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Food Journal

Pesto Pappardelle Recipe

pesto pappardelle

I love pasta. More than pizza in fact. Whenever hubby gets pizza cravings, I immediately check what pasta options there are. When my latest Try the World box arrived a few weeks ago, it had products hailing from Italy. As expected, pasta ingredients were in there, so it wasn’t a surprise to find a Pasta recipe inside the box. My hand immediately started itching to cook some delicious pasta.

The recipe was for Pesto Pappardelle. The recipe called for some ciliegine (mini mozzarella balls). I didn’t find any in our supermarket, so I opted to use some mozzarella sticks, which I grated on the pasta before serving.

This recipe serves 2.

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 jar pesto sauce
  • 1 cup of peas
  • 1 package pappardelle
  • 1 cup ciliegine (mini mozzarella balls)

Directions

  1. Heat a large skillet over moderate heat and add butter. When butter is melted, add peas and cook for 2 minutes. Then mix in the jar of pesto sauce.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add package of pappardelle and cook until al dente, for about 4-5 minutes, then drain.
  3. Add the cooked pappardelle to the pesto and toss to coat evenly.
  4. Distribute into 2 serving bowls and add 1 cup of ciliegine (or grated mozzarella). Serve, and enjoy!

TIPS:

  • Save some cooking water to stir into the pesto. It loosens the sauce while helping it adhere to the pasta.
  • For added flavor, use some truffle zest or truffle sauce on the pasta. Don’t use too much as too much truffle can overwhelm any dish.
Food Journal, Life Notes

The Cranes Start to Fly

The First Crane Has Landed
This is the first paper crane for the year (and for this artsy project).

Happy New Year everyone! I was supposed to make this post yesterday, but my husband and I attended a fun and food-filled evening of a get-together with family last night. We went home around midnight and just jumped into bed. We were to well-fed (hehe) and conked out from singing karaoke, talking, and well, eating more.

Oh, and for your information, I don’t do karaoke. I just sing along with everybody else. 😀

This entry is a start of a 1000 crane challenge I imposed on myself for the following reasons:

(1) I want to do something artsy. I felt deprived! I was able to do some artsy stuff this year but I felt there weren’t enough. This year, I want to have a bit of art on a regular basis. Thus, the origami crane thing.

(2) I find romance in the legend of folding 1000 paper cranes. According to the legend:

After being diagnosed with leukemia from the radiation, Sadako spent her time in a hospital folding origami paper cranes in hope of making a thousand of them. She was inspired to do so by the Japanese legend that one who created a thousand origami cranes would be granted a wish. Her wish was simply to live. Source: Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes – Wikipedia

There’s no loss in trying to fold 1000 paper cranes right? Plus, it will be a good art project to have all cranes displayed on a large frame once they’re all done. It can be a good living room decorative.

(3) My paper cranes can become a constant companion in my wanderings, work, chores, etc. They can be my partners in crime in photography.

To no further ado, here are my first paper cranes for the year.

0001. The Crane Has Landed

The First Crane Has Landed
This is the first paper crane for the year (and for this artsy project).

Our 7-ft Christmas tree will possibly be taken down in a week, depending if we feel like it. So a crane has taken refuge on its needles and hanging trinkets, becoming a decorative in itself, colorful and fragile, a small beauty preparing for flight.

0002. It Smells Too Good

Freshly Baked Goods is the Best Scent for Any House
Creamy Red Velvet Cupcakes. I need practice with putting frosting though.

The house smelled of freshly baked cupcakes. Yum! I made Red Velvet Cupcakes that had cream cheese with white chocolate filling and cream cheese frosting. Here is the recipe I used for it.

Red Velvet Cupcakes

Ingredients

  • 1 pkg Duncan Hines® Red Velvet Premium Cake Mix
  • 1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup flaked coconut
  • 1 container Duncan Hines® Creamy Home-Style Cream Cheese Frosting

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease muffin pans or line with paper baking cups.
  2. Prepare batter according to package directions.
  3. Spoon batter into lined muffin cups. In small bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar and egg; mix until smooth. Stir in chocolate chips and coconut.
  4. Spoon about 1 Tbsp cream cheese mixture onto batter of each cupcake.
  5. Bake 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool cupcakes following package directions. Spread cupcakes with frosting.

0003. The First Big Chow of The Year

Chips and salsa
Chips and Salsa before the first Big Chow of the Evening

It’s a fact. Befriend a Filipino family and you discover just how much food they can make (and chow) in every special occasion. We love reunions, get-togethers, fiestas, and the likes. And food is the most important aspect of every occasion. We got an invitation from our Tita for a New Years dinner, and true enough, there was so much food we were invited to take some home. Just check out how much we chowed down.

New Year's Feast
New Year's Feast


New Year's Feast
New Year's Feast
New Year's Feast


And here are family and friends enjoying the food and company.

2017 New Year Dinner

2017 New Year Dinner

And so to my family and friends from other places, I hope you had an awesome 2017!!!

Cheers!

Travel

Frolicking in the Wintry Twin Cities – Minnesota Adventure

Stone Arch Bridge

As a year-ender adventure, my husband and I decided to take our first step to the American soil by visiting hubby’s long-time friend in Minnesota. When we made known to our relatives our trip, the first question was, “What can you find in Minnesota?”. I wondered the same thing myself. Being a total rookie on international travel, Minnesota doesn’t hold any known “go-to” destination compared to places like New York and Las Vegas. So I was open to discoveries despite my hatred passion against winter cold.

We are very thankful to our gracious hosts for opening their home for us to stay during our first day in Minnesota. They also were generous in booking a hotel near the airport, driving us around Twin Cities, and making sure we’re well fed. 😀

Now, let’s start with the photo gallery of our trip to Minnesota.


Mall of America

MOA - Wall of Fame

MOA - Theaters

Mall of America

MOA - Flyover America

Flyover America

Using the latest virtual flight ride technology and special effects such as wind, scents and moving seats, it will feel like you’re really flying. Be wowed as you soar over America’s most iconic landscapes during the 10-minute flight. My only complaint is it was too short. I would love it if the ride was made longer. Check out this attraction, it’s worth it.


Cathedral of St. Paul

Cathedral of Saint Paul

The City of Saint Paul was known as the Pig’s Eye Settlement until in 1841, when the first Catholic priest in the area, Fr. Lucien Galtier, dedicated his log chapel on the bluff to Saint Paul, requesting that the settlement adopt the name as well. The Cathedral of Saint Paul is now a civic landmark and the mother church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Paul and Minneapolis. Source: Webiste

Cathedral of Saint Paul

Cathedral of St. Paul

Cathedral of St. Paul

Cathedral of St. Paul

Cathedral of St. Paul

Cathedral of St. Paul


Minnesota State Capitol Building

MN State Capitol Building

A 1905 masterpiece returned to its original grandeur. Source: Website


Stone Arch Bridge

Stone Arch Bridge

The Stone Arch Bridge is a former railroad bridge crossing the Mississippi River at Saint Anthony Falls in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota. This bridge offers a panoramic view of St Anthony Falls and is recognized as a National Civil Engineering Landmark.


Bentleyville

Billed as America’s Largest Free Walk Through Lighting Display, Bentleyville invites guests to stroll under the glow of over 4 million lights in a 20-acre park situated on the shores of Lake Superior, while enjoying complimentary hot cocoa, cookies, popcorn and roasted marshmallows! Source: Website.

Bentleyville

Bentleyville

Bentleyville

This is the first winter attraction I’ve ever been too. Though the cold froze my fingers, made me shiver to the core, and made me almost want to burn myself over the hot coals, I enjoyed the attraction very much. And I also salute those children sitting on the ground right beside the bonfires, roasting marshmallows casually without any care in the world. I couldn’t sit on the cold ground for a few seconds!


Minneapolis Institute of Art

I love museums especially those related to art. So I was very happy when the hubby and I discovered this attraction. It took us about 3 hours to go about the whole museum, and that was exclusive of a special exhibit on Martin Luther King, which we didn’t have time to go to. MIA is a free, non-profit museum of visual arts from around the world. Ancient to modern.

So please pardon the number of images I took from MIA. I was in art heaven so to speak.

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Minneapolis Institute of Arts


So what can I say about Minnesota? It has its own interwoven flavor of modern and historic culture that is distinctive to its own right that may not be at par with big cities but is charming to stroll in and explore. I would like to go back to it one day if only to discover what other cultural sites would be like in warmer climate. Minnesota will hold a place in my heart as my entryway to the United States. It’s a continuation to a Western travel adventure.