!!! If you don't know how to: how to separate eggs. Put the whites into a small mixing bowl. Put the yolk in with the milk.

Step 3: Add the rest of the wet ingredients to milk mixture and mix until thouroughly encorporated.

Now Preheat your nonstick skillet on medium heat!!!

MAGIC STEP

This is what's going to make your pancakes fluffy. Whipped Egg Whites

If you have a hand mixer put it on high and beat your egg whites until they form soft stiff peaks.

Now to form the batter...

Slowly pour dry mix into wet mix while stirring. Mix only until the wet mix has completely combined with the dry mix. There will be lumps and that's okay. But don't overbeat, because you will have TOUGH pancakes.

Now fold your egg whites into the batter with a wooden on rubber spatula. FOLD IN, do not mix! you want to keep the air that you just whipped into the whites.

IMMEDIATELY
Take a measuring cup (size will depend on how large you want your pancakes, but i suggest between 1/4 cup and 1/2 cup) Fill with batter. Pour batter Directly into center of pan and let it spread naturally. Let it cook on one side until the bubbles start drying out and edges set. Use a spatula that is almost the same diameter as the pancake and flip. It's gana be approx a 2-3 minute cook on each side.

VOILA!

Happy Eating

~M~

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Day 2 of 30

Yeah Yeah, i know. Yesterday was supposed to be day two, but I totally didn't go anywhere so...


Blazer: Gifted
Sweater: Thrifted
Jeans: Gifted
Fishnets: Walmart
Shoes: Gifted
Belt: New York and Company

And while I was at Earth Fare this GORGEOUS guy felt it neccessary to tell me how good I looked today. :) I think I did well.

~M~

Sunday, December 19, 2010

30 for 30 challenge: Better Late than Never

So Kendi Everyday started a great challenge...  30 for 30 remix challenge. And I have been supposedly starting it for over a month now... Well, wait no longer... I have begun my own personal 30 for 30 challenge.


So I'm working on remaking a skirt that was too long, too big and too boring.


I've taken it in and cut it shorter and I'm working on a hem and some ruffles for it. I'll blog it when I finish.

But I had to make a run to the fabric store, and so kicked off day one of my 30 day challenge...


 Sweater: New York and Company
Blazer: Thrifted
Jeans: Gifted
Tights: Walmart
Leg Warmers: Walmart
Boots: Parisian
Scarf: Gifted
I wear that scarf with EVERYTHING! For two reasons... 1) It's my only scarf. 2) It's special to me because my step dad's parents sent it all the way from Kenya, Africa (My step-dad is Kenyan) So I find new and inventive ways to wear it. It doesn't always match (like it did today) But it always looks Good!!

What about you? Any favorite article of clothing you'd like to share?

Monday, December 6, 2010

Cooking Tips: #1

The Secret to Perfectly Cooked Vegetables
Recipe to follow


Soggy veggies are NASTY!!! Undercooked ones leave little to be desired also. There is a delicate balance when cooking vegetables to get them wonderful, flavorful, and perfectly textured.  True, it's in the seasoning, but THE (in my opinion) most pertinent aspect of cooking vegetables is...

Drum roll please...




Water Content.
When you have too much water, not only do the veggies get soggy, but they lose nutrients, which in turn causes them to lose flavor.

My Answer:

DON'T ADD WATER!!!

"Well how will they cook?", you may ask.
Simple. Vegetables are well endowed with their own water that is released when cooking. If you simply cook your veggies on medium heat with a fitted lid, your veggies will steam in their own water, they will cook perfectly EVERY time, and they will taste SOOOOO good.

10 minute Cabbage

Ingredients:
Thinly sliced or chopped onions
sliced carrots
chopped turkey bacon (pork is not good for you okay! lol)
thinly sliced or shredded cabbage
Kosher salt
Black pepper
Red Pepper Flakes
olive oil (optional)

Directions:

Preheat pan on medium heat

1: cook bacon
2: add onions and carrots
3: Saute until onions become translucent
4: add salt and peppers
5: add cabbage. Stir all ingredients together and cover pot.

Cook on Medium heat until cabbage is desired doneness, checking and stirring periodically.

NOTES!!!

I cooked it in a nonstick skillet so I used a very small amout of olive oil (an EXTREMELY SMALL AMOUNT) simply for flavor. If you don't have a nonstick pan, though, you may want to consider not making the oil optional.

Happy Eating

~M~



Thursday, December 2, 2010

Forgive Me

Man!!!! I've had soooo much stuff to blog about in the past couple weeks, but the computer at work has become so unreliable... It goes down for weeks at a time and I'm lost somewhere in blogosphere without a voice...

Since I've been gone:

I started a 30 for 30 wardrobe challenge...
I challenged someone to a cheesecake cookoff
etc and so forth

BUT ALAS...

no blogs, no pictures, nothing...

So forgive me. But I'm back (for now) and you'll definitely get a whiff of that cheesecake challenge cuz it's on an poppin soon and very soon.

~M~

Sunday, November 21, 2010

shoes Shoes SHOES!!!!


I have a shoe fetish....

This is my wallpaper on my desktop for my computer....

I have lots of shoes. Black one, blue ones, white ones, cream colored ones, gold ones, brown ones, burgundy ones, etc and etc.... but I have had this craving for the past few years for my first pair of red shoes... (I desperately want some red shoes. I have on many occassion wished for a red shoe to make an outfit pop)...

So I go on Zappos.com today to BROWSE the red shoes (I don't have any money, so I'm browsing)

I'm SICK!!!!

Let me show you the FABULOUS shoes I ran across.
Okay so these are kinda simple

Simple yet sexy

Too hott for tv

Girlie cute

Those are me... Handsdown

Add caption

I'm leaning hard towards these... Understanded SEXY...
It's been a while since I've spent more than 30 dollars on some shoes (times are hard) but I think I'm gana have to make a sacrifice for AT LEAST one pair of these...

Which ones do you like the best?

~M~


Just a little lyricism

Dear Relationship,

I don't think about you.
I have way too much other stuff to do.

I have too many things on my mind
and I don't have time
to pine away for you.

But you do cross my mind,
you know...
when I have time.

But right now, I'm too busy making music,
doing school,
going to work,
and sometimes acting like a fool,
so I don't have time to chase after you.

But you do cross my mind,
you know...
when that other stuff isn't taking up all my time.

It's not that I think I'm better off without you,
It's just that I don't want to be defined by you
I can be blind sometimes when dealing with you
so for now I'm thru.
But not because I want to...

It's just...
I don't have time to think about you...

Okay, well maybe I do...
Maybe I think about you.
Maybe I fill my time up with things that distract me from you
Maybe I want you,
Maybe sometimes I miss you...

It's not that I can't live without you,
It's just that sometimes life would be perfect with you...
Especially those cold winter nights that are made just for cuddling with a boo.

But since I don't have you,
I fill up my time with things that fill my mind
so, I really just don't think about you...

But sometimes I really do.

~M~

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Artist Review: Amy Winehouse

Okay Then... A little stray from my typical foodie stuff, but in case you don't remember or just haven't read my profile... my two passions are food AND MUSIC... with Music actually ranking first. And today seems as good a day as any to do a review on a MUST-HEAR artist.


This one isn't underground, or even new. And based on the amount of Grammy nomminations she has had, I'd dare say she's not unknown or completely underrated...

HOWEVER...

Her bad press due to her addiction has been allowed to overshadow her talent, and I kid you not folks... She is one of the more talented artists that the 2000s has seen. So I'm going to attempt to bring back to light the reason ANYONE has heard her name to begin with.

Disclaimer: This is not an objective review. I'm writing about Amy because I LOVE Amy! So you're only gana hear good things. Brace yourself.

Amy Winehouse, a songstress from England has a really jazzy soulful vibe.  It's actually more jazz than soul, but not explicitly jazz so I'm stuck in labeling her. But her voice brings amount the thoughts of ancient Jazz greats such as Sarah Vaughn.

What I Like About Amy

Lyricism
Jazz music is really about technique, in my opinion... which I believe is a valid opinion. Whether vocal Jazz or instrumental Jazz, the point that usually comes across is highly stylized technique. The lyrics for Jazz music are usually simple to complement the intricacy of the accompaniment. 
But...
In Amy's case, her lyrical content is quite intricate. She paints pictures and tells stories with her words, but she does it in such a way that she's not actually telling you straight out. I would consider her the Jazz equivalent of a hip-hop artist, whose primary emphasis is lyricism.   

Originality
Amy Winehouse has music steeped in a very familiar sound (Jazz/Soul) But what she does with it is so new that you can't help but take her bait and follow her to see where she goes. Most of her music is orginally, self written music, tho she does do some covers.  There aren't other artists out that are like Amy Winehouse.

Raw Talent
This chick can SING! No... Wait.... This chick can SANG!!! And her voice isn't bounded to one particular sound. Sometimes it's sweet and melodic, sometimes it's raw and gritty. Her ballads are awesome, her swings are awesome... And when she does full acoustic work you can hear the richness in her voice that is not enhanced by some computer program (read: AUTOTUNE)

Raw Emotion
Some music is good but it just doesn't connect, simply because the artist can't connect with what they're saying. But Amy's music is so emotional. You feel it because she feels it... Good or bad, her music reflects her life...

Accolades
Amy Winehouse has two Albums.... Frank and Back to Black... Frank was released in the UK in 2003 and in the US in 2007. Back to Black was released in 2006. Over here, Back to Black was her first album. And it's GREAT, but with my two cents, FRANK WAS MUCH BETTER>>> However there are gems on both of them so if all you know of Amy Winehouse is the song "Rehab" GET TO YOUTUBE and look her up. If you know ANYTHING about good music, you will love her like I do.

Happy Listening
~M~



Monday, November 15, 2010

Sweet Potato Cheesecake

The readers have demanded and I must give the people what they want! LOL. My Recipe for....


Sweet Potato Pie Cheesecake
(It is SOOOOOOOOOOOO good!!!)

Okay, now for starters (And this is gana help the people that have NEVER made a cheesecake and the ones that have cheesecake making woes... For starters, The BEST (my opinion) Cheesecake recipes are the ones that have equal amounts of cream cheese blocks to eggs. For example, 2 8oz bars of Cream Cheese and 2 eggs... Now, mind you... That opinion isn't based on ANYTHING except for the fact that I've always done it like that and my results are always great... So says me, and so says the people that eat my cheesecakes.

BUT, I digress.

Sweet Potato Cheesecake

What you need:
8 inch Springform pan
1 large mixing bowl
1 medium mixing bowl
Dry Measuring Cup
Liquid Measuring Cup
A hand mixer (or stand mixer)
coffee grinder

KAY... You got your supplies now...

Ingredients:

Crust
1 1/2 crushed ginger snaps
3/4 cups ground toasted pecans
3 TBSPS Brown Sugar
6 TBSPS Melted Butter

Filling
1 medium sized sweet potato
2 8oz pacakages of Cream Cheese
3/4 Cup Brown sugar
1/4 Cup White Sugar
2 Eggs
1/4 cup Heavy Cream
2 TBSP and 2 tsp Maple Syrup
1 1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
1/4 tsp ground ginger
3/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Interjection....

These ingredients are listed as such for the two toned effect I wanted... 



Like this...


See??

So If you don't care about that or don't want to do the extra work, do one full cup brown sugar and omit the white sugar, and completely omit the ground ginger...

Step 1: Put your cream cheese and your eggs on the counter so they can come to room tempurature. If you try to beat these items cold you WILL have a lumpy cheesecake. Jus sayin.
Step 2: Bake your sweet potato in skin and wrapped in foil at 350 for about 1 hour or until soft to touch.

While your potato is in the oven you will begin the prep work for your crust.

Step 3: Grind your pecans in a coffe grinder (or if you don't have one you can finely (VERY FINELY) chop them.

After that, crush your gingersnaps using the following method...

Step 4: Combine Gingersnap crumbs, ground pecans, brown sugar and mix until thoroughly incorporated.

Step 5: Pour melted butter into Crumb and mix thoroughly
Step 6: Press into pan sprayed with baker's joy or similar baking spray to form crust. Dont' be afraid to get dirty... USE YOUR HANDS!!!!


Set Aside

Step 6: Once your sweet potato is done take it out of the oven, cut it in half (while still hot, but be careful) and scrape the flesh out into a bowl. Throw the skin away.

Step 7: Mash Sweet potato into soft like mashed potatoes (or baby food... lol)
(no photo available)

Step 8: Put room temp cream cheese into large mixing bowl and whip until creamy

Step 9: Separate out 1/4 cup of the whipped cream cheese and put into medium mixing bowl. Add white sugar to small bowl and and brown sugar to large bowl. whip separately until soft and satiny.



Step 10: Stir sweet potato into large bowl with wooden spoon. Mix in cream, maple syrup, and pumpkin pie spice. Mix well until whole mixture is thoroughly incorporated.

Step 11: Beat eggs. Separate out 1/4 and put into small bowl. pour the rest into large bowl. Mix each batter separately until smooth and creamy. Mix Ginger into white mixture.

Step 12: Pour white mixture into bottom of crust, spreading evenly over the crust. Pour Sweet Potato Mixture on top.

Step 13: Fill a 9x13 in pan with water and place on the bottow rack in your oven. Place the cake on top rack. Close oven door and turn temperature down to 275.

Step 14: Bake for about 45 mins or until edges are set and pulling away from the side and the center is still a little wiggly.

IMPORTANT!!!!

Step 15: Turn the oven off, but leave the door closed. This will allow the residual heat to gently cook the cake the rest of the way through without cracking  (which happens due to over cooking). Let cake rest in oven until the oven has completely cooled. Remove cake from oven and set on counter until pan is completely cool. When the cake has cooled, put it in the fridge... DO NOT REMOVE FROM PAN YET. The cake will set. Let set over night.

Step 16: EAT>ENJOY>REPEAT!!!


Sunday, November 14, 2010

It's the most wonderful time of the year

I'm feeling right festive these days.  Playing my Christmas Pandora Radio Station... Baking, and cooking meals that center around these wonderful days. Just to share a little of my festivity with you...

Peach Glazed Chicken, Cranberry Rice, Steamed Kale, and Herb Butter Biscuits

Sweet Potato Cheese Cake
Recipes and How-To Coming in future blog

and...

for some HOLIDAY CHEER>>>

Mariah Carey- All I want for Christmas

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Why I Love Earth Fare


In A Word....


FREE!!!!!!!

I mean, who doesn't want free food. And you may say, oh there's a catch... you have to spend $5 to get the free item. Well that's no catch to me... I'm gana spend 5 dollars at Earth Fare ANYWAY cuz groceries cost a heck of a lot more than 5 dollars. It's almost like they're rewarding me for doing what I have to do anyway.

Can't beat that.

~M~

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Guess Who's BACK

I have been gone for a long time against my will and it's been KILLING ME!!!!!

The internet hasn't been working properly for two weeks so I couldn't blog, but

I'M BACK

And with a slightly new idea on how to make my blogs more interesting and diverse with out being to scatterbrained....

So once a week I'll do a product review (Food related mostly), Once a week I'll do a "this vs. that" segment where I compare two foods that are the same but different. LOL. For instance, a quiznos turkey sub vs Subway, or Homemade Pasta vs store bought... ETC... A DIY day, for around the house. Natural hair and skin care remedies... etc

And of course the tried and true recipe blogs... And with the Holiday Season in full effect, you'll see lots of goodies: desserts (YAY), soups, and Seasonal food items.

So follow along as I explore the world of my love for all things artsy, fun, tasty, and beautiful!!! :)

~M~

Thursday, October 21, 2010

To-May-to vs To-Mah-to

I don't mean to pick, but...

You're vs. Your
I know... They're sooooo similar and sometimes you get confused. So much so that you use them interchangeably, and I guess if I read the sentence enough times I know what you're TRYING to say but...

You're: This word is a contraction for You are... simple as that. If you can't place "You Are" in the sentence where YOU'RE trying to place "you're" ...

IT DOESN'T GO THERE!!!!

Your:  Indicates possesion. Example: This is YOUR shoe.

 This is you're shoe. BAD BAD BAD...
Your coming to dinner. BAD BAD BAD
I hope you're coming to dinner because I have your shoe here waiting for you. GOOD GOOD GOOD

~M~

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Cheese and Apples

Move over Cheese and Crackers... A new snack is in town!!!!!! I don't think there's anything (aside from peanut butter) that goes better with a sweet, juicy, crispy apple then some beautiful pieces of aged cheddar cheese.

I was at earth fare this past friday. I was in the cheese section cuz I had to buy the Bleu Cheese for my filet Mignon. Then (because I LOVE cheese, I started scoping the other cheeses and my fav section came up (Cheddar of course). I saw a tiny block of 8 year aged (or 8 months... can't quite remember) cheddar cheese and I thought... hey I'll try it. It was mad expensive, but they sold it in a small square that came out to 4.80 so I figured... WTH... go ahead...

BUT...

They were sampling this other cheese, (which was much more expensive... $30/ lb to be exact. but it was on sale for $18.99/lb...) But it was PHENOMENAL!!!!!!! so I bought the smallest square I could find. It cost me $5.32.

But I couldn't think of ANY dish I could use that tiny little bit of cheese on... And I didn't want to waste $30 cheese on any old random dish. so as I was preparing my meals for the day, I decided I'd take some to go along with my Honeycrisp Apple...

BEST DECISION I MADE ALL DAY WEEK!!!!!

If you've never had cheddar cheese aged in cloth GO GET SOME IMMEDIATELY... Has the texture more like parmesan cheese, the sharpness and mouthfeel of a good creamy cheddar. There are WONDERFUL amazing notes to this cheese. PLEASE... I BEG YOU!!! TRY this cheese. Even if you buy just one ounce (cuz it really is quite expensive. I could buy a pair of shoes for the same price of a lb of this cheese). But.... try it... I promise you won't hate it. And you will most likely fall in love :)

Happy Eating

~M~

Sunday, October 17, 2010

SpoilMe Saturday

About 2 months ago I began dating myself. I take myself out every Saturday night. Whether it's just to the dollar movie or something more high end I have found it to be the most necessary thing in my life right now.  Well I LOVE sushi. So I decided that every pay weekend, I'd implement Sushi Saturday. But since that decision was made, I have not had sushi saturday ONCE. (smh) BUT... every pay weekend I do cook myself a special meal, and I try to splurge on entertainment. So instead of Sushi Saturday, I've implemented
"Spoilme Saturday". Last pay week I made Herb Encrusted Pan Seared Tuna with sides of Cilantro Pepper Rice and Green Beans with Balsamic Butter glaze (recipes all in aforementioned link). YUMMM!!! This week...

Filet Mignon
topped with Red Wine Sauce 
Carmelized Onions and Bleu Cheese
Thyme Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Soy Ginger Broccoli

OH MY GOSH!!!! It was PHENOM! And the price for the meal prolly came to a total of about 10 dollars. Whereas a filet at most steakhouses will run you upwards of 25 dollars. Just a thought.

Sidebar: It took me forEVER to learn how to cook a meal for just one person. Now that I've mastered it, I have mixed emotions about it. Does that man I'm doomed for singlehood? LOL. And also, when my meals are SUPERB... there are no leftoevers!! :(

BUT I DIGRESS.

Filet Mignon w. Red Wine Sauce

Ingredients:
Dried Rosemary
Onion Powder
Dried Oregano
Kosher Salt
Black Pepper
8 oz filet
Olive Oil



OKAY... so for the filet DO NOT MARINATE!!!! filets are very tender cuts of meat already and to marinate in something acidic will make the texture much too mushy. YUCK! Instead, make a dry rub to season it. filets also tend to be more bland than other cuts of meat because they have much less fat.. so what you gain in texture you lose in flavor, but no fear. This recipe is so flavorful you will not regret it.

Bring steak close to room temp. I try not to cook any of my food straight out of the fridge, especially meats and eggs. I've read somewhere that it just gets a better cook at room temp and I believe it. Mix first 5 ingredients together. This will be your dry rub. I used my fingers to get the spices ground as fine as I could. You can use a mortar and pestle if you have one. Sprinkle the dry rub on all sides of the steak.



Heat olive oil in a pan on medium high heat for about 5 mins. Place filet in pan and sear for about 4 minutes on both sides. DO NOT DISCARD DRIPPINGS!!!!

Red Wine Sauce:
Shallots
Chicken Stock
(or beef stock or veggie stock. I actually used chicken broth because I had no stock)
Red Wine (I used Shiraz)
Balsamic Vinegar
Brown Mustard
Butter
Kosher Salt
Black Pepper
Dried Thyme

Turn heat on saute pan down to low. Mince Shallots. Saute them in the pan drippings from the steak just until translucent (be careful not to burn them). Turn burner up to high. Pour in equal amounts of chicken stock and red wine (measurements are all up to you. I didn't use any I just eyed it :). Bring liquid to a high boil and let reduce by about half. Turn burner down to medium high heat and add balsmamic vinegar and mustard. Let reduce to desired consistency. Turn heat off. Add butter. Add Salt Pepper and Thyme to taste.
(Original Recipe: How to make a Red Wine Sace but these are my alterations with what I had on hand, (and I also didn't measure anything.)


Carmelized Onions

Sliced Onions
Butter
Sugar








Thyme Roasted Sweet Potatoes

(inspired by a recipe I found on Allrecipes.com)
1/2 a sweet potato chopped
Olive Oil
Dried Thyme
Chopped Garlic
Kosher Salt


Toss all ingredients together and put in covered bowl overnight. Roast at 300 degrees until slightly crispy around some edges.

Soy Ginger Broccoli

Olive Oil
Fresh Ginger, minced
Red Pepper Flakes
Salt
Soy Sauce
Orange Juice
Broccoli Florets



Saute ginger in olive oil over medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Add Red Pepper flakes and salt. Stir. Add soy sauce. Mixture will bubble up quickly and start to thicken. remove from heat when this happens so it doesn't burn. Add just enough orange juice to loosen up mixture and deglaze pan. Stir. Add Broccoli Florets. Mix thoroughly. Cover and cook over medium heat just until broccoli is bright green and still crispy. Turn heat off and let the steam cook it the rest of the way. This prevents over cooking.

Doesn't this look PHENOMENAL!!!!!!!!!!

Happy Eating

~M~

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Au Naturale

So, I'm a sucker for all things natural. I get it from my momma. The whole GREEN movement everyone's all about these days... well, I was suckered into that trap at an EARLY age... Now, I have no beef with non natural methods, but somehow they either A, proclaim too many unnatural side effects, or I'm scared that somehow they're gana mutate my body. LOL. Because of this, I rarely take pain medication for anything: headaches (even migraines), cramps, toothaches... You name it, if I can help it I'm looking up a natural remedy for it.

But I digress.

My scalp has been incessantly dry for some stupid odd reason for a while now. I can get NO relief. It's always itchy, usually flaky... Sigh. Now because I have a background in cosmetology (read: I'm a licensed, but non practicing cosmetologist) I'm big on my hair care and styling products. So I use my ultra moisturizing shampoo and scalp calming conditioner. Still nothing. I thought about buying some natural shampoos and conditioners, but something occured to me...

9 times out of 10 the products named "natural" are just as much chemicals as the other, they just add a little extract here and there to make it more natural. Soooo, I decided to go for what I know.

So for a quick Hair 101 lesson, your hair (skin and nails too) is naturally acid based and is at it's healthiest beween 4.5-5.5 on the pH scale. To keep it here, you don't want to use anything with too high of an alkalinity on your hair without balancing it back by using something of a low acid. A general rule is acids are good for your hair, alkalines (or bases) are less good. But most shampoos are alkaline based. And very high at that. The reason for that is the alkaline opens the hair shaft and allows the soaps to penetrate and clean.

BUT!!

Your hair doesn't really need that.

Courtesy of google images

Has anyone every checked out Arm and Hammers MILLIONS of ways to use baking soda? From cooking to cleaning, baking soda is soooo versatile. Well, Baking soda is also about an 8 on the pH scale making it a low alkaline and PERFECT for gently cleansing your hair. So I put the baking soda on my wet hair and massaged just as if I were lathering up my scalp with shampoo. then rinsed it

Next...

ROSEMARY AND THYME

I was researching to find what natural remedies are good for dry itchy scalp and two of them are rosemary and thyme and since I had some fresh rosemary and thyme trying to go bad in my fridge, I boiled them into a strong tea. I poured it on my hair and concentrated on my scalp. Rubbed it in and put a plastic cap on for about 30 mins. Then Rinse

AND FINALLY
MAYONAISE!!!!

Everybody knows that mayonaise is about the best conditoner for your hair. I'll tell you the most important components of it. Egg, Oil and Vinegar. Egg is full of fat and protein which is important for the building of your hair (protein that is) and Vinegar... well it's about a 2 on the pH scale so it will bring your hair back down to a good acid balance. Put the mayonaise on the hair. Plastic Cap it up for about 20-30 mins. Rinse with COLD water.

VOILA!!!

Now, my hair is extremely soft right now, scalp is nowhere near as dry and it took 10 hours for me to notice any itching and still the itching isn't that bad. Prior to this, I could wash it and the itching would be back in 30 mins. So... NATURAL IS ALWAYS BETTER.

And you heard it here first :)

~M~

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Enough is too much!

For some very weird reason, almost everything I cooked today had too much salt in it. I say very weird because I'm the person that under salts. I believe that the purpose for salt is to enhance flavor and that if you season a dish well enough you don't need too much salt. I also am deathly afraid of high blood pressure.

But I digress...

I was cooking some kettle corn this morning for my afternoon snack. When it was time to put the salt on a put a little bit. Then I went back and put some more, thinking "There. That should be enough." I tasted it and my heart sunk because I knew that had I not have thrown in that extra bit of salt it would have been PERFECT!!!! Enough was just too much.

Then I was ready to make my breakfast, but since I was running late I made a fried egg (for the first time) instead of my traditional... (scrambled or omelet). I salted it a bit, but when I tasted it I was a little perturbed because it was bland. There just wasn't enough salt. So I topped it with more salt, thinking... "There. That should be enough." But enough was ENTIRELY too much. Since initially I had salted over top of it instead of my normal way of salting and beating the salt through, the salt wasn't evenly disbursed. Actually, the salt was mainly on the yolk. So when I added the extra salt, well... UGGH! is all I can really say.

There's not object lesson here. I'm just saying, don't be surprised if the next few recipes from me have absolutely NO SALT in them... I think I'm all salted out now. And I won't lie, I'm a little bit salty about it.
(Pun intended  LOLOLOLLOL!!!!!)

~M~

Monday, October 11, 2010

HAHAH!!! My FIRST blog award!!!

 


I am so excited to receive my first blog award from kdr'S— a PHENOMENAL blog by an even more phenomenal pair of women!
PAY IT FORWARD, SHARE THIS AWARD – RULES FOR WINNING
Thank and link back to the person who gave you the award.
Share 7 things about yourself.
Pass the award to 15 bloggers you recently discovered and think are fabulous
Contact the bloggers you chose and let them know about the award.


 

Okay so 7 things about me

  1. I am a foodie
  2. I <3 my little sister to pieces!!!
  3. I want to travel the world SOON!
  4. I have come to really love blogging. Such a therapeutic release.
  5. I hate reading looooooong blogs. Such a turn off.
  6. I'm also a composer. Dunno why I put this so far down on the list.
  7. I don't know what else to put

    It's so hard to choose 15 bloggers, Mostly because since I'm fairly new to consistent blogging and even reading other's blogs, I'm not familiar with 15 bloggers. So I'll just choose as many as I find to be worthy. :)
    1. Everything I like causes cancer
    2. Shutterbean
    3. Ummmmm,  well I read more... But I can't think of them right now. But these people deserve awards so...

New = Better

Yes. I changed the name of my blog. Why? Because my personality type likes to organize EVERYTHING to it's most minute detail and because of that I have THREE blogs. But I think the people that follow the one are missing out on some of the stuff I put in the other and vice versa, so I decided to put it all under one umbrella. All of it is me and my blog will just show different aspects of what makes me ME! So enjoy.

~M~

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Freezer Burnt

This just in: Do Not... I repeat
DO NOT!!!!!

freeze this soup. So...

Remember the Roast Chicken Soup that was sooooo PHENOMENAL? (Recipe in "Roast Chicken Soup" blog).

Yeah it was great. I made a huge pot... Since I love soup and I'm one person, I decided to freeze a few bowls so i'd have them on command... Reheated one today.

BLECK!!!

I dunno if it's cuz I reheated it in the microwave or what it was... All I know is that it wasn't the same soup. It was something else... :( I'm gana try to reheat the next bowl in a pot over the stove and see how that does, but in the future I know... CAN'T FREEZE THAT SOUP!

~M~

Cilantro Lime Tilapia

I wanna talk about this AH-MAY-ZING Tilapia Fillet I fixed this morning. I'm gana promise to include pictures with the next recipe blog post, because I know how much pictures add to the experience. But today, you just have to trust me.

I was reading yesterday that it's better not to cook your fish in oil because it loses some of it's healthy Omega-3's (or what not) so better to poach or steam it... Fine! No prob for me, cuz olive oil is rather expensive anyway. If I can save it, I'll save it!

My Cilantro was going BAD!!!

So I made my Cilantro Pepper Rice (recipe in "Midnite 'Snack'"). But I still had cilantro left to use...

Courtesy of Google images

Cilantro Lime Tilapia
chopped cilantro
1 shallot
Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
Kosher Salt
Black Pepper
Juice of half a lime
1 Tilapia Fillet
Because I'm not using oil I prepare this in a nonstick pan. Heat the pan on medium heat. Add first 5 ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon. After the shallots and cilantro has softened, add lime. Give it one more quick stir. Place the tilapia fillet in the pan, then flip over immediately. This allows some of the seasoning to be on top and some on the bottom. cover the pan and steam for 2 mins. Flip the fillet and steam for 2 more minutes. Remove from heat but leave the pan covered.

Soon to Come: Vegetarian recipes for my vegetarian friends :) Hi Stea'Van!

Happy Eating

~M~

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Breakfast for Champions!

WHAT A DAY!!!

So busy. From the alarm until now I have been moving non-stop. Last night I went ahead and planned my meals for the week because I realized that if I don't do that, I don't eat well rounded meals and I'm always hungry. Additionally, I shop aimlessly at the grocery store, and... welll.... I'm just a little to broke for that mess!

SO...
In order to prepare today's meals, I had to go the the farmer's market and pick up a few items... That took a chunk out of my morning. Also, there were FAR too many dishes in the sink.. Another chunk out of my morning to wash them. I was able to successfully prepare 3 meals and two snacks for myself for today, HOWEVER, I didn't have enough time to take pictures of my recipes so I hope you trust that it looked, smelled and tasted PHENOMENAL...

Rosemary Potatoes
3 creamer potatoes, chopped
2 TBSP thinly sliced red onions
Leaves from 1 sprig of fresh rosemary
1 TBSP olive oil
Kosher Salt
Black Pepper

Saute the onions, salt and pepper in the oil. Add potatoes and stir. Cook over medium heat, uncovered, stirring occasionally. After potatoes have all become golden brown, add rosemary leaves and cover. Cook over medium heat until soft.

"Scrambled Omelet"
1 egg
1 - 1 1/2 TBSP milk
(or milk substitute... I used almond milk)
2 TBSP chopped red pepper
1 slice chopped turkey bacon
(or meat substitute... your choice)
1 shallot, chopped
Kosher Salt
Black Pepper
2 tsp butter
1 1/2 TBSP shredded cheese

Let the egg sit out for about 30 mins. Room temp eggs fluff up nicely. Beat egg with milk, salt and pepper. Melt butter in pan, saute veggies and meat for about 15 secs and spread thinly over pan. Pour egg over it. Let the egg set on the bottom then add cheese. Take a wooden spoon and bring egg toward center of the pan letting the uncooked egg flow out and cook.

HAPPY EATING

~M~

Monday, October 4, 2010

Hot Chocolate

CHOCOLATE!!!

Chocolate has sooooo many culinary applications. You can use it in sweet dishes, savory dishes... you name it, and chocolate has prolly been there.  You have Dark Chocolate, Milk Chocolate, White Chocolate,
There are sooooo many wonderful things to put with chocolate. Nuts and caramel top most peoples list. But my absolute FAVORITE things to put in chocolate...


Out of anything I've ever paired with chocolate, nothing enhances it's flavor like these two things. When I make my chocolate cake, Cayenne Pepper is the secret in the proverbial sauce... :)
My upcoming baking experiences include a chocolate orange marble bundt cake and I will let you know how it goes. Don't be shocked when you see ground cayenne pepper in the ingredients list. IT'S THE ABSOLUTE BEST!!!!
My friend Deon asked me to bake for her hubby's b-day (She's the best chef in the world, but baking isn't her forte...) He likes chocolate, so what should I fix??????

~M~