Wednesday, February 24, 2010

If there's a mic to be rocked, I will throw the first stone

The 2 Skinnee Js have been my favorite band for a long time. I haven't been a fan quite as long as Alex, and I don't have any 2SJ tattoos to show you, but I do love them. They rock hard.

Every year we wait and hope that they are going to play a reunion show.

2010 may be a good year! Right now, a few of the Js are on tour playing acoustic shows on the east coast. Word on the street is they may be back this summer with a few full band concerts.

The idea of playing acoustic is an interesting concept for a band that categorizes themselves as nerdcore, geek rock and includes a keytar player. They make it work though, even without my favorite, J. Guevara. That being said, it will be so sweet if they are back in action this summer with a rock tour.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Little cabbages that taste like broccoli

About a year ago, I discovered brussel sprouts.

I was at H dinner at Henrietta's Table with Debra, Lex, and Kate, and they were the only green vegetable on the list of sides. If you know me, you know that a meal with out vegetables for me is like a day without sunshine. Green is my favorite color and except for split pea soup, I'm all about eating green. So I went for them. My god, I was missing out on one of the best vegetables out there.

Then I tried to come home and make them myself and low and behold, they were pretty awful. So I had to look up the right way to cook them. So easy and so delicious.

Golden Crusted Brussel Sprouts (from 101 Cookbooks)
  • 6 small brussel sprouts
  • 2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • a dash of sea salt
  • a dash of black pepper
  • a couple of pinches of grated cheese of your choice
Directions
  1. Wash the brussels sprouts and trim the stem ends and remove any damaged outer leaves.
  2. Cut in half from stem to top and gently rub each half with olive oil, keeping it intact.
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in your largest skillet over medium heat.
  4. Place the brussels sprouts in the pan flat side down.
  5. Sprinkle with salt, cover, and cook for roughly 5 minutes
  6. Once just tender, uncover, turn up the heat, and cook until the flat sides are deep brown.
  7. Use a spatula to toss them once or twice to get some browning on the rounded side.
  8. Season with pepper and a dusting of grated cheese.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Happy Family Day

This year, instead of celebrating Presidents Day in Cambridge, Alex and I celebrated Family Day in Toronto.

We stayed at the One King West Hotel, we spent some time in Toronto's best museums, and we ate and drank in some interesting Canadian places! It was great little weekend getaway.

Here is a quick review of best places we ate, drank, visited, and saw.

CN Tower
The CN Tower definitely has the best views of the city. At 1,800 feet tall with two observation decks, visitors get 360 aerial views from the downtown area to Niagra Falls.

Greek Town
Greek Town is my favorite Toronto Neighborhood. Cute, lots of wedding shops, and incredible restaurants. It doesn't get any better than saganaki at Pan on Danforth. Opa!

Royal Ontario Museum
The ROM has 40 galleries and over 6 million items on display, including one of the world's most beautiful gem and jewelery collection (what can I say, I'm a girl).

Casa Loma
Casa Loma is a beautiful castle located just inside Toronto's city limits. With 98 rooms to explore, secret passage ways and tunnels, and 5 acres of beautiful estate gardens, Casa Loma is quite the adventure.

Hey Lucy
The food and drinks were so good, we actually went here twice. Hey Lucy has delicious martinis (lychee, a new favorite!), great wine, and mac and cheese with bacon, tomatoes, and green beans. Yum!

The Olympics

Seeing the Olympics Canadian Style was quite the experience. Getting to get to see them win their first gold on home soil was pretty neat.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Birthday Boy

Happy birthday to my favorite person in the whole world!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

All hail to Massachusetts, we'll keep her flag unfurled.

Massachusetts is the place to live. Let me tell you. Universal access to the best health care in the country, equal rights to marriage for all, over 120 colleges and universities attended mostly by liberal, intelligent thinkers. Seriously, why wouldn't you want to live here?

Massachusetts is also good to its residents. They have tough landlord-tenant laws, our tax refunds are always pretty fair, they provide free medicines to people living with HIV who can't afford them, and they put of crosswalk signs one week after a simple request by email. Amazing!

Thanks Massachusetts for making my walk to work a little nicer and a lot safer. You are the best!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Pork Chops and Apple Sauce

I've always been sort of wary about cooking pork chops. I don't really know why. I kind of hated them as a kid. My mom always made them on the stove with canned tomatoes and onions. I love my mom, but they were pretty gross.

I'm so sick of chicken though that I decided to give it a go. Let me tell you, I am officially a huge fan of the other white meat. They came out delicious! Alex liked them too, although I was a bit more excited about them than he was.

Baked Pork Chops
  • 1-1/3 Granny Smith apples, cored and chopped
  • 1/3 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple, with juice
  • 2 tablespoons and 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon water
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1-1/3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 boneless pork chops
Directions
  1. Preheat an oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place apples, pineapple and juice, vinegar, sugar, water, honey, and garlic in a large saucepan.
  3. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the apples are tender, about 15 minutes.
  4. Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature, then puree in a blender until smooth.
  5. Place the pork chops in a 9 baking dish and cover with apple puree.
  6. Bake pork chops for 1 hour.

Monday, February 1, 2010

It's like super chicken. I bet it could fly.

I really like fried chicken. It is delicious. Unfortunately, it is a bit time consuming to make and really not healthy enough to be a daily meal.

This Pan Fried Lemon Chicken, however, is an easy and healthier alternative. It may not be the real thing, but it sure is tasty.

Pan Fried Lemon Chicken
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon zest
  • 2 Tablespoons Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons Italian bread crumbs
  • 1 chicken breast
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
Directions
  1. In a small mixing bowl, combine lemon zest, Parmesan cheese, and Italian bread crumbs.
  2. Spread mixture onto a plate
  3. Place chicken on top of mixture and rub to coat
  4. Heat olive oil in a skillet on medium heat
  5. Place chicken in skillet and pan fry for 10 minutes on each side
  6. Chicken is done when juices run clear