Rainbow Salad

This gallery contains 9 photos.

I love to make salad. It’s simple and fast, not to mention efficiency which I like. Another favorite reason is a way for me to clean out the fridge. Especially vegetables that I sometimes buy one too many, which we … Continue reading

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This is it: Paradise on Earth

This gallery contains 113 photos.

I need a vacation. I want a vacation. I miss my vacation. A vacation that is in paradise. My idea of paradise is a pristine tropical island with swaying palm trees, pure white beaches, villas on top of crystal clear … Continue reading

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Friday Casual: Daring and Serene

Happy Friday, everyone! I can’t seem to get enough of pink lately, even though Valentine’s is way over. It’s a laid-back and daring color that could be paired with almost anything and any color. My favorite way to pull off … Continue reading

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A Rustic Rendition of Shrimp Ravioli with Sun-Dried Tomatoes Salsa

This gallery contains 7 photos.

I love pasta, all kind, but something about ravioli that makes my heart skips a beat. A plate of heart-felt ravioli. Now, homemade dough is absolutely admirable but that’s not for me as it’s time-consuming to knead, roll, fill and … Continue reading

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A Baked Salmon Recipe and Its Beauty Benefit

This gallery contains 5 photos.

Healthy skin, healthy hair, happy life. Forget about the gross-me-out fish oil pills, I am all about natural and organic beauty care when it comes to youthful and radiant looking skin as well as gorgeous hair. Often, we waste time … Continue reading

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A Glimpse of a Sweet Saturday

This gallery contains 23 photos.

W has been stressed about work this week so we took it easy before our training long run tomorrow to prepare for our Paris marathon (which is coming up in a little over a month. Yikes!). It was a beautiful … Continue reading

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A DIY Valentine’s Treat: Fruit & Nutella Swedish Pancake

This gallery contains 11 photos.

Happy Belated Valentine’s, you beautiful! Hope you had a day filled with roses, hugs, kisses, candies, chocolate and sweets too! I am a big believer of love but not so much a gamer of spending double the money on Valentine’s … Continue reading

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Romantic Valentine

My very first Polyvore style board so happen to be a romantic valentine outfit. I don’t know when that I start to fall in love with pink and glittery things. But putting on some pink and glittery thing makes even … Continue reading

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Chinese New Year Dumplings

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Jiaozi (餃子) or dumpling is perhaps the most special food in people’s life thousands of years ago in China because it is served at a particular time and day. People, typically in northern China, have a custom to stay up … Continue reading

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Welcoming Snake Year’s Eve

Last Saturday, Feb. 9, my family and I gathered to welcome lunar new year, the year of snake (a zodiac of both my dad and hubby) which is extra special. The eve of Chinese New Year is all about family … Continue reading

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Apple Sago Pudding

A beautiful day begins with some apple sago pudding.

Apple Sago Pudding

I woke up this morning wanting dessert. For me, that’s out of the ordinary to crave sweet as breakfast. Typically, a boiled egg and a piece of toast would do.

Though, I had been thinking about sago very much lately. I actually MISS it. I love sago. I used to have a lot of it in desserts when I was young, with coconut milk, with mung bean, in ball shaped, etc. After boba drinks came out, they immediately become my must have starchy balls.

Apple Sago Pudding
Apple Sago Pudding

However, I opted for sago this time. Sago is tasty in a form of pudding. Well, when sago is cooked, it clumps together like pudding. And pudding is one of my favorite desserts. It’s easy and quick to make.

Who would have thought baking sago pudding and apples is such a great combination, which truly completed my wonderful morning. It satisfied my craving. It warms my heart. It put a smile on my face.

Apple Sago Pudding
Apple Sago Pudding

Warm pudding and apple that comes right out of the oven is heavenly delicious.

Apple Sago Pudding
Apple Sago Pudding

Baked Apple Sago Pudding

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Baking Time: 45 minutes
Serving: 8

1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup sago
2 1/2 cup whole or reduced milk
1/3 cup dried raisins
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of ground nutmeg
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 medium apple, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
1 tbsp brown sugar

Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease the sides of a square ceramic baking pan. Set aside.

Place sugar, sago, milk, raisins and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring often to avoid sago stick to the bottom of the pan and burning. After boil, reduce the heat to simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat.

Stir in vanilla extract, nutmeg and eggs. Pour into the prepared baking pan. Lay slices of apple and then sprinkle with brown sugar evenly on top. Bake for 45 minutes, or until set and golden brown.

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Star + Kiwi Fruitti

Star Kiwi Fruitti

I had been telling myself to eat healthy lately so I bought a bunch of fruits and trying to figure out how to make eating them fun and pretty. I envisioned a fruit platter related to love and Valentine’s Day. This is how star + kiwi fruitti with fresh pomegranate juice came about.

Because Valentine’s is around the corner, my heart is all about love. This fruitti in Chinese is called 心心相印 (xin xin xiang yin), which means “you are my soul mate.” Star and heart have the same pronunciation (xin xin) in Chinese so starfruit here represents the heart.

Star Kiwi Fruitti
Star Kiwi Fruitti
Star Kiwi Fruitti
Star Kiwi Fruitti

To put this together, you only need to cup up a starfruit and a kiwi, processed 1/2 cup of pomegranate seeds with a few mint leaves into juice, and decorate with any flower you have from your garden or around the house.

Eating healthy could be pretty and delicious too. Do you agree?

Star Kiwi Fruitti
Star Kiwi Fruitti
Star Kiwi Fruitti

Do you see two hearts dancing hand in hand?

Star Kiwi Fruitti
Star Kiwi Fruitti

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Friday Favorites: Superbowl Munchies

Happy Friday! Just 2 more days till American’s biggest sport event – Super Bowl! Or should I call it Harbaugh Bowl, brother vs brother never before in football history. It will be THE game to watch!

I am not a big football fan, though I haven’t miss a Superbowl game since I met W (boy needs his sport and ESPN channel). For me, Super Bowl is all about the FOOD! Chicken wings, chili dogs, pull-pork sandwiches, mac-n-cheese, dips, nachos, beer-drinking, etc. The game, million-dollar-worthy commercials, and halftime performance are added entertainment like salt and pepper for seasoning.

Here is a roundup of my favorite munchies for the game from my Pinterest (check out my board, Food I Crave, for more ideas and inspiration). Warning! These are full of cheese, grease, and meat. Get ready to lick your fingers.

Chili is such a comfort snack that you can’t replace with anything else, whether you will have it as a dip or drizzle over hot dogs.

Source: southernliving.com via Irene on Pinterest

Chili in a tiny bread bowl…too cute!

Source: Uploaded by user via Irene on Pinterest

Spice up the game with some buffalo chicken drumsticks or wings.

Source: bhg.com via Irene on Pinterest

Awww…a football shape meatloaf heightens the sport spirit.

Source: ivillage.com via Irene on Pinterest

This is not your everyday mac-n-cheese. Its the Pulled-Pork Mac-n-Cheese with Caramelized Onions and Four Cheeses. Just the name itself oozes me.

Source: ivillage.com via Irene on Pinterest

Barbecue Pulled-Chicken & Cheddar Quesadilla is a little messier than the food items above but watch out for those dripping BBQ sauce and stringy cheese when you pull each slice apart.

Source: bhg.com via Irene on Pinterest

Cheddar-beer weiners screams touchdown!

Source: bhg.com via Irene on Pinterest

Don’t forget the little ones. Mini corn dog muffins might be the perfect pick.

Source: iowagirleats.com via Irene on Pinterest

And this decorative football shaped pizza makes eating and watching more fun for everyone.

Source: refinery29.com via Irene on Pinterest

Bring the game closer to your heart by adding some New Orleans favors like jambalayas, Po’ Boy, and beignets

Source: savoringthethyme.com via Irene on Pinterest

Source: ivillage.com via Irene on Pinterest

Source: pauladeen.com via Julia on Pinterest

Opt for a healthier dip like edamame-avocado dip for those tortilla chip.

Source: bhg.com via Irene on Pinterest

Fruit-ball helmet to stay hydrated from all the beer-drinking.

Source: alittletipsy.com via Irene on Pinterest

Some football treats to celebrate the occasion.

Source: chef-in-training.com via Irene on Pinterest

Source: bhg.com via Irene on Pinterest

My utmost favorite has to be this. Go Niners!

Source: gwenskitchencreations.blogspot.com via Food & Nutrition on Pinterest

Whether you’re cheering on the San Francisco 49ers or rooting for the Baltimore Ravens, we could all enjoy some yummy munchies. Perhaps, burst out a dance move or two during Beyoncé halftime performance to burn some calories and eat more.

Where will you be watching the game?

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You may also like these recipes, Pizza Italian Sausage Margherita, Sheperd’s Pie,The Pittsburger.

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Sunny Arugula Salad with Pomegranate Vinaigrette

Rainbow Salad

Hello, Everyone! How’s your week been so far?

Last few days, it was a playing “catch up” with my long-due list of to dos. Taking passport photos, renewing passport, booking hotels for Paris, and schedule appointment for annual body check-up were planned for an early January complete date. I kept on putting it off by telling myself that I could do that tomorrow. Then tomorrow. Then tomorrow. One week after another, here comes the end of January, and a nightmare made me realize that Paris trip could be in jeopardy if the postponement kept up at this rate. Heck, NO! I would not miss PARIS for anything. So for the last couple of nights, W and I spent a few hours each night, researching, picking, eliminating, and reserving hotels. Gladly, the hard part of the trip planning is done. As I am typing about it makes me antsy and jiggly.

Beside that, W and I continued on our house hunting (we started since last April and still searching). It’s not a matter of us being picky, rather it’s the fact that we couldn’t outbid 20 – 30 offers on every single house we liked. 20 – 30 offers! A number of them were even all cash offers! What in the world is going on? I thought we are still in recession. Why is everyone fighting to buy? Anyone else facing the same problem? It’s frustrating. No matter how high we are willing to pay, there’s always one that would outbid us. This is a journey that I wish could end soon.

Anyway, I had been busy cooking too. This is the best part of all things I’d done this week. Dishes I made so far were roasted pork with mushroom stew, baked salmon marinated in citrus soy sauce, stir-fry pork tenderloin and vermicelli, and this wonderful sunny arugula salad with pomegranate vinaigrette.

Rainbow Salad
Rainbow Salad

Salad is what I had been aiming to eat more of each week (as one of 2013 resolutions), especially like this one where is packed with numerous rich-nutritious ingredients. Green peas, corn, and tomatoes are loaded with antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, vitamin C, and fiber nutrients. The salad has “healthy” written all over it.

The inspiration came from digging and browsing through what I had left to use from the fridge, and the almost dried up pomegranate which was leftover from making the cherimoya and pom sundae.

The sunny-side up egg is the accessory to the look of this gourmet salad. Like my friend, gotasté mentioned, this is a “cheer you up” type of salad whenever you a little lift.

Rainbow Salad
Rainbow Salad

Sunny Arugula Salad (SAS) with Pomegranate Vinaigrette

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 3 minutes

Serving: 4 or 8 (entree or side)
pomegranate vinaigrette dressing (see recipe below)
5 cups (7oz) arugula
2 beets (chioggia candy striped), thinly sliced
a box or 20 whole yellow grape tomatoes
1 small red pepper, thinly sliced
1 shallot, thinly sliced and separated
1/2 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed
1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
1 tsp olive oil
4 large eggs

Pomegranate Vinaigrette Dressing
3/4 cup of pomegranate seeds
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
5 large mint leaves, finely chopped
pinch of salt and freshly grounded pepper
1/2 cup olive oil

In a food processor, blend pomegranate seeds, balsamic vinegar, garlic, mint leaves, salt and pepper together, about a minute. Pour the mixture in a saucer or container. Add olive oil and whisk until well combined. Set aside or fridge.

Heat 1/4 tsp of olive oil in a pan. Crack an egg into pan and fry till egg white is cooked for sunny side up yolk. Make all 4 eggs. Set aside.

In the same frying pan, stir fry corn kernels and peas till kernels lightly brown, about 1 – 2 minutes. Set aside.

Pour arugula in a large salad bowl. Add radishes, grape tomatoes, red pepper, shallot, and corn and pea mixture. Pour dressing and toss. Serve on a plate and top with fried egg. (To serve individually, put 1 cup of arugula on a plate. Decorate with radishes, grape tomatoes, red pepper, shallot and corn and pea mixture. Add dressing. Top with fried egg.)

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You may also like this, Apple Pomegranate Fall Salad, Watercress Plum & Apple Salmon

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Cherimoya + Pom Sundae

I want to present you our late Sunday night snack – cherimoya (Vietnamese: mãng cầu, Chinese: 番荔枝) + pomegranate sundae (W said it tasted like ice cream), the sweet and super healthy kind. In less than 3 minutes, a drooling dessert presented beautifully in front of us.

Mang Cau
Mang Cau
Mang Cau

It makes a terrific Valentine dessert as well.

Mang Cau
Mang Cau
Mang Cau
Mang Cau

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