Saturday, July 23, 2011

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Curried chicken cherry salad sandwich - that's quite a mouthful!

If you ask me, there's nothing better than rotisserie chickens. Really, what could be as delicious, easy, and versatile than a juicy rotisserie chicken? For giggles, the bf and I went to Costco to go sample tasting. Maybe this is just a weekday or summer thing, but the samples were disappointing. They had things like parmesan cheese (not even with a cracker), yogurt, nuts, etc. Eh. I like it when they have hearty samples, like ravioli, pulled pork, tuna salad, etc. But, we didn't leave empty handed (I'd like to meet someone who manages to get in and out of Costco without pulling out their wallet. I'd like to shake your hand my friend). Anyhoo, we picked up a rotisserie chicken and a big carton of fresh bing cherries.

So today when my tummy started rumbling for lunch, I knew for sure I wanted to use up the leftover chicken. I've always enjoyed curried chicken sandwiches and this time I decided to throw in some cherries for a sweet crunch. This was a filling and light lunch, great for hot days when the last thing you want to do is turn on the stove.

Makes 2 sandwiches

1 cup shredded rotisserie chicken
1/4 cup diced celery (or cucumber (what I used), bell pepper, whatever you have handy)
1/4 cup diced cherries
1 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp cumin
2 spoonfuls greek yogurt (this is the secret!)
Salt and pepper to taste
4 slices of bread of your choice
8 thin slices of avocado

In a big bowl, mix the first 7 ingredients together until the spices are well incorporated. Arrange the mixture evenly on two slices of bread. Top with 4 slices of avocado on each slice. Set the last two slices of bread on top, cut in half, and enjoy!

Tip: In general, greek yogurt is an excellent and healthy substitute for mayo. A bit of avocado in moderation makes any sandwich heartier.

Turkey bacon, cheddar, and mushroom quiche

Good day lovelies! Today I'm sharing a healthier take on notoriously-fatty-but-oh-so-yummy quiche. How? By substituting potato for the usual butter laden pie crust. I found this recipe on fortheloveofcooking and Pam used shredded potato as the crust. The first time I made it, the crust was too soggy. I didn't squeeze all the water out of the shredded potato. The second time around, I squeezed the life out of those suckers and voila - I had a nice crunchy crust.

Makes 1 pie

2 potatoes (I used red ones and just left the skin on)
6 eggs
2 slices turkey bacon
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Sliced green onions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grate the potatoes and spread them evenly on paper towels. Cover them with another towel and squeeze until all the water comes out. Spray a pie pan with cooking spray and press the shredded potatoes evenly on the bottom and sides. Season lightly with salt and papper and bake for about 10 minutes.

While the crust is baking, slice up the turkey bacon and saute it together with the mushrooms. Whisk eggs together, season with salt and pepper. Take the crust out of the oven and dump the bacon/mushroom mixture in. Sprinkle green onions and cheese on top. Pour the eggs in, making sure the mixture doesn't rise above the top of your potato crust (spillage is no good).

Bake for 30-40 minutes until a fork inserted comes out clean. Take it out and let cool (it will harden and be much easier to cut) and eat away!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Photo session in SF

Last Sunday I went tramping around San Francisco with a friend to shoot photos around the city. It's been beautiful outdoors and the city was unusually sunny and warm. We started at the Palace of Fine Arts, walked over to the Marina for a view of the Golden Gate, stopped by the Ferry Building, and ended in Chinatown. It was nice to spend the whole day totally focused on taking photos. Normally when I'm out with friends or trying to get somewhere I pressure myself the just "get the shot". I'll just snap using auto settings that I know will get me the kind of photo I want. But this day I shot totally on manual, taking the time to set up the shot and experiment with aperture and shutter speed.
Cheese at Cowgirl Creamery
Ducks @ Palace of Fine Arts


Walking to the Ferry Building

Ferry Building

Palace of Fine Arts


Golden Gate
Naturally I took this opportunity to try out a new restaurant, and my friend is a discerning burrito critic, so we went to Papalote on 24th Street in the Mission. We both ordered a super carne asada burrito. To be honest, the burrito is good, but what makes it great is the smoky salsa that this place is famous for. 

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Being crafty

I have so many recipe clippings, food mags, etc clogging up my desk. I haven't seen the bottom in months! I'm spending the afternoon organizing it all into this lime green binder I picked up at Office Depot. Wish me luck!

Happiness lately 7-8-11

One weekday the bf and I were checking out a studio for rent in SF (which was not the place for me, made evident by the drug swap we saw occur right outside the building!) We were done at 5pm-ish, and decided drive down California St. towards the beach. We decided to stop and get some Chinese food at Shanghai Dumpling King and kill some time to avoid rush hour traffic going back home. This is a bona fide "hole in the wall" establishment and the service very efficient, quick, with no time to exchange pleasantries. I wouldn't come here for the atmosphere but the xiao long bao's are pretty darn good. We also ordered the spicy wontons and honey walnut shrimp, both were eh.
Spicy wontons

Xiao Long Bao

Honey walnut shrimp

Somewhere we've always talked about trying is Refuge on Laurel St. in San Carlos. Everytime we drive by the place is packed. They specialize in pastrami and Belgian beer. When we walked in, I was a little surprised. I assumed that was the sort of place where you ordered at the counter and got a number. Nonono. This was a sit down with wait staff. Everyone looked like they were having great conversation, great food, and great beer. I ordered the chopped pastrami salad which came with homemade picked vegetables, a heaping serving of pastrami, and rye toasts on the side. It was huge and magnificent. I asked for dressing on the side, which I'm really happy about because the picked vegetables are really flavorful and so I barely used the dressing.
Chopped pastrami salad (quality is not great b/c I snapped it on my iPhone)

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Yosemite Round Two

Taken with my new DSLR!