Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The Tan Punjabi

The (indian) Dude

This is based on a cocktail I had at DOSA on Fillmore a while ago. Our friends made a great Indian meal in Mammoth so I decided to pregame (do people still say pregame if they are over 21?) and I would try and recreate the Chai Spiced White Russian. It was a success! And at the risk of being racist - I call this the the Tan Punjabi. Okay, only call it that to close friends who hold NO judgment. My only change would be to add a shot of espresso, alas we did not have such luxury in a rental condo in Mammoth.

Chai Spiced White Russian
1 part chai latte mix
2 parts milk
1 part vodka
1 part kahlua
shaken and over ice


Gellin with January

My journey to the perfect chili has been akin to your typical road trip buddy comedy movie. We (me and chili) started with a dream in our hearts and a full tank of gasoline headed towards the promised land. On the way we met some crazy characters! I cant describe them because "you had to be there", but suffice it to say hominy was my copilot and black beans reprised the role of Neil Patrick Harris (gay) playing Neil Patrick Harris (straight). The sun set and deals were made to secure a sequel.

It's been a crazy month - as you can see below in the movie montage of my life - I went dog sledding, the Packers are NFC champions and going to the superbowl (not pictured), I took a cooking class with my team at Ubisoft and spent the perfect day at the beach with friends. Oh! And my jimmy jam Evie moved to town. Sick! Even though I have been tearing my hair out working like crazy its these times with friends that make this time in my life so memorable.

Smoky Chipotle Chicken Chili + Black Beans & Hominy
4 chicken breasts
3 cubes of tomato bouillon*
1 onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 can of diced green chilis
1 can of chipotle chilis in adobo sauce (only use 3 minced + 2 tblspoons of the sauce!)
1 large can of diced tomatoes, drained
2 cans of black beans, drained
1 can of hominy, drained
olive oil, splash
Salt & Pepper to taste.

Step One: Bring a quart of water to a rolling boil then add the chicken and the tomato bouillon. Cook for 12-15 minutes. Set aside til semi cool. Meanwhile, in a dutch oven over medium heat add olive oil, onions and garlic until soft.

Step Two: Once onions are soft add in the chilis (both adobo and green) and simmer. Once mixed
add in the black beans, hominy and tomatoes. If you can take 1 cup of the tomato water from the chicken into the chili.

Step Three: Shred the chicken and add in to the chili thats cooking. Let cook for another hour so the water reduce. Serve with crema fresca!

*Here's the thing - I have NEVER seen tomato bouillon. It was in the Mexican aisle and I absolutely had to try it! I cant tell you if its vegetarian but I wouldn't bet on it. I def say it was my secret ingredient.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Simple Sweet & Salty Salad

The minute I made you, I knew you wouldnt be enough to satisfy. I wanted you so badly all to myself but I had to share with the likes of my Book Club! I had a toddler like wave of selfishness as soon as you came out of the oven. Please maamaaa dont make-a-me share! But instead of cancelling my plans and sitting in bed shoveling you into my mouth in blissful fatty solitude- I went to book club and politely watched people eat you up. It was hard at first, but if you love something set it free. In people's mouths.
I give you: Garlic Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Leeks, Chickpeas, Dates and Pecans.
Preheat your oven to 400. Toss Cauliflower, leeks, chickpeas, pecans and chopped dates with olive oil, minced garlic and salt and pepper. I sprinkled a little Parmesan on before I roasted, too. You dont have to though! Bake for 20m, then toss, bake for 15 more minutes until caramelizing starts - serve and enjoy!
Le sigh.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Year To Year

Greetings 2011 *curtsy*. Have you met 2010? *gesture to the air* Oh just in passing? Well, I think if you two had met before 2010 moved to Yemen you'd probably have been best friends. You both really like baby corn and the color burnt sienna. Although, Ive never seen you two in a room together - whats to say 2010 and 2011 arent the same? 2009 could totally have passed for 2010 on a fake ID - but you 2011 - you look even more like 2010 than you did last year.

New beginnings are dichotomous, both rare and evergreen. While we are able to determine when and where we want to implement personal and professional change, sometimes we need a helping hand on the timing. I could wake up and decide - tomorrow at 1:30 I will start remembering people's birthdays and taking better care of my skin. And with discipline, I would. So - why do we wait until the 1st of every year to get on the bandwagon? There could be a scientific moon/mood explanation but the biggest factor I suppose is: measurement. Well, laziness in measurement. We like to see results based in real time. Its easier to say Ive been doing something a year, two years than since last Tuesday at 1:30.

I spent my NYE in Los Angeles on a trip where we were preparing to attend the Rose Bowl. I requested my good friend Jenny and Aaron cook with me since Jenny and I spend roughly 3 hours a week talking about new recipes and new table settings. We're so interesting! I know its hard to contain your impressed selves. We made a 5 course meal consisting of A Curried Pumpkin Soup Shot, Peppered Mango & Burrata Salad, Oysters on the 1/2 shell, Fillet Mignon over Lobster Mashed Potatoes and finishing with a homemade Chocolate Souffle. It was divine and Jenny gave me a crafting DIY boner.

For me 2011 will be for the most part predictable. I already know what it will hold, which in a way I feel more pressure to make something of it. It will most notably be the year I get married, but I want it to be so much more. Granted, it will only set myself up for disappointment when I fall back into old habits and am a mush of failure - but for now my outlook is positive. While not a hard line of "must be"s small and large-- this is my Top Ten list:

1. Return to Pre-San Francisco weight.

2. Wash my face on the regular.

3. Do not lose things anymore. Or break them.

4. Do more copy writing at work.

5. Get my hair professionally dyed.

6. Play video games a little so I understand my job more.

7. See a play.

8. Learn to knit/craft.

9. Listen to voice mails.

10. Shave my legs more often.

I would also like to set some New Years Resolutions for other people. Can you do that? Or is it presumptuous? Please sub the appropriate authority for all the "YOU ". If you think I am talking to you, chance are I am.

1. I think you should pull up Mad Men and Breaking Bad so they are not summer shows.

2. I think you should blog more.

3. I definitely think you shouldn't move away from San Francisco.

4. You should stop the construction across from my apt.

5. I think you should buy me more diamonds.