Monthly Archives: November 2010

Post Gobble Gobble + Giveaway

Oh man, oh man!  What a week!  The vacation is coming up in T-3 days and I am getting very excited!!  As should you be because I’m doing my first ever giveaway! 🙂

Let’s recap the week.  Well there was Turkey Day! I won’t bore you with the food details, but let’s just say there was plenty!  The best part was that I got to celebrate with the most important people in my life!  Thanksgiving Day was a reminder of how blessed I am to have the family that I do!

If you remember, I contributed the following:  macaroni & cheese, mashed potatoes, strawberry pie and apple pie, and it turned out fabulously!  Let me tell you – the roasted garlic mashed potatoes – TO DIE FOR!  It was the roasted garlic that made it.

Garlic lurve:

I will be using roasted garlic way more than ever now that I know it’s so simple!

I don’t know about you, but I cannot do after-Thanksgiving leftovers.  My MIL made a kick-a$$ turkey but I cannot eat it the next day.  Something about reheated turkey (or chicken) does not work for me.  And luckily, because we’re taking a vacation soon, everyone was less insistent on us taking a boatload of leftovers!

So, for breakfast, I tried out Amy’s breakfast burrito.

and some pears with cinnamon:

Of course pumpkin butter had to be involved

And let’s not forget the answer to the case of the sleepies! 🙂

Do I grind my coffee every time I want to drink it?  Heck yes!

And, with all the work from yesterday, I forgot to eat lunch – I never ever thought I’d hear myself saying that.  So, I do what I do best and hit up the salad bar at Jason’s Deli.  I wasn’t kidding when it came to eating color.

Perfect for me and Binks to share

You won’t find anything in this salad except veggies, hummus and some balsamic vinegar!

And, I also got started on this:

Yep!  These are good ole’ dried habaneros!  I plan on grinding them into a fine powder – the uses thereafter are endless (use a tad in some Indian dishes, Mexican dishes, throw in someone’s face, etc.)  You would be surprised how a little goes a long way – not just in spice, but in flavor.

So now for the giveaway!

I have been planning for this vacation since I got engaged to my Binks.  This vacation means more to me than all the other trips we have taken (Rome, France, Tokyo, Chicago, and the list continues)!  And, it’s finally happening!

Can you guess?  If you do, you’ll be the the lucky person to receive a special treat – trust me, it’s a “Good Thing”!

Do you trust me when I say that it’s like eating a cloud of goodness?  What is it?  It’s my all-time favorite fall cookie, an adaptation from the great, the big M herself!  And do you think I’d leave you with just a baked good?  Heck no!

So, the rules:

Leave a comment telling me where you think I’m going (random, I know), and what your all-time favorite vacation location would be.

Tweet about this giveaway, and leave a comment saying you did the same.

All entries made by 11/30/2010 5:00 p.m. CST will be considered.

Make sure you provide your e-mail as I will be e-mailing the winner!

I will annouce the Winner on 12/1/2010 and let you all know where I will be going!  Can’t wait to read your entries!

Good luck!



Filed under Giveaway, Holiday, Uncategorized

It’s On Like Donkey Kong

Okay, so remember when I said I’m a hot mess?  I really am.  More so now than ever!

I’m actually taking a vacation December 1 – 15th to a place soon to be revealed – perhaps with my very first giveaway! Let’s hold our breath, shall we?

So, between now and December 1 is a rush like you would not believe.  T-8 days as of today! (I’m not very good at math – don’t judge me.)

Here is a list of things I have to get done:

1.  Work related:  3 Motions, 2 discovery responses (just assume is a ginormous task – it is!), and the usual slew of letters to courts, clients and a-hole defense attorneys (if you’re a defense attorney, it’s not you – it’s the ones on I deal with!  Again, don’t judge), accounts payable, accounts receivable, administrative things to make sure the office can function to the best of its ability while we are gone.

2.  House related:  clean the house (I hate coming back to a messy house), clean the tub – it needed to be done 2 weeks ago (whoops!), clean the fridge (get rid of everything that will spoil in 2 weeks – It’s time for food hand-me-downs, mom!), pack, buy traveling supplies (because where I’m going – I’ll need all the hand sanitizer I can get), pick up adequate luggage from my parents’ house, go shopping for vacation clothes (you know it’s a necessity!), make sure my cell phone works on the trip and to sign up for whatever plan that won’t charge me $24,000 in roaming charges.

3.  Thanksgiving related: go grocery shopping, coordinate with other family members on food and time, make the following: pie crust, apple pie, strawberry pie, rolls, salad and cornbread (Why the hell did I sign up for all of this?!  Oh yes – because I’m crazy!  It’s time to delegate to other family members!).

While this may sound easy to so many of you super women out there, please keep in mind that I’m balancing all this with a 12-hour work day.  I think this calls for a “GAH!”

Since, I’m being honest – while managing these days – my good eating habits have gone down the pooper.  Since Shreveport, we have on-the-go everyday and let me tell you – take-out salads (Jason’s Deli & Chik-fil-A)and soups (Jason’s Deli & pho) have been my friend.  While I want to make excuses, I really don’t have a valid reason.

For instance, I have one my favorite quick meals in my house – the Boca!  I am a HUGE burger fan – I could eat burgers and fries at least 3 times per week – and I’m sure in college I did that.  (Let’s say Wendy’s and I were pretty much sisters.)

Then, Binks introduced me to the Boca burger – flame grilled, of course.  After this, I never looked back.  I do not have a craving for a burger that cannot be satisfied with this.  I sound like a commercial, but I swear it’s fantastic.  (I’m probably going to find something about it saying it’s bad in some way shape or form – but for now, it’s delicious.)

I had it for lunch yesterday:

That’s my husband’s burger – not mine!  (To be fair, mine were just missing the habaneros).  I used his picture for two reasons: (1) he insisted for whatever reason and (2) I wanted to show you just how insane he is with the heat!  I asked him how it tasted and he said: “It tastes like burning….a good burning.”

If you look carefully at the picture, underneath all those veggies, you can see a burger (on the right bun).  It’s delicious, filling and I never look back when it comes to burgers.  Does this mean I give up all ground beef burgers?  No.  But, this reminds me that when I go through the fast-food window that I have better and just-as-easy options at home.

And then I had a couple of these:

Dark chocolate covered raisins!

So, again, I ask for help! 

Any of you know a good recipe for the following: salad (really I’m looking for a mix – pref. with nuts and fruit – and dressing) and cornbread?

How do you cope with stress and a huge to-do list?

Happy Glee Day!  🙂


Filed under Favorites, Uncategorized

Oh. Em. Gee.

Dear goodness and gravy…

What a couple of days…

What happened?

The Good – I got a camera!   I have been taking pictures with my iPhone this entire time!

The Bad – I need to do a lot of learnin’.

The Ugly – Oh dear – do you have time for this?  Indulge me – if you will.

The camera was delivered to my office last Thursday (11/18/2010).  I opened it quickly out of excitement, and I left it on my desk because I was meeting with a client.

I left it in the office overnight. (Foreshadowing for BIG MISTAKE!)

Next morning, I come in and it’s gone. I saw some packaging paper sitting next to my trash and I knew – I just knewthe cleaning staff threw it away thinking it was trash.

I ran to the building recycling bin and fished through loads of bags of paper and plastic – in my good suit, nonetheless.  Nothing.

Then I approached the dumpster – the stink smelly dumpster – and I just stared at it.  Do I dare? The thing was packed to the max.  Thinking I have a client coming in the next 30 minutes, who probably won’t want their attorney smelling like yesterday’s lunch leftovers, I gave up.  Even I couldn’t make the dive.

I told the building manager, and she said she would do her best to see what happened.  Needless to say I was irritated/disappointed/sad.

Then the next day…I got a call.

The manager of the cleaning company said that he asked around (I’m sure they were motivated considering they would have to replace the sucker if they didn’t find it), who said his staff remembered the box and brought it to him – camera and accessories in tow!

A little fishy if you ask me but hey – I got my camera back.  And, let me tell you!  It’s divine! I don’t know what most of the buttons mean but, golly – I’m sure going to learn!

I, of course, practiced right away – on one of my very favorite items!

Since all was right with the world, and because I needed something good in my day, I made this:

What’s inside you ask?  Let’s take a closer look:

What you see here is a mix of the following:

–  drained garbanzo beans

–  carrot ribbons

–  sliced onions

–  romaine

–  chopped tomatoes

–  a little bit of ground black pepper

Then,  a dressing, which matched this combo perfectly!

Just a simple mix of spicy mustard, red wine vinegar, cumin, garlic powder, salt, and olive oil.

(I love making my own dressings!)

This, and  then the Sopranos – makes you think – what camera incident?



Filed under Dinner

Food + Strawn’s + Second Hand Smoke = My Trip to Shreveport

My lungs are currently in a state of rage as I have recently exposed them to massive amounts of second-hand smoke.

My brain is telling my foot to kick me in the bum for losing all my money on the roulette table.

My stomach and the rest of my body is in a state of disappointment as I have frequented more restaurants in the past three days than I ever eat out in a month.

Saltgrass, you and I need a break now.

I filled up on bread so much that I ended up throwing away my steak salad – future note to self – pace yourself!

My taste buds and tummy (just a small portion) is loving me for having some Strawn’s strawberry cake!

I don’t know what person thought of this, created this and executed this – but years from now, I know one of the only things I will remember about  this trip is this pie!  So light, so flavorful and so delicious!  If you go to Shreveport – try this pie!!!  I could have made a meal out of this pie, but we all (4 of us) shared it.  By the time it got to me – it looked like this:

Gah – don’t these people know I need uneaten pictures to blog! 🙂

All in a three-days’-worth vacation to Shreveport.

How do you eat during vacation?  I need help/advice!

Hope you all had a great weekend!



Filed under Uncategorized

My Pumpkin, My Love

Oh pumpkin, my pumpkin.

I, like most other people this time of year, have been obsessed with pumpkin!!  I have been throwing globs of canned pumpkin in my oatmeal and smoothies.  Delicious is an understatement.

So, I took a hint from Deb at Smitten Kitchen and decided for my next healthy pumpkin concoction – pumpkin butter!

And can i tell you?  It’s vegan (look at me go).  It’s delicious.  It’s a keeper!

Here is my rendition of Deb’s recipe:

Start with the good stuff

Stir, stir, stir…

And after more stirring, you, my friend, have the most delicious topping for your morning oatmeal,


and goes wonderfully with vegan mandel bread!

On an exercise note, I have been keeping up with the C25K program and it’s going quite well.  I just did Week 3, Day 1.  I am so freaking proud of myself for keeping up with the program!!

I feel like I should not say anything in an attempt to avoid jinxing myself, but i can’t help but feel proud!!  [I’m currently patting myself on the back on your behalf.  Trust me – if you were here, you would do the same.]

What about you?  What is something you are proud yourself about today?


Filed under Breakfast, Desserts, Favorites

Mandelbaum Mandelbaum!

Now…just replace the baum with bread and you get —-  MANDEL BREAD!

“It’s go time!”

I am a big fan of Ashley.  I am also a big fan of biscotti (although I have never made it – just inhaled it).  Now, when Ashley said that she thought she found something “better than biscotti“, I just had to give it a go.  (Afterall, she did convince me to make my own coconut butter!)

After reading her recipe, I knew I wanted to try the vegan version!

Can I tell you something?  I have never ever made a vegan-version of anything before – let alone desserts!  It has been ingrained into me that to bake, you have to use butter, sugar and eggs.  This recipe blew that idea out of the water.

I made my first ever flax egg!

And then there was mandel bread!

Now, honey – let me teeeell you!  I just came from a week of eating chocolate chip cookies and this – as proclaimed by both Binks and I – this was one of the most delicious refreshing cookies ever!  I will absolutely be making these again.

The recipe was full-flavored, nutty, crunchy, and light.  Had a great crumb and went fabulously with my tea , and at night when I couldn’t help but grab more! 🙂

I used Ashley’s veganized recipe, but I used half whole wheat and half unbleached all-purpose flour.  I loved the flavor of this cookie!

And just like Mandelbaum – Mandel Bread won’t be beat!


Filed under Cookies, Desserts

Baingan Good Time

Yesterday, my mom came over and it was a food fest in my apt – lucky me!  My mom is probably the nicest person I have met in my entire life.  With that said, she is probably the quirkiest!

She and I were cooking together in my tiny kitchen and I told her – “move mom, move!”  She responds:  “When I move, you move – just like that”  Uhhhh…..

HOLD UPLuda?!  This 50-ish-yr-old tiny Indian woman, who watches no American TV/Movies has the strangest things come out of her mouth!  I asked her where she learned that from, and she said she’s in the know!!!  When did this happen?!

Oh lawwdddd….have mercy.

So, let’s get cooking.  I must preface this by saying I LOVE LOVE LOVE eggplant.  It is one of my – nay – my favorite vegetable!  An old favorite that I recreated myself was baingan bhartha.  Went deliciously with my mom’s chapathi.

With my mad skillz (in honor of Luda), I turned this:

into this:

And then magically the oven timer goes off and this appeared:

I swear to Moses I only had TWO!  I resisted my little grabby fingers I did.

I’m not one to say my mom and I are best friends.  Man, we have duked it out from 13-26.  Then, 27 hit and somehow she and I had more in common than we knew!

Now if the woman would only teach me where she learned to be such a lyrical gangsta!

Baingan Bharta


–  1 eggplant

–  2 tsp garlic, finely minced – I use garlic paste

–  2 tsp ginger, finely minced – I use ginger paste

–  1/4 cup onion, finely chopped

–  1 roma tomato chopped

–  1 jalepeno – (adjust to the level of heat you want)

–  1/2 tsp cayenne pepper – (adjust to the level of heat you want)

–  1/2 tsp garam masala

–  1/2 tsp turmeric

–  1/2 tsp ground coriander

–  1/2 tsp ground cumin

–  1/2 tsp black pepper

–  1/2 tsp salt

–  olive oil



1. Preheat oven to 450F

2.  Wash and cut the eggplant in half, lengthwise.

3.  Place eggplant cut-side down on a well oiled cookie sheet.

4.  Bake in oven for 20 minutes.

5.  Once cool, cut the eggplant in bite-size pieces.  (Many baingan bharta recipes say you should scoop out the flesh but I keep the skin because it contains alot of nutrients.  Moreover, I don’t mind it!)  Set aside.

6.  In pan, heat oil.

7.  Saute onions and jalepeno on medium heat until the onions are golden brown.

8.  Add ginger paste, garlic paste, coriander, cumin, cayenne pepper, turmeric, garam masala, salt and pepper.

9.  Saute spices with the onion and jalepeno until the raw smell of the spices are gone – for approximately 5 minutes.

10.  Add tomatoes and saute for another 3 minutes.

11.  Add eggplant and again saute for another 5-7 minutes – until the eggplant is soft and has absorbed some of the spices.

12.  Serve and enjoy!


Filed under Dinner

You Live. You Learn. You Rajma. You Run.

So after yesterday’s DISASTER, I definitely needed to decompress.  I also did a mini-soul-searching session yesterday on my drive home and realized that I need to set goals for myself and focus more on myself. So, starting next week, I will be posting goals that I want to attain for the week!

Well, after reaching home, it was time to cook.  For the past week there been nothing in my fridge and I was eating out way too much!  So I started on the rajma.

Rajma is a North Indian red bean curry dish, and it went a little something like this:

You got black pepper, cardamom, coriander, cloves, cinnamon, and turmeric.

After sauteing the onions and chili peppers, add in the spices and cook for about 5-7 minutes.

Add tomatoes until it cooks down.

Add the beans (un-drained) and cook down until it gets thicker – for another 10 minutes.

Sorry for the blurry picture – but you really have to know that this was delicious!!!  I ate it like soup yesterday but you can have it over rice or your favorite roti or naan!

I also was rushed because I had to run – Week 2, Day 1 – I’m keeping up!!! 🙂  The run was exactly what I needed to clear my head!

Happy Thursday everyone! 🙂


Filed under Dinner

The Best Revenge…

…is to live well.

Let’s just say it’s been a tough day and it is not at all work-related.

In a previous post (here), I talked about two friends I was hoping to start running with, which didn’t end up so well.  Well, this post is about those friends.

These two girls and I have been friends since high school (approx. 14 years).  We have been friends separately – I’m friends with one and the other – just not together.  At first anyway.  Overtime, I started incorporating them both together

Firs thing this morning, I found out today that these two girls have been ‘trash talking’ me during times that they get together.  Well, of course this came to my attention today from a mutual friend, and needless to say I was in a rage!  I think my cheeks are still red!

I have been through a lot with these girls – family emergencies, divorce, relationship problems, etc. – and I feel nothing short of betrayed that I am finding this out.  Also, it makes me irritated that I ruined my whole day thinking about this…

From what I hear, comments were made as to my marriage (“Oh, I bet they have a lot of problems”), my career (“I don’t think their business is going to do so well”), and me in general.  Of course these comments are mild compared to the other things said.

I, in Olie manner, confronted them.

They denied it.

I said I heard it from the person you two told.

No response from both parties.

Now, I don’t know if I’m more angry that they said the stuff or that they are deciding not to respond back.  I guess it’s best so I don’t get my panties in a wad (yes, I said that) and start saying things I shouldn’t say.

So, as I sat here fuming for the past 4 hours over this matter, I realized that the only person that allows me to be so affected by this is ME.  I can only let others bother me and get to me as much as I allow the same to happen.

So to the haters in my life:

Will I ever be free from you?  No.  If not these, there will be others who just won’t like me.

Will I let you get me down?  NO!

Is it easy to just let it go? NO.  But, I have two options: 1.  Keep processing the same information in my head with no result, or 2.  Move on!

So, here I go – onto bigger and better things.

Thanks for listening!



Filed under Uncategorized