Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Quote of The Day


(you can guess my answer)


Alexa Chung for Madewell


I love Alexa Chung and I love Madewell, so I was so excited to see the second Alexa Chung for Madewell Collection. Some great pieces again this time around. If you're late to the game, don't worry - there are still some cute items online and in stores.

Monday, October 24, 2011

I'm Ready Already


We're only a few weeks into fall and I'm already daydreaming about sandals and warm weather. If it were sunny outside, I'd happily slip on any of these K. Jacques pour Opening Ceremony sandals. I love the color combos and styles. What a great new take on their classic sandals. 

The Pink Palace


A few things to love about The Beverly Hills Hotel...

1. The original Martinique banana leaf wallpaper made famous by the hotel. Considered to be one of the most famous wallpaper designs ever. Seen here in Nicky Hilton's kitchen nook and Brian Atwood's office. Love the look.

2. The bright green or pink and white striped beach towels from the hotel. A fun and unexpected gift for a loved one this holiday season.

3. The food at the The Fountain Coffee Shop. If you're ever in LA, swing by and pony up to the bar for a delicious breakfast or lunch. I'm partial to the Corned Beef for breakfast or the Grilled Russian for lunch. Deeeeelicious!

Look of the Day


Photo Credit: The Sartorialist

Friday, October 21, 2011

What's Your Sign?

My friend Marly told me about the site Astrology Zone for incredible, detailed horoscopes. I never tend to read horoscopes in magazines or the like, but I am loving these. I always end up reading them later in the month, which makes it fun because you can look back at what she (Susan Miller) predicted for you and whether or not it rang true. I'm pretty amazed at some of the things she says and how spot on she is. Kinda silly. Kinda eerie!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Obsession du Jour


I'm obsessed with Susan Posnick's Color Flo Mineral Foundation which comes in a self-dispensing refillable brush. It's a powder that offers great coverage without looking cakey or chalky. I'd venture to say it's the best makeup I've ever used on my face! I love the coverage. A little of that, a touch of blush and I'm out the door. 

Seattleites can find Susan Posnick makeup at Frenchy's Day Spa.


Shout Out of The Day: Vegetarian Cooking Classes with Dana Wootton

My sister-in-law told me about a cooking class that she knew would be right up my alley. The classes, taught by Dana Wootton, offer great vegetarian recipes, lots of cooking tips, the food is delicious, and the wine flows. I didn't waste a minute and not only signed myself up for a class, but got a whole group of friends to do it with me. All the more fun, and a great girls night out.
Dana (who funny enough was one of the best yoga teachers I ever took from until she moved to London like 8 years ago) was born to teach. She has such a great energy about her and has so much knowledge to share. We all learned a ton - new recipes, techniques, cooking tips, and more. I'd go as far as to say it was the best cooking class I've ever taken. We learned an appetizer, soup, salad, savory pie, two vegetables and a dessert. We ate our hearts out, drank lots of good wine and laughed a ton. A perfect evening.

I think a cooking class is a true success when you actually make the recipes you were taught. I've already made the soup and savory pie three times each, and the salad once. I've cooked Dana's recipes for my family and for dinner guests, and everyone loved them. The melon soup tastes to me like something you'd have at a fancy pants restaurant, and the pie is a perfect slice of summer for dinner.

(Side note: I started this post a month ago but I'm slow to get things posted. Sadly, corn, tomatoes and melon aren't in peak season anymore. You can still find all three at the farmers market or grocery store but they aren't as sweet and delicious. Tuck the soup and pie recipe away for next year when these key ingredients pop up again. You won't be sorry!

At the class I learned that Dana writes a blog called Dana Treat. I've been perusing the recipe index and salivating over the photos of her vegetarian dishes and yummy desserts. I cannot wait to try all of her lentil dishes, soups and more. Stay tuned. I'll keep you posted on what's cookin' in my kitchen, straight from her blog.

Here are three of the delicious recipes we made at her class that I especially loved and have been making...

(Also, in the last month I've taken another great cooking class with Dana. The highlights for me were the Wild Mushroom Risotto and the Maple Roasted Delicata Squash. I'll link to these recipes if they show up on her blog.)

A Healthy One for the Collection

My naturopath recommended the cookbook, "The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook" saying that she and her husband cook from it several nights a week. I'm trying to eat a little healthier a few days a week (to offset the other nights where I'm not healthy) so I thought I would get a copy. I made my first recipe the other night and it was great. I made the Lemon and Lentil Soup. As I was making it I started to worry. There were so few ingredients and it seemed so healthy.... how could it possibly be that good? Well to my surprise it was not only good, it was delicious. And so healthy! Leftovers were great too. Tonight I'm making the Black Bean, Rice & Yam Wraps. Stay tuned...


Revised Recipe: Nancy's Chopped Salad

I made Nancy's Chopped Salad last night and it was delicious. I made a few minor changes to the quantities. I can't wait to make this again.

I made a special trip to DeLaurenti at Pike Place to get my favorite salami: Fra' Mani's Salame Nostrano. I'm sure the salad would be great with any salami, but if you have access, get that or another specialty salami.

I also bought an aged Italian Provolone but ended up liking the Organic Valley Provolone slices better. The Italian version was a bit spicy and the slices were creamy and mild.

My version made enough for three adults (with enough for everyone to have seconds). The salad is hearty so it's perfect paired with soup or a light entree.

Oregano dressing

4 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons lemon juice, or juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup good red wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1. Roughly chop the garlic and then add the oregano, salt and pepper. Chop the mixture together and use the side of a knife or a mortar and pestle to make a grainy herb paste.

2. Transfer the paste to a large salad bowl, and add the lemon juice and vinegar. Mix with a fork, allowing the salt to dissolve, then add the oil and whisk with a fork until well combined. The dressing should be thick with garlic and oregano.

Salad and Assembly

1 1/2 cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/4 - 1/2 red onion, peeled, cut in half and sliced paper thin
4-6oz provolone, sliced 1/4 -inch thick then cut into 1/2 -inch ribbons
1/3 pound salami, sliced 1/4 -inch thick then cut into 1/2 -inch ribbons
5-8 pepperoncinis, sliced into rings
1/2 - 1 pint cherry tomatoes
1/2 head iceberg lettuce, cored, and cut in ribbons 1/4 - to 1/2 -inch wide
1/2 head radicchio, cored and cut in ribbons 1/4 - to 1/2 -inch wide
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Dried oregano for garnish (optional, preferably Sicilian or Turkish)

1. Gently fold the chickpeas, red onion, provolone, salami, pepperoncini (including seeds and juice) into the dressing, one at a time. Halve the tomatoes lengthwise and season with salt. Set aside until ready to serve.

2. When ready to serve, gently add the tomatoes, lettuce and radicchio to the salad bowl, along with a couple of generous pinches of oregano, and toss to combine with the dressing. Serve immediately.


Monday, October 17, 2011

Recipe of the Day: Nancy's Chopped Salad at Pizzeria Mozza


I was in LA this weekend and was lucky enough to hit Pizzeria Mozza for lunch one day. As always, it was delicious. My husband and I love Nancy's Chopped Salad so I'm going to make it this week. Click here for the recipe via the LA Times.   .

Thursday, October 13, 2011

More from My Crush Michael Pollan

Do any of these questions interest you? If so, check out the Q&A with Michael Pollan from the "Food & Drink" issue of The New York Times Magazine...

Which Organic Foods Should a Family on a Budget Prioritize?

How Would You Rewrite the Farm Bill?

What Are the Pros and Cons of a Vegan Diet?

How Much Soy Is Too Much?

Real Sugar or Artificial Sweeteners?

Should I Buy Local Foods or Stick to Organic?

What Is One Food We Should Eat Every Day?

Are Carbohydrates the Real Culprits in Our Diets?

What Do You Eat While Traveling?

Are Eggs Good or Bad For You?

30 Minute Meal

Try my new recipe for Toasted Orzo with Chicken, Kalamata Olives and Feta along with a Kale Caesar for a quick 30 minute meal. I just updated the orzo recipe so check back if you already printed it. 

A Kale Caesar can be as simple as this:

Kale - rinsed, stems removed, chopped
Good croutons (I like PCC)
Good Caesar dressing (I like PCC's Vegan Caesar)
1/2-1 lemon
Kosher salt
Freshly gound pepper
Shredded parmesan

Healthy and delicious!


Sunday, October 9, 2011

Seattle Shout Out of The Day: Yoga with Madzy

Finding the right yoga teacher/class can be difficult. Some like it hot, some like it really really hot, some like it meditative, some like it athletic and demanding, some like to om and some hate it. Finding the perfect fit is hard, but when you do it makes all the difference in the world. It makes you excited for class and motivated to go each week because you know you're going to enjoy it and feel great after. I've just found another class to rave about... Madzy's class at Mountain Flow Yoga. It's the perfect combination for me - hot but not too hot, tough but not unbearable, mindful and thought-provoking but not preachy, flowing but with care and focus. I love it.

Madzy teachers twice a week:

Powerful Vinyasa FLOW on Wednesdays at 9:45

Fluid Power on Fridays at 6:00am


Quick & Easy Dinner: Toasted Orzo with Chicken, Kalamata Olives and Feta

I was craving chicken tonight but didn't have the energy to cook raw chicken and didn't want a big hunk of chicken on my plate either. I wanted it as flavoring, and not as the main dish. I ran to PCC and picked up some of their grilled chicken breasts, some orzo, kalamata olives and feta. Voila - I had myself all I needed for an experimental pasta. It wasn't fancy or incredible, but it was really good, fast and easy. And it was good enough that as my husband polished off his third serving he said, "Honey, you can make this any night!"

I served this with a simple green salad for a lazy Sunday supper that hit the spot.

Toasted Orzo with Chicken, Kalamata Olives and Feta

2 T butter
2 T olive oil
1 cup orzo pasta
2 1/2 cups water
1 Rapunzel brand vegetable bouillon cube (no salt version)
2 T minced shallot
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1/2 chicken breast, cubed (I buy 1 or 2 grilled chicken strips from PCC)
1/3-1/2 cup tomato sauce (any jarred sauce will do)
1/2-3/4 cup pitted kalamata olives, sliced
1/4 cup feta cheese (I like sheeps milk feta)
1 T fresh parsley, minced
freshly ground pepper

Put 1 T butter and 1 T olive oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat. Add orzo pasta and saute for a few minutes, stirring regularly. Once it starts to brown a little bit, add water and vegetable bouillon cube (breaking apart as you sprinkle it in). Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, sprinkle with some salt. Simmer until the liquid is absorbed (10 minutes or so), stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, combine 1 T butter and 1 T olive oil in a second pan over medium heat. Add shallot and saute for a few minutes. Add garlic and saute until it starts to sizzle. Add tomato sauce, kalamata olives, chicken, parsley and some pepper. Stir to combine and remove from heat. Once orzo pasta is completely cooked (you may have to add a little more stock or water if it's not cooked all the way and give it a few more minutes), add chicken-tomato mixture and stir to combine. Stir in feta and let it melt to create a creamier consistency. Allow feta to melt into pasta and flavors to mix. Check seasoning and serve.


Thursday, October 6, 2011

House Crush: Brooklyn Heights Apartment


To borrow a cute saying from my friend Jennie, I have a "House Crush" on my friend Clare's apartment in Brooklyn Heights. Look at this place! It's amazing! More amazing than anything is that my friend Clare, with no interior design experience, did most of it herself. She's got a knack, clearly.

I love how it is so clean and crisp. I love that it's subtle but colorful at the same time. So much white, which creates a perfect backdrop for the great color palates to pop from. A perfect balance. I love the fabrics and how she brought them together and I'm crazy about the bookshelves. I'm a sucker for great bookshelves. Clare has such a great eye and did such an amazing job.

Disclaimer for Clare - the master bedroom and her daughter's room are not entirely done. I can't wait to see those rooms once completed. I know they'll be even more lovely than they already are.

Thank you to Jami Supsic Designs for all the photos.


Shoe of the Day

Finally a leopard print shoe (sandal really) that makes my world stop for a moment. Oh how I love this sandal. It's perfection.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Quote of the Day

"A face can be visually perfect, but if there is no light shining from the inside, it just won’t be as beautiful. In other words, women who have a bright aura will outshine the most aesthetically perfect face hands down."

- Dr. Cheryl Karcher, from The New York Times Face Time interview

Monday, October 3, 2011

Everybody's Talking About It

More great press for The Willows Inn on Lummi Island. I've been lucky enough to go and the presentation is the prettiest and most creative I've ever seen.

What's the Next Big Restaurant?


Two Interesting Articles from Last Week

Delay Kindergarten at Your Child’s Peril

Roundup Weed Killer is Showing up in Air and Water

I Die!



Quote of the Day

"There are only two lasting bequests we can give our children - one is roots, and the other, wings."

- Hodding S. Carter