Why eat food when you can wear it: My avocado facial

I am a frequent reader of xojane.com. I was a HUGE fan of Jane Magazine back in the day. I don’t read many “woman’s magazines” but I always loved Jane. Since Jane is no longer I have become an avid reader of xojane.com. It’s not the same as Jane but I read it daily. I still don’t read “woman’s magazines”. I can’t stand Elle or Cosmo. I refuse to read them. I’m not sorry that I’m not sorry. I still read Vogue though but that doesn’t count because I’ve never seen an article in Vogue titled “101 ways to change  your man” (Seriously women WHYYYYY are you consuming that crap).

Anyways, back to the main point. Yesterday while I was perusing xojane I ran across this article about doing an avocado facial. Pat Cleveland does it and I want to too!

Here’s the deal: I love avocado but I have a thing about day old avocado. It starts to get brown no matter how I wrap it and then the magic is gone. Anyways, I have an avocado and my last law school final on Wednesday. Obviously after 1 hour of intense studying I was looking for something else to do besides study. Clearly the time had come for me to schemer my face with avocado.

Per the articles suggestion I took 1/2 an avocado which I wasn’t planning on eating and smudged it around in a bowl until it was it was mashed down a bit. Then I applied it to my face liberally.

I was going to study more while waiting for it to dry, see the Criminal Procedure Examples and Explanations in the back ground.

Instead I took photos of myself with avocado on face and tweeted about it.

After a while the avocado started to tighten like the article advised. I went and washed it off- in the kitchen for the record.

After I inspected my face in the mirror and applied a layer of bb cream. I’ve been obsessed with bb cream since February. BB Cream is part moisturizer, acne cream, with SPF and anti aging crap. It’s also tinted and I’ve been wearing it in lieu of foundation for a while now. I’ve seen an improvement in my skin over the long term and instantly when I apply it. In fact, when my Mom was recently in LA she called out how amazing my skin looked and I was only wearing bb cream. Anyways. My point is that bb cream is awesome and you should buy it immediately. I use Garnier, light/medium shade, and its available at CVS in the skincare aisle. I wasn’t wearing any other makeup because I was feeling lazy.

I have to say, there will be more avocado facials at my apartment. I was quite pleased with the results:

And again, instead of reading I took photos.

I would say that my skin feels softer, looks cleaner and had more of a glow to it.

Yay avocado facials!

My last day of school was last Tuesday and I have my FINAL law school final on Wednesday. Can you stand the excitement? I will for sure be doing an avocado facial the morning before graduation (which is May 11th!) At some point I will blog a real meal and not just about fruit I apply to my face.

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Bacon, Leek and Scallion Pizza inspired by Pizzeria Mozza

It’s a well known fact: I love pizza. While some have strong Chicago vs. New York opinions, I will pretty much enjoy any pizza as long as it’s well made. OK, that is a bit of a lie. Chicago pizza is boss. If you have a good, crispy yet thick crust and the right sauce and inspired cheese and delicious toppings Chicago pizza is the best. I don’t want to hear your arguments. It’s like my feeling on equal marriage, access to birth control and dirty gin martinis: you will never change my mind.

LA pizza is a bit of a disappointment. I really enjoy the pizza at Masa in Echo Park. Probably because the owner of the restaurant is from Chicago and he and I have had a very intense discussion of Walker Brothers Pancake House. I also hear 800 degrees in Westwood is awesome (of course, opening right before I graduate) and I plan to hit it up over finals. However my favorite pizza place in LA is probably Mozza. I blogged it before but the waiter told me to “put away my camera” so I don’t really photograph my food there anymore.

HOWEVER, I was back at Mozza with my mom during spring break. We sat at the counter overlooking the pizza oven and was able to watch all the pies being made. The recipes are available from the Mozza cookbook so I don’t feel that bad blogging it. Obviously we jumped at the opportunity to order the Bacon, Leek and scallion pizza. I watched them make the pie and then I diligently attempted to recreate it. While not a total match I think I did a pretty good job.

Ingredients

Pizza dough (if you have the Mozza cookbook you can make Nancy Silverton’s dough. I used whole foods dough)

4 slices of bacon

Goat cheese

1 leek

3 scallions

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 tablespoon of butter

Instructions

Pre heat the oven to 425. I let the dough sit out for 10 minutes to warm up and loosen. Then I used flour to spread it out and brushed the sides with extra virgin olive oil. I set it aside.

Then I took a pan and over low heat melted the butter. I also sliced the leek. The leek that I bought was legitimately longer than my arm. Fact: the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market is awesome. Please note my attempt to document the size of the leek below. I sautéed the leek over low heat until cooked though. Then I put them down on the dough as a base.

Then I sliced the scallions at an angle and scattered them over the leeks. I crumbled the goat cheese loosely over the top of the pie (as you can see, with space in between the cheese). I scatted sea salt and pepper over the top of the pie.

Finally I topped raw bacon on top of the pizza and popped it in the oven for about 10 minutes, until the crust is crispy.

Delicious! My only qualm or thing I would improve in the future is that the goat cheese at Mozza is more spreadable, clearly higher quality than whatever Trader Joe’s has to offer cheap and is used on the base AND on top of the pizza. Otherwise, this was a great pizza. Pizza is my go-to easy dinner and I plan to make this again. I especially loved how I could just throw the bacon on raw and it cooked all the way though by the time my pizza was done cooking. Highly recommended!

In other news!

  • Today was my last day of school ever! I started this blog at a time when I felt law school would last forever. It’s amazing to me that it’s all over. It is very anti-climactic in a weird way. I have one exam and some clinical program edits to make and then it’s done forever. I have more thoughts which I may or may not blog here later depending on their content.
  • I started a second blog. Basically I wanted to have a home for my political, race, gender, and popular culture. It will be progressive and critical, you have been warned. I’ve recently really wanted an outlet for those thoughts a little deeper than twitter and LCC didn’t seem like the right place.

Plan Check

I’ve made a really obvious recent discovery: The LA Times website has an entire section devoted to food on the Westside! How did I not figure this out sooner? Obviously, the second I figured out that this section of the site existed I read all the entries that have been posted in the past year.

In one of the more recent entries there was a description of Plan Check, a new gastropub in the Sawtelle area in Los Angeles. For those not familiar, Sawtelle is basically referred to as Little Osaka. The area is near the 405 and boasts tons of delicious restaurants featuring Asian food, specifically lots of Japanese food. There are two Japanese grocery stores and shops. I have come here in the past for noodles, sushi, and boba tea.

Plan Check popped up on some of the twitter feeds of foodies in LA I respect so it obviously shot to the top of my “must try” list. Obviously I enlisted my friend Kelly to check it out with me. She was in the second she heard that the former executive chef from Umami Burger was behind this bar.

Kelly and I went early on a Wednesday and had no issues getting in. We immediately plopped down in a booth and interrogated the drink menu. I decided on a Little Osaka Sour, which is a whiskey sour with sake!

I’ve probably been ruined by living in cities but $9 doesn’t seem that bad for a special cocktail. This drink was similar to a traditional whiskey sour and it was strong! I got my $9 worth.

Kelly had this one night only drink that I forgot the name of but it was pretty.

Kelly is more or less my dining soul mate. We like all the same things and we both like to split our dishes to maximize the food we get to try.

We started with the beet salad with whipped goat cheese, spinach and balsamic vinegar because, you know, whipped goat cheese.

Whipped goat cheese is the food of the gods. I highly recommend this dish. It reminded me of summer and it was light. Plus did I mention the whipped goat cheese? Yep. Delicious way to start the meal.

Kelly and I wanted to try one of the burgers and one of the entrees. I am not a huge fan of eggs but I took a chance and ordered the Chef’s Favorite burger. The burger is cheese two ways, bacon two ways, ketchup leather, sunny fried egg, hot sauce. Behold!

I feel like that parmesan crisp on top is a dead giveaway from Umami. This was delicious! I was quite pleased. It wasn’t overly eggy or hot saucey. It was super baconey and cheesy. These aren’t words but don’t worry about it. I would order this again. Once we cut into the egg the yoke went everywhere which I really liked. I would order this again.

We also tried the fried chicken.

Crispy skin, gravy and yams. This was also quite good. The skin was crispy and the meat was very moist. Note that when you order the fried chicken there is also a fried chicken sandwich which I want to try when I go back.

I gleaned from yelp that the fries aren’t that great but the veggie chips are delicious so that’s what we ordered as a side. They came with guac and were delicious. Perfect size for sharing.

For dessert there was only one thing we wanted to try: house made donuts.

I was overcome with excitement when they came out to the table and I ate them before I got a picture. Whoops.

Cinnamon sugar deliciousness.

I would totally come back to Plan Check. It’s near where I live, has great drinks and enough menu options that I want to have again, or try for the first time. I didn’t have one but there is a great local beer list for those who want beer and there are several other cocktails I still want to try. Definitely will be making a return trip to Plan Check!

In other news: I have a week and a half left of law school class. Who let that happen?! I also was a beast on my 10 mile run yesterday finishing it in an hour and 33 mins. The last time I ran ten miles nearly that quickly was in the Rock n Roll San Diego 1/2. Not sure I’ll be able to bust my PR in Pasadena next month but fingers crossed. These training times bode well.

Penne with Winter Greens, Potato and Cheese

One of my favorite gifts from last Christmas was the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market Cook Book. As I’ve blogged, I hit up the SaMoFM weekly so this book was perfect for me. Not only does the book give a brief recap of how the market came to be. Then the book launches into recipes with ingredients you can purchase at the market and notes which season the recipes are for. That is probably my favorite feature of the book. I like to try to eat seasonally. For starters, it’s less expensive and I also love marking the changes in season based on what I eat.

These last few weeks the spring food has been coming in. That means fava beans and asparagus! I’ll try and contain myself.

Anyways, with spring coming in I decided to make one of my favorite winter recipes one last time for the season. This recipe has it all: potatoes, pasta and cheese. All of my favorites!

This recipe is quick and a good way to incorporate a lot of greens. I’ll be totally honest. I’m kinda like a child in that I want my green covered in cheese. What can you do? At least I’m eating them.

Penne with Winter Green, Potatoes, and Cheese

Ingredients

1/2 red onion, chopped

1/8 cup olive oil

1 bunch winter greens (swiss chard, kale or the like- I just threw in spinach this time because it’s all I had)

1 glove of garlic, chopped

1/4 lb brown penne pasta

1/2 lb waxy potatoes

1/8 lb gouda cheese

Sea salt and pepper

Instructions

Bring pot of salted water to a boil.

Chop your onion and garlic. In a large skillet heat the olive oil to medium heat. Add the onions and sauté over medium heat until translucent.

Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 min. While the onions are cooking, wash the greens and roughly chop them.

Add the greens and some salt and pepper to the onions and garlic. Stir in.

Reduce heat to low and let the greens cook until they are tender, about 10 mins. Add water as needed.

Meanwhile, the water in the pot will be boiling. Add the pasta and potatoes. I like to chop the potatoes in half before I cook them. Cook until the pasta is al dente and the potato has been cooked through. Drain the pasta and retain 1 cup of pasta water.

Incorporate the pasta and potato into the greens mix and grate on the cheese. Turn off the heat and mix until the cheese is melted.

And serve!

This is delicious and one of my winter main stays. I’ll miss it over the summer although maybe I can recreate it for summer somehow. There isn’t a sauce but who needs sauce when you have so much cheese! As I mentioned above I like this because it’s a good way to sneak in a bunch of greens into my diet.

I have an awesome restaurant review coming up later this week from an LA hot spot that I checked out last week! Get pumped!

 

The last spring break ever.

Hello everyone!

There was been some LCC radio silence recently but I have a fantastic reason, last week was my last spring break ever! I cannot believe that this is the last break I am going to have as a student. Graduation is looming and I really wanted to have a full week of relaxation and that’s exactly what I got!

Obviously, my mother came to LA to help me celebrate. We did our usual thing: shopping, starbucks drinking, going on long walks, eating, and (attempting) decorating.

I took the week as a FULL week off. I didn’t work out at all. I didn’t check my school email. I tried to scale back social media (successful on facebook, unsuccessful on twitter and google+ – hey a girl can try). I didn’t do any homework while my mom was here. I went to bed early and got a ton of sleep. I meal planned for after she left and took care of little things that fell by the wayside in March. It was glorious!

I didn’t blog and I didn’t take very many photos but I will share a bit of the adventures that we had (I have two recipes that are ready to go and a restaurant review pending tomorrow night, stay tuned!)

We ate at all my favorite places and some new places as well! This included: Susie Cakes, Vanilla Bake Shop, Tavern, Yummy Cup Cakes, Clementine, Father’s Office, Pizzaria Mozza, Pecorino, Huckleberry, Real Food Daily, Primativo, Farm Shop, Fig and Hungry Cat. Whew! It was a fantastic and delicious week.

Some photo highlights:

Caramel copetta with marshmallow sauce & Spanish peanuts at Mozza. Delicious! I recreated the pizza I ordered there and it will be on the blog soon!


Latte from Café Luxxe in the Brentwood Farmer’s Market.

My mom and I went on a walking tour of the secret stairs in LA. There is a book that has walking tours to follow all over the city but most of them are on the east side. We did one in Silver Lake that was mostly homes and such and one in the old Hollywoodland neighborhood (where the above photo was taken). Many old film stars lived there such as Charlie Chaplin and my Grammy’s favorite Jeanette McDonald lived. I snapped this shot of her old house JUST for her:

Nice pad Jeanette.

We also had a great view of the Hollywood sign and found a community of nuns who live in silent repose but sell pumpkin bread (random, I know).

Hey Hollywood.

Dinner at Hungry Cat was amazing! We had great service and the food was delicious. We had a smoked salmon with a salad with a Greek spin on it to start and I had a traditional New England lobster roll and it was hands down the best one I ever had. The bun was grilled and buttery, the lobster was fresh and had the perfect amount of mayonnaise and seasonings. I also had their fries with it which was great. We ended with a cheese, honey and almond plate with grilled bread. Delicious! I highly recommend. The cocktail I had was good too. It ended up being happy hour price but it would be worth the full price. It was called a Mia Farrow and had organic vodka (organic vodka confuses me but I won’t fight with it), a rosemary simple syrup and muddled orange and citrus. So good I had two!

My mom and I happened into a liquor store and found this mini sized bottle of St Germain! A must buy obviously. I used it to mix one of my favorite cocktails: st. germain, gin and tonic.

Treats at Tavern. No explanation necessary.

We also went to the Norton Simon museam in Pasadena. I ran by here recently. They have a nice selection of art and beautiful gardens. It was nice to mix it up with an art museam. I love impressionist art through early 20th century art (can I please go live in Midnight in Paris?) and they had some nice ones like this Monet:

Overall, it was a fantastic week! I’m sad that I don’t have any more spring breaks left but it was nice to have a quiet week with my mom especially with all the exciting events coming up in the next month. I’m excited to see what the next few months hold.