Monthly Archives: January 2011

Asian Meatballs

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Basil Chicken Meatballs with Ponzu Sauce

“The sweet and sour Asian condiments in the meatballs add tangy, spicy, fresh flavors without high-fat ingredients” – Cooking Light

These Basil Chicken Meatballs with Ponzu Sauce were featured in the Jan/Feb 2011 Cooking Light magazine. They were not only tasty, but easy to boot. I wouldn’t change anything about the recipe [following]. I used ground turkey because it was on sale, and I left out the Mirin for the ponzu sauce. Also they gave me the perfect opportunity to use and take pictures of the cute new measuring bowls and spoons I got for Christmas. Thanks Mom!

Meatballs:

2/3 cup panko breadcrumbs

1/3 flaked sweetened coconut

1/4 cup chopped green onions

1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

2 tbsp sweet chili sauce

2 tsp minced garlic

1 ½ tsp fish sauce

1 ½ pounds ground chicken

2 large egg whites, lightly beaten

cooking spray

Sauce:

¼ cup lower-sodium soy sauce

2 tbsp small basil leaves

1 tbsp chopped green onions

2 tbsp fresh orange juice

1 tbsp lemon juice

1½ tsp water

1½ tsp mirin

Dash of crushed red pepper

Directions:

[1] Preheat oven to 425º. [2] Combine first 9 ingredients, and shape into 1 ½ inch meatballs. [3] Heat skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Brown meatballs on all sides. [4] Place browned meatballs on baking sheet. Bake at 425° for 7 minutes or until done. [5] To prepare the sauce, combine soy sauce, basil leaves, green onions, juices, 1½ teaspoon water, mirin, and red pepper in a small bowl. [6] Garnish with basil leaves and additional chopped green onions, if desired. [7] Serve and enjoy!

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Laundry Fun

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Okay. Okay! Now I know laundry is never fun, but since moving into my new duplex I have found a whole new appreciation for doing laundry. It all started with me refusing to buy a washer and dryer.  If you had told me previously I would come to make such a decision, I would have told you that you were crazy! So here it is: The story of how the Laundromat makes me a better person.

My mother was visiting from Raleigh, NC to help me get moved into my new home. I decided to drag her to my first expedition to the laundromat. She of course, being the supportive team player she is, came with me. I might add, not without saying, “You sure you don’t want to just buy a washer and dryer?”, but who’s mother would feel comfortable with them washing there “delicates” in public. So we get to the laundromat and there is only ONE women there, and she was leaving. Oh no, what if i needed help! We didn’t know what to do or where to begin on this adventure. So I grabbed her on her way out and said in the most desperate voice, “Mam, I have never used a laundromat before. Do you mind telling me what machines you used?”. Now this women could have just blown us off with a quick, short, semi-informative answer, but she gave me the most awesome tutorial of this laundromat. Telling me what to use what not to use, how much money to put in the dryers so I wouldn’t waist my money. She was like an angle sent to guide me through washing my clothes. And no lie, what she told me is what I have done. I haven’t strayed from her instruction once. Its like that women wrote the bible on doing your laundry at Thatch Coin Laundry. So thanks Laundromat Angle if you’re reading, which I’m 100% sure you’re not.

Charlie on Sanford Lawn!

My mom and I survived that day flawlessly. My mind was made up. I was not going to buy a wash and dryer, and here I am 5 months later still loving the laundromat.  Now I tell everyone it makes me a better person. Which it does! Here are some of the ways how. [1] Reduce, reuse, recycle: It makes you want to reduce the amount of laundry you have. For instance, I used to wear socks to work, bring socks for the gym, and then put different socks on after the gym. Now I combine the socks to work and socks for the gym. thats an average of 6 pairs of socks saved during the week. I also recycle t-shirts worn out and about into gym t-shirts. [2] Folding your clothes the second they are out of the dryer. How many times have you forgot you dried a load of laundry and had to turn the dryer on again to un-wrinkle the clothes? Or put a dry load into a laundry basket without folding them, until you have a Mt. St. Helens of wrinkled unfolded laundry to get organized? I cant do that I have no dryer to un-wrinkle with, and I don’t have to explain to anyone the downside of ironing! [3]  When you use the laundromat you have to be super organized with separating your clothes before you get there. This leads to better organization of your dirty clothes in the first place. [4] YOU CAN DO MULTIPLE LOADS OF LAUNDRY IN ONE, YES ONE, HOUR!! Need I say more? [5] Makes me the queen of multitasking. You can read stuff for work/school, take your dog to play fetch on Sanford Lawn, meet friends for coffee/lunch, run small errands, the list of things I have found to do during laundry hour is endless.

Only down side is having to hand wash your “delicates”. The laundromat machines don’t have a gentle cycle or a hand wash setting. So this week its time to wash all my bras in the tub. Which is what inspired me to write this post to day. Bra bubble bath anyone? I think I will reward myself for doing all this Laundry Fun by taking myself a bubble bath later.

The bra bubble bath!

Whirling Dervish

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Once upon a time, I was a history major. I loved, and still love, all things culturally historic. I took a Middle Eastern history class where we watched a video on Persian Dervishes. These monks are known as the Whirling Dervishes. They perform a physical active meditation in which they dance by whirling around in repetitive circles. I can remember the feeling of irony hitting me, as I watched and learned about this whirling to reach a meditative state. It seemed crazy, and unimportant I’m sure, to everyone around me, but I understood.

As a young girl one of my most vivid memories was when my grandfather passed away. I was bought a beautiful dress: Green with hot pink roses all over it. The best part of the dress was the skirt that would allow me to make a big beautiful spin. Like most little girls, one of the requirements of an awesome outfit was the ability to twirl in circles over and over again until you couldn’t twirl anymore, or your mother told you to stop (Debby downer). Anyway, I cry easily, and when I was little in order to teleport into my own little world I would just spin in circles.  I remember being very upset about my grandfather passing. The situation being too substantial for my tender mind to grasp launched me into a spin. The image of my dark green skirt with pink roses spinning around with me pops into my head every once in a while, because I am a non-pertain, non-Islamic Whirling Dervish.  I find the ability to embrace all life with love, and reach a meditative state while whirling through my life like a tornado.

Like the dervish, the whirling nature of my life (my dance if you will) is not intended as entertainment; however it has become an attraction for all my friends and family. This is my blog about all things me. There is no strict theme to this blog, just inspiration from my ever changing life.