Thursday, September 8, 2011

Fall is here!?

 There is kind of a cool breeze blowing through South Florida, especially after our daily torrential downpour in the thunderstorms that seem to pop up out of nowhere. This is the part of FL that no one really talks about, because it is probably the worst time to be here.. thanks, hurricane season. But, I have to say that the other night when I stepped outside, it was actually nice and I could breathe! Fall was probably my favorite season to live through in Chicago so the fact that pumpkin spice lattes have appeared once again at Starbucks and butternut squash have grown in abundance at the grocery store lately makes me super excited :) This also means it's time to switch over to fall/winter nail polish. Here are my picks:

L to R: Revlon Silver Screen, OPI: Dulce de leche & You make me vroom,
Sephora by OPI: Hi Def & Charge It!, love&beauty  M61 Yellow

L to R: Essie Chincilly, Sonia Kashuk Tauped, Zoya: Helen Caitlyn Jules Dove,
Sephora by OPI: Metro Chic, Run with It, Brunette on the Internet
This is what I currently have on my fingers: Essie Chinchilly and attempted nail design with the silver glitter Nail Art Paint by Kiss (I really like the texture of these glitters)
Sunglasses I picked up at Forever 21 the other day -- they actually do provide more shade than this photo would suggest; I was looking for a pair that had that gradient thing going on.

I also picked up the Mac Seasonally Supreme in Tea Ceremony. This lipstick is super creamy--I preferred to rub it into my lips with my finger after applying just so it blended in better with my face haha.

Swatch of Tea Ceremony -- lovely milky tan/beige color that is very neutral.
What you can't see is that there are tiny silver sparkles in the lipstick also (very subtle, but they are there)

Monday, September 5, 2011

Happy Labor Day!

it came out so beautifully!
Hope everyone enjoyed their 3-day weekend. I went shopping and ended up cooking a roasted tomato sauce from scratch. I haven't made pasta in a really long time and I needed something for lunch this upcoming week, so I figured I had some extra time today to make some tomato sauce. Mmm.. plus I have a lot of pent up stress in me; thank goodness cooking allows me to take my mind off of other things. I have to say that as simple as this sauce is to make, it has a whole lot of flavor--it just takes a good amount of time to make it, that's all.
pasta always comes out better when you saute it in the pan with the sauce

INGREDIENTS: 6 vine-riped tomatoes, 1 head of garlic, 2 red peppers, 1/2 vidalia onion, dried oregano & basil (obviously you can use fresh but I didn't have any on hand), crushed red pepper flakes, olive oil, salt&pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Spread out veggies (leave the garlic inside their wrapping, just cut off the stem part) on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and liberally sprinkle with olive oil, salt & pepper. Use your hands to spread everything around the veggies until they are all coated. Lastly, sprinkle with your dried herbs.
  3. Stick the veggies in the oven for about 40 minutes, until the skins of the tomatoes and peppers are wrinkly & split open. You will be able to smell the delicious garlic roasting that will tell you it's finished roasting. Usually you can't really ruin veggies too badly by roasting them too long, they get more and more delicious until the point where they get really burnt so just watch out for that!
  4. After removing your veggies (you can leave the skins on or remove them; I removed the skins from the red peppers, which you obviously had to remove the seeds & stem from as well, but left the skins on my tomatoes) from the oven, stick everything except for the garlic into a food processor or blender to puree everything to your desired consistency. I left my sauce a bit more on the chunky side.
  5. As for the garlic, squeeze the roasted goodness out of the paper that surrounds them & mash it all up with a fork.
  6. Add everything back into a saucepan on medium heat to further reduce the mixture and further develop the flavors. Cook for 15-20 minutes until you get the desired thickness of your sauce. Add some crushed red pepper flakes if you want it to be spicy, and obviously salt & pepper as needed! Near the end, add a splash more of olive oil and any fresh herbs you would like to have in your sauce.
  7. Cook your pasta al dente according to the directions on the package them came in. Add into sauce and cook it for 3-4 minutes to get all the flavors absorbed into your pasta. Add cheese in you'd like (I didn't have any cheese unfortunately). It is ok not to completely drain your pasta from the water it had boiled in. That water actually contains starches that will help thicken your sauce and bring the whole pasta together. What I did was just take a slotted spoon and transferred the pasta to my saucepan with my sauce in it.
[2 cups of Barilla mezze penne pasta] packed and ready to take for lunches!


Friday, September 2, 2011

Nails of summer

Just wanted to share some nail polishes (that I haven't yet) that I frequented this summer.. these are just the few from whenever I remembered to take photos. Ready for autumn to arrive already, I will probably make a post later with nail polishes I've picked out in anticipation of "cooler" temperatures, not that we really experience any seasonal changes in south Florida. Also going through some new nail polish withdrawal so changing up colors for the fall season will be exciting! I have a feeling that I'm gonna have to bring back some of the brighter summer colors when school gets particularly depressing.. many of my tests are scheduled back to back so I foresee some painful, sleepless times ahead.

I'm Wired (Sephora by OPI) with a multicolored glitter on the pointer finger that I tried on at the store

Sand Tropez (Essie)

Sun Worshiper (China Glaze)

Ate Berries in the Canaries (OPI)

Slushied (Sephora by OPI, Glee collection)

Lilacism (Essie) with silver metallic shatter (Sephora by OPI) on top, which I don't own--I tried it on at Sephora