Can you believe it’s February? 2017?

I have so many posts, “almost finished” on here…. I promise to post my New Years Eve dinner post tonight, but life has just been flying past me.

Swoooooshhhhhh….

I feel like this website needs a makeover, do-over, something.  It’s become more of a lifestyle blog than a food blog, although food still is my main love :]  But hey, the older you get, the more life gets in your way.  You grow, evolve… changes.

I’m trying this “healthy” approach to my snacking and randomly missing meals with RXBars and ProteinWorld smoothies… but hell, sometimes I just want my bag of chips to munch on.  My body doesn’t do too well with salty food, so I constantly crave it.  Ahhh, the irony.

2017 has been interesting. I was back in the States before Xmas 2016 but so much drama and blah blah blah… oh and BLAH!… Thankfully I’ve had great people to be there with me and for me [as me for them] during the times.  Love is in the air.  I love you my friends/family.

Anyways just wanna put it out there, I shall be blogging more, cooking more [hopefully]  and I hope I haven’t lost a ton of you….  especially since I’ve been back and forth from Asia and America so much – still figuring out where I wanna end up living at for a “time” or just stick with traveling everywhere :] OK… time to finish my plan for tomorrow’s menu and my NYE Dinner blog post that’s long overdue.

xo always,

I’m back bitches!!!!!!!!

Tiffie

PS. Patriots are DA FUGGING CHAMPIONS……AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This year’s superbowl was unforgettable and epic. Tom Brady for life <3 You know what else was on fire? The wings I made for Superbowl Sunday. Scotch bonnet, garlic, shallots, pineapple, etc…. FIRE <3 Fire like Brady was!!!!! Holla!

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Happy Chinese New Years 新年快樂

Chinese-New-Year-2014-Horse-1

年年有餘 to everyone and have a beautiful, successful, lucky year.

May be all be blessed with health, love and happiness!!!!!  New beginnings, I feel them tingling in my toes :] Smiles all around today!!!!

___ A little something about the food traditions thanks to wiki ___

Cuisine

One version of niangao, Chinese New Year cake

reunion dinner, named as “Nian Ye Fan”, is held on New Year’s Eve during which family members gather for celebration. The venue will usually be in or near the home of the most senior member of the family. The New Year’s Eve dinner is very large and sumptuous and traditionally includes dishes of meat (namely, pork and chicken) and fish. Most reunion dinners also feature a communal hot pot as it is believed to signify the coming together of the family members for the meal. Most reunion dinners (particularly in the Southern regions) also prominently feature specialty meats (e.g. wax-cured meats like duck and Chinese sausage) and seafood (e.g. lobster and abalone) that are usually reserved for this and other special occasions during the remainder of the year. In most areas, fish (traditional Chinese: 魚; simplified Chinese: 鱼; pinyin) is included, but not eaten completely (and the remainder is stored overnight), as the Chinese phrase “may there be surpluses every year” (traditional Chinese: 年年有餘; simplified Chinese: 年年有余; pinyinniánnián yǒu yú) sounds the same as “let there be fish every year.”

Red packets for the immediate family are sometimes distributed during the reunion dinner. These packets often contain money in certain numbers that reflect good luck and honorability. Several foods are consumed to usher in wealth, happiness, and good fortune. Several of the Chinese food names are homophones for words that also mean good things.

Like many other New Year dishes, certain ingredients also take special precedence over others as these ingredients also has similar sounding names with prosperity, good luck, or even counting money.

Food items
Name Description
Buddha’s delight
(traditional Chinese: 羅漢齋; simplified Chinese: 罗汉斋; pinyinluóhànzhāi)
An elaborate vegetarian dish served by Chinese families on the eve and the first day of the New Year. A type of black hair-like algae, pronounced “fat choy” in Cantonese, is also featured in the dish for its name, which sounds like “prosperity”. Hakkas usually serve kiu nyuk(Chinese: 扣肉; pinyinkòuròu) and ngiong teu fu.
Chicken Boiled chicken is served because it is figured that any family, no matter how humble their circumstances, can afford a chicken for Chinese New Year.
Fish Is usually eaten or merely displayed on the eve of Chinese New Year. The pronunciation of fish (魚yú) makes it a homophone for “surpluses”(餘yú).
Leek Is usually served in a dish with rondelles of Chinese sausage or waxed meat during Chinese New Year. The pronunciation of leek (蒜苗/大蒜Suàn miáo/Dà suàn) makes it a homophone for “calculating (money)” (算Suàn). The waxed meat is so chosen because it is traditionally the primary method for storing meat over the winter and the meat rondelles resemble coins.
Jau gok (Chinese: 油角;pinyinyóujiăo) The main Chinese new year dumpling. It is believed to resemble ancient Chinese gold ingots (traditional Chinese: 金元寶; simplified Chinese:金元宝; pinyinjīnyuánbǎo)
jiaozi (dumplings)(Chinese: 餃子) Eaten traditionally in northern China because the preparation is similar to packaging luck inside the dumpling, which is later eaten. The dumpling resembles a silver ingot, or money. The symbolism is prosperity.
Mandarin oranges Mandarin oranges are the most popular and most abundant fruit during Chinese New Year – jin ju (Chinese: 金橘子; pinyinjīnjúzi) translation: golden tangerine/orange or kam (Chinese: 柑; pinyingān) in Cantonese. Also, the name gik (橘 jú) in Teochew dialect is ahomophone of “luck” or “fortune” (吉 jí).[26]
Melon seed/Kwatji
(Chinese: 瓜子; pinyin:guāzi)
Other variations include sunflower, pumpkin and other seeds. It symbolizes fertility and having many children.
Niángāo (Chinese: 年糕) Most popular in eastern China (JiangsuZhejiang and Shanghai) because its pronunciation is a homophone for “a more prosperous year (年高 lit. year high)”. Nian gao is also popular in the Philippines because of its large Chinese population and is known as “tikoy” (Chinese: 甜粿, from Min Nan) there. Known as Chinese New Year pudding, nian gao is made up of glutinous rice flour, wheat starch, salt, water, and sugar. The color of the sugar used determines the color of the pudding (white or brown).
Noodles Families may serve uncut noodles, which represent longevity and long life, though this practice is not limited to the new year.
Sweets Sweets and similar dried fruit goods are stored in a red or black Chinese candy box.
Bakkwa
(Chinese: 肉干; pinyin:ròugān)
Chinese salty-sweet dried meat, akin to jerky, which is trimmed of the fat, sliced, marinated and then smoked for later consumption or as a gift.
Taro cakes (Chinese: 芋頭糕, yùtougāo) Made from the vegetable taro, the cakes are cut into squares and often fried.
Turnip cakes (Chinese: 蘿蔔糕, luóbogāo) A dish made of shredded radish and rice flour, usually fried and cut into small squares.
Yusheng or Yee sang (traditional Chinese: 魚生;simplified Chinese: 鱼生;pinyinyúshēng) Raw fish salad. Eating this salad is said to bring good luck. This dish is usually eaten on the seventh day of the New Year, but may also be eaten throughout the period. 

To learn more about our traditions click here.  I really wish I was in Taiwan right now!

So 恭喜發財,紅包拿來 I want my red envelopes ;]

Ending 2013 with a Bang, starting at Les Zygomates

I know, I know, you’re thinking WHERE have you been? Posts of song lyrics/music videos/etc is just lame – so let’s speak FOOD….!!! That’s what you guys come here for, right? I hope you still do.  I’ve been super busy with, LIFE.  And happiness and just living the dream.

It was super last minute and the day before but we, B & I settled on commiting to Les Zygomates.  So after getting dolled up listening to some good music and drinking some bubbles we headed out into the freezing night for a good time.  Dinner at Les Zygomates + Estate.

It was pretty funny because I asked them if we could order off the regular menu and they said NO, if we sat at a table we HAD to get the Prix Fixe and we could only order off the regular menu if we sat at the bar.

And yes I made that face.
I think I made that noise too….

Their New Year’s Eve Menu

First Course (choice of one)

Lobster Bisque, Puff Pastry, Oloroso Sherry

Endive & Chicory Salad Cider Vinaigrette, Roquefort Cheese, Spiced Filberts, Shaved Heirloom Apple

Onion Soup Gratinee

Torchon of Foie Gras, Chocolate Brioche, Dried Figs & Port ($12 supplement)

Second Course (choice of one)

Thatch Island Oysters, Mignonette

Seared Pork Belly, Lentils de Puy, Sherry-Honey Emulsion

Escargot, Braised Black Garlic, Fresh Fettuccine, Roasted Tomato & Thyme, Cumin Scented Marcona Almonds

Tuna Tartar, Sesame Soy Vinaigrette, Hearts of Palm, Winter Melon, Cucumber & Lotus Root

Third Course (choice of one)

Pan Roasted Giannone Chicken Breast, Braised Escarole, Lardons, Sweet & Sour Cherry Gastrique

Grilled Painted Hills Sirloin, Kennebec Potato Gratin, Maitake Mushrooms, Green-Peppercorn Red Wine Sauce

Seared Diver Sea Scallops, Black Truffle-Parsnip Puree, Chestnut Veloute, Fried Kale

Lightly Roasted Berkshire Pork Chop, Roasted Butternut Squash, Braised Apples, Calvados Glazed Onions

Grilled Faroe Island Salmon, Whole Grain Mustard Whipped Potatoes, Braised Lentils, Brussels Sprout Leaves

Dessert (choice of one)

Creme Brulee Tartlett

L’opera Cake  with Pistachio and Pomegranate

Assorted Ice Cream & Sorbet

Ok so knowing me, you guys should know what I wanna do with this. B was a true sport and we picked the dishes out together.  He actually pointed out today how funny and ‘food critic’ of me that I made the comment “Nothing in the third course really pops out at me… can I just order one of each second course?” We got a decent bottle of Rosé….  and then later on each had a different glass of wine… I liked B’s better so he switched with me :] HEE HEE HEE

Yes I have issues, you have to ask B why he puts up with it :] Rawr rawr rawr purr purr purr…..

First Course
Torchon of Foie Gras
Chocolate Brioche, Dried Figs & Port

This was DIVINE.. of course, a huge delicious piece of foie perfectly cooked and amaaaaazing with the slightly re-hydrated dried figs.  The chocolate brioche wasn’t sweet but had a nice bitter chocolate, very mellow, taste, that had a perfect fit to the fatty foie.

Endive & Chicory Salad
Cider Vinaigrette, Roquefort Cheese, Spiced Filberts, Shaved Heirloom Apple

This wasn’t bad but it wasn’t super amazing – I think it was overdressed and just so-so.  I mean a simple salad is a simple salad. Yeah we didn’t finish this, BUT it was refreshing after DEVOURING the foie.  Definitely a good palate cleanser…[esp from the cider vinaigrette]

Second Course
Thatch Island Oysters
Mignonette

We were actually gonna just order like a half dozen oysters but they were on the menu, so WHY NOT?! They were huge briney and delicious. So just to let you know, Thatch Island Oysters are from Branstable Harbor, Cape Cod so they’re pretty local, I also LOVE LOVE LOVE and PREFER East Coast to West Coast Oysters, so YAYYYY.. happy little me.

Seared Pork Belly
Lentils de Puy, Sherry-Honey Emulsion

Not gonna lie, Pork Belly is never bad, but the lentils to pork belly is kinda like… UHHHHH…. yeah. It was nothing special though.. I guess there’s only so much people do with pork belly now? Yay for Asians who are more creative…. but overall a solid dish, I kinda wish we went for escargot…. I was thinking of it but I always figured Oysters CHECK, Pork Belly CHECK – Maybe I went wrong this time?!

Third Course
Pan Roasted Giannone Chicken Breast
Braised Escarole, Lardons, Sweet & Sour Cherry Gastrique

Ok I blame myself for ordering this, but it was the most interesting on the list [other than scallops, which we also ordered] While the lardons and the flavoring was great the chicken was sooooo dryyyyyy I kinda was dying….

Seared Diver Sea Scallops
Black Truffle-Parsnip Puree, Chestnut Veloute, Fried Kale

These were absolutely amazing and totally B’s call.  In fact, since I didn’t like the chicken he was so sweet to trade with me and actually eat a lot of the chicken. HOW IS B NOT THE BEST THING EVER? He let me eat the scallops <3

Dessert
They had four different ice creams, all of them were the usual except for this one, it was like some boozy  kind of a sort.

But the reason why he’s THAT awesome is that he ordered espresso to pour over the ice cream and made it into an affogato – yeah I think he knows the way to my heart.

Creme Brulee Tartlett

This was good, but no ice cream with espresso.. hahaha, my bad. By this time I was just happy and my tummy was happy and I was just loving the  affogato – so NO, this dessert did not fail… I was just distracted by my talented partner in crime’s idea :]

SO Happy New Years from US TWO… May everyone have the most amazing 2014… cuz I just ended 2013 in a FUCKING AWESOME WAY and it’s definitely off to a darn good start with this guy around ;]

Best. New Years. EVER.

New Years Brunch at Aquitaine Bis

Thank YOU for a beautiful message exactly at midnight this year <3 XOXO Thanks babe :]

Dressed down and stayed in…. ate insane amounts of pig’s feet and delicious chinese food…. drank a lot but barely got tipsy.

Happy New Years Bitches! Loved talking to everyone at midnight [Eastern hehe] all over the world <3

Went home, drank a little more, nada, so just watched a movie, went to bed and woke up early for a delicious New Years Brunch at my favorite brunch – Aquitaine Bis. Didn’t get my favorite waitress but I did get to see her and say hi :] Such a sweetheart – got a guy that wasn’t too attentive but whatevz. Love this place.

Brunch For Two :]

Omelette for me… Toast, Potatoes… Bacon, Sausage…

Oh, Avocado, Mushroom & Tomatoes in my omelette… and of course tons of black pepper and tabasco <3

Mimosas galore <3 Still celebrating with bubbly.. and red lipstick!

And New Years Brunch DESSERTS!!!

Vanilla Bean Creme Brulee

Creamy and decadent, I LOVE when I can see TONS of vanilla bean specks in my desserts! NOM! Nice thick crunchy chewy crust – just the way it should be :]

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream Profiteroles

Dark chocolate syrup and the puffs were made from almond meal.. OMG HEAVEN!

ANNNND…. Just for fun :]

Highlights of the end of 2011

Okay I’m pretty sure everyone hates me right now.. I’ve been writing my Best of 2011 post for awhile now… #fail… it’s getting longer and longer, almost a novel – NOT my intention. But aside from that, while I’ve been consuming good food…. I’ve been weird about making posts about them….

A few highlights of the end of 2011

\

…the Morning After

As important as the last meal of the year is… don’t you think the first meal is just as much so? My first meal of 2010 was spectacular, unbeatable… and I’m so glad I enoyed it hangover free :]

We decided a few days beforehand that we wanted Momofuku Noodle Bar to be our first meal of the new year. So Momo it would be…

Do you see how excited I am for my Momo?

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