Thursday, June 28, 2012

Friday Faves on a Thursday Morning

Oops, I missed a week! Life has been exciting. In lieu of actual favorites, I think I'll go with a good ol' standby list.

- Ryan and I started a food blog! We'd been talking about starting a blog for a long time, but we finally narrowed down the theme and got to work. The official description goes something like:

Welcome to Love of Grub! We are Ryan and Kaylene and this is our food blog: a host to recipes we've tried and loved, favorite vendors, useful tips, ruthless restaurant reviews, comics, and fun little research projects. You don't have to be an aspiring Top Chef to enjoy great food. We are just regular people with an apartment-sized kitchen and a passion for cooking, eating and sharing. Follow us as we document and share our culinary adventures one bite at a time...for the love of grub!

So it's more than a recipe/photography blog. In fact, we don't have the tools yet for amazing food photography, but we're planning and learning every step of the way. For now, we are having a great time building the site and doing our best to attract followers. This project has given us tons of time together and lots of excuses to try fun new things in the kitchen, not that we really needed excuses beyond it being fun and tasting good :) Check us out at If you like us, "like" us, leave a comment, pin us or follow us on twitter, facebook and/or your reader!

<puts down megaphone>

- I have about 13.5 hours of work ahead of me and then FIVE DAYS OFF IN A ROW! I can hardly sit still when I think about it. We don't have huge plans for most of the time, but my little sister is visiting from CA (haven't seen her in years), a friend is coming from OR and then on July 3rd we are staying at a fabulous Gone With the Wind style Inn on the beach and I can't.flippin'.wait. There's a jacuzzi in the living room, a balcony facing the ocean, and we're planning a delectable surf & turf meal & signature cocktail to celebrate our second 4th of July together.

- I've started a book club! We had our first meeting (ie, we ate snacks and drank wine and then about 4 hours in, thought about perhaps choosing a book) on Tuesday and we have decided to read Anthony Bourdain's The Bobby Gold Stories. I am pretty into Anthony Bourdain these days, and also very happy to have an excuse to hang out with some fabulous ladies on a more regular basis. Thank you, summer!

Work had been busy. I don't have nearly the time I used to to dedicate to my ramblings. Go see my blog. And have a great weekend :)

Friday, June 15, 2012

Friday Faves, Top Three Edition

1. Seafood
Sometimes I forget that not everywhere in the world has free access to unlimited salmon, clams, crab, oysters, and so many other fantastically delicious, healthy and soul-nourishing foods! We picked up some crab meat from the seafood market downtown today for tomorrow's crab cake asparagus bennies we'll be creating for lunch. I gasped at the $29.99/lb price tag because for all of my childhood that I can remember, I would frequently show up at my grandparents' house and be handed an overflowing crab cocktail upon arrival, which I would devour and beg for more as I watched my grandpa dig the meat from the shells of crab that were very recently alive and stranded in his crab nets. Or are they cages? pods? The point is, I've been eating crab cocktails and razor clam chowder and home smoked salmon that someone biologically related to me personally extracted from the ocean for most of my life, and that's really something to be grateful for. Despite the fact that I'm buying it for myself instead of enjoying it on a barstool in Pat & Don's kitchen, or in a lawn chair under their shady tree out back, there's nothing shabby about being a few dollars & minutes from fresh crab cakes.

2. Cooking
I don't mean throwing together dinner because you have to eat to survive...I mean that moment when the spark is ignited and you're passionately spinning around the kitchen with 10 different executions on deck and you start to realize that the dream you pieced together the hour/day/week prior is coming to fruition and for that moment, you are untouchable. If you don't know what you're doing, it doesn't matter in that moment because you're just doing what needs to be done however you can pull it off, and if you botch everything you've attempted, you don't know it yet. It's a powerful moment, and it doesn't show up every night, but when it does, it really makes me question my desk job! I watched Ryan gracefully power this moment as he prepared our (phenomenal, btw) Date Night Meal and it was pretty fun to see it from an outside perspective. Cooking is fun. Really enjoying cooking is really fun!

3. Online Shopping
I am not an efficient shopper. I average about an hour a store if I'm not in an enormous hurry and more often than not, I can't find everything I need in fewer than 4 stores. I refer to my leisurely weekend trips as Shopping Adventures because it's what they are. I'm not sure I even want to fathom how much time I would spend in stores if I didn't shop online as well. I admit that clicking some buttons and putting a book in your amazon cart is not as charming or interesting as grabbing a latte and mindlessly browsing about in a jungle of high rise bookshelves, but it IS cheap and easy, and with free 2 day shipping, it is kind of hard to argue with when there's something specific you're looking for. I love supporting local businesses as much as I can, but I also love supporting independent artists, local or not, so Etsy has become my number 1 choice for quirky tees, kitchen towels, purses, and even the occasional soy candle.

There are only 3 faves today because it has been a BEAR of a Friday and I am finally getting very very close to the sweet reprieve only an Anthony's Happy Hour can offer. Cheers, friends!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Your Turn.

Hello, world!

It only seems fair that since I deactivated my facebook and encouraged you to follow my blog, I ought to update it with a bit more passion or at least frequency as before. Buckle your seatbelts, friends!

But seriously, what do you look for in a blog? I follow a couple blogs about eating whole foods, a couple with sinfully wonderful recipes (and pretty pictures!), a couple that are funny and/or thoughtful and a handful of personal blogs belonging to friends who are either chronicling something specific or updating about their adorable kids or just naval gazing and I love them all!

Writing is one of my Top Five favorite things to do (making Top Five lists is another favorite, as you may know by now if you're not new!) and I don't do it nearly as much as I would like to, and I plan to use this blog as a feeble attempt to help correct that. Interpersonal exchange is another important and fun part of being human that I would like to nourish, so hopefully some dialogue will come of this as well. Well, maybe not this post in particular. This is the blog post where I talk about writing a blog post. Thanks for hanging in there thus far.

Every Friday I tell you my 5 favorite things of the week. How about, to kick off our new blog friendship (or rekindle one, or just keep one aflame), you tell me your Top Five favorite somethings...books, movies, parks, foods, children, whatever. You in? Great.


Friday, June 8, 2012

Friday Faves, TGIF Edition

* Eating incredibly healthy foods in reasonable portions. I have lost 1.6 pounds since I implemented my hard core no-b.s. plan on Monday. Only 27.3 more to go!

* Friday Happy Hours at home. Okay, I love them at Anthony's, too. Swing is also is Water Street, and Ramblin' Jack's has those $3 appetizers...but showing up at Happy Hour hungry at the end of a long week is never as friendly on my bank account as the name suggests. A cool alternative is to buy some wine and snacks at Trader Joe's and invite some friends over and have all the fun without having to deal with parking, waiting for a table, tracking down a waiter in time for one more drink before HH ends, and driving home afterward (at least for the hostess, bwahahaha!). I really love Anthony's Happy Hours, actually...but I digress! I'm very excited to have a couple cool girls over for wine & munchies (homemade pesto, salami, artichoke dip-stuffed mushrooms, shrimp cocktails, and TJ's surprisingly delightful $9.99 box shiraz!) after work today.

* Traditions. Ryan and I just made plans to spend the 4th of July in Ocean Shores, since we had such a great time doing that last year. We have only been together just over a year, so we haven't had a lot of recurring events yet and I am excited about establishing "things we do". We have plenty of daily habits and trends we subscribe to, but this will be the first official holiday we get to celebrate for the second time as a couple. 25 more days 'til our romantic beach getaway!

* Hollywood Kill Krew shows. They are always a blast. You should definitely come to one. Tonight will be the first one I've missed since I went to my very first, 2010's Hip Hop for the Homeless benefit. The guys (& gal) are taking their show on the road, and this old groupie is better suited for drinking wine than driving to Onalaska for an outdoor show. I will be there in spirit, though!

* Instagram. Snap a somewhat decent photo, crop it into a square, apply a kitschy filter, and suddenly you're so hipsterrific you could puke on your one stars. Sign me up!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Friday Faves: Welcome to June!

No Reservations. I have developed a quick fascination with the Kerouac of the culinary world! Ryan and I love to sit down with our dinner on our tv trays and be entertained and inspired by Anthony Bourdain while we eat. I don't know how I've gone so long without seeing this show...I absolutely love it. It really gives me the travel bug, and it's also the reason I made some bomb cajun pork tenderloins and corn sweet potato hash last night that was basically to die for.

Hall & Oates Pandora station. It's right up there with the otter cam when it comes to bringing a little sunshine to a dreary afternoon. Try it for yourself. You'll be tapping your toes in no time.

Pine Nuts. Not only are they handy for making delicious basil pesto, but they are a wonderful addition to roasted asparagus, broccoli, salads and veggie wraps! And if you buy them at bulk somewhere like Winco, they don't cost you a kidney.

The Help. I just finished the book on a lazy holiday Monday and I thought it was really cool. I enjoyed the imagery of the rich, catty south in the '60s and I can't wait to see the movie for its bright colors and pretty dresses, but I also thought it shared a socially important message. I hope that people who read and watch The Help and aren't already on board with the idea of all humans having equal rights will draw some parallels between how ludicrous the segregation laws were half a century ago and how stupid the ones we have now are going to look to our grandchildren.

Trader Joe's. Organic, not a lot of added b.s., right off the freeway, paper bags only, obscenely cheap and delicious canned & frozen food &'s not great for everything, but mostly I think it's great.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Friday Faves, 1st Edition

To play off my fellow blogger, Chelsea's Love List and to give myself a reason to write, behold my Friday Faves, a list of things that I find worthy of mentioning this week:

Nelly's "Just a Dream" and not being pretentious about music I have, in the past, attempted to dislike on some kind of inexplicable principle that now seems like a lame excuse not to like something, which is ridiculous because liking things is neat!

Muffins. Specifically, the ones I've been making from Annie's recipe, which explode with decadent raspberry goodness and have just enough cinnamon to make you go mmmmm!

Otters. My new river otter shirt. The online (Sea) Otter Cams at Seattle Aquarium that let you watch the frolicsome critters any time you want. No joke, check them out for yourself!. Ryan sent me the link and I don't think it's up for debate that it is the cutest link anyone could possibly send.

Obsessively checking my Shop Stats page on etsy. Even though I've only been selling on average a couple of things a month, it's really heart-warming when someone "favorites" something I've makes me feel like the silly little hobby I have that is really just me drinking wine, watching Roseanne on my laptop and covering every nearby surface with glitter is somehow making someone besides me smile...and I like making people smile! Especially if I can do it in sweats & a ponytail, from 100s of miles away!

Our new apartment. Ryan and I moved at the beginning of May to a less expensive, less unique, less downtown apartment with fewer dumpster divers outside our window and fewer (exactly zero) crazy rock stars living above us. We thought we were downgrading and sacrificing, and while we did have to trade a little charm in for some practicality, I regret nothing. We are saving money, living easily & comfortably (still a short walk/drive to downtown, both our offices and the gym, with a great espresso stand in between!), and generally much happier with our current living arrangement. We can do laundry without going outside, things get fixed the same day we complain about them, and our sleep has not been interrupted by anything but the early morning garbage truck. It's great!  

That's one for every weekday...seems like a good place to stop. Have a fabulous Memorial Day Weekend, everybody!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Edamame Hummus

I wanted a healthy, green, dye-free dip recipe for the St. Patrick's Day party we hosted last Saturday, and I found this one on my new favorite food porn site:

Edamame Hummus
1 (16-ounce) bag frozen shelled edamame, thawed and drained
1 (15-ounce) can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1 lemon, juiced (3 tablespoons)
3 tablespoon tahani (Sesame seed paste)
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup olive oil

Combine all of the ingredients except for the olive oil in the bowl of a food processor. Process until combined. With the food processor running pour the oil through the chute and continue processing until combined. If the hummus is not creamy enough add 1 tablespoon of water at a time until desired consistency is reached. Taste and add more seasonings as desired.

It is a bit greener in person...closer to the hue of the soybeans sprinkled on the top. If you like hummus and don't hate edamame, I highly recommend this. It has all the same ingredients as traditional hummus but with the added flavor/color/nutrition/texture of soybeans, and I think it's magnificent. I've been scarfing down the leftovers on mini carrots and I will definitely be making it again in the near future.

Our St. Pat's party was fun...I think I'll make it an annual habit. What did you do on March 17?