Monday, July 30, 2012

Inspired Design

I'm a huge fan of modern decor and bright color (think Jonathan Adler), but I also appreciate simple, clean lines and more natural, earthy tones. It's a very sophisticated look for any home. I came across this beautiful house in New York on Architectural Digest's website, which is home to film director Shawn Levy.


(image via - Photography by William Waldron)


You can create a similar look using leather upholstery, wood accents, and neutral colors. Add fresh cut flowers as a finishing touch.

 Collage using Polyvore



 -Lauren

Monday, July 23, 2012

Pork with Orange-Bourbon Sauce

I like to cook with a variety of ingredients, but for some reason I always forget about pork. I just tend to gravitate towards meats like chicken and fish. This weekend, I decided to switch things up and cook with pork for dinner. I followed the pork with orange-bourbon sauce recipe from the Williams-Sonoma Simple Suppers book. It was really easy to follow, and most importantly tasted great.



Ingredients (Two servings):

-4 boneless pork cutlets (thin sliced)
-Salt and pepper
-1 tablespoon of thyme (fresh or dry)
-2 tablespoons unsalted butter
-1 small red onion, thinly sliced
-1/3 cup (80 ml) orange juice
-2 tablespoons Bourbon, or Madeira

Steps:

1. Get your ingredients prepared. Start by peeling and cutting the onion into thin slices. Season pork generously with salt, pepper, and thyme.


2. Melt the butter in a large frying pan over medium heat.
3. Add the pork to pan and cook, turning once, until browned on both sides and barely pink in the middle (Took me about 6 minutes total). Transfer meat to a plate.
4. Add the onion to the pan and saute over medium heat for about 4 minutes. 
5. Next, add the orange juice and bourbon to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally for 1 minute.


6. Return the meat to the pan, cover, and cook for another minute.
7. Let meat rest on a cutting board for 2 minutes. Serve and enjoy!


What ingredients do you like to cook with?

-Lauren

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Breakfast at the Beach

Santa Monica is one of my favorite cities within Los Angeles. Not only is it beautiful, but it's very walkable (rare for a city where everyone uses cars).


 One of the many rows of palm trees in Santa Monica


My boyfriend and I were walking around the area when we stumbled upon a restaurant called Le Pain Quotidien. I had eaten there in May when I was in NYC, so it was exciting to find a location here.

We stopped in for brunch, and it was amazing! I had whole wheat french toast with fresh strawberries and agave syrup. They used a fresh baguette and all I can say is it was DELICIOUS! I recommend eating there if you have a location near you.




What's one of your favorite breakfast spots?

-Lauren

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Summer Style

I love summer - the weather is great, it's the perfect time to go on a vacation, and there are lots of events to check out around town. However, it can be challenging to pick out an outfit since it's so warm outside. How do you dress lightly yet still look appropriate for the occasion at hand?




Tired of wearing jean shorts? Try a more polished look like these Juicy Couture bright orange shorts. Pair something bright with a more subdued color like this silk grey top. You can take this outfit from day to night with black pumps and a fun necklace.

What's your go-to summer look?

-Lauren

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

An Outing in Orange

I love visiting Old Towne Orange. It's a small historical district located within the city of Orange. When you walk through the streets, it feels like you've been transported back in time to the 1950's. The buildings have been preserved really well, which gives the shops and restaurants a charming feel. There are also tons of antique stores, adding to the old time feel. Even though our definition of  "old" doesn't go that far back, it's still a nice little snapshot back in time.


The circle in the heart of Old Towne. I love that there are actual orange trees there.



A view down one of the streets 



I stumbled upon this old school soda fountain inside a drug store



One of the many unique restaurants in the area



Even the Starbucks sign is cute



 The Bruery Provisions sells specialty beer, wine and cheese. You can find pretty much anything here.


What cities/towns do you like to visit?

-Lauren

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Quick & Easy Pasta

Yesterday, I celebrated the 4th of July with friends and got to watch firework shows across Los Angeles from the rooftop. It was a great view! Before I went out, I made this quick pasta and mushroom dish for lunch. It's super easy to make and tastes great. You can also add a protein like chicken or shrimp to the dish.



Ingredients (Makes 2 servings):

-2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
-1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
-1 package of baby bella mushrooms
-2 servings of linguini
-Parsley (optional)
-Parmesan (optional)

Steps:

1. Wash and pat dry mushrooms. Trim off the stems and slice mushrooms evenly.
2. Melt butter in a pan over medium heat.
3. Once the butter is melted, add in mushrooms. Next, add a swig of EVOO.
4. Make sure to stir around mushrooms frequently so that they cook evenly. Sauté for 10 minutes. The mushrooms will start to shrink and become darker. The mushroom "juice" will begin to combine with the butter and EVOO, creating a nice sauce.
5. Plan ahead so that your pasta finishes cooking by the time the mushrooms are finished.
6. Combine pasta with mushrooms. If desired, finish off with some Parmesan and parsley.


Enjoy!

-Lauren

Monday, July 2, 2012

Food Finds

Can you believe it's already July?! I feel like time is flying by. I'm excited to have the day off for 4th of July and celebrate the holiday with friends. Hopefully the weather continues to stay sunny and nice. This past weekend I got to see some friends who were in town from New York, which is always nice. We went to Primitivo Wine Bistro in Venice, located on Abbot Kinney Blvd. I've passed by it many times, but it was my first time eating there.


We sat outside on the patio, which had a really nice, charming feel to it. There was even a community garden behind our table.


 They had these really cute chandeliers hanging all over the place.



I was tempted to doodle on the paper table cover...



I had tempura Mexican white shrimp and shiitake mushrooms, kung pao, peanuts and spring onion. Super filling but SO good!


Have you tried out any new restaurants lately?


-Lauren

 
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