Food Trucks

Something unique to LA are the sheer number of food trucks that roam the streets. Basically a food mobile will pull over in any old location and start vending fabulous goodness.

Chrissy and I walked home from school today and ran into the Korean Spicy BBQ Taco Truck. I got a Pork BBQ taco for under $3 and it was ah-mazing. It had more of a tanginess than a spiciness. It was delicious and the tortilla was also really good. Great after school snack.

With that being said, I have been trying to eat healthy since I’ve moved to LA. It’s been going well, but slowly, which is ok. I think maintaining healthy habits over time is better then just losing a ton of weight quickly. I started running three times a week for the past two weeks. I go 2.5 miles on hills each time (because, in LA we can run outside in January!) I also started Carolyn’s ab routine twice a week. Although, the past few days I have been so hungry! I ate an entire personal pizza last night (normally I save 1/2 for lunch the next day). Tonight I had a salad and it was really good. The taco was a bit of a slip, but I am reasserting my commitment to eating healthy here and now.

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A beautiful prison… no?

Sorry for the lacking of updates but I have updates ready to roll! Just need to write about it.Part of the reason is that I went out for the most amazing burger of my life at Father’s Office a few days ago, but it took up two hours of my night, which meant that the rest of the night was sadly not devoted to blogging.

This is what I have been up to for the past few days… memoing, summer job searching, reading, trying to learn easements, cite checking to get onto journals and the like. Its been busy but a lot less stressful than I was a few weeks ago.

Today I had lunch at the exclusive faculty lounge at UCLA. The team went with Prof. Civ Pro. I had “California Chicken”. Any food can have the word “California” in front of it, so long as the food contains avocado. It also had cheese and tomato and was delicious. I thought about taking a picture but I didn’t want to look crazy in front of a professor.

I watched the State of the Union last night while eating (more) soup! I might post a rely later. Just wanted to say that I loved Obama attacking the recent Supreme Court decision.

Thought of the day: Skim Brie is SO not the same as regular brie. I won’t be buying it again.

Anxiety = Bagels

No new news to report. Still working my way through the left over soup. I froze some for the purpose of eating when I’m too lazy to cook at a later date, but I still have more left overs.

nom nom nom

My new obsession this week is bagel chips. SO GOOD! When I diet or “eat healthy” as I have been doing for the past few months, I traditionally give up bagels. It is impossible for me to eat one without chive and onion cream cheese and one bagel generally leads to another. In the past I generally give up bagels and then when something makes me mildly anxious I will revert back to my old ways… not so this time.

For the past few weeks I have had this feeling like my heart is beating in the throat. Carolyn correctly diagnosed me with anxiety. There is a lot going on. I’ve been emailing jobs like a mad women, but I have been feeling less anxious for the last few days dispite there being no developments. I’m not really sure why this is but I’m not complaining. Maybe its because I’m allowing myself bagel chips. Or maybe its because I’m starting to really feel that I have two choices 1) stress about getting and keeping a job for the rest of my working career (the next 40 years or so) or 2) I can relax and know that there is nearly a 100% chance that I will have a job this summer, next summer and then various jobs for the rest of my life. And none of them will be in the food service industry.

Saturday Night Dinner Party

The beginning of an amazing meal

At the request of the family I hosted a dinner on Saturday Night. Kal and Chrissy were stuck all day at Moot Court so I spent the afternoon cooking to celebrate the end of their suffering. When having people over you can always depend on the Barefoot Contessa. I decided to make her cheddar corn chowder.

Before everyone came over I measured out all the ingredients. That meant cutting up 6 cups of yellow onions. Yes, 6 cups. I was on the phone with Carolyn practically crying because of the smell. I also measured out the seasonings, cut up bacon, chopped potatoes, measured cream and grated cheese. It was great because when everyone came over all I had to do was start cooking. The other great thing about this soup is that it only takes 45 mins once everything is prepped. It was done quickly and gave everyone enough time to have a glass of wine before dinner.

the onions, after they made my eyes water

First I cooked the bacon in the olive oil until crispy. Once it was done cooking I removed the bacon from the pot and kept the grease in. Then I added all the onions to the pot and the butter.

BACON!

Once the onions were translucent I put in flour, and the seasonings. I stirred for three mins. Then I added the chicken stock and potatoes. Oddly, Trader Joe’s did not have chicken stock. I had to go to whole foods for 12 cups of chicken stock.

onions and butter

tons of chicken stock

After the chicken stock was brought to a boil I reduced the heat and let it simmer for 15 mins before adding the frozen corn. I choose to use frozen corn 1) because I didn’t want to deal with removing corn from the cob and 2) because is there really any good corn in January? Even in California I decided it was better to use frozen.

corn chowder

After adding the corn I put in the cheese and the half and half and topped it off with more salt and pepper.

Bacon topping

My guests were able to use the bacon as a topping.

Overall, the meal was a hit. Eric made this amazing beef that he marinated, seared and baked. Then he made a tomato, onion, mushroom, and cucumber (?) topping. It was so good!

For desert I made cookies. I was able to make the dough earlier in the day. I used a basic cookie recipe off the back of the chocolate chip bag but I stepped it up by browning the butter and adding Saigon Cinnamon. Adding cinnamon to the cookie gives it a something extra special. I believe one of my guests said, “I am so never eating store bought again”. Thanks to Carolyn for the cinnamon and browned butter idea!

Then we watched “The O.C.” and marveled at Sandy Cohen’s eyebrows. We also watched “The Pregnancy Pact” and “Jersey Shore”. Clearly a stellar night.

Try it for yourself:

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/cheddar-corn-chowder-recipe/index.html

Eric's Brithday

This was a very exciting weekend, which is why there hasn’t been a post for several days. On Thursday, it was Eric’s birthday. The cake did end up being a surprise thanks to a lie about the gynecologist. We just got one from Ralph’s. It was Chrissy’s idea for the cake to be for “Enrique”.

We were the first people to arrive. I brought my own drink to the pre game. I normally do this for several reasons. First, I can make what ever I want. Yes, I’m that girl rolling into pre game turning my noise up to the lemon vodka and drinking a home made dirty martini. Plus, then I have one drink I like and I can nurse it for a while. This week I made the cocktail that Carolyn thought of when she visited (gin, lemon-cello, topped off with sparkling wine). It was fabulous.

Then we also got to try a cake that Eric brought back from his brother’s wedding. Apparently its tradition to give them as favors. It was really good, red bean with some type of nut. So good.

Then we went to the Parlor, but not before almost getting shutdown by the UCPD. Yes, because we are the party. Actually, Section 8 is “the party” with their public drunkenness, vandalism, throwing shot glasses off the balcony. Parlor was ok. It’s like a sports bar type place. We weren’t there long, but it was a good night.

Kal, Chrissy, Me, Eric, Haylee

Eric’s Brithday

This was a very exciting weekend, which is why there hasn’t been a post for several days. On Thursday, it was Eric’s birthday. The cake did end up being a surprise thanks to a lie about the gynecologist. We just got one from Ralph’s. It was Chrissy’s idea for the cake to be for “Enrique”.

We were the first people to arrive. I brought my own drink to the pre game. I normally do this for several reasons. First, I can make what ever I want. Yes, I’m that girl rolling into pre game turning my noise up to the lemon vodka and drinking a home made dirty martini. Plus, then I have one drink I like and I can nurse it for a while. This week I made the cocktail that Carolyn thought of when she visited (gin, lemon-cello, topped off with sparkling wine). It was fabulous.

Then we also got to try a cake that Eric brought back from his brother’s wedding. Apparently its tradition to give them as favors. It was really good, red bean with some type of nut. So good.

Then we went to the Parlor, but not before almost getting shutdown by the UCPD. Yes, because we are the party. Actually, Section 8 is “the party” with their public drunkenness, vandalism, throwing shot glasses off the balcony. Parlor was ok. It’s like a sports bar type place. We weren’t there long, but it was a good night.

Kal, Chrissy, Me, Eric, Haylee

Brithday Week…

There was a lack of posting yesterday, and I am afraid to say, a lame post today, due to Birthday Week. Molly, Josh, and Eric have back to back to back birthdays!

Yesterday I went to see Josh perform at the acoustic coffee house on campus. First, UCLA has the most amazing dorms. Like, I didn’t know that there were dorms this nice. Also, tons of talented musicians! Of course that includes Josh. He is so talented and he writes all his own songs. I admire that because I would be so petrified to write something that other people would hear. The other acts were good too, but Josh was clearly the best. It was a great night and got me to relax after a crazy day with classes.

Tonight is Eric’s birthday. We are going to pre game (with surprise cake, man I hope he doesn’t read this). The we are going to Bar Review. Bar review is a law school institution where students go to a different bar each Thursday. It should be fun cause I haven’t gone to bar review since last semester. Maybe there will be a review here later. In any case, we are headed to Parlor on Wilshire in Santa Monica. Chrissy and I are trying to find a nice girl for our friend Kal. He’s not a player but sometimes people think he is, but he’s not.

I am also wondering how dressed up I should get… it’s basically a monsoon outside (so bizarre for LA). There is thunder and lightning and winds. It reminds me of Sr. Pub Crawl when Carolyn and I walked in the rain to Boylston and declared that we would never return to McFadden’s. We also were sung to by a drunk Red Sox Fan. Ah, the old days.

Tomorrow is Molly’s birthday party which means westsider’s travel to the east side. I am looking forward to it. Molly is an awesome foodie/social justice person and I really like the eastside.

So that is why there hasn’t been any cooking. I will rectify that this weekend. I just had some artichoke ravioli  and I made it without nuts to combat my heartburn. I think it worked! Feeling good!

Research Madness…

As you can all see, memo madness is setting in again. This one is about excessive force in an arrest of a UCLA student at a protest. He is anti Marlyn Manson because his music is anti christian.

Since the memo madness is setting in that means that the Pandora station is set to the Temptation. Every time “Second that Emotion”comes on I want to sing “Don’t file a Second Motion”. Thanks prof civ pro!

Anyway, Since this is a busy work night, although aren’t they all?, I am making myself a salad which is quick. I ran out of Brie which is upsetting. I might make another mini pizza tonight since it takes no time and have it for lunch tomorrow. Maybe make the other law students envious? Also, observation: my heart burn flares up when I have nuts (almonds, walnuts, pecans etc). Beginning to think that there is something to this. We will see. It was really bad during Civ Pro today. Might have to tweak my mid afternoon snack a bit.

Also, watching very sadly the election returns from Massachusetts. I had the opportunity to see Martha Coakley several times last spring when I worked at the Massachusetts State House. She is an incredible, well spoken women (not to mention, she is a fierce dresser). I am wondering what went wrong. I don’t think its about health care or about Obama, which many national pundits point to. For one thing, Massachusetts already has health care for all its citizens.  I think it probably has more to do with backlash against state democrats, which is sad. At least when I was in the state people were becoming very opposed to Deval Patrick and there were several situations with members of the state senate or house leaving amidst public scrutiny resulting from questionable ethics. These situations slowed down the pace of the legislature. Not to mention that Gov. Patrick seemed to be trying to vie for public favor by fighting with the legislators. I get the feeling that the result in Brown v. Coakley is more local backlash to MA Democrats than many national figures are making it. We have to remember: Obama is not a magic potion. He cannot just show up and make things happen. Him not “winning it” for her doesn’t reflect on him. I think it reflects more on the way her campaign was managed and the fact that Dems tend to take victory over Republicans in Massachusetts for granted.

With all this being said, I’m no expect but I have been around Massachusetts and at least spent 20 hrs per week for a semester in the State House. I am mostly sad that we aren’t getting another women in the Senate. The gender and race disparities in our government are very disheartening to me. If this topic interests you, you might also like this article from Politico http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0110/31680.html.

Finally, Scott Brown’s politics are much more conservative than what I think most MA residents tend to favor. As Keith Olbermann put it: “In Scott Brown we have an irresponsible, homophobic, racist, reactionary, ex-nude model, tea-bagging supporter of violence against women and against politicians with whom he disagrees.”

Golden Globes 2010

After scouring the web for photos and watching all the coverage on E! I present my best and worst dressed. I cannot wait to watch Joan Rivers tonight. I grew up on Joan and Melissa on the red carpet. Such a treat that shes back. Also I find Ryan Seacrest to be kind of a perv. I wish they would just give the pre show to Giulianna. All of this is in no particular order.

Best Dressed: Women

Emily Blunt (best accessory, the adorable John Krasinski)

Toni Collette

Anna Paquin (Sidenote: apparently she just got her drivers license! Makes me like her more since we both don’t drive!)

Best Dressed: Men

Male style is simple and its hard for it to go wrong. So many men looked great. I love a classic tux. See George Clooney, John Krasinski, and Alex Skarsgard. Also Joseph Gorden Levitt: so SO CUTE. Loved (500) Days of Summer and I just want to cuddle him.

But when it goes bad… man does it go bad…

Worst Dressed: MenMickey Rourke (I cannot say that I am surprised… the hat? the shoes? the rent a date? the snake skin lapel?)


Also, James Cameron’s Hair (too OLD for your hair to be that long!)


Worst Dressed:Women

Julianne Moore – Horrible fit, awful color. Is this a funeral? I like her earring and I won’t mention her hair since it was probably wet.


Tina Fey (It kills me because I love her so much, but the short dress? She was so great last Golden Globes in the class black. Have to say that I was very let down)

Diane Kruger (just no. Also, is Joshua Jackson’s crotch wet or just poorly fit?)

The Awards:

I thought the show was really good this year, at least as far as award shows go. Mo’Nique’s acceptance speech was amazing. I was almost in tears. I also loved Drew Berrymore’s speech and I was so thrilled she and Grey Gardens were recognized. It was one of my favorite things last year and I was so happy they won. I was also very pleased that Glee won for best comedy along with Meryl Streep for best actress in the comedy film.

I have not seen The Blind Side, but I have a hard time seeing Sandra Bullock as best actress when she was up against who she was up against. Although I haven’t seen it so no comment. I did think that George Clooney and Up In the Air were robbed. I know that Avatar was a huge achievement but I thought that overall, Up In the Air was an amazing and beautiful movie. Hopefully the same mistake won’t be made at the Oscars. Of course, this is the time when I curse out the Academy for having 10 best pic noms this year.