Thursday, September 3, 2015

Fall Fashion 2015

Let’s talk wedge sneaker. For the third fall in a row I am still seriously obsessed with black wedge sneakers. Up here in the woods, the only fashion outlet are the things that Target compiles into low budget fashion, and they are pretty good at it. In Fall 2013 I debated back and forth about getting yet another pair of shoes, but still bought those Xhilaration kahsha high top wedge sneaker.

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Forward to Fall 2014, with a few warm black pants from Lululemon, I wore those until December. This summer, I figured out that these wedges are copies of the Isabel Marant originals with a price tag of $695.

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Well done, Target, and thank you for your copying efforts and giving them to me for about $30.

This year I was ‘this close’ to customizing Nike hidden wedges, because if I like something I typically buy 2 of the same or similar.

But, all black does not look good.

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White soles and swoshes also less than fashionable. Too athletic.

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Maybe, switch colors?

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So much about shoes. My local GAP store tries to convince me that the flare jeans is back. Do you believe it?

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(source)

I am unsure. Fortunately, I still have a few older ones, just in case.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Split pea soup (vegan)

I started watching “Seinfeld”  on Hulu. Some things just get never out of style. This is a soup that is also a classic, an Indian inspired pea soup. Simple to make, and leftovers can be reinvented with adding some fresh summer squash.

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Split pea soup (vegan)

  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 large onions, chopped
  • 1 garlic glove
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cups dried split green peas, picked over and rinsed
  • 5 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 TB curry powder
  • 1/2 TB garam masala powder
  • pinch of cayenne
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk

In a heavy-bottom pot, heat the coconut oil, and ad the onion and garlic, and saute until translucent. Add the dried slip peas and the broth, as well as the curry powder and garam masala, and cook on medium-low until the peas are soft (about 40 min). Cool, and remove about 1/3 of the cooked peas, and set aside.

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Puree the remaining soup in a blender and add some water to achieve the desired consistency of the soup. Add the whole cooked peas back in. Reheat, and add the coconut milk. Stir, and serve.

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Monday, August 31, 2015

Back to school with beaches on my mind

So, there we are. Summer is over and school starts again today. The transition was met with the usual short phase of depression, of “Oh, no, it can’t be!”, but protest does not make anything easier, and here we are. Freshly scrubbed and full of energy.

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This morning I saw these arial photos of Italy’s beaches. Yes, this is how I remember it. Since I live in Maine, I realize how necessary it is to stay away from soooo many people to really relax, and I enjoy myself the Maine beaches. Just enough people for comfort.

The weather is still golden, warm, hot even, and the coast is calling my name. Fortunately, we still have a long weekend ahead of us. It is the time of apple picking, and inexpensive heirloom  tomatoes at the farmers market, of taking the bike to work to avoid the battle for parking spots on campus, and a silent hope that summer will turn into Indian summer and last until the end of October.

Last week, I had to renew my library card, and so I perused the cookbook section and borrowed a few classic like “Super Natural Every Day” and “Momofuku” for renewed cooking inspiration. Since I cancelled my TV subscription (and now binge-watch TV series on Hulu)  I really miss Food TV and the Cooking Channel. Unfortunately, they are not part of any streaming deal (yet). 

Anyway, I am rambling. With back to work, I hope to come back with more recipes soon.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Vacation, Part 2

It’s vacation weeks around here. Here are some impressions. Island time.

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Farmers market in Belfast

free range dogs and chickens.

Indoors at Chase’s Daily

Old Port, Portland

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Vacation like a tourist

It’s been quiet around this little blog, mostly due to summer, a lot of work and letting loose. I still have a few milestones until I release myself on a 2 week vacation but I take work to the beach. Good if you can. One half of me enjoys the salty, tangy sea breeze and the other half gets work done. Not bad.

Here are a few impressions from the last weeks.

It is an event if there is a Rolls Royce Convertible in Belfast. Even men take selfies with the car.

Otherwise, the new find in Belfast is “Meanwhile in Belfast”, a Neapolitan Pizzeria, run by an Italian family with just the best pizzas. The colors of white and pastel make the place look fresh and cozy.

And that is the sandwich…. with fresh baked bread.

It is August, and people actually swim in the ocean. Brrrh.

I am not sure what happened here, maybe a paparazzi convention in Rockland?

I had not been in Rockland for at least 5-6 years, and new stores have popped up, like this gorgeous, local version of a Wholefoods, with a nice hot bar (Main Street Market, Rockland, ME).

Acai bowl for me!

Another place I hung out this summer, accidentally, is Havana in Bar Harbor. It is ‘far away’ (maybe a half Mile) from the center of the tourist craze, there are plenty of parking spots, it is quiet and it has excellent food. What’s not to like.

The outdoor patio of Havana’s.

Home-made pickled vegetables at Havana’s.

And, yes, working with a view (Northeast Harbor, ME).

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Internet Vegan Recipe Finds

Since I eat (mostly) plant-based, it is key for me to make hearty, flavorful meals that leave me satisfied. In that regard, I am a ‘foodie’ (<—dreaded word) as ever. With cutting out entire food groups, it becomes a creative challenge to come up with new recipes. Here are some vegan internet recipes that inspire me to try something new. They seem to be promising in the flavor, texture and satisfaction department.

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  • Baked Potatoes with Black Beans and Salsa
To make it: bake or microwave a few Yukon Gold potatoes, then top with black beans and salsa. Dress with lime juice, jalapeno slices, hot sauce, and cilantro, and you’ve got one of the cheapest meals you can eat with next to no active cooking time.
  • Bengali Red Lentils or Spicy Lentil Soup
To make it: bake or microwave a few Yukon Gold potatoes, then top with black beans and salsa. Dress with lime juice, jalapeno slices, hot sauce, and cilantro, and you’ve got one of the cheapest meals you can eat with next to no active cooking time

Recipe link for Bengali Red Lentils.

Recipe link for Spicy Lentil Soup.

  • Romaine Salad with Beans and Tahini Dressing

Use a whole head of lettuce and half a can of beans for single salad. To fancy it up, add some carrots,  …

Tahini dressing: blend together a half-cup of tahini, a quarter-cup of lemon juice, 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, and 2 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce. Then thin with water (you’ll likely need a half cup or more) and add a dash of hot sauce to taste.

  • Cauliflower Steaks
Slice cauliflower head into think slices in and grill on BBQ or in pan. Add a nice dressing.

Recipe

In other vegan news: