I’ve been reading a lot lately about the differences between whole wheat and multigrain bread. Is one actually better for you? How can you tell? Apparently, some bread companies assume that using just white flour and rice flour makes its bread multigrain. Though technically correct, two wheat flours is not exactly the “multi” that customer is looking for.
One of my indulgences in my small town crowded with fast food restaurants is the Co-op. Not only does it allow me to join humanity for weekend brunch, but it also provides me with fresh and often organic options that I can’t find at the more local and less expensive supermarket. The multigrain bread I bought there lists its ingredients on the front: white flour, whole wheat flour, oats, barley, millet, corn, rye chops, sunflower seeds, flax, honey, and sea salt.
Truly “multigrain,” I’ve felt a bit more comfortable indulging on carby snacks like open-faced peanut butter sandwiches or this, one of my favorites: a spin on eggs in purgatory. I loosely followed Mario Batali’s recipe, simmering some jarred tomato sauce in a saucepan, adding in 2 eggs, and cooking for 3-5 minutes. Plopped on top of some toasted multigrain bread, this was the perfect hearty brunch.
The tristesse is overwhelming. I’m missing Paris. A lot.
The chouquettes I could buy for under 1 euro. The daily bus rides with a view of the Eiffel Tower. Living avec masoeur and her copainseems like a distant memory. Even listening to the same playlist that lulled me to sleep in the City of Lights gives me a homesick feeling.
I had to bring in a snack to a group meeting. Someone does it every week, and to feed into my mélancholie, I decided to bring in a snack that could somehow encompass my love for French in one small bite. Result? Cinnamon Palmiers. These little buttery bites of sweet puff pastry heaven are a simple reminder that even if Paris is a plane ride away, some things can bring me back instantly. And even fewer ingredients than the last palmiers I made.
Recipe via About.com (though I used 2 tbsp. of butter instead of 3 as per the comment section and probably would have been fine with 1 1/2)
I never really knew what to call my generation – the one that had Hilary Duff, The Parent Trap-era Lindsay Lohan and Mia Thermopolis to look up to. The fashion was questionable, but the soundtracks were great. I can put any of these on and not only know every word, but know the sequence in which the songs can play. It’s quirks like that that may die off with my generation, but I’m holding onto them as long as I can.
1. The Lizzie McGuire Movie– We’ve got HilDuf originals, Atomic Kitten, and Vitamin C, some classic girl-power hits of my middle school years.
2. The Princess Diaries – This one was on repeat in my Hello Kitty boom box. BBMak, Mandy Moore, and of course the hit ”Miracles Happen.”
3. Legally Blonde – My first PG-13 movie came with a delightfully millennial soundtrack.
4. 13 Going on 30 – An ironic mix of Liz Phair, Billy Joel, and Lillix.
5. What A Girl Wants– Girl power songs mixed with Oliver James and Duncan Sheik. Just too good.
A bunch of my friends just got back from studying abroad in the fall. Who knew that switching from “I studied abroad last semester” to “I studied abroad last year” would be so tough? I know, I know. Have some perspective.
I have an amazing free software called MyShoebox that backs up any photos I’ve uploaded to my computer via my camera or Dropbox. It’s not only great in case my computer crashes (knock on wood), but also send me a bit of inspiration. It tells me what photos I uploaded “This Day in History.” Though it’s bittersweet to see the amazing adventures I had studying abroad last year, I thought I’d share some of my forgotten treasures.
Cafeteria food isn’t always bad, but it certainly gets to be repetitive. Even the dining halls end up serving the same Asian-inspired-beef and homestyle-fried-chicken meals pretty much once a week. So when one of my favorite dining locations switched it up with some balsamic roasted red potatoes, I was intrigued. After we had the delicious potatoes, my friend and I decided to recreate them (in mass quantity, of course), seeing as potatoes are not only inexpensive but the perfect comfort food for these cold North Carolina days.
Balsamic Roasted Potatoes
5 lb. bag red roasted potatoes, cut into wedges
1 yellow onion
1 tablespoon rosemary
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper
I cooked off the wedged potatoes, onion, and oil in a skillet for a few minutes until they were tender (I had to do this in two batches). Then I spread them on two baking sheets sprayed with non-stick spray. I added the rosemary, salt, pepper, and vinegar and gave them a toss.
Roast these at 400 for 30-35 minutes, then give them a toss and let them cook for another 10 minutes or until they are tender and crispy (I even like the almost burnt bits).
I’ve been thinking a lot about perspective lately. If you follow me on Twitter, you probably already know that. But as I grow up and face new challenges every day, I find that one of the biggest helps is having perspective. It’s important to face the challenges and learn from them, but perspective is the added ingredient that can help you overcome. Here are 5 things that have given me a dose of perspective.
After Mandela by Douglas Foster – After hearing a bit from the author, I’m excited to read about something so vital a nation’s history and that I embarrassingly know very little about. The stories in this book are a huge dose of perspective.
Atticus Finch: “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view…until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.” I’m rereading To Kill a Mockingbird and this quote stood out to me right away.
Jiro Dreams of Sushi - A documentary about how passion and a lot of hard work is the key. This man turned sushi into an art, and his dedication and diligence are inspiring.
Alice in Wonderland: “I can’t go back to yesterday because I was a different person then.” I always have to have a little Disney inspiration!
After a little while back at school, cabin fever is always expected. It’s nice to be able to head off campus – if only just for the afternoon – to experience something a bit new and exciting. I went to Carrboro, a town near Chapel Hill and not too far from my school, for coffee and lunch with my friend. The outing was much appreciated after a long week of school, and we discovered two amazing spots.
First, Open Eye Cafe. It’s attached to Carrboro Coffee Roasters and serves one of the best cups of coffee you can find. There’s plenty of seating though most tables are taken by computer-dwelling students. Not to worry though – there’s plenty of comfy chairs for a quicker stay.
Right next door is a Neal’s Deli, a small spot with enough outdoor seating for you to eat your sandwich and enjoy the weather. The pastrami on rye with mustard was most recommended on Yelp, and it did not disappoint. The oil and vinegar potato salad was the perfect side, and it brought me right back to the Upper West Side.
With a new year under way and a bunch of new commitments lined up, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. I’m back at school after an incredible escape from reality at home. As the new semester rolls around, I thought I’d share some of the things that help keep me sane.
1) A great planner – No matter how high-tech our society becomes, I’ll always need a planner. My sister jokes that my life mottos is, “Every planner has a December.” I can’t fight her on that one.
2) Clean up – In my space, everything has its place. Taking the extra step to make your bed, reorganize the clutter on your desk, and spritz a little cleaner makes a world of difference. Not only have you accomplished something, but you’re in the mood to take on more.
3) Make lists – From menus to to-do lists, writing things down helps me when I am juggling what feels like a million things. Seeing it all on paper makes it easier to tackle.
4) Detox with Downton – Or any of your favorite shows, for that matter. It’s okay to take some time out of your day to turn off your mind and close your mouth and indulge in some British banter.
5) Breathe – Taking deep breaths and following my steps is my remedy for stressing out.
As the New Year approaches, I’ve caught myself looking back on fashion. I could have easily been a flapper in the 20′s or a Jackie O. impersonator in the 60′s. Though it’s not always best to live in the past, what better time of year to remember the past than at the end of the present year.
My dad is all Sicilian. You’d think that means Sunday gravy and cannoli galore, but in fact, he didn’t come from a foodie family. It’s my mom, the German/ Irish/ Portuguese one, who created a tomato sauce recipe worth passing down. But if there’s on thing my dad does know, it’s “pancakes.”
The reason for the quotation marks is because they’re not quite the same. Halfway between a crêpe and a pancake, these disks are super thin but remain fluffy. Though I can try to mimic them, only my dad can make them feel oh-so special and comforting. Paired with some maple syrup from our Christmas stay in Vermont, and they made for a perfect day-after-Christmas breakfast.