Wednesday, December 29, 2010

What's With Me And Donuts?

It's typically not my pastry of choice (unless it's a bear claw, gimme one of those any day of the week!)....but for some reason on this little bloggy I just love them. HOWEVER, I cannot take credit for this post. Last summer, my mom and sister went to New Orleans for a mission trip. My mom fell in the Mississippi River and my little sister ate her body weight in craw fish. Oh, and they helped restore houses for Katrina victims. Anywho, my mom picked up Cafe Du Monde Beignet mix to make back when she got home because they are just so darn good. Christmas morning my mom whipped out her wok (I'm telling you, screw frying pans for frying) and her rolling pin and got down and dirty with some beignets. I helped...and by helped I mean took pictures and ate them.

So here we go:

You'll need a box of beignet mix found here and some water. UM how easy is that?

Then you roll it out so it's reeeeeal skinny.

Then you wok 'em until they're pretty and golden.

Then you roll 'em around in powdered sugar and...

Fancy French donuts! Put on a beret and draw yourself a skinny moustache and you'll be Paris-ready in no time. Oui!

These kind of taste like Indian fry bread, so I decided to put honey all over one before it was attacked by powdered sugar and THAT my friends, was a tasty treat. Unfortunately my bff Emma (she's part human part chocolate lab) was laying at my feet when I did that and I poured honey on her head :/. Sorry, Em!

Merry Christmas/Happy New Year and shiz! That's my Mom, isn't she cute? Yes, that picture is from Christmas Eve, clearly, because I'm wearing a union suit and red lipstick. I do realize that my deer-in-the-headlights-scary-face is not the most flattering, but if you don't like it, than you can just bite me.


Monday, December 20, 2010

Who Needs Gas? According to Socal Gas Company...I Don't!

I tried to find a picture of me looking "angry", but couldn't. Apparently I'm too damn happy! Anywho. I rush out of the office on Friday to catch the gas guy so I could FINALLY cook in my new place. I get to my complex, barrel through the front door and what do I find? A "Sorry We Missed You" notice. UM!!! My appointment wasn't even until 45 minutes later! But in an effort to not complain constantly (after all, it IS Christmas!). I looked up some no-cook recipes to get me through the next couple of days so I'm not ordering Chinese and Dominoes. I would like to fit into my New Years dress.

I would love to not have gas when it's July because these no-cook recipes are delicious when it's roasting out, but seriously? It's POURING out and all I want to do is make soup.

Which one of these should I make tonight? Any of them? All of them? Does anyone have any suggestions? I am capable of using my toaster and crock pot, and my Kitchenaid but I don't think that will get me anywhere.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A Mini Peek.

So, we all know I just moved. Although my kitchen is considerably smaller than my last, I'd like to look on the bright side. The bright side, being the following:

1. There's a breakfast nook attached to it large enough for a table and four chairs.
2. The CUTEST hutch in said nook to showcase my adorable dishes.
3. My building was built in the twenties, and they decided to keep the original ice box in place for added storage. I mean, how stinkin cute is that?

Let's take a tour!

I had to get a little creative for things like my pot holders and measuring spoons because storage is limited so I thought....why not display them!?

I LOVE my spice jars but never had a fun place to put them in my old kitchen. Now they're out for all the world (or me and my kittens) to see! However, take a little advice from me- if you're planning on transferring your spices out of it's original packaging be sure to label it. I didn't, and sometimes I get to play a little game I like to call "Guess the spice"'s not as fun as it sounds!

This is the bottom half of my ice box. The top half isn't as cute and just has pots and pans in it, so let's stick to where the good stuff is!

How cute is this mat? Now, I know what you're thinking. Nothing really matches! I know, I like it that way. I tend to like neutral colors for the rest of my house, but since I adore being in the kitchen so much and it's fun for me, I like to surround myself with bright colors and my very favorite patterns.

This kind of sold me on the place. My mom has always had her "good china" on a bit of a display in the house and I think it's so sweet and perfect. While I don't have anything fancy yet, I really love my bowls, tea cups and vintage champagne glasses and hate that they're stuck behind cabinet doors most of the time. Now whenever I have girlfriends over for dinner (or let's be honest...for wine) they can take a peek at some of the things I love most.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Can Someone Please Pass The Rills?

No, my friends, that is not a typo. I said rills. When I was young, I watched Father Of The Bride Part: 2 alllll the time. There's a part in the movie that Steve Martin takes a sleeping pill right before he's about to conk out, he asks someone to pass the rills. I seemed to think it was the funniest thing I had ever heard, and would forever call them rills after that. I'm sure the story is really not that thrilling, but I like it. Don't judge me. But enough about me, right? Right. Onwards!

Buttery Herb Dinner Rolls Rills:
Recipe from Sunset Magazine

1 cup milk

1 tablespoon active dry yeast

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup butter, softened, plus more for sheets

2 eggs

3 1/2 to 4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading and shaping

Microwave milk (or in my case, use a sauce pan....I say F microwaves!), until warm (90° to 105°) Put in the bowl of a stand mixer. Stir in yeast, salt, and sugar. Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes.

Attach dough hook (I don't have a dough hook, I just had to wing it...and I winged it well! Is that a word? Winged?) and, with mixer on low, stir in butter 1 egg and 3 tablespoons freshly chopped thyme *or whatever herb is your favey! Add flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until a stiff dough forms and pulls away from inside of bowl. Cover with a clean towel or plastic wrap and let sit until doubled in bulk, about 1 1/2 hours. Meanwhile, butter 2 large baking sheets and set aside.

 Punch down dough and turn it onto a floured surface. Knead a few times, adding more flour if necessary to keep dough from sticking. Um, punching the dough is really fun and a great stress reliever! I highly suggest doing it if you have a particularly long work day.

 Divide dough into 24 pieces. Working with 1 piece at a time (keep other pieces covered), roll into a 10-in. rope. Coil rope into a flat spiral or twist into a pretzel shape, pinching ends in place. (Make sure you really pinch those puppies, they kind of don't like to stay) Put shaped rolls on buttered baking sheets. Cover and let sit until doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350°

In a small bowl, beat remaining egg with 2 tbsp. water. Brush rolls with egg wash and bake until brown, about 20 minutes, rotating pans halfway through baking time to ensure even baking. (meh, if you don't do it, they'll survive!) Cool on wire racks. Serve warm or at room temperature.

And there you have it, kittens. You're welcome.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


I really do. Like, a lot. Maybe too much. It's my go-to vegetable for any side. Roasting them, steaming them, I lurve it all.

Boiled brussel sprouts with red currant vinaigrette:


2 lb brussel sprouts

1/4 cup red currant jelly

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Bring large sauce pan to a boil and add sprouts, boil until just tender...about 5 minutes.
You could roast them- but I personally love them boiled this way. I got made fun of for boiling instead of roasting them, but that was prior to anyone trying them. TRUST ME. You'll be hogging this dish like a mother f-er.

Heat the jelly in a small saucepan over low heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Add the red pepper and mustard. Whisking constantly, slowly add the oil. Season with the salt and black pepper.

- I personally brought the jelly to a slight boil before removing it from heat, mostly because I forgot about it (stop judging, I was also making home-made dinner rolls, an entire roast beef and sour cream mashed potatoes AT THE SAME TIME...but it turned out just fine.)

Transfer the brussel sprouts to a serving bowl, drizzle with the jelly vinaigrette, and toss. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Fun fact: this recipe actually called for broccoli rabe instead of brussel sprouts, but when I went to Ralphs they didn't have the fancy broccoli so I went with my staple veg. Red currant jelly is kind of amazing and I feel like isn't used often enough. It needs to be brought into high rotation in my kitchen.

PS: I googled how to spell broccoli at least 5 times because I thought it looked funny spelled that way. Is it just me? Yes? Ok.

If you make this dish every night of the week I don't blame you. D-LISH.

OH: So I realize that this is a cooking blog, HOWEVER, I was thinking of doing a shop my closet. Thoughts? Concerns? Yay? Nay?

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A Little Explanation.

Image via we heart it.

I have 3 posts from meals I made over 3 weeks ago that still need to go up. I haven't cooked in my kitchen in a month. It's not my kitchen anymore. I'll be settling in to (if all goes well) my new kitchen next week. It's smaller, but its mine. A LOT has changed in the past couple of months and I managed to keep my mouth shut to protect everyone else around me then realized that I wasn't protecting myself. I've been in the process of wiping my slate clean and starting over. Trying to keep a smile on my face and remembering that the chapter that has closed is for the best. I am a very lucky girl to have the friends and family that I do. I've never been hugged so much in my life!

So bear with me, send me some positive thoughts if you've got 'em, and I'll be back to my normal shoe-obsessed, sarcastic self in no time. (PS this is the most serious post I will EVER do so don't get used to it).

Here's to a fresh start, a lovely Holiday season surrounded by the people that mean the most to me, and (gulp) learning how to cook for one.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Treats Treats and More Treats!

As I was flipping through the virtual pages of Martha Stewart's Everyday Food website I found this.
Popcorn? Pretzels? Carmel? Almonds? YES. My hands are sticky and I have stuff all over my shirt but I don't even care.

Let's get this party started.


•Nonstick cooking spray

•12 cups plain popped popcorn (from 1/2 cup kernels or 2 microwave packages) I used 2 things of Jiffy Pop. Yeah, you know, the kind that

•4 cups coarsely chopped small salted pretzels (7.5 ounces)

•2 cups sugar

•Coarse salt

•2/3 cup heavy cream

•2 cups miniature marshmallows

In a large bowl, really, the bigger the better, combine pretzels and popcorn.

In a saucepan, bring sugar, a pinch of salt, and 1/2 cup water to a boil.

Be patient with this process, it takes 8-12 minutes and don't try to rush it because it needs time to thicken and become a rich amber color.

Once it's nice and amber-y, add cream and marshmellows. Stir until it is completely blended.

Once it's all ready to go, pour entire mixture over popcorn mixture and toss with a rubber spatula (remember, it's HOT, so you wan't something heat-proof)

If you desire (and I did) add chopped almonds for an extra crunch and texture.

Transfer mixture into a BUTTERED  9 x 12 baking dish. Use your clean little hands or plastic wrap to press into dish.

Make sure to let it cool before cutting into squares. This is important, I like to jump the gun and do things before the recipe says to because I am massively if you're like me, stick it in the fridge! (whoa, that was a serious run-on sentence).

After it's cooled, dump it upsidown onto a cutting board and cut into squares. In my case, the carmel kind of settled into the bottom of the pan, but oh well..they were still delish.

Let's not forget Olive Oil! She wasn't in the mood for kitchen help, but was sure in the mood for some pettins! 


Left: Best friend sleepover. Center: Amanda put plastic wrap in the oven. Good job! Right: My Jude and his new girlfriend Avery. Could you just die?

I promised myself I would blog at least once a week. And all of a sudden it's been almost 10 days. In my own defense, a lot of changes happened in Sarah-land the past week and I'm trying to settle into these changes and with that came emptiness in my dear sweet kitchen. But what did happen was junk-food and slumber parties, and I am totally allowed.
I have an a-mazing post coming up about dinner I'm making Saturday night as well as a tasty treat I made last week. So bare with me my little bloggers.
OH and are you on twitter? Can we be friends? Please? @sarahmahaira , I mean, I talk about the same things on there as I do, shoes and cats. I am so typical.

Monday, November 1, 2010


Yesterday on Twitter a bunch of my girlfriends were talking about how Halloween goes from partying to it being more about kids as you get older. So true. Although I don't have any of my own yet, I decided to borrow a few and go trick or treating with my BFF Jude and some of his school pals.

Reason behind my title? All the kiddies would yell LETS GET MOOOOORE CANDY! After every house we went to. One of Jude's friends, Owen, took a liking to me. We're kind of dating now and its getting serious. He even asked me to hold hands.

We made candy apples before going out and it was kind of a fail. I don't know if I made the carmel too thin but it all kinda sank into the wax paper. Oh well. It was still fun, though!

Candy apple attempt:

My guy helpin' me open the carmel

See? Not so awesome. Boo hoo.

Anyway, I dressed up as a half-assed cat. I didn't wanna dress up but was FORCED by Amanda (jk love you!). Can anyone guess what Amanda was?

And this is my new boyfriend, Owen.
I just wanna make sure no one is jealous of my dragon boyfriend and my spiderman boyfriend. Oh you are? Too bad.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Shoes From The Eyes of My Blackberry.

Everyone is doing their Fall Fashion posts this week which I lurve. I can't justify doing it on a food blog (and we all saw what happened last time I tried to take an outfit shot of myself), so I figured I'd show off some of my favorite shoes. I PROMISE this is my last collage. OK I don't promise, but it's my last one today. Unless you want a kitten collage and if you do I can make like 15. Onwards...

Top Row: leopard oxfords; urban outfitters, riding boots; doc marten, ankle booties; minnetonka
2nd Row: old toms, new toms (silver sparkle), platform oxfords; castaner, floral boots; doc marten
3rd Row: camel oxfords; urban outfitters, high tops; converse, royal blue flats; aldo
4th Row: repeat offender (sorry, i wasn't paying attention), lace up boots; joie, knee high mocs; minnetonka
Last Row: striped tennies; urban outfitters, color block oxfords; urban outfitters, wool cordones; toms. 

I've learned something about myself from this: I really like shoes with laces.

Food Through The Eyes Of My Blackberry.

Top Row: First night cooking in my new kitchen, corn salad, cream puffs, farmers market findings, banana bread, Miami Vice from Mondrian West Hollywood.

2nd Row: Pinkberry smoothie (AMAZING), mini red velvet cupcake, smore roasting with natalie, spice cupcakes, my 25lb bird strapped into my passenger seat for the ride home, dessert with amanda

3rd row: wine with friends, yogurt stop in west hollywood, prep for seared pork chops, andy's bruschetta, wiener mobile (TOTALLY FOOD RELATED), The Dude sandwich at honey hole in seattle (send me one, pls!)

4th row: First attempt at fallafel, po dog in seattle, champagne and strawberries from zoe and my romantical getaway, bbq rib prep, wine and cake- typical basket contents when i go to trader joes, sushi success

5th row: Candy shop in dani's town, giant bag of fruit from a street vendor, fruit and cheese plate at andy and j's, carrot cake in my lap, leftover apple pie, leftover cheesecake.

Last row: FAVORITE WINE (Francis Coppola 2007 Zin), donuts, latte in seattle, popsicle prep, clam chowder in seattle, bok choy prep.

I take more pictures of my cats and food/food related items with my phone than I do anything else. #sad

Thursday, October 21, 2010

SUSHI!!! *Image heavy, obvi!*

Clearly. this was  REALLY exciting thing for me. Sushi is pretty intimidating and I always thought I would F it up. It's really more about patience than talent, quite frankly. My dearest Lauren (she started a blog last month and will be updating it more so click on her name to check it out!) took a class on Friday and passed her knowledge down to me. Now. I'm not going to do a recipe or tutorial because I was strictly learning the ways of the sushi last night, but I figured I'd share a few pictures and fill all of you in that sushi making is seriously not as hard as it seems. You nee to make sure you have the proper rice, sushi grade fish and good soy/seaweed paper. You'd be surprised how much better yours tastes than if you go out. I'm never going to a sushi place again! That's a lie. I totally will, but now I know that making it isn't that hard. Enough with the chit chat and onto the good stuff!

Fun fact! Most wasabi you get in resaurants is actually horseradish. Real wasabi costs about $100 a pound because it's hard to grow. Get the powder from your local Japanese market and mix it with water to get close to the real thing.

Ever wonder why sushi chefs keep a giant bowl of water next to their station? Because of the way the rice is cooked, their hands will stick to it and ruin the roll unless they're wet.

My turn to try, yahoo! An inside out roll even, how fancy!

I literally jumped around laughing when I did it right. Like a little girl with Bieber Fever. Yeah, I said it. It was a proud moment.


It wouldn't be  a No Thank You Bite post if I didn't post a picture of my feet. I was feeling very lumberjack chic. Don't be jealous of my $10 flannel I got in the boys section of Target. Ok, be jealous, it was an amazing find.