Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Hey guys, I finally moved over to my new blog "Beauty, Brains, and Balance"

Please check me out at http://www.beautybrainsandbalance.com and update your readers/feeds accordingly!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Okey dokey artichokey

I LOVE artichokes with all my heart. :)

So it's no wonder that on the first day of cold and drizzle, I had to bust out my famous Artichoke and Leek Soup.

I couldn't resist using my fancy pants new cutting board but my knife wielding skills are lessened by my injuries and I had to elicit help from Evan.

Artichoke and Leek Soup
3 small or 2 large leeks
3 golden potatoes
3 cloves of garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
1 12oz package of frozen or canned artichoke hears (NOT marinated)
salt and pepper
4 cups of vegetable broth
1/2 cup soy or almond milk (or half and half)

1) Chop off and discard dark green leek tops. Split remaining leeks down the middle and rinse out and dirt thoroughly.
2) Slice leeks into 1/4 inch pieces and mince garlic.

3) Scrub clean and dice potatoes into medium sized chunks.

4) In large soup pot, sweat leeks and garlic in olive oil over medium heat for 5 minutes.

5) Add potatoes and stir, cook for another 5 minutes.

6) Have your sous-kitty add in the broth and artichoke hearts.

7) Simmer for 15-20 minutes until potatoes are soft.

8) Puree in batches using a food processor or high-powered blender. HOT!!!

9) Return pureed soup to pot and stir in the milk.

10) Test for seasonings and add salt and pepper to your liking.

Extra milk/cream can be swirled on top as a pretty garnish, though I just went for some baby spinach instead.

It is ever so slightly green, which can be enhanced by adding some more of green part of the leek, or I may experiment with adding a swirl of spinach puree in next time too. It looks a bit like mashed potato soup and baby ... um, I am not going to finish that sentence.

But I promise it tastes good!!!

I also experimented with a nectarine cobbler of sorts but the improvised oat crust came out all kinds of wrong. Back to the drawing board for that one!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Fallen Fruit

My posts will have to be short for a while until my hand heals. I currently still have my left hand and forearm wrapped and it makes typing (and doing everything else) more difficult!

I didn't realize how many things we use our thumbs for, I am definitely missing the full use of my left one.

I woke up early and hungry this morning, so Ev and I went out for breakfast. Not only did I want french toast, but I also wanted eggs so we compromised at Shakers.

I ordered the California style omelette and he got the french toast, halfway through we switched!

Since I was still exhausted, we took the afternoon easy. I managed to take a nap while Ev prepped work for the week. I woke up with an insane craving for fresh juice.

Carrot, apples, and celery. It ended up being awfully sweet due to all the apples, but I managed to guzzle it down in 3 seconds flat.

After that we followed some Fallen Fruit maps and picked a handful or two of local public fruit. What a neat idea! Fallen Fruit takes user submitted maps in various cities and plots out areas with public and private overhanging fruit that's easily accessible.

We got some green figs, lemons, guava, and a mystery fruit I have yet to research. Most of the trees were either finished fruiting or just starting to produce. I'll be excited to go back when there's more ripe pickings.

I was dreading replacing my bandages tonight and had to cut the gauze off a few places that it was stuck to. Luckily the little leftover gauze pieces came off in the shower, but ouch!

Another helping of Hearty Vegetable Soup for dinner! Now that I'm all re-bandaged and comfy it's time to watch the rest of Howl's Moving Castle before bed. 'Night!

Saturday, October 1, 2011


I had a little accident today and now I have both hands in bandages and a left forearm bandaged as well. It involved this little guy...

(He's such an angel when he's asleep.) ... and a neighbor's cat and my arms/hands. I won't post any pictures or go into too much detail, but needless to say I have multiple scratches and a very deep fang puncture mark in my left palm. 

When tears and expletives were worn out and Evan lovingly bandaged my boo-boos, I knew I needed a drink. Tonic and lime, my go-to mocktail.

Heavy on the lime and ice. I have a feeling I'll be drinking a few more of these today!
But, before all the madness, I managed to have a long day of errands:
- Ikea
- Amoeba Music (got to Hawai`ian CD's)
- Glendale Library
- Goodwill

And an excellent meal with Evan at Merkato Ethiopian Restaurant on the west side.

We both got the vegetarian combo, which is a great mixture of lentils, tomato/pepper salad, collard greens, cabbage 'n' carrots, and some other lentil gravy which I can't place.

It's served on top of, and with a side of, injera. I could sit and eat this porous fermented teff bread all the live long day. It is also your utensil at this authentic restaurant, so you'd better have a lot of it!


The perfect bite of spicy lentil gravy. Although, I have to admit that my favorite is the collard greens. How they get them to remain so tender and juicy while still maintaining the deep green is beyond me.

Since my injuries took me out of comission for a lot of other activities, I think I'll just settle in and oil up my new cutting board!

I abandoned my fan brush about 30 seconds into the project. I had no idea the wood was going to be that porous and ended up just pouring and rubbing the oil in by hand. It's now a lovely rich golden brown and ready to go under the knife!
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