January 15, 2013

Seasoning my Tagine

For christmas my wonderful mother bought me a Tagine. Upon opening it, I was pretty excited about the beautiful dish to put on our kitchen table and serve dishes out of...then after talking to Mum i found out that it's something you COOK in. Yes, i had no idea what it was. But now after researching it i have become a fan. A Tagine is a cooking dish from North Africa, which cooks things sort of like a slow cooker. It is made of clay and is glazed on the outside. It can be used on the stove top or in the oven for cooking Moroccan stews (meat and vegetarian). The domed lid traps steam and returns the condensed liquid to the pot, allowing you to slowly cook the dish without excess liquid.
with the cold, bitter winter weather we are having (see above for proof..my inside outfit of ugg boots, headband and puffer jacket), a stew sounded like the perfect winter warming dinner!
Yesterday, I finally got around to 'seasoning' mine so i could cook my first moroccan dish. This involved soaking it in water for 4 hours, coating it in olive oil and baking it in the oven for two hours...now it's ready to go!
I made an eggplant, squash and chickpea stew, served with israeli couscous and side salads. 

It was a successful first attempt and has left me excited to experiment with some other flavours...in 5 months probably...because im back to Uni on thursday which means zero time for extravagant home cooked dinners and blogging. But i will try to be be better at putting up photos of events we attend. Promise.


January 2, 2013

New Years 2012

Bailiwick New Year's Party...doing it the classy way.
 shirts, ties and slacks were pulled from the wardrobes, dresses were steam ironed and shoes shined. 
taxi's ordered, cocktails made and the partying began.
we started our night off with a delicious 4-course meal at Osetra Fish House before making our way to Bailiwick.
ice sculptures...
hundreds of floating balloons...
...and new years kisses! 
We all had an amazing night! Thanks to all our beautiful friends that came down to celebrate with us! You guys made the night what it was! 
New Year's Day was spent with a good old fashion OB funday...bar hopping, beers, mimosa's, fish taco's, sunshine and the greatest crew of friends. My stomach hurts from laughing so hard!
Here's to a great start to a great 2013!

December 27, 2012

Christmas Getaway

Merry it was too..PJ surprised me with a trip to Big Sur for a few days of peace and quiet from the crazy busy life here in San Diego recently. I arrived at the airport at 6am Sunday morning with no idea where i was going..we flew up to San Francisco then onto Monterey for some sea-life action at Monterey Aquarium.
the greatest sea horse ever..very sneaky disguise. 
after all the sea life action we braved the storm and headed to Fisherman's Wharf for some cocktails and  clam chowder on the ocean
then wrapped up dry in our little green mini and started our scenic trip along the coast to Big Sur..
day two: with the rain and storm past and the sun shining...we headed out to do some hiking in the woods..
..and some eating and drinking by the fire before the big fat man came down the chimney!
Christmas morning and more surprises: a bottle of Don Perignon Champagne to start of the day...consumed with apple pie, in bed, at 8am. Heaven. 
after we recovered from our early morning drinking we headed out to do some hiking and sight seeing..
We had Christmas Dinner at Ventana Inn and Resort where we enjoyed an amazing 3 course meal and cocktails all night! Christmas was over too quickly, a great day and an amazing little get away in the wilderness!
Hope you all had a great christmas with loved ones too

December 14, 2012

My past 6 months..summarized

Kiora! It has been forever since i last posted anything...life got crazy and busy and something had to give..and because i refuse to give up running like a mad women, drinking and partying and spending adequate time passing my exams, the blog got thrown to the back of my 'to do' list... BUT I am back, momentarily, as i enjoy a much deserved 5 weeks off from my doctorate program. This post pretty much sums up my life since i got back to America..not a lot of photos but i'll try to give you all a glimpse of what we have been up to!

First we had the amazing wedding of our beautiful Orchard couple, Kate and BJ. So thankful to have been there on their special day!
It was the perfect sunny San Diego day as we celebrated on Sunset Cliffs over looking the ocean.
Soon after my boys from my Tulsa days came to visit..it was too short and disrupted by me running and training for my first half marathon, but who better to have there as my support crew than the ones who kicked my butt into shape for those years at Tulsa!
the boys after a little sunset cliff jumping
carl mid food challenge at OB noodle...thanks for putting yourself through that pain so we could be entertained :)
pitbull and carl then spent some time with my training group before coming to watch me run the AFC half marathon..Pitbull's timely race updates to PJ were amazing! Thanks for being there mid race when the times were getting tough!
celebrating with my kiwi after winning the AFC half marathon!
then celebrating again in...VEGAS!!!!
Before the real showdown at uni began we thought i should probably go get wild and try get the partying out of my system before i gave my nights away to the books..where else to go than Vegas right!?!? We jetted off for the weekend before i started, arriving home hangover and tired late Sunday night before i rose to my new routine the next morning..
we had one of the best weekends, heaps of drinking, dancing, eating and pool time with our amazing friends Tim and Chelsea! Thanks to you guys for enjoying this weekend with us! Can't wait for round two!!
And with that, the summer ended and my new Doctorate of Physical Therapy program began...
my amazing and very talented class! We have had a great semester, we worked hard, got given a taste of the real world, were challenged more than ever before and all came out on top!! That's how we roll..nothing will stand in our way!!
The new schedule looked something like this:
5am: wakeup
5.15am: run/workout
8am: leave for uni
5pm: arrive home
5.30pm: run again/weights
7pm: cook dinner, eat
7.30pm: study
9.30pm: sleep
and get up and do it all over again
somewhere in there i did actually hang out with my boyfriend and friends..occasionally ;)
halloween time came around and i took a break from studying to go trick or treating for the first time (at the age of 24)...i had so much fun taking Brylie around and eating too many lollies..
..and hanging out with oscar the grouch!
During Thanksgiving break PJ and i snuck away to Florida for some much needed R and R! I was exhausted from uni and definately needed this little break! We met up at the house in Clearwater Beach with all the family!
thanksgiving on the beach and drinking and eating amazing food!
And that brings me to today...so much else has happened but this is just a quick recap..lots going on at the moment with two new restaurants on the way, xmas parties, new years and the piles of laundry i have to catch up on! I'll keep you posted!
Thanks to everyone for making it Wednesday night to our post semester party! And thanks to Marcella for being my person and keeping me sain throughout this semester! Bring on the next two and a half years!!