Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Banh Mi Pork Tacos

Banh Mi Pork Tacos Banh Mi Pork Tacos Banh Mi Pork Tacos
I've been dreaming of making these things for YEARS, years I tell ya! I took some liberties with this one and did the shortcut version, though if you want to be challenged there's always this recipe.
There are so many Banh Mi creations to be made. Take away the tortilla and toss all the ingredients with some greens and you've got Banh Mi Salad. 
Also to try: Banh Mi fries, hot dogs, quesadillas.....

Banh Mi Pork Tacos
fill this
taco sized tortillas
with this
Pate (Trader Joes)
BBQ Pulled Pork (Trader Joes) - heated up!
shredded carrots tossed with rice vinegar, marinated for 15 min
sliced jalapenos
sriracha mayo

and you've got some Banh Mi Tacos. 
Banh Mi Pork Tacos

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Albums I Will Always Love: Of Monsters and Men, My Head is An Animal

Of Monsters and Men
My Head is An Animal

This is one of those albums that I seriously underrated the first few times I heard it. I wasn't until this year that I realized how truly great it was. Seeing The Secret Life of Walter Mitty really reignited my flame for them. Their music, set agaist the native landscape of Iceland really did it for me. Of Monsters and Men own the signature cinematic, big sound that most Icelandic artists tend to have. I mean, how can the otherworldly landscape not inspire you?
Their folksy sound is less contrived than their radio counterparts (but I have to admit "Little Talks" is not one of my favorite songs of theirs...) and their sound is more dramatic, less I'm-so-happy-I'm-going-to-whistle-instead-of-sing. 
My "Driving through Iceland"playlist will be featuring this album, several times. Lets hope they release some new music before then too! 

I move slow and steady
But I feel like a waterfall
 - Slow and Steady

And these fingertips
Will never run through your skin
And those bright blue eyes
Can only meet mine across the room filled with people that are less important than you.
 - Love Love Love
Check out: "Dirty Paws" makes me wanna adventure somewhere big, "Yellow Light" is mysterious and magical, and "From Finner" has great some percussion. 

Monday, September 15, 2014

Mixtape Monday: What I am Listening to and Why

This summer has produced some great new music:

1. Giving Up - HAERTS (After following this band for almost 2 years, they are finally releasing an album in October.)

2. Young and Free - Sucre (this is such a great LP)

3. Brill Bruisers - The New Pornographers (Their latest album has been my soundtrack these past few weeks.)

4. The Getaway - TV Girl

5. Every Other Freckle - Alt-J (very sexy)

6. Champions of Red Wine - The New Pornographers (I just love the title of this song, and its my favorite off the album.)

7. The New You - Jenny Lewis

8. Stay Gold - First Aid Kit

9. When I - Shovels & Rope (Charleston natives)

10. Lily - Benjamin Gibbard

11. Crazy - Sucre (makes me miss my modern dance days)

12. Torrent - Asgeir

Friday, September 12, 2014

maybe I think too much...

Don't you wish there was just a tiny red "X" in your brain that you could click to stop over-analyzing everything?
And why as women do we have a tendency to spiral?
Ah, to only have your home page open all the time.

In improv we learn to not over-think anything, because it takes you out of the present moment. I need to start implementing that back into my life. 

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Curried Summer Vegetables with Polenta

Curried Summer Vegetables with Polenta Curried Summer Vegetables with Polenta
Sussing out every last bit of summer, mostly through meals I make. 
This dish was a quick one to put together and you can adjust just how much curry you'd like it to have. It's a 15 minute - all sauteed - one pan dinner. 

Curried Summer Vegetables with Polenta
1 onion, chopped
1 zucchini, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
1 - 15oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
curry powder
Salt and pepper to taste
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
18 oz roll polenta, thickly sliced 
cilantro, for garnish

1. Saute onion with EVOO in a large pan for a few minutes till soft, then stir in zucchini, bell pepper, and chickpeas.
2. Add curry powder, salt and pepper. Adjust to your own taste buds. Saute till all veggies are cooked. Throw in jalapeno. Remove veggies from pan. 
3. In same pan, saute polenta until crispy, you'll have to flip them over a few times. 
4. To plate, place some polenta rounds on your plate topped off with cooked veggies and cilantro. 

Curried Summer Vegetables with Polenta

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Chicago Lately...

I was determined, despite all what life threw at me, I was going to make this summer count and savor it until the leaves started to change. And I think I accomplished that. 
My mom was in town last weekend for a mini girls trip which included a boat ride on Lake Michigan and riding bikes on the lakefront trail. And of course, lots of eating. 
divvy jenny jenny
Yes, that's Jenny Lewis, my #1 lady. I saw her Lollapalooza aftershow and it was everything I wanted it to be and more. How does someone sound even better live than they do recorded? She sang a lot off her new album as well as some Rilo Kiley hits. 
jenny tacos
Yeah, I was this close to Jenny // Antique Taco's always adorable set-up
I also got to see Lucius' Lolla aftershow! These girls are fierce and energetic. I would see them live again and again. 
the "beach"
stan's jeni's
The Kitchen Aid mixer wall at Stan's Donuts // Chocolate Hazelnut Macaroon Ice Cream Sandwich from Jeni's
Banh Mi Burger from Burger Bar Chicago
One of my favorite spots in the city - the Art Institute of Chicago Gardens. You could be in Europe. 
stan's mom and me
Donut Gelato (!) from Stan's // a throwback photobooth sesh

Friday, September 5, 2014

Stop-Motion: big sur & the coast

I've been fortunate enough to have seen the Pacific coast in very different weather conditions. The first year I went, it was foggy and the water looked black, making the landscape look almost Arctic. Then last year, it was clear and sunny and the water was all sorts of salty blues. 
This stop-motion is complied of my trips - from both years and forecasts. 

Song: "Too Late" by M83

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Hawaiian Pork Tacos with Pineapple Slaw

Hawaiian Pork Tacos with Pineapple Slaw Hawaiian Pork Tacos with Pineapple Slaw
There are still so many tacos to make/eat before the summer is over! Korean Tacos, Banh Mi Tacos....the list is endless. 
I'll be making this Hawaiian version again - It's a perfect way to use some fresh summer flavors. 

Hawaiian Pork Tacos with Pineapple Slaw
(inspired by this recipe)
2.5 lbs pork for stew
1 bag Campbell's Slow Cooker Hawiian Luau Sauce
1/3 cup greek yogurt
1 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh pineapple juice
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon orange zest
Pinch of salt and pepper
1-10oz bag shredded cabbage slaw mix
1 cup fresh pineapple, diced
1 jalapeno, seeded + chopped
soft tortillas
diced avocado 
crumbled goat cheese

1. Cook pork in slow cooker, according to package directions. 
2. Make the slaw, in a medium size bowl whisk together the greek yogurt, rice vinegar, pineapple juice, brown sugar, orange zest, salt and pepper. Add the cabbage, pineapple and jalapeƱo. Toss well.
4. To assemble tacos, add some pork and slaw to tortillas and any extras you desire - cilantro, avocado, goat cheese - and have at it. 

Serves about 6, will stay for 5 days separately in the fridge
Hawaiian Pork Tacos with Pineapple Slaw

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Mixtape Monday: So Long, Summer

With September approaching and the fact that I've already seen Halloween candy for sale, I guess it's safe to say summer is pretty much over. I've still got a full list of things to do before the season ends, so I am hoping for some Indian summer days in the upcoming weeks. 
I used to get excited for fall, and I will soon, but fall means winter. And in Chicago, that is something else. I'm still trying to store some heat!

So here, one last playlist for the summa:

1. Classic (feat. POWERS) - The Knocks
2. Hate Yourself - TV Girl
3. Summerboy - Lady Gaga
4. Love U Forever - Jenny Lewis
5. Learn How to Hang - David Vandervelde
6. Killin the Vibe - Ducktails
7. Dusty - Monster Rally
8. Her and Her Friend - TV Girl
9. Solitude is Bliss - Tame Impala
10. Paradise - Monster Rally
11. Scars - GEMS
12. Tough Love - Jessie Ware
13. How it All Ends - The Mary Onettes


Friday, August 22, 2014

Stop-Motion: San Francisco

Finally got around to making a San Francisco stop-motion, compiled of pictures of my trips in 2012 and 2013. Another video of Highway 1 is on the way...

Song: The Sun by SURES

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