Thursday, August 27, 2009

Link Love!

Ah, yes.

- Feral Houses from Sweet Juniper. AMAZING post. It's beautiful and creepy and fantastic.

- Bicycle Benefits- a really cool program that gets you discounts and free stuff for slapping a sticker on your helmet (and actually wearing it).

- Urban Farm Magazine! Oh boy.

- Tomato Tarts? Uh... yes, please.

- One Year After the 250-Mile Diet is a very cool write up about a realistic approach to eating locally.

- Kristatomic posts on decorating your House & Home, via her collection of inspiring photos. I think a lot of these are from Design Sponge. I have to keep reminding myself that we're moving into our own place in just over a month... and then Matao will probably be in flowery, textured hell. This couch is just about the most fantastic thing I've ever seen.

- Hahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaa

- And lastly: KOMBUCHA!!! from The Baking Bird. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

I Hear the Wind Whistling "Come Back Anytime"


I decided to break this post up into a few categories. You'll see.

First, of course, is FOOD:

I hiked up Eaglecrest on the new road with my mom my second (I think) day in Juneau. My grandma kept telling us there were no blueberries left, but I really think that's physically impossible. We picked nearly 4 gallons in a few hours, and I kept eating every salmon berry I found. So much good. I brought home about half of our blueberries, which are camping out in my freezer right now. I need to figure out what to do with them... I really want to make jam but I also just want to eat them all RIGHT NOW. We will see!

Beautiful, perfectly full blueberry bushes

Salmon berries! They're like super water-logged sour raspberries? Hard to describe, but I love them. I've never seen them anywhere but Alaska. They range from salmon colored (orange) to super dark red, to almost black and range in sweetness.

Watermelon berries and weird and sticky and gooey. Not very good to eat, but really great to smush and make messes out of. Also really pretty.

Our super sexy blueberry picking outfits. It rains a lot. A lot a lot a lot. Like... Seattle is extra wimpy compared to SE Alaska.

Nom nom chomp. This was part of lunch. Smoked sockeye salmon salad on yummy bread. Simple and so good. We also had really awful carrots, apricots that I forgot to eat and probably smushed, a bar of chocolate from Theo, and some dark chocolate covered candied ginger from Alaskan Fudge Co.

While driving down Mom spotted some chicken of the forest/chicken mushrooms growing on a tree tucked back a bit. This was entirely experimental, as neither of us had ever picked or prepared it before (it's one of the few types of wild mushrooms that can't be mixed up with any others- so nothing to worry about). Unfortunately it ended up being a bit of a culinary disaster for us, but it was still fun to mess around with. Turns out that it's best to pick it while either very young, or to cut off the outer edge on older fungus, as it becomes very woody and dry as it ages. Oh well!

It's so intensely orange and absolutely stunning in comparison to how green the woods are.

The day before I left we wrangled up a bunch of my family members and a few of my brave friends and had a barbecue/picnic out at the beach in the cold pouring rain. It actually ended up being a lot of fun, but that probably had something to do with the peppermint schnapps my aunt Margie was encouraging us to sneak into our tea. Either way.

We found these beautiful little fingerling potatoes at Costco, of all places. I baked them with olive oil, garlic, and a lavender sea salt spice mix from Whole Foods, then tossed them with a light vinaigrette and fresh herbs once they came out of the oven. So simple and so good. I have a ton of potatoes coming in my CSA tonight so I definitely see myself repeating this soon.

Aside from all of that- we ate at a few of my very favorite restaurants. Paradise Cafe is basically my absolute dream, and what I hope to open my own version of someday. It's perfect, as far as I'm concerned.

So, while I was intending to break my photos down into categories... I somehow managed to cover a pretty good chunk of them just talking about food. Figures. Here are some of my other favorites:

Wall of skis on the North Douglas Highway

I'm sure I've mentioned before that my parents live on a sailboat. So this is where I stayed while home. The husky was a dock dog, but the sweetest little thing in the world.

Trees, and mountains, and out of season chairlifts, and things.

The cutting edge of Alaskan fashion.

Kim, Eva, and Tegan... heading upstream with the salmon to spawn.

All in all it was probably one of the best trips home that I've ever had. I came back to Seattle completely relaxed and refreshed. Ahhhh. Back to it.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Homeward Bound

Ironically enough I've been dying to watch that movie lately.

Oh man. Tears in my eyes just watching the trailer with no sound secretly at my desk. Sigh.

Anyway. I came back from an epic trip to Portland last night, and am now hopping a plane right after work tonight to go home for a week. I'm staying with Mom and John on the boat in Douglas Harbor. Here:

Photo Source

No bike, not a lot of cooking (there will still be plenty of eating!) and rain every day. Sounds like home to me! Aside from that there isn't a ton planned (is any of that even a plan?) but I have zero doubt that it will be a great week.

Pictures when I get back to Seattle!

Friday, August 7, 2009


I can't stop listening to this obsessively on repeat. It has been forever since I've really fallen for a band- and this is doing it big time. This whole album is a winner. It makes me miss my past life. FFLY.

This is Henry. He is a rather sad, lost, and rejected baby seagull who I have taken under my figurative wing. We found him all scruffed up and unable to fly or squawk hanging out around my office building earlier this week. Yesterday I had to save him out of a ditch. Today we hung out and I fed him mushy Triscuits and leftover salmon. He came in the office for a while and kicked it (no joke- he didn't even poop!) Unfortunately it's just one of those cruel shitty Mother Nature deals where he was more or less the bottom of the seagull pile and probably isn't going to make it on his own. I'm not exactly in a prime position to be adopting a baby seagull (is anyone?) so we gave him some food and snuggles and put him in a bush with the hopes that he'll at least make it through the weekend. What exactly do you do with a seagull who can't fly?

These are ridiculous cupcakes. This was an accident, but I love it and I can't stop laughing every time I look at them. I left my cupcake pan at work, and the papers I have suggest just using them on a regular pan (stating that they'll hold their shape) well HA HA. They got me. I kind of want to do this all the time now, though. It's like a whole new world of cupcakes all up in here. Excuse the awful picture. I really need to invest in a new camera. I just can't justify it when the one I've had for ohhh... 6 years still works. Whatev. Deal.

THIS is something that I had promised pictures of earlier. Stefanie is one of my new favorite people, and not just because of her cabin, or Daryl. However- this is something at her cabin, that is just too genius for any more words. RIVING-ROOM:

If you can think of anything more genius than a living room in the middle of a river- then please fill me in. I need to know.

Alright. Back to the kitchen. We're having late night dinner guests- the best kind.

Thursday, August 6, 2009


All clear!

I have a lot of goodies to post. Except that right now I'm extra lazy. I just ate the worlds biggest sushi roll from Shiki Sushi that probably weighed about ten pounds. And all I have on my mind right now is the fact that there is cold root beer in the fridge, and vanilla ice cream that needs to go in it. I haven't had a solid root beer float in years. Tonight is the night. Don't get in my way.

Anyway. I catered my annual company picnic yesterday. It was insane. I've never done anything like that, and it went over unbelievably well, despite the double dose of shit storm that I thought was going to take me down. The kitchen in our office building is already pretty minimal- and somehow the day before the disposal had gotten completely backed up. I had two plumbers working on it for nearly four hours yesterday without fixing a thing. So I had to prepare food for 25 people in a kitchen with no sink or running water. On top of that my only help didn't show up. Somehow it all came together perfectly, and we ended up with plenty of food for everyone who came. On top of that I set up a time to TAKE OUT MY BOSSES BOAT next week. This is a bigger deal than it sounds. I take it out once for a few hours and prove that I can drive it- and it's mine for the taking whenever I feel like it. You should probably start kissing my ass very soon. Just saying.

Enough of that for now. I missed my blog. Probably more than someone should miss something that's on the internet (other than internet boyfriends... swoon!)

So, because I NEED to eat a root beer float sometime within the very, very near future- here's something that can explain itself. There is no recipe, and no guidelines. If you want to do this- you just need to do it. My general technique is to do what I think sounds good. I almost never follow recipes. No joke. They're too hindering. Just make sure that you take the seeds out of your peppers, and if you don't like something- then don't use it in your cooking. Easy.

Goat Cheese Stuffed Jalapenos with Prosciutto, Herbed Potatoes, Seared Scallops, and Deviled Eggs- A Meal Guide In Poorly Lit Photographs:

I got rid of the picture that had deviled eggs in it. Those little beasts are ugly. Oh, and if you're going "OMG RENAI YOU ATE MEAT!!!?!?!?!", then you need to chilllllllll, and probably have a sit-down convo with me about some stuffs.

Rooooooootbeeeeeeer floattttttttt.

Oh yeah, and I chopped my hair off! My head feels so good.

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