Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Guilt-Free Sweets!

I'm always in awe and constant delight to see how creative people can get when it comes to visually enjoying sweets. No fat, no sugar, sounds boring but not quite...not quite with these items created by Jou Ling of Amigurumi Kingdom. Visit her site and her Flickr photostream to see more of her adorably delicious cupcake bear creations.

I like collecting miniature food items and these are some of the best looking minis I've seen whilst browsing. Stephanie Kilgast of PetitPlat (means Little Plate) definitely put a lot of passion into her miniatures and it will not go unnoticed by the world! I'm also so pumped to know that they have an Etsy shop!! Oh my my, I think I'm in trouble now. My husband thinks he has a large collection of toys...just wait till I get my hands on all the stores on Etsy. Can you guess that I've just joined that community? Actually I've spent plenty hours on that site in search of retro housewife products for my best friend Lacy's bachelorette party. Woo Hoo!  Check out some of PetitPlat's tiny and outstanding works:

Have a Great Tuesday!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Colorful Food Idea

The video says this is great for the holidays but I also think this is great for birthdays and Thursdays! Haven't been on for a while...technical difficulties occur in this household but not to fear...iPhone is here.

Hope you enjoy the video.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Just Thoughts and Songs

Ah the blissful 50s. I really admire some of those women and what they did for their husbands. Don't know how they did it but they did it well. (I was inspired to write this after listening to Ella Fitzgerald's take on the song Wives and Lovers)

I know it's not really ideal or easy for wives nowadays to be the ultimate housewife as in the fifties but some advice from the past can still apply to today. I know I still try to look my best for my husband and put some effort into looking good in the morning and evenings. It is also very much noticed by me when he does the same for me by grooming himself and keeping himself and his surroundings clean.

Speaking of clean, when it comes to being clean I believe the first step is to be organized and having furniture, hangers or just a location to keep your stuff. Just designate a place for that stuff and get into a habit of putting things right where you've assigned them. Pretty soon it'll just be habit to expect your belongings to be in a certain place. Also, having trash cans available in each room is a big help.

When it comes to actually cleaning your home, why not schedule in a day to clean? So on days when you know the house is a mess but you don't feel up to it, you can still feel like you'll be achieving a clean day and you won't get overwhelmed in thought. I know this helps me to just focus on what I can do for the day instead of worry about tomorrow, because you know what? Tomorrow has it's own set of worries, you have Today. Focus and channel your energy into the present.

Well, that's all the advice I have on being a wife today. It's definitely a great learning experience for me and whatever I can share with you I will. Thank you for reading my posts and spending your time with my thoughts. I wish you a great rest of the week! Enjoy some of these songs while you work, cook, play or relax.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Pixels Are Sexy

Yesterday evening my husband and I had a wonderful opportunity to be invited to the Super iam8bit art show in Los Angeles. It was amazing and quickly lifted my spirits to see some of my most beloved video games turned into spectacular artwork. We were cordially invited by illustrator/designer Chris Sanchez, one of the talented artists whose work was featured at the show.

Chris is currently working as an illustrator and designer with some of the best in the industry. We all have seen his work in opening credits of films such as Sherlock Holmes and Sprider Man 3, Discovery Channel's Deadliest Catch and many many more. I was inspired to hear Chris's story behind his Mega Man portrait and how he continued to finish what he started despite his life being at it's busiest. His passion for video games and art combined is evident in this oil and acrylic painting of one of Capcom's most memorable characters.

To see more of his works and contact info, visit his site at chrissanchezart.com.

Support passionate people like Chris (by visiting his site) and iam8bit. Here you can learn more about who they are, read their blog and buy some cool stuff! Video game artwork to me is as beautiful, nostalgic and moving as diva Maria Callas's voice in Puccini's aria Un bel di. Yeah...it's that heart-hurting for me and my husband. You'll see more reasons why below:

Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Best Chicken Satay Recipe

There are many times when browsing the web I find answers via About.com pop up letting me know that they have the solution to my search. But instead of clicking the link I go "meh, I'll look elsewhere." Silly of me I know but I do it anyway and I do it frequently.

However, one secret that most people may or may not realise is that when it comes to advice on Thai food, About.com's writer Darlene Anne Schmidt contributes pretty authentic Thai recipes. I've tried a couple of Thai dishes from other sites, that will not be mentioned, but every time I try her recipes through About.com, they turn out delicious and the flavors are just as I have remembered it when I used to live in Thailand. 

So without further delay, if you wish to make a mean Chicken Satay, visit her post. I followed all her instructions except for the portion of chicken meat used. But the flavors are there and it was a hit with my family. 

If peanut sauce is too much for you or you want to try something else, below is a recipe I came up with that worked well with the mildly spicy satays:

Creamy Cilantro Dip

1 cup of Greek Yogurt
1/2 cup of finely chopped Cilantro
2 tablespoons of lemon juice 
1/2 teaspoon of lemon zest
Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Mix all ingredients together. Add salt and pepper to taste. Adjust ingredients according to your liking if the listed amount is not what you prefer.
  • Refrigerate for about 30 minutes. Give the dip a little stir before you serve it. This satay also goes exceptionally well with cold cucumbers or Thai Cucumber Salad.
Kob Koon Kah, Darlene and Thank you for reading this post today. Happy Thursday Y'all!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Looks Like Anime Food

I couldn't figure out what I was going to name the dish I put together for dinner so instead I'll just describe what it reminds me of...anime food. If you've watched a lot of anime, I hope you know what I mean. If not, you can probably google the term and find photos, drawings of anime characters eating. In fact, let me see what I can find, hold on a sec. Okay, I see a few here and there but you get the picture.

The taste is definitely something new for our palette because this is the first time trying aidells Habanero & Green Chile Smoked Chicken Sausage. It's quite delicious and the next flavor we'll be trying is their Chicken & Apples Sausage. The reason why I love this brand is because it has a really nice hearty flavor to the meat and it is also nitrites-free. I heard that consuming sodium nitrite isn't good for a majority of reasons, but if you suffer from migraines it's probably an even better reason to avoid foods with nitrites. Less pain is a good day, if you know what I mean.

Here is the recipe for my Anime Sausage Food:

1 package of aidells's Habanero & Green Chile Smoked Chicken Sausage
1 cup of frozen Spinach, thawed and drained. Squeeze any excess water.
1 medium Onion, sliced
1-2 Roma Tomatoes, sliced
1/2 cup of shredded Cheddar Cheese,
1 teaspoon of powered Garlic
Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease 8-inch glass square cake pan.
  • Saute sliced onions until tender and slightly caramelized. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • Place spinach on bottom of pan. Sprinkle shredded cheese, powered garlic and season well with salt and pepper.
  • Arrange sauteed onions on bed of spinach. Then place sausages on top, with sharp knife create three slits on each sausage. Arrange tomatoes in between sausages or anyway that suits you.
  • Bake in oven for about 15-20 minutes. If you want your sausages a little more browned, turn up your oven to Broiler setting and place dish underneath for about 5 minutes or less. Keep an eye on your dish when broiling. Sometimes there is a point of no return when it comes to broiling. I should know, I'm a pro at burning things lately.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Creating Chrysanthemum Flower Cupcakes

I've been browsing through ALOT of videos on YouTube just to find some really informational, understandable, easy, fast and to-the-point decorating tips for cake or cupcakes. There were a couple I found that fell into the categories above but most could use a little more love on the production aspect.

Anyway, I've always wanted to decorate cupcakes into large flowers so I found this clip from yoyomax12 on YouTube. Hope you enjoy it and let her know what a great job she's done presenting her tips and tricks for making chrysanthemum cupcakes.

Merry Monday to you!

Friday, August 5, 2011

The Cinema Sentinel: Rise of the Planet of the Apes

Wondering what to do this weekend? I'm not. My husband and I are going to catch the latest and greatest film of the weekend, Rise of the Planet of the Apes (#apeswillrise).

I am so pumped for this movie and even if the movie turns out blah or best, I will appreciate all the work put into making the apes come to life in a dramatic and realistic way. I mean, how can you go wrong when Weta Digital is involved?! Well, here's just one of the many trailers out there. For more information you can visit their official site or their official channel on YouTube.

In this trailer below we get a little more in-depth conversation about a portion (there's soooo much work put into films of this standard) of the CGI involved. This is linked from movieclipsTRAILER'S YouTube Channel since I couldn't find the official channel's embed of this clip.

Have a great weekend Humans!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Crustless Broccoli and Ham Quiche

Have you ever whipped up something in the kitchen off the top of your head and much to your surprise the recipe turned out just right? Well, I have. I'm quite delighted and surprised my crustless broccoli and ham quiche turned out the way it did.

I find that quiche is a pretty versatile dish that allows for much customization; kind of like a smart phone or an avatar or just about anything you can think of these days. Anyway, I'm getting off track. I will share with you what I did but I found a great instructional page on About.com on how to make a crustless quiche.

But here is my take on the dish:

4 Eggs
1 cup of thawed frozen Broccoli
1/2 cup of diced deli Ham
1/2 cup of diced Onions
1/2 cup of nonfat Fromage Frais or Greek Yogurt
1/2 cup of nonfat shredded Cheddar Cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste
Cooking spray or 1 teaspoon of Olive Oil
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare pie dish or casserole dish with cooking spray on bottom and sides.
  • Heat pan with cooking spray or olive oil. Saute onions, broccoli and ham until onions are slightly tender.
  • Remove from heat and place sauteed mixture into prepared dish.
  • Beat eggs, add some salt and pepper to taste. Mix in fromage frais or Greek yogurt. Add shredded cheese, mix well. Then pour egg mixture onto the sauteed broccoli ham mixture.
  • Bake for 30-40 minutes until eggs are cooked. Let cool for a couple minutes before serving.
For an extra kick enjoy with Tapatio hot sauce!

Happy Thursday!!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Adventures In Spreckels Sweets & Treats

We may not have the Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes joke shop of Diagon Alley, nor is there a Wonka candy store nearby but there is a sweet-sational shop called Spreckels Sweets & Treats in San Diego. I'm still on this kick of Coronado because I did have a great experience there and I mustn't be greedy of the time I spent at Spreckels enraptured by confectionery delights. This store is only for the young at heart. I take it you are one of them.

Spreckels Sweets & Treats is named after wealthy businessman John D. Spreckels. He was the second owner of the Hotel del Coronado in 1894, hence the store in the hotel and it is a fitting name at that because John's father was named "Sugar King" Claus Spreckels. Claus also a successful businessman and founder of one of the largest American sugar refineries back in his time (maybe even today). Go figure. I could be wrong but that is my guess.

But enough of guessing and rambling, let's get to the good part. Here are my pictures and hope you have a wonderful Wednesday!

Have I fulfilled my daily requirement of sharing decadent pictures? 
I hope so. 
For more information:

Monday, August 1, 2011

Chicken Stew (West African Style), Attempt No.1

This photo looks Old School Betty Crocker-ish...but BC would do it better. 
So what do you do for dinner when you have a can of diced tomatoes, chicken breasts and you're totally bored of the routine chicken dishes? Well, that's what I faced one evening and so I searched for the word "chicken stew" and found a couple interesting recipes. What I found most interesting were the African or West African Chicken Stew recipes that called for peanut butter. Peanut butter in stew? Sounds fun!

After reading and researching a couple recipes, I concocted this recipe I'm going to share with you. Mind you, it's a first attempt and I don't think I can confidently say it's an African or West African stew, hence the parentheses in the title. So the next time I try this, there will be tweaks here and there but my first attempt did get a passing grade by me and my husband.

For this recipe I used two very large chicken breasts. I took off the skin and cut each of them into three pieces. You can mince garlic or just slice up each clove. Also, I used my dutch oven for this recipe. Here goes something delicious for the evening:

Chicken Stew (West African style)

2 Large Chicken Breasts, cut into six pieces
1 can of Diced Tomatoes
1 1/2 cup of Baby Carrots
2 teaspoons of Cumin
2 teaspoons of Ground Coriander Seeds
2 teaspoons of Powdered Chicken Bouillon
2 teaspoons of Salt
2 teaspoons of Black Pepper
2 teaspoons of Cayenne Pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons of Natural Unsweetened Peanut Butter
6-7 cloves of Garlic, sliced
1 large Onion, diced
1 cup of Water
2 tablespoons of Vegetable Oil
White cooking wine
  • Heat pan with vegetable oil. Brown each side of chicken in pan. Once browned remove chicken and set aside.
  • The bottom of the pan might brown so add a couple of splashes of white cooking wine to help loosen the greatness at the bottom.
  • Add garlic and diced onions. Then add baby carrots. Fry the trio until onions are tender.
  • Add cumin, ground coriander seeds, cayenne, bouillon, salt and black pepper. Mix well. 
  • Place chicken on top and add tomatoes, peanut butter and water. Mix well and cover, bring to a boil. Then lower heat to medium low and let cook for 30-40 minutes. And as always you know your stove best so you know how high or low you need to get your food cooked. 
Serve with rice or potatoes and have yourself a great Monday!