Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Office Uniform Part 2


...And so the saga of the sheath dress continues!

sheath dress4
-- Milly of New York sheath dress from Neiman's Last Call -- Manolo Blahnik 'Ravel' snakeskin pumps --


This dress currently sells on ebay for more than twice of how much I paid for. SCORE!!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Dressing Room Update2


W
henever folks at CSN stores approach me to do a review, it always makes my day! And yes, I will use it again for a product review for something in my dressing room. Nevermind if what I really need is a new laptop and a new laptop messenger bag.


Speaking of dressing room, look what arrived today! I searched high and low and finally after months of browsing through catalogs and websites and stores, I found the perfect settee!

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Yes, I know, my progress has been very slow on this room considering it's my favorite room of all! Maybe I need to create a project plan just so I can manage its completion better! For now, I'm targeting to finish the entire room in 3 months (which is exactly what I said 3 months ago!)


Progress in 8 months:

4 ladder shelves

bench/settee/chaise

paint wall in mocca

Lucite (or mirror) side table

animal print area rug

platform

more shoes to fill the shelves! :D




...I'm sloowly getting there! Let's hope I finish by summer!



Sunday, January 23, 2011

Office Uniform

I've never worn pants for the past 8 months now! I really love sheath dresses and been buying them every chance I could! I probably have a dozen already with no plans of slowing down!


sheath dress1
-- Chetta B sheath dress from Neiman's Last Call -- Jimmy Choo watersnake pumps --



sheath dress2
-- Marc New York sheath dress from Neiman's Last Call -- Gucci 'Paloma' peep toes --


sheath dress3
-- Banana Republic sheath dress -- Jimmy Choo watersnake pumps --



Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The French Laundry : "Peas and Carrots" -- Maine Lobster Pancakes with Pea Shoot Salad and Ginger-Carrot Emulsion


"Peas and Carrots"
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Everyone, meet Coco, Miuccia and Donatella -- my new friends.

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Friends for a few mintues, that is... until I drenched them in hot water and steeped them silly. Yes, that's how I like to treat my new friends.

But I did butter them up nicely after. Literally! Even found out there's a fancy name for buttering-up your newfound friends - it's called beurre monté

Now that you know how nice I treat my new friends, let's begin!

Oh wait... Before I actually begin this recipe, I had to learn how to steep a lobster here. It was surprisingly easy! About 5-10 minutes per lobster, not bad!


Part 1 - Lobster Glaze
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I heated the canola oil and sauteed the lobster bodies (and shells too). This smelled really good. So good that if I could eat the air around the cooktop, I would!

Then, I added the tomato, carrots, thyme, water and simmered for 1hr 15 minutes. I then strained and simmered again until the sauce was just 1-2 tsps.
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Yes, you read that right. This process requires to simmer about 4 cups of liquid down to 2 tsps. It took patience!

In the interest of time, I might need to skip this step the next time I do this recipe again! So there, consider yourself warned!


Part 2 - Lobster Filling
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This part is so easy, all that's needed is to mix all ingredients plus the reduced lobster glaze above. So I don't have an excuse when I realized after that I forgot the mascarpone cheese!

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Silly, silly, silly me!! No wonder when I finished this dish, I was like, hmm, there's something missing. It's not really French Laundry quality!

Oh well, next time, I promise to redeem myself to friends who were kind enough to be my taste testers in this experiment!


Part 3 - Carrot-Ginger Emulsion
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Yes, your eyes are not tricking you. That's a Jamba Juice cup you're seeing right there!
But I can explain! I don't have a juicer and didn't want to buy one so I just bought a carrot juice from Jamba!

Forgive me, pretty please! =)


This step is again pretty simple. All that's needed is to reduce the juice, whisk in the cream, then whisk the butter. Just be sure that when you whisk in the butter, your saucepan is not too hot, otherwise, the sauce will break!

Then, I blended with an immersion blender until it's emulsified.
If you don't have an immersion blender, I think it's ok to skip this step. It wont' affect the taste, this is just for presentation to have those little bubbles when you plate them!

Or if you're patient, use a wire whisk, I think that will work too.
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Part 4 - Crepes
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Again, this is rather straightforward. If you've been making regular crepes, this is nothing different. Although, I have to say, I will definitely invest on a crepe spreader next time I do this recipe again. That way, the crepes are even and thinner.


Part 5 - Pea Shoot Salad
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Super easy, it's just like making any regular salad.


Part 6 - Plating!
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So after 4 hours of slaving in the kitchen, this is what you'll have!

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But please don't let that stop you from trying this recipe. The only reason it took 4 hours for me is because I had to take pictures as I cook, you see! I bet the next I do this, I can probably do it in 3 hours and 50 minutes! :P


The verdict? I didn't like my first version since I forgot the mascarpone. When I added it and did a little tweak to the steps (skipped putting the crepes in the oven which kinda dried the edges, instead, I microwaved the crepes for 30 secs which made it even softer!) . So the verdict is YES, when done right, this recipe is a Michelin star worthy!!


Time: 3-4 hours. Sadly, yes, that's the sacrifice!

Difficulty: Easy. It's just a bunch of steps and a lot of patience reducing liquids.

Calories: about 511 calories per serving

Total Cost: About $70-80 because lobsters don't come cheap!

Will I do this recipe again? If I can find a free afternoon again, absolutely!!


Sunday, January 2, 2011

2010 Hits and Misses


T
o recap 2010, I started the year buying shoes and ended it buying some more.
In between, I worked, ate, bought a house and racked 50,000 airline miles! :D


2010 was a great year for us!
Had our share of challenges but still feel so blessed!
Wishing for a great 2011 as well!


January - new shoes for the new year!


February - weekend in Vegas
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March - goodbye downtown, hello 'burbs!
Lanvin LBD (5)



April - Regret
Who in their right mind would pass up a Lanvin for 90% OFF?
Back then it was either the dress or the coffee table!


May/June- French Laundry Craze
I discovered I have the patience to do gourmet at home!
French Laundry Tasting Party (14)



July ♥♥♥ Rio, Copacabana, Ipanema, Samba♥♥♥
Ola, Braziwww!!!
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August - S√£o Paulo for my birthday!
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September & October
6 things I distinctly remember about these months: I worked, worked, worked and ate, ate, ate!!!



November - 30 for 30 Remix Challenge
What a fun challenge it was!!
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December
Spent Christmas Eve 30,000 ft above, spent Christmas Day eating take out, spent day after Christmas hunting for these!




I look forward to an exciting 2011 with all of you!


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