Saturday, February 27, 2010

Frijoles Borrachos

Ya'll may remember when I was talking about how I usually didn't like beans, but the Tex Mex beans I tried in San Antonio were absolutely divine? 

Well, the next day, my childhood friend CQ was having people over for bbq chicken (and all the fixins) so I thought that making these beans would be perfect.  (and yep, its the same night as the smoking incident)

After reading my last post about beans, Moms gave me a few tips on making these beans really stand out.  Unfortunately (for JP haha) these suggestions were to add bacon (and sometimes sausage).  Also -- canned pinto beans are a better bet for time saving because rehydrating dried beans can sometimes be obnoxious.  And, the Goya Ham seasoning is also key -- buy a box and use about 2 or 3 packets.

So I took these suggestions and tweaked it a little.

Frijoles Borrachos a la Sarah

-Brown a few slices of (peppered turkey) bacon on the bottom of a pan (cut up into little pieces)
-Saute a handful of frozen onions and some minced fresh jalepeno for a few minutes
-Add 2 cans of pinto beans (with the majority of the "juice" -- sick word I know -- poured out)
-Add 1 bottle of (dark preferably) beer -- I used Shiner (not quite dark, but not Bud Light)
-Stir this all together and let it simmer for about 10 minutes
-Add some cayenne pepper, salt, reg black pepper, and a capful of liquid smoke (even Whole Foods carries it.. and a little goes a long way -- sold in the condiment aisle)
-Let this all come to a boil, then lower the temp and simmer for about 30-45 minutes (or however long it is until dinner)

And I'm not much for beans, but these were pretty good!

Poor and Hungry: Honey Bran Blueberry Muffins

I'm a sucker for blueberry muffins -- it reminds me of my childhood, and it's always been a comfort food of mine.  Moms taught me this trick when I was young that you can buy a huge bushel (basket?) of blueberries, fresh from the farmer's market/grocery store -- use them fresh for a while, and before they go bad, freeze them.  That way you get the benefit of fresh blueberries, and also get to use blueberries all year around.

I'm still using the blueberries I bought in season (summer) -- and last weekend I was having such a craving for some muffins!  Moms told me the simplest way to get a healthy and quick muffins is to use the Martha White mix, add some milk, blueberries, and in about 14 minutes you've got some stellar muffins.

..and she was right!

So Poor and Hungry presents Honey Bran Blueberry Muffins:

Follow the directions on the bag (which, btw cost less than $2), add a handful or two of frozen blueberries and cook for about 14 min or so.  I use silicone muffin "tins", which work great and are really easy to use.

And they were delicious.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Happy Hour: Grapefruit Caipirinhas

One of my absolute favorite drinks is the caipirinha!  It's the drink of Brazil, and when I spent the summer there (has it been 4 years since??) it was a staple.  It's a strong drink, but cachaça is such a good liquor (especially when you get a quality one like JP did), that even when you taste a ton of liquor (usually not my style), it doesn't even matter.

Now.  The typical caipirinha is made with limes, but you can really make it with whatever fruit you want.  And if you make it with vodka instead of this Brazilian rum, it's called a caipiroska (fun fact!).  

JP had some delicious smelling grapefruits, so I decided to use those instead of the standard limes.. and it turned out great.

How to make the caipirinhas:

-Cut the grapefruit, and peel off the rind (you can save them in the fridge and use it to zest since they smell so good)

-Cut the grapefruit into quarters, and use one quarter per glass.  Each quarter should be sliced into about thirds to make it easier to smash it in the glass.

-Using a pestle (or in my case, a honey drip, err..) smash the grapefruit in the glass to get some of the juice and pulp out.

-Add about a tablespoon of sugar to the grapefruit, and smash it again to mix (is there a more appropriate bartender term instead of "smash"?? But then again, correct terminology isn't quite my style).

-Pour in about a shot of (chilled is best) cachaça, add some ice cubes (and if you're really fancy, which I'm not.. mix it well with a bartender shaker -- as I've seen done when I order them elsewhere)
So to recap:

In a lowball glass, you'll need
     -a quarter grapefruit
     -1 shot of cachaça
     -ice cubes
     -1 tablespoon of sugar

Smash together, mix well.. and enjoy (a la JP below).

The Bar.

Now, I'm not much of a hard liquor drinker (mostly a wine and beer girl), however, in my new home (where ever in NoLa it is), I want to have a fully (or almost fully) stocked bar.  I think it's a crucial entertaining piece, albeit a little expensive, but for a small get together.. it would be nice to have.  Also, having all different kinds of booze around would give me a reason to try some really fun drinks I keep seeing over at eat make read for their happy hour posts.. such as the blood orange gimlet seen below.

I've come across some pretty stellar looking bars and here some of my favs:

[champagne toasts, eat make read, Lonny, La Dolce Vita, Lonny, Tory Burch's home via Habitually Chic, Habitually Chic]

Poor and Hungry: Light Pasta with Rosemary

This is so simple and delicious -- I'm going to have to make it more often!

I stopped by Whole Foods on my way home, and they actually had a quality Parmesan Reggiano on sale for a decent price (at least for this most time expensive cheese).  I love the saltiness of the cheese, and the distinct bite it gives a dish.

..and did I mention it's simple?  Yeah. it's that too.

Light Pasta with Rosemary
-Cook the pasta (above I used orecchiette -- organic, not wheat unfortunately)
-Drain it, and put the pasta back in the pot
-Grate the parmesan over top of the pasta -- as much as you like
-Let it melt, stir
-Add pepper and rosemary (and a pad of butter if it's the pasta isn't well coated)

and voilà!

A whole box of pasta lasted me 3 meals (and a snack) -- and it keeps pretty well so you don't have to eat it for every consecutive meal after you make it.  heyohhh!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

DWW 02.25.10

..yeah I know it's a day late.. well hell.  no excuses over here... I've been living a wild life.  Running, cleaning, laundry.  Coop had some training updates with our "dog whisperer" -- he's getting better with his dominance and other dogs don't distract him as much (at least his predator stare is waning).  We have some more work to do, but progress is being made! onto the week's outfits!

Top:  Gift from Moms
Vest:  Express
Jeans:  BDG (from Urban)
Shoes:  Steve Madden

Shirt:  Vintage DVF (bought on Etsy -- tractordog)
Belt:  UO
Jeans:  Sevens
Boots:  Corral Vintage -- bought in San Antonio at the rodeo by Wifey EP

Dress:  Nordstroms
Jacket:  JCrew
Leggings:  Etsy shop Branch Handmade
Shoes:  UO

Tank:  The Limited
Cardigan:  JCrew
Jeans:  Michael Kors
Bow:  H&M

Shirt:  H&M
Cardigan:  UO
Skirt:  American Apparel
Tights:  H&M
Shoes:  UO

Entire outfit -- H&M (unintentionally of course)

..and I know Coop looks a tad overweight.  I'm hoping our runs will pay off soon (for both of us).

Bathing Suit Season?

I've really been slacking on my fitness for the past few weeks -- but I did take Coop for a run last night and I realized how much more work I need to do to get back to my peak shape.

But these bathing suits are giving me some inspiration into getting buff.

all from anthropologie.

H&M Fashion Studio.

Ok, I've had the most fun mixing/matching outfits on the H&M Fashion Studio.  And now I can't wait to go to ATL this weekend and do a little shopping for these outfits!

and thank you Loveology for introducing it to me!

Soul Pretty.

Simple and so feminine.  Just added to my fav sellers list on Etsy.

[Soul Pretty]

New from CB2.


all the latest from CB2.  adding all these looks to my wish list.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Breakfast Nook

[Apartment Therapy]


Couldn't you really see eating oatmeal with coffee here every morning? 

..who am I kidding.  Mimosas and frosted flakes (with bananas).

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Compare and Contrast.

RSJ's new bridesmaids dress for her next wedding (from JCrew):
And mine:
One of us can wear the dress again.  Take a wild guess.

My bad.

Just bought.  Collective Concepts on Ideeli.


She's so absolutely gorgeous, and has amazing style.  Adore her. [Le Blog de Betty]

Monday, February 22, 2010

Craving the Summertime.

Riva Polaroids By Gutschera & Osthoff


Last night, I attended a dinner at my childhood best friend's apartment.  I grew up with her family, her brother is my my brothers age, and the two girls of the family were just at my age also.  Our parents were best friends, and we went on multiple trips together.

Fast forward many years.. we keep in touch, but not like we used to, and I hadn't seen the brother in a long time.

The last time I saw him, he was in college, since dropped out to be a server, sleep in the daytime, and play poker until 4am.. and now only has the option to join the army.  He has also picked up a smoking habit.  Fine.

BUT.  He is clearly smoking to be cool.. which I thought went out of being cool since the teen angst years.  I have friends that smoke (and so happy that RSJ has quit!) but as long as I have known them, have never been "peer pressured" into smoking.

Last night, however, MQ (the brother) wouldn't let it go.  He kept saying to Andy (my brother) and I, "ya'll still don't smoke??".. in the same way that I would ask him "you still haven't graduated college?" or "you still don't own a smart phone?" as plausible questions for real adults.

I get that people have their vices, and I know that I definitely have mine.. however.. putting your cigarette in front of my face to try to get me to smoke it is crossing the line.  (Oh, and joking about trying to get your friend's kids -- who's 4 years old -- to smoke and then really trying it saying "they have to start young" is also really cool.)

People like that incredibly trashy to me, and I have no patience for it.  I also love that my brother has not started smoking... or is anything like MQ.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Market Bags.

I really adore a good tote bag that I can take to the farmer's market -- and have acquired quite a few over the years.. and in the search for some great new ones, I came across these lovely totes.  I'll have one of each, please.
[LUXE Tote -- Bag the Habit]

[Knitting Love -- Girlscantell]

[margarida chita basic tote -- drika.b]

[Remedy Quarterly Tote]
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