Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Emmy's 2014 Fashion.

Who didn't watch this year's Emmy's? I started a new job this week, so I missed the red carpet, but you can bet I DVR'd it for later! The fashions worn by the actors and actresses at awards shows are a spectacle of beauty.

The show this year was really fun. It had a great sense of humor with Seth Meyers as the host and Weird Al doing a hilarious performance. What I liked very much was Billy Crystal's tribute speech to Robin Williams. It truly honored him, but wasn't so dark as to leave the audience with a heavy heart.

The winners were very much deserved, too! Although, I would have loved to see House of Cards and Orange is the New Black with some wins, as they are a refreshing addition to the TV world. Both well directed, great casts, and awesome story lines.

Where there's a red carpet, there I am fawning over the designers and this year's Emmy's were no different. There were so many beautiful gowns on the carpet this year, but these are my top 3...gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous!

1. Julia Roberts in Elie Saab. Short dresses are out of the ordinary at awards shows, but Julia rocked it.  

2. Camila Alves in Zuhair Murad. I have no words...did Camila wake up like this, because she looks flawless!

3. Gwen Stefani in Atelier Versace. I mean come on...that dress is made entirely out of Swarovski crystals and Gwen looks stunning. 

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Fancy Ass Mac and Cheese.

Who doesn't love mac and cheese, honestly? I had some leftover ingredients that I didn't want to expire so I mixed them up and created my "Fancy Ass Mac and Cheese". What I mean by fancy is that I added some ingredients that made the mac and cheese more decadent, including sage, nutmeg, Gruyere cheese, and panko breading crust. These all come together to create a really special spin on a classic comfort food. It's so good!

Yummy, cheesy, and crunchy goodness. 

Here's how I made it...


  • Vegetable or olive oil
  • 1/2 pound pasta like elbow macaroni or cavatappi
  • 2 cups milk
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter 
  • 2 tablespoons sage
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 cups grated Gruyere cheese
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs 
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Drizzle oil into a large pot of salted boiling water. Add the macaroni and cook for 6-8 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, heat the milk in a saucepan, but don't boil it. 
  4. Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a large pot. Add the sage and flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring with a whisk. 
  5. While whisking, add the hot milk and cook for a minute or two more until thickened and smooth. 
  6. Off the heat, add the Gruyere and Parmesan cheese, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, nutmeg. 
  7. Add the cooked macaroni and stir well. Pour mixture into a baking dish. 
  8. Melt the remaining tablespoon of butter and combine it with the panko breadcrumbs and sprinkle on the top. 
  9. Bake for 30-35 minutes until the sauce is bubbly and the macaroni is browned on the top. 


Monday, August 11, 2014


I'm still on an LA brunch tour finding the best places to go to brunch, and Eveleigh was on my top 5 places to try. I was actually debating on celebrating my birthday there this year. I went to Eveleigh with a couple of my friends for brunch and I was very pleased with the food and the ambiance there.

Outdoor patio seating. 

It's located on the infamous Sunset strip in LA and has such a cute little garden patio. You almost forget your in the city when you eat here...almost.

My friend and I were meeting our other friend there, but we arrived a little early so we had a drink at the bar while we waited. I started with their Bloody Mary, but my second drink, the Eveleigh Lemonade was my favorite. It had chamomile infused tequila, lemon, and honey.

Floating bones at the bar.

Our Bloody Mary's. 

For my meal, I ordered the Baked Eggs with prosciutto, heirloom tomatoes, chevre cheese, and arugula. It was SO good. The Avocado Toast was delicious too.

This was a cute spot for the occasional brunch. It's a good spot for brunch with girlfriends. 

Throwing a Fab Dinner Party.

Last weekend, I decided to throw a dinner party for my girlfriends at my house. I've watch tons and tons of Barefoot Contessa episodes...enough that I've learned a few tips and created some of my own for creating the perfect dinner party. I really love cooking and I love entertaining, so this was a fun experience for me. Here's what it takes to throw a great dinner party...

Table Setting:

Use a fun tablecloth and pair with napkins in a similar a color palette. The color blue is psychologically an appetite opener, so its helpful to use. Serving food in white serving dishes are classy and a good way to make your food the star of the table rather than a fancy plate.

Flowers are a great centerpiece to bring the table together. It's great to use bright colored flowers that pop in contrast with the tablecloth, napkins, and plates. Make sure the flowers aren't too tall. I like to test this by sitting in front of the flowers and making sure the flowers are not in my field of vision when I look across the table.

Candles are also a great addition to your table. Make sure, again that they are not too tall. Most importantly, make sure they are NOT scented! You don't want a candle scent to overpower the smell of your delicious food.

I used a blue color palette and added a pop of color with bright yellow sunflowers. 


I like to have both red and white wine available for my guests. Have enough bottles for the amount of guests you will have...about 1 bottle per 4 people.

I also have some hard liquor and a couple juices or sodas to mix it with.

Finally, I fill a pitcher with water and add some lemons to place on the table.

Toasting to my girls. 


Start with a good appetizers. Depending on the amount of guests, have a couple of options. Since I only had 3 guests, I made a cheese plate. I placed brie, gouda, and gruyere cheese on lemon leaves and added some toasted french bread with red grapes and almonds.

Everyone's tastes are different, but what I like to do is have 5 parts to a meal:

  1. Start with a salad with a light dressing. 
  2. I like to include some type of bread like rolls or garlic bread. 
  3. Then for the main course, I like to make 1 protein dish like marinated chicken, steak, or fish. 
  4. Then I have 1 carbohydrate side dish like mashed potatoes or a simple pasta. 
  5. Then I have a MUST of a vegetable(s) like brussel sprouts or broccolini. 

For my dinner party, I began with a light Greek salad with lemon and olive oil and made some garlic Parmesan bread. I made grilled chicken marinated in lemon, garlic, rosemary, sage, and olive oil. I paired it with roasted rosemary potatoes and roasted asparagus.


When the meal is done, I like to serve dessert with tea and coffee.

I like to have fresh fruit as a dessert option for those who prefer healthy alternatives.

Desserts are what guests bring as a gift to a dinner party most of the time, so serving their gifted dessert is a must.

Depending on the amount of work you do to prepare for dinner, I like to keep this part light and simple. I cheat and just arrange store bought cookies or buy a pie or cake. If the rest of the dinner I make is easy and less time consuming, I'll try to bake a dessert.

And that's it! A fun and easy way to entertain and throw a great dinner party. Getting compliments about it all is the best part ;)

Risotto Done Twice.

Risotto is one of most delicious Italian dishes out there. The first time I had risotto was at Trattoria Neapolis in Pasadena and it was to die for. So I decided to try making it myself and take a crack at being an Italian chef for a day. Risotto, although delicious, is known to be one of the hardest Italian meals to make, but this is a misconception. It's more so that it is time consuming and requires constant attention to make sure its perfect and comes out with a good consistency.

There are many different ways to prepare risotto. You can make it with a tomato sauce, add chicken or shrimp, and different types of veggies. I decided to make my risotto creamy with some mushrooms and peas.

Toasting the rice before adding wine & broth.
The finished product. 

Here's how I made it:


  • 6 cups of low sodium chicken broth (I used 4 cups of chicken broth and 2 cups of hot water, you can mix and match or use only water to your taste)
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1.5 cups chopped onions
  • 10 ounces of cremini mushrooms chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1.5 cups Arborio rice
  • 2/3 cup dry white wine
  • 3/4 cup frozen peas thawed
  • 2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste

  1. Bring the pot to a simmer in a saucepan. Keep the broth warm over very low heat.
  2. Melt the butter over medium heat then add the olive oil. 
  3. Add the onions and saute until tender, about 10 minutes.
  4. Add the mushrooms and garlic. Saute mushrooms until tender, about 5 minutes. 
  5. Stir in rice and let it toast for a few minutes.
  6. Add the wine and cook until the liquid is absorbed by the rice stirring often, about 2 minutes. 
  7. Add 1 cup of hot broth, simmer over medium low heat until the liquid is absorbed stirring often, about 3 minutes. It is so important to stir often so the rice doesn't stick to the pot. Repeat this step until all the broth it used and the rice absorbs all the liquid. This will take about 30 minutes. 
  8. Add the peas and Parmesan cheese.
  9. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 

This turned out so delicious, but it came out with A LOT of risotto. After eating it for a couple days, I got a little tired of it so I found an easy Round 2 recipe that reuses the risotto to make a new dish. Risotto cakes! They're little patties of risotto fried up in a crispy panko breading. 

After dredging and coating in panko, ready to be fried.
Beautifully crispy.

Crispy outside and warm, creamy inside. 

Here's how I made it them...


  • Leftover risotto
  • 1 cup all purpose flour for dredging
  • Eggs, beaten
  • Panko breadcrumbs
  • Vegetable oil for frying

  1. With cooled risotto, form the mixture into a burger sized patty about 1 inch thick. 
  2. Set up a dredging station with flour in one dish, beaten eggs in another, and panko breadcrumbs in another.
  3. Dip the rice patties into the flour then into the eggs and finally coat them with panko breadcrumbs.
  4. In a large skillet, heat 1/2 inch of vegetable oil over medium heat until a panko crumb sizzles in it. 
  5. Working in batches of 2-3, fry the risotto cakes until they are golden brown, 2-3 minutes per side. 
  6. Transfer to a wire rack to dredge excess oil and to help them stay crispy. 

Recipes courtesy of Giada DeLaurentiis and Ina Garten.

Game Haus.

I was casually driving through Glendale a couple of months ago and drove past a cafe that caught my eye. The cafe's sign said "Game Haus" and had some pictures of board game pieces next to it. I'm not sure why, but I was immediately intrigued by the spelling of "Haus" and I love board games so I decided to check it out on Yelp.

Last week, I finally went there on a double date with my boyfriend and my cousin and her boyfriend. This place was so cool...they have a selection of hundreds of board and card games to play and a full cafe with coffee, pastries, and sandwiches. They even have Cards Against Humanity!

The selection of games is insane.

There is a $5 cover charge to enter, but it allows you to spend an unlimited amount of time in there and play as many games as you want. I love the classic board games, but we got to play some unusual games like Star Fluxx and Yeti Slalom (lol), which was super fun. Their drinks were really good and I loved that their sandwiches were named after board games like Boardwalk and Old Maid.

Drinking a vanilla latte while playing Labyrinth.

This was such a cute date spot, especially for double dates. I'm currently soliciting this place to all my couple friends :P, because I definitely want to come back! It'll take me a few trips there to play even a fourth of the games they have available. 

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Vegas Nails.

Last week, I was preparing to go to Las Vegas for the weekend and I wanted to spice up my nails to be Vegas-eque. Now, I love the professional work that some nail salons like Buff and Tweeze do, but paying $10 for each accent nail is kind of steep, so I decided to paint them myself. When I'm doing designs on my nails, I look to do things that are 1. easy, 2. fast, and 3. cost effective. And by cost effective, I mean a reasonable price that will last long on my nails. I collected a few ideas from Pinterest and Instagram and came up with this design...

I don't toot my own horn often, but I'm going to here :) Each nail is different, but in the same color palette. These are the tools I used...

Sally Hansen "Blackout", Forever21 "Nude", Sally Hansen Salon Effects in leopard, and nail studs.

The Sally Hansen salon effects are really easy to apply and require no dry time...and before you think its a sticker, know that they are made of nail polish materials and to remove them you have to use nail polish remover.

The studs are tiny plastic pieces I purchased from Etsy.com and are super easy to apply...

  1. Using a toothpick, dip the tip in a clear coat nail polish and place a droplet of it onto the area of your nail in which you want to place the stud.
  2. Using the same end of the toothpick, pick up a single stud from the top. The clear coat acts like glue to pick up the stud.
  3. Place the stud on the desired area where you initially placed a droplet of the clear coat.
  4. Seal the studs with a top coat to secure them. They last about 10 days!

Finally, I just painted a couple nails with a solid color to offset the accent nails. So cute, and I got so many compliments for them from my friends and even a bunch of strangers. This took me literally 20 minutes to do and its so great for various occasions. 

News Flash!

This summer, I recently became so obsessed with Flash Tattoos, which are essentially temporary tattoos...but they're metallic in gold and silver! In fact, I included them in my Summer Fashion blog post earlier this summer. They were available at Forever 21 for a while, but since they sold out I was on a mission to find them again, and after some research, I found them. The website I found them on is called flashtat.com and they have many different "collections" of tattoos available. I ordered the Sofia collection, but they're all so beautiful. You can mix and match the different tattoos...I actually think it looks better when you do. I think my next purchase will be from the Zahra collection. Question is, how many more occasions should I plan in order to show these off?! These are so much fun and what I like most...unique! How can you not love them?

These tattoos are from my Sofia collection.
All the pieces that come in one collection.
These are pieces from the Zahra collection.