Lvrgrl’s Weblog


WTD: How to make a quinoa salad:
October 3, 2012, 5:00 pm
Filed under: eats, finance | Tags: , , ,

Continued from WFD, Episode 1: Get a Job featuring Orzo salad.

Last night I actually ate at a restaurant with a friend.  But because I’m motivated by humiliation I also made dinner at 6pm.  A big bowl of something healthy that I’ve already written up for my own records.

That’s ok in my book because going out to dinner with friends is one of my favorite pastimes.  I love sitting at the bar over some warm bowl of pasta with red sauce and a goblet of wine until there’s only sediment left.  And I learned that if I cook up something quick before I go, I’m less likely to want to order everything on the menu.

A few months back I made a vow to only eat out when I have a dinner companion.  That same day, after I bought some groceries at the bodega, I stopped on the sidewalk to pick up what appeared to be a large diamond earring that had fallen out of someone’s ear.

Was this a gift from the universe for my valiant efforts?  Find out next time when WFD continues.

October 2nd:

Rinse a cup of red quinoa in a strainer for 2 minutes, tossing over with your hands.  Pat into a pan with a drizzle of olive oil and move around every 15 seconds or so until the water has evaporated (about 2 minutes). Pour a cup and a half of water and a some dashes of salt into the pan and let the water come to a boil.  Cover the pan and let the quinoa simmer for about 15 minutes.

In a separate pot steam two ears of corn.  Use a strainer or a steamer, or just plop the the half cobs into some shallow water for a little.  If the corn is fresh they only need to be in there until the outsides are hot.

While the corn is getting hot, chop up a shallot or two (or a small onion) and one big green pepper.  Once the quinoa is settled and finished let it cool in a bowl in the fridge along with the corn kernels while you toss the onions and peppers around in some olive oil (the onions first for a minute or two and then the peppers for a minute or two).  Pull everything out of the pan when the peppers turn bright green.

Rise the corn in cold water and cut the kernels off the using a downward slicing motion, getting as much of the meat off as you can without cutting into the grainy part of the cob.   Add to the quinoa mixture along with a hunk of feta cheese and crumble feta on top to your liking.  Pour in the pepper and onion and mixture and toss all together with a little more salt and pepper if you’d like.

Eat straight away or let cool in the fridge. Healthy man.  And not bad tasting either.

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What’s for Dinner (WFD) – Tri Color Orzo w/ onions and arugula
October 3, 2012, 1:11 pm
Filed under: eats, finance | Tags: , ,


One of my biggest money problems is that I don’t want to take the time to make dinner for myself.  Instead of having a pantry stocked with beans and rice and a fridge with fresh veggies I have a credit card bill for restaurants in my neighborhood that have a good tasting dinner for under $20.  I lie to myself and say that I love food and that’s why I prefer having someone else cook for me.

But really it’s because I have high expectations and a princess attitude.  When I do cook at home I make salmon, seared, with potatoes and bustle sprouts.  The ingredients alone cost more than the meal would at a restaurant.  The leftovers end up sitting in the fridge and browning until they are too old to eat.

Now before you stop and think to yourself, fancy for this women, she spends $30 on groceries for one night, why should I spend my time reading about her problems? And I say, that’s a very good question my friend.  You should not.  What you should do instead is support me in changing my habits by following an ongoing report of the cost effective home cooked dinners I vow to make every night at 6pm sharp.

October 1st

Orzo.  Tri color.  One cup boiled in 8 cups of water with dashes of salt.  One half sweet yellow onion sautéed in generous amounts of extra virgin olive oil.  Three handfuls of fresh arugula shredded up by hand (pul out stems) them, just pull them out).  Healthy dumping of parmesan reggiano cheese.

There’s no really important order to follow  Once you get the pasta cooking up you can put the onions in a separate pan and let them simmer a while, the longer the sweeter (like 15 minutes even).  When the orzo is out and cooling and the onions are done, they go together in a big bowl with salt and pepper.  Use plenty of oil for more flavor.

Get salad stuff from a farm-like place if you can.  The whole bag of arugula cost $4 which felt like a splurge at the time.  And it probably is except I made at least a salad plus this meal so far and there’s still some leftover.  Plus it really tastes so good, like better than the kind from the super market, as far as I can tell.

If you have other ingredients you like then throw those in too.  Mushrooms, tomatoes or bits of asparagus steamed or done up in oil like the onion would probably be worth a try.  Oh, and feta cheese instead of the parm if you’ve got some on hand.

I ate this meal over a “conversation” with my LIB (live-in-boyfriend) about how i need to get a job.  Baby steps, I tell him and I taste the caramelized onion in between the pasta chunks and the flashes of cheese.  For now this is as grown up as I get.

P.S. I’m Back.



Introducing Owlie Hour

Owlie hour is a more than hour long session with Owlie (Allie Alvarado) and lvrgrl (Emily Kramer) who meet on the internet to talk about sex, dating and technology. We will take notes on the technology part for public use.

Things we’ve learned during Owlie Hour in Session 1,2 3 and 4.

iChat enables two people with Leopard to share screens. Not only can you see what’s going on on someone else’s computer, but you can reach out across the interweb and touch your partners computer screen, IM-ing members on their buddy list and reading bits and pieces of their digital journals stored only on their desktop. Don’t ask us how it works, it just does.

Gmail is not the most efficient interface for e-mailing from your computer. Mac Mail is! One bit of proof is the drag and drop attachments that preview in the body of the email as well, so you can be sure you aren’t sending along a copy of your phone bill instead of an invoice to your ex-employer.

You can host music files for your WordPress blog in the public directory of your mobile me folder if you don’t have another server option.

Your iPhone will be more useful if you group listings in your address book. For instance, do like Allie and put all your hairdressers in one a group together for emergency situations.

Pixelmator is a good choice for people wanting to do graphics stuff who can’t afford Photoshop or are scared of it.

You can use use automation in Garage Band to bring effects in and out of a track. or to the whole song using a master track say serious Owlie.

Use compression creatively to pump up your drums, yo, or to control the dynamics in your track. No, No, No we’re not going to go into a whole compression discussion here.

If you are teaching technology to a person who would like to add new age music to still pictures of flowers, you just have to suck it up and do it anyway. Sharing is healing.

Um. Do your software updates EMILY.
Then maybe this year’s version of iChat will work…

We will have a graphic once Allie gets her wackem. It will be of an owl and a clock. “Watch” out, get it?

Tweet, tweet!



Ninety Nine Dolla
October 27, 2008, 10:13 pm
Filed under: finance | Tags:

Guest House
Chinatown, NYC

Once an idea generated over white table clothes and sweet and sour soup, ninety nine dolla is now an officially open guest house run out of our very own loft space. With electric waterfalls and painted bamboo behind us, we brainstormed brilliant and benevolent ways to fill two rooms, freshly vacant from two friends now shacked up in Brooklyn. Step by step, we put our ideas to work.

How to Make Your Own B & B
The Basics:

Bed:
You’ll need a spare room or two, plus a space you can make cozy and communal. Pick up enough sheets, blankets, pillows and towels to supply each room, plus an extra set to have on hand. Pillow liners and mattress pads are good too. Give the walls rooms a new coat of paint and make up the room like you’d wanna stay there yourself. Jump on the beds and make sure they don’t squeak like granny’s mattress because couples will be half your business.

Breakfast:
Food=comfort. Simple cereal, dairy, bread, jams and fruit will do. Keep it fresh with a few trips to the market each week and pick up a little something local or seasonal for a special treat.

Booking:
Inviting and confirming your guests is going to take up a lot of time. We use craigslist.com, vrbo.com and roomorama.com. All our bookings start over email. Provide a phone number so when people get nervous they can call and talk to a real person who can assure them they won’t wake up in two pieces.

Branding:
Pick a name. Ours is 99dolla, chosen to conjure up images of economy, fun and New York City’s Chinatown. We uses WordPress to manage our digital content and update it every few days with photos of and bloggings about our guests. We also make friends on the Facebooks.

Banking:
Nothing’s worse then a business gone broke. Make a simple monthly accounting sheet that subtracts your expenses from your revenue and project at least 3 months into the future. If you are working with a partner or a roommate, talk about the money at least once a week to preempt broken piggy banks, sequestered toilet paper or landlord lockouts.

Bravery:
Call us lucky dragon, but so far no one has walked off with our computers under their arms or our projector under their shirts. If you are scared about people staying at your home, they will smell it on you, sniff out your quality items and pee all over them. Conversely, if you relax and have the faith, people will generally like you and treat with goodness, bottles of wine and house plants you can name after them when they leave.

Best of Luck!



lucky dragon
October 22, 2008, 1:08 am
Filed under: art, finance | Tags: