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Food: Easy Recipes While Sheltering in Place

As we all know grocery shopping has become the most challenging – where we need to stand in-line, or shop certain hours, take home only 1 or 2 of a product even if feeding a family of 4 or 5 and after spending an excruciating amount of time walking from aisle to aisle, holding our breathes, or wearing a mask and gloves, and avoiding even eye contact with anyone – we come home forgetting something or that what you may need the most isn’t on the shelves  – so you improvise. The next step is finding creative ways to make a meal – after the usual pot full of spaghetti, or lasagna.  Is it just me, or most of us are craving more carbs these days? So, while awake at night – worrying about my aging dog, and working from home or my mother – I find myself thinking even more about our dinners. Not because of me enjoying cooking but for some reason the survival mode we are now in. Weird how our minds …

Food: Craving Tacos Again and So It Is

I left my house early this morning with the intend to replenish some of the grocery items I could not get my hands on last week, particularly toilet paper, rice of sorts, and bottled water. Even the almond milk in the refrigerator section has dwindled. At times like these, I cannot help but reflect on just  how much granted we take everything. So due to the limited supply on some things and alternatives of others, I am continuously shifting my plans for dinner. Also, I haven’t had a solid appetite either, I guess not getting out much and burning any energy.  But today, after my hunt for necessities, I craved food, in particular Tacos, so here’s a cool recipe I am going to try tonight. I’ve never considered pineapple in Tacos.  Also, I won’t use a crock pot. Just my thing. Enjoy! INGREDIENTS start something like this 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast, thighs, or a pork shoulder/butt 1/2 cup pineapple juice 1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce 1/3 cup honey   {more} Featured image and recipe full credit On another note – I …

Culture: I Watched A French Film and It Helped

In my efforts to remain calm and positive as the captain of my ship here in San Francisco, I decided to open a bottle of red and watch a film that would,for a few hours, take me far away –  like Europe,  and in particular the French wine region. Now, if you are not familiar with French films, they tend to run long – sometimes over two hours, to include every detail and then some. Which I love about – film makers outside of the U.S. – They do away with too much editing, to keep true to the story. The other aspect of French films, is the English translation – which is the only thing I can relate to – of their beautiful language, metaphors  and to some extend wisdom. If you listen to the narrative throughout a film carefully, you might just pick up on it. This aspect keeps me nostalgic because I’d like to think I was a Frenchwoman in some former life, and therefore able to relate. Er…perhaps it could be …

Food: Dinner Tonight – Easy Chicken Recipe and Oh Don’t forget the side dish

My mother, who I care for, asked what was for dinner tonight and I told her it was surprise, but had to do something with chicken. She made a face ‘chicken!’ and I walked away telling her to trust me 😉  and went searching for that fun recipe because she has grown tired of chicken or maybe it’s her cute senior attitude. So here we go – I have everything in the cupboard except fish sauce, hate the damn thing from my childhood days.  And we are going to omit the chili – or any super spiciness – since she also can’t stomach that. Otherwise, chicken it is! INGREDIENTS 1 pound skinless boneless chicken tights cut in 1-inch pieces 1 tablespoon canola oil, divided kosher salt 1/2 cup dark brown sugar 1/4 cup fish sauce 1/4 cup water 3 tablespoon rice vinegar 1 shallot thinly sliced 1 teaspoon fresh ginger 1 teaspoon minced garlic fresh Thai chili, halved, or dried red chili 1 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper 4 cilantro sprigs (optional) Steamed rice  {more} …

Food: Corned Beef and Cabbage Pie Altered

A Topic very difficult to avoid right now is the concern and fear over COVID-19, which is naturally on all of our minds . Even if we pretend a strong front, the worry about spreading the disease or contracting it, has become part of our daily routine, as we figure out ways to adapt to a new lifestyle. The only thing I want to ask, is that we don’t freak out, nor become obsessed, but rather do our part through legitimate sources online to help contain the spread of the virus. Not to say that I am downplaying the situation, but panic is the worst enemy in times of global threat or affliction. For the time being I keep my family engaged in much cooking, and alternative conversations to help distract – and finding interesting recipes to consider fits both of my efforts. INGREDIENTS 2 lb. russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 2″ pieces 1 tsp. kosher salt, divided, plus more 4 Tbsp. unsalted butter, divided 1 head of Savoy cabbage 3 thick-cut bacon slices (about …

Decor: Defining An Artist’s Home

I watched a film last night – Poison Pen – and in it, someone mentioned  how one can tell when they’ve landed in an artist’s home – which I am proud to say includes my detached studio apartment –  in the San Francisco home I grew up in – all by the shear eclectic of it all. Kind of like this beauty: Do you ever watch a film by accident, and think it is actually pretty good even if its the cheesiest film you’ve seen in a while? That happened Sunday night – Poison Pen 2014 and not the classic film 1939 – is the story about a writer with writer’s block needing to fulfill a contractual obligation for not delivering a finish book three years overdue. The deal he would write a gossip column for a Celebrity trash magazine.

Food: Dinner Tonight – Shepherd’s Pie

Yes, you read it correctly – Shepherd’s Pie is a staple meal in our household and something I haven’t put together in a long while for efforting to cut down on carbs – but tonight, actually at 5 a.m. this morning I was craving Shepherd’s Pie  – except, I wanted to snaz up my recipe consisting of only simple ingredients (ground beef, corn, and mashed potatoes)  into something like this recipe. Ingredients  Filling 1/2 cup French green lentils 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil 1/2 pound ground beef or lamb (I like using 15 to 20% fat) Kosher salt Freshly ground black pepper 8 ounces mushrooms, such as shitake, crimini, or button, sliced 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped 2 medium carrots, finely chopped 1 large fennel bulb (stems and fronds included), finely chopped 2 tablespoons chopped thyme leaves 2 tablespoons tomato paste 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 1/4 cup dry red wine, optional 2 cups low-sodium vegetable stock 1 cup fresh or frozen peas 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce Topping Kosher salt 1 1/2 pounds (about 4 to 5 medium) Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks 1 pound (about 2 to 3 medium) parsnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks 1/4 cup unsalted butter 1/4 cup whole milk, …

Boutique Hotel Pick – JK Place – Capri, Italy

I haven’t been to Capri in 20 years, but I remember it fondly. So last night, my wanderlust had me searching Netflix and Amazon Prime for films based on the Island and naturally all of Italy. Which I found and listed below for your reference. But for the sake of this post, a boutique hotel pick in Capri was all I can think about for the planning stages of a trip this year to this romantic destination, brimming with breath-taking scenery, cuisine and nightlife, and some of the best beaches in the world.  As for me, I crave smaller details and sometimes luxury in accommodations , because I spend a great deal of time in my room, penning from the inspiration I draw by my environment, whether here or the next novel. And this hotel will suit me just fine, while in Capri. Care to join? Here’s a list of films made in or about Capri, but my all time favorite classic – It Started in Naples – but really mostly in Capri  {featured image …

Food: Dinner Tonight – Pasta with Roasted Red Pepper Vodka

Short work weeks are great – even though they sometimes feel the longest. Do you ever feel that way? But there is one thing for certain – I love home cook meals, and actually and no matter how tired, I am – I look forward to rolling up my sleeves, or getting into my comfy clothes, and putting my hair up and opening up the refrigerator door to see what wonderful meal I can prep. Last night – around midnight I woke up craving pasta – which is something I try to limit making – carbs and all. And yes there are noodle variations, but I like to keep it real with the carb. 😉 Anyway, I searched for a different option than the normal spaghetti with meat sauce and this wonderful recipe popped up,  and guess what, it’s happening tonight!  I think I’ll add chicken pieces and even some whole peanuts – weird you might think, but I have a palette for these things. INGREDIENTS 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 3/4 cup Panko breadcrumbs 2 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves …

Lifestyle: Latest How To Guides I Found Online and My Recent Film Recommends

Over cocktails with friends from out of town, we embarked on several conversations, which I always wish I could simply jot down during the event, so that I could remember the topics as well as share some eye-opening views, which naturally add to my outlook, and get me thinking whether my approach is better than theirs or they truly have valid arguments. I love how invigorating the discussions are, which this time around where based on the following topics. The everyday anxiety of new parents, something I got a glimpse of during my last trip to England, where I spent a few days with a now stay-at-home co-worker, dealing around the clock with a one year old. If I were able to, would I learn a new skill? Was a question that came up during out talks about the need to change careers, or the love or hate of our jobs, as well as why is it that we tend to settle for a job to make a living rather than take on a career …