Sometimes I get nostalgia whenever i’m in my kitchen. I’m reminded of how my grandmother did something that I was doing. After all it’s because of her that I know my way around the kitchen. Cooking is relaxing …almost like yoga, depending on who you ask. My mom will bring home something and I’m taken back to a time in childhood when she would bring food home and it was probably something that I didn’t like but was still curious about. I can’t count how many time my mom would take a heavy sigh as I asked a thousand and one questions about what she was eating, and what it taste like. Then I’d finally ask to try some being the adventurous kid that I was when it came to food. I had no issue asking and then tasting. The Turkey Club was one of those things she’s bring home and before you knew it I was trying to fit my child sized mouth over this 2 layer sandwich.
As I got older Turkey Clubs have been one of my favorite sandwiches. I loved the taste of doughy toasted bread slathered in mayo, the saltiness of crispy bacon, and cold turkey. I personally never liked turkey but on a club it tasted like heaven. In honor of International Bacon Day (August 30) I decided to share one my favorite way to enjoy a turkey club. This club is so delicious and so easy to make. The star of the sandwich is the Old Bay Mayo if offers a delicious flavor to everything.
I really thought my summer would be full of cute outfits and things. I have found myself wearing these denim shorts more and more. I wore them here before. To be honest they give a mom jeans vibe when I wear them. They are beyond comfortable though. They don’t slouch, they don’t ride up when my thigh meat touches. They are basic, but still my favorites. I wore them with a crop top because it’s been cooler around the city lately. My shoes are a cute and comfy and from Marshalls. I still get a lot of stares because I have no shame about wearing crop tops outside in public. They will live.
My blowout held on for awhile after going for a second time. I’m so impressed with the fact that I have a ponytail. Small but it’s there!
My July resolution was to get out more, and have fun. It’s the middle of summer right? This month I explored, ate, and traveled. I started the month off by visiting Rural Society for a Media tasting. I can say that everything there was delicious! If you can get there, please go, delicious Spanish and Italian inspired food from Argentina. I tasted a few things for the first time that night. Sweetbread, and Blood Sausage. I take pride in being adventurous enough to eat that blood sausage. One too many episode of the F-word on BBC.
My next cool event was the Yelp 10 Year anniversary. I’ve developed an unhealthy obsession with my Yelp App. So when Vivy sent me the link for their celebration I knew I had to be there. I applied and found out I was selected to go. The bonus is that it was right in my neighborhood. I have to tell you for those who don’t know, S.E. DC is divided into two. You have your section near the stadium, and the marine barracks that people flood for good food, and the flea market. Then you have home east of the river. Mostly residential a little rough in some areas but overall still rich in history. I grew up here, but I know that for many of my friends visiting me was their first time in the area ever. So when I saw that Yelp decided to host their event at the Anacostia Art Center, I was so ecstatic. I come by this place to visit Vintage and Charmed all the time. I blogged about them here.
Everything was delicious and you can see my review on yelp here. It was my first time having fresh oysters and I must say they are delicious. I’ve only had them fried before. I can’t wait to go somewhere and have them again. I also had the most delicious doughnuts from District doughnut. My favorite was the Key Lime Pie. I love Key Lime anything. We also had a paint bar which was pretty amazing. All of the deets are in my review if you’re interested in the businesses. Vivy, Kristen and I had a blast.
By the way, playing up lippies lately. After eating this one faded but I’m thinking a video of mixing lipsticks for new colors is needed after this.
Next up was getting out with my ladies. My mom and aunt Sherri. We are lazy bums to be totally honest we relax for the most part during the weekend. We cook, eat, and basically lay around with Hulu/Netflix. For the past couple of weekends we’ve been going out for a few hours to explore DC. this time we went to a few museums and we had a great time. I’m a native here, so the thought of walking around the Mall when it’s hot is still crazy to me.
Inside of the Native American History Museum. I really love coming here. My grandmother was apparently part Native American and we have family from the Shinnecock Tribe in New York so it’s always nice to see artifacts and pieces from the tribes.
Randomly feel back in love with my love for comics after a conversation with my uncle. When I was a kid i read these all the time with him, we watched cartoons, we watched star trek and star wars movies all day because we didn’t have cable. It was fun, and today I’m a proud nerd girl because of it. When I found out that Storm got her own series of comics I took my lunch to go across town to start my collection up again. It was nice to take some time to enjoy this. Life is a blur with so much information coming at us. Everything seems to be so negative, wars, fighting, violence, and politics, trust me find something that takes your mind off it.
I also pretty much stalked Ted Bulletin restaurant for the last two weeks. It all started with me and mom popping in for a quick bite. I had this Cobb salad that honestly is so good that I’ve been googling these onions. Fried chicken tenders? Sign me up please!
I ended up coming back because I wanted eggs so bad. This was the breakfast platter. Can I say that this plate tasted like home. It tasted like something my grandmother would have whipped up. Cheesy eggs, hash brown, delicious Italian sausage patties. Ugh, so amazing and good.
The very last time I went which made 3 times in 2 weeks. I got a short rib sandwich because for the next 30 days I’m going meat free. A side of Mac and Cheese and a fine waiter. I was done. I could live at this place if I didn’t think I would come out the door weighing 600 lbs. I’ve never had a bad day there.
508 8th Street SE, Washington, DC 20003 Phone: 202.544.8337
Lastly the exciting wedding that I was waiting for all year. My friend Shella of The Everyday Catwalk was set to wed the love of her life at Oheka Castle in Long Island. I knew this would be a grand affair and indeed it was. Vivy and I took a drive up there and that roadtrip alone was hilarious and music filled. She’s definitely my go to road tripper.
The wedding was amazing. I didn’t catch the bouquet but in the process of trying to catch it. I slapped someone by accident. Everything was gorgeous, the food, the fireworks, dancing, the tons of sweets and drinks. It was so overwhelming and fun at the same time. We also got to visit our boo-thang Waverly who made the big move to New York. She lives off Flatbush which is a big Caribbean community there. I loved it, and I love it every time i go to visit my family from Trinidad. We all met up Blessings Cafe and Herb Shop. It was great, the food was fresh and they seemed to use the best ingredients to make their dishes. There was a limited menu but everything was delish. Check them out here if you’re in Brooklyn. 663 Flatbush Ave. Prospect Lefferts Gardens, NY11225 (basically Brooklyn).
My latest conquest is that i’m going meat free (Pork, Chicken, Beef) …I’m edging off seafood for awhile too but I honestly find it hard to not eat anything. So I ventured out to try a vegan restaurant. Everlasting Life Cafe which is now Evolve cafe is located in Takoma Park. They use tofu and some kind of way cook it in a way that mimics meat so well. I tried the Southern Fried Chick un with Vegan mac and cheese. It was actually really delicious. I’ll be back there to try everything else there. Look them up here on Yelp.
So there’s a recap of what’s been going on in the past month. I must say I was impressed with myself, and I had a ton of fun while getting to know myself, and my friends.
Drive STI was crazy kind enough to let me test drive a Mitsubushi Outlander for a week. There’ something about the smell of a new car that makes you want to drive more. I currently own a 2008 Nissan Versa, and when I say I get zero excitement from driving around the city, I mean it. This SUV was so good, that I went out every night during the week just to drive it around. It’s such a breeze to drive. At first I was intimidated by it’s size. I got in and immediately felt like I wouldn’t be able to park it anywhere. This SUV was fully loaded and had so many cool features like the HD radio, and Fuse hands free system. There was little to complain about with this SUV. I worried about the cost of gas only to find out that it has a Eco feature that conserves gas but made the car feel like it was going slower than other cars around me. I finally got the hang of it and used the ECO feature when I was on the highway. I know it sounds crazy but longer stretches of road caused for steady driving as oppose to city driving.
This SUV had so much space, I’m 5’8 and I need all the leg room! I’m in love with any vehicle that will let me feel like my feet dangle as if i’m in a chair. It makes driving so much easier for me. Less foot cramps, less strain on my driving leg. There was also this amazing feature of dual air/heat settings. One for my side, and other for the passenger. After tinkering with it for awhile I was able to set my to a warmer temp because I’d prefer to feel warm in any situation in life. We didn’t realize until we got in New York city that the Outlander had a sun roof, which I absolutely love.
My favorite part of the SUV was the GPS and Radio. I listen to music everyday for the most part. I need to hear some many genres I never stick to one when I’m listening to streams. You have the option to link up your Apple devices and listen straight from your iPod, you can also link your phone to the cars bluetooth and listen to Pandora or Spotify. If that wasn’t enough Mitsubishi Outlanders come fitted with Sirius radio capabilities. All of those options made my long drive to Long Island bearable and of course having someone to chat with. Our favorite station was the 2K station, and the Blend Station. I found so many artist with that Blend Station.
The built in GPS made everything easy peezy when it came to finding the hotel, gas stations, and food spots. I truly appreciate it because I’m forced to use my cell phone which was ancient and you know the battery was dunzo in about an hour. One of my last errands in this care was to upgrade my cell phone too.
Lets get to the important stuff. When i took my drivers test I practiced parking so much that I was a self proclaimed Parking Queen. I did so well that I didn’t get to show them my driving skills and I was super bummed. I kept thinking “I don’t need this rear camera” when parking. Let me say this, this camera was amazing and so helpful. I manage to park even better then I normally do each time. It also helped big time since my neighborhood is full of kids who are spoiled rotten when it comes to car traffic. We’re always watching out for them because they dart out of nowhere. This camera put me at ease whenever I backed out.
I also love the the Outlander features a number of safety features. Automatic wipers that seeme to sense water on the windshield. Sensors to alert you of lane changes and drifting. You can check out a small clip of how the Outlander has been awarded safety awards.
The Outlander can be converted into three rows or two with a lot of trunk space. The process was easy enough for us to figure out for the drive up to New York. I had more than enough space for my huge Rent the Runway Box that housed my dresses, My overnight, Vivy’s Overnight bag, my shoes. More than enough space. Overall my experience with this SUV was amazing and I was so sad to give it back the Drive STI reps clearly are used to it. I handed over the keys with such a sad look and she just took them and went on her merry way. I’m not in the market for a new car, but I have definitely realized that when I am in the market I can handle a SUV like this. I got used to driving it in 30 minutes essentially.
A quick post on the awesomeness that is Rent the Runway. I know this online rental boutique has been around for awhile. I never checked it out because they didn’t cater to plus women. They do now and it’s amazing. While I’m hoping they get to know a few other brands for us, they saved me this weekend. I was lost all of last week looking for a dress for a very formal wedding I attended this past weekend. I searched all over, Asos, Macys, and Nordstroms. All of which cater to plus woman, still some of my favorites. However, when would I need the gown again? I had no plans on wearing it again if I paid 300 bucks for one day.
So I begin searching on Rent the Runway, which you can join by clicking–> here. I was so confident and excited that I lost 20lbs I got ahead of myself and picked this gorgeous number in a size 16. Well, it didn’t fit, not even close. So that same night, I packed it and sent it back that night since UPS is open much later than USPS. I called up the stylist, nervous because I was to leave Saturday morning and hoped, that something else could be shipped by Friday. Amazingly, I called 40 mins before “last call” and I chose a gorgeous Adrianna Papell dressed called “Luck Be a Lady”. I was worried that the color wasn’t summer enough but it worked out well. It came Friday, and was there to greet me when I came home from work. This time I was smart enough to take advantage of ordering the same dress in a larger size just in case. This 16 was a perfect fit.
Overall, I was in love with this dress, Rent the Runway was amazing in helping me fix my situation so quickly. They also offer a $25.00 off coupon code for first time renter. You can register here and peek around for the next big event you have. They’ve expanded to jewelry, handbags, sunnies, and Bridal accessories including veils, and things. Happy renting!
*THis is not a sponsored post, but signing up through my link will yield me a credit for referrals. *
I have to confess, I’ve never had my hair professionally blown out. I was invited to the new Blo Blow Dry Bar to give it a go. I was so nervous with having one of the kinkiest textures of hair out there, I didn’t think it would go well. I called twice solely to make sure there would be a stylist that knew how to work with my hair. I walked in and it was pretty amazing. I was greeted by Laurie who is a franchise partner. She was so nice and kind enough to show me around while I waited to be seen. I checked out the hair menu and decided on a sleek style. Once I got my hair shampooed with the yummiest smelling Unite products, which I think I might buy on my own. I sat in Patrice’s chair, she sectioned my hair, detangled and got to work. Well, she got to work and the end result was straighten hair that wasn’t burned like my last attempt to blow dry my hair. She flat-ironed my hair and the end result was gorgeous. I’ve been converted and proven wrong. I’m not sure if today was the best day to get this because DC is humid hell. The sky threatened to rain on me all day and then I went to an event where my hair fell. Regardless, I love the end result, nothing a few hair rollers won’t fix tonight.
Excuse my Crazy Eyes
Such a cool experience, and I’ll definitely be back. The service was quick which is the only way I’d come in a hair salon. My past experiences lasted much longer before I decided to wear my hair natural. I couldn’t see myself in the salon for hours like I did in the past. I can’t wait to see how my hair comes out the next day since my curls tend to fall the day I put them in. Blo also offers waxing services, manicures, and pedicures. The last thing I really love is that they are affordable. The one con is that they don’t cut. Which I assume keeps the prices low, you can always get a trim elsewhere but Blo is the place to go to get it it sleek and soft. I’m so obsessed with how soft my hair is.
Blow Blow Dry Bar has two locations in the DC area, one in Dupont and one Gaithersburg.
I know it’s summer and tons of grilled corn recipes are all over the place and corn is being grilled probably at this very moment. I thought I would give it a try myself because I’d never pass the chance to eat corn. This recipe is super simple. You will need to light your grill though. I’m sure you could cheat and grill it on the stove.
You’ll want to make your butter ahead of time, to give it time to firm back up in the fridge.
For the butter-
– 4 tablespoons butter (softened)
– 1 tablespoon honey
– 1 to 2 tablespoons sriracha (more if you like it spicy.
– 1 teaspoon ginger
Directions – Whisk all the ingredients until well combined. Place in small bowl and cover with saran wrap. Place in the fridge to firm back up.
For the Corn-
– 8 ears of corn
-1 tablespoon of salt
Directions- pull back husk of corn without pulling it completely off. Remove the silk between the corn. Pull husk back over corn and soak in a large tub, or your sink (after cleaning) and let the corn soak for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the corn and shake the access water off. Place corn on a medium grill and cover for 20 -25 minutes, rotating the corn every 5-8 minutes. The corn kernels should be tender. Remove the husk. If you want grill marks on your corn place it back on the grill for a few minutes. Serve with the Sriracha butter.
Roasted grapes…wait …hear me out. Lately I’ve been obsessed with cheese and pairing them with different things. I always knew that grapes paired well with cheeses but I always had the idea of roasting them into a sauce or jam?. This wasn’t anything original as I begin to research. The recipe was so simple and perfect for those nights when you’re relaxing alone and watching Netflix. I mean doesn’t want to have an entire cheese plate to themselves on a Friday night? What I really love is a recipe that doesn’t have exact measurements. You can’t mess this up to be honest.
This was my first encounter with roasted grapes. I had nothing to compare them to except what I’ve seen when researching. There are sweet versions of roasted grapes, and savory. In the end, this was an experiment for me. On a scale of 1 to 10 I would give this recipe a 8. It’s different, tart, but pairs so well with my favorite cheeses. I think I’ll try them again with a roasted chicken that I saw. Making roasted grapes is about as easy as it gets, roasting temps of 400 and above for your stove, olive oil, a few springs of herbs and viola. There are a few things that this would go well with. Served on toasted slices of baguette with a smear of goat cheese, a fun addition to a wild rice pilaf, and as a part of a cheese platter when hosting a get together.
1 lb of Red or Green Grapes.
Olive Oil for tossing
2 Sprigs of Lemon Thyme
1 shallot (optional)
1. Preheat your oven to 500.
2. Cut grapes into small bunches. (You can separate them from the stem if you want)
3. Thinly slice shallots, and pull thyme from spring and mix.
4. Dump shallots and thyme on grapes and toss in olive oil.
5. Place the grapes in a roasting pan and roast until grapes they blister checking and stirring ever so often.
6. Let the grapes cool and serve with cheese that pair well with Grapes. (Goat, Brie).
Summer is here and it’s time to polish that gorgeous skin of yours. As someone with eczema it’s really important that I know what’s in my products. I love to exfoliate but I tend to stay away from store bought because of random chemicals. I decided to make my own, a salt based scrub in one of my favorite scents grapefruit. I ended up going really easy on the grapefruit essential oil and a little heavier on fresh lemon and orange zest. Using a salt instead of sugar ensured me that it would preserve the zest for a longer period of time. I made this almost a month ago and it’s still holding up pretty well. Check out the basic recipe below. Think of it as a guide though. I didn’t record measurements because my jar is small and honestly, I didn’t want to base if off this 4 oz jar. I hope you have fun using this DIY Citrus Body Scrub because it sure my skin really soft and smooth and leaves a light scent.
1. Once you have your ingredients together you can start by filling your jar with salt. Leave 1/4 of space for your oils. You can fill it halfway depending on how much oil you want in your jar. I found that I would have preferred more oil in mine but it still works with more salt.
2. Squeeze in almond oil until you see the salt gradually soak it in. I find that putting it in gradually helps.
3. Get your dropper and put in about 6 -15 drops of essential oils depending on how big your jar is and how strong of a scent you want.
4. Zest your citrus and add it on top. Close the lid and gently shake the jar to mix.
I love grilling season and after seeing an episode of that seventies show where the dad had and issue with a woman grilling , I took up grilling. Simply because more girls should grill, it’s really easy and I love the taste. I had two awesome grills, and the past winter ruined them. I grabbed this a portable Weber Grill until I’m able to upgrade. I’ve been using it non-stop since I got it.
I received a few toys to test out on the grill as a part of a Blogger Grill Off. We were to use Cookina, which is a reusable grill accessory that replaces the use of foil. Cookina has a few products that are reusable alternatives to wax paper, and parchment. This product is also great for fat free grilling. You can cook things that sometimes are a pain to grill. Scallops, chicken and fish are so much easier. I learned this weekend that you can’t grill everything on it…like bacon. Um, note. don’t grill a bacon wrapped hot-dogs on these. I had to start fresh, and grill a few pieces of curry chicken which came out great. I also received Colman’s Mustard which is a spicy mustard, it paired well with the Carolina BBQ Sauce that I use in this recipe for Bacon hotdogs.
Preheat your oven to 400. Start out with Beef Sausages. I picked mine up at a Halal Caribbean Market in the city. Any hot-dog/sausage will work fine. I started by wrapping them in Bacon and securing them with toothpicks that have been soaked in water for 10 minutes. Normally I would say throw these on the grill, but this was NOT a good idea bacon fat and hot coals equals fires and a burned ankle. Bake them instead on a lined baking sheet until the bacon is crisp flipping for an even crisp on the other side. Meanwhile, get your Carolina Mustard ready using this recipe and using Colman’s for a spicier taste.
Once your dogs and mustard are finished, you can assemble, after removing the toothpicks. At this point it’s super easy and a layer of flavors. Steam a few buns place the dog inside, top with coleslaw. I cheated with a really basic style coleslaw that I got from the store. and drizzle with the carolina bbq sauce.
Can I toot my own horn for a bit? Um, these came out really well. The Mustard was tangy, spicy and delicious. The dog and the bacon gives it a nice crunch.
My first attempt with Cookina which is now available at Home Depot, wasn’t that great. My second attempt was awesome though. I grilled marinated curry Chicken. I can see that I’ll be doing other proteins like seafood with this. Grilled Lobster tails, shrimp kebabs, and scallops all sound like a great idea. I’m actually really excited to try some Tuna Steaks that I have too. Cookina is really simple, you simply cut it to fit half of your grill without covering the entire grill. It can withstand heat up to 500 degrees. Once you’re done you can wash this, and reuse it later. Recipe is below.
Once I figured out the sheet I was happy with both products and I’m sure I’ll be getting some Coleman’s simply for Carolina Mustard. I’m obsessed with it at the moment. I never realized how much I love mustard until this weekend.
Grilled Curry Chicken
I cup Plain Yogurt
1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1 teaspoon Grated Ginger
A few pinches of Pepper
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons Spicy Curry Powder.
4 Chicken Breast or 8 Chicken Tenderloins or 12 -15 wings chopped into wingettes
Whisk Ingredients in a bowl. Place chicken in a large Ziploc and pour curry mixture in, mixing inside the bag. Marinate for 3 to 4 hours or overnight. Grill until chicken is cooked through but do not overcook or you’ll get a dry breast.
Want more recipes from the Yes You Can Cookoff? Look up the #YesYouCancookina hashtag on Twitter and Instagram!
Do you Grill? What’s your favorite thing to enjoy on the grill?