Sunday, July 31, 2011

And Da Winnah Is . . .

Wait, first I wanna tell you about this candy.  It's flavored milk candy.  I looooove it.  I just bought it at Marukai . . . remember when I was killing time when my windshield was being worked on?  It was $1.89 a bag. It comes in strawberry,  . . .


chocolate,  . . .

and vanilla.  But my favorite is this melon. 

I decided to share a bit of my candy with the winner of my Girl with the Dragon Tattoo giveaway.  Can you see the name hidden under the candy?   It's . . .

Bobbi!!!  Hoo hoo Bobbi, you finally won one. . . and it's a good one!   E-mail me . . . maybe I can drop off your prize or meet you somewhere.


For those of you waiting for the results of my Girl with the Dragon Tattoo giveaway . . . sorry . . . Wendell left early this morning for softball practice/game(s), so I gotta wait until later this afternoon for him to draw a name.  I'll post the winning name tonight . . . I promise.

In the meantime, here is Lo.  We first met up at Kahala Beach yesterday but it was jam packed with people and Lo couldn't find any parking.  Plus, I had arrived earlier and saw that the tide was so high that there was hardly any good beach area to use for shots. With time and light running out on us, Lo suggested that we head to KCC. It turned out to be a great suggestion.   

We mostly hung around the chapel area.  Lo was such a trooper.  I asked her to sit on dried up leaves and dirt, wet grass and rocks, and she did so without hesitation  . . . even though she was wearing a white outfit.   Thank you so much Lo.  You were great.  I think we totally got the look I was going for.









Saturday, July 30, 2011

Wendell's Pork with Black Bean Sauce

I'm gonna take a nap right after this.  Feel sleepy, but wanted to make sure I posted this recipe.  Wendell made this last night, and boy was it good.  I loved putting all that black bean sauce on my rice.  He adapted a recipe he found in Hawaii's Best Local Dishes by Jean Watanabe Hee.

I also wanna tell you what happened today.  Me and Wendell woke up early to take my car in to Toyota's Servco Auto Windward in Kaneohe. There is some kind of floor mat/accelerator recall thing that we needed to take care of.  One of our conversations during our two-hour wait involved a warning light that's been lit on my dashboard for the past week or so.  It's warning me that at least one of my tires is low on air.  I had asked Wendell to take care of it . . . because that's what husbands are for . . .  but he never got around to doing it.

Anyway, while we were having breakfast at Denny's, Wendell wondered aloud if the service guys were gonna take care of the air in the tires.  I said, "No way. Do you think that someone would take the initiative to do something extra? "  He said, "Definitely."  I said, "I doubt it."

So, when the car was done, I got into the car and right away looked at the dashboard.  Guess what . . . the warning light was off.  Someone took the initiative. 


3 1/2 pounds pork butt, cubed
Flour for coating
Oil for browning

Black bean mixture:
2 tbs rinsed and mashed black beans
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbs shoyu
2 tbs oyster sauce
1 tbs sugar

Broth mixture:
1 can chicken broth (12 oz)
1 c water
1 cube chicken bouillon

Dredge meat in flour lightly and brown in oil.  Add black bean mixture while browning. Add broth mixture and bring to boil.  Stir in 1/4 c cornstarch mixed with 1/4 c water to thicken.  Cover and simmer for 45 minutes.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Ace Auto Glass

I am rarely a passenger in my own car, but I was just that this past weekend while running errands with Wendell.  That's how I got to see the crack in my windshield.   At first I thought (and hoped) that it was just some rubbish stuck on the glass.  But alas, no such luck.  When I got out of the car and rubbed my finger on it the "rubbish" didn't come off.  Crap.

I taped a dime next to it so that you can see the size of the crack.

With me, when choosing a place to take care of stuff like this, convenience is at the top of my list.  I'm willing to forego "cheapest" for "most convenient".  Going out to Kalihi or Dillingham is not convenient.  So my first call went to Richard's Auto Glass on Young Street.  A guy named Roland answered my call and was so so so so nice.  He said that they could drop me off at work and pick me up, and he even gave me his cell number.  Unfortunately, they don't do patch work and could only replace my whole windshield.  I was so tempted until CQ said, "So you're willing to replace your WHOLE windshield because you can get a ride?"   Okay, okay she had a point. 

So I called Ace Auto Glass on Waimanu Street.  Karen answered my call and was really nice and helpful.  She said that if the crack was small enough they could repair it and that it would cost $65.

So I dropped off my car at a little after 8 a.m. this morning, and about an hour later it was done.  They did a really good job.  From the outside you can barely see it any more.

You can still see a little bit of it from the inside, but I'm pretty confident that it'll hold up for a long time.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Didi's Big Batch Prune-Apricot Mui

You drooling.



6 packages (12 oz.) pitted prunes
4 packages (6 oz.) dried apricots
1 package (8 oz.) wet li-hing-mui seeds
1 package (4 oz.) dried lemon strips
1 1/2 c. Real lemon juice
1 box (16 oz.) brown sugar
3 TB Hawaiian salt
2 TB Chinese five spice
3 TB Jack Daniels whiskey
1/4 c. li-hing-mui powder

In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients, mixing well. Let stand 2 days at room temperature. Makes 1 gallon.

Note from Didi:
Ps-I added one bag "Li Hing Fuji Apple" from Wallmart .... soosoo ono

Monday, July 25, 2011

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

It's a murder mystery about the disappearance of a young girl from one of the wealthiest families in Sweden.  A story so intriguing that listening to this audio CD made me not mind being stuck in traffic.   It made me miss the turn into Leslie's street, driving a whole block past, leaving me wondering wheredahell I was.   It made me linger in my parked car long after I'd gotten home, making Kona wonder why it was taking me so long to come into the house.  

16 1/2 hours on 13 CDs.  Me, Les and Landon are done listening to it . . . so it could be yours . . . if you win . . .  my latest GIVEAWAY!!! 


Just leave a comment here or e-mail me at So simple.  No be shame.   Your name will be put into a container and pulled this Sunday, July  31.   Anybody is eligible.  Maybe I should put a disclaimer here:   Pay attention to your driving while listening to the CD.  If you get into an accident, not my fault.   If you get lost, might be my fault.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Didi's Ume Dressing

When Didi gave me a bottle of her ume dressing, she warned me that it might be a bit sour.  It wasn't at all. It was perfect . . . not too sour nor too vinegary (I don't like vinegary). 


Here's her recipe.  Isn't she the greatest for sharing!!  Love you Didi!!!  Mwa, mwa, mwa!

2 TB ume pulp, from 6 large umeboshi*, mashed well
¼ c. rice vinegar
2 TB mirin
2 TB water*
4 tsp sugar
1 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. garlic powder
¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/4 tsp. salt
2/3 c. salad oil

* After removing pulp from umeboshi, place seeds in water and rub any remaining pulp off seeds. Place all ingredients in a dressing bottle and shake shake shake. Optional to place all ingredients in a food processor and puree. Makes approximately 1 cup.


Had to share my attempt at trying to get a good shot of the bottle indoors.  Neva work.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Pretty Beeezzzaaarr

I've been trying to figure out what to post tonight, and all I can think about is this weird thing that happened today.  I'm still scratching my head about it.

At 5 o'clock Lorna and Runa said their goodbyes and left the office.  A few minutes later they were back and asked me to go downstairs with them.  They said that somebody might be needing help, but they weren't sure.  I quickly got up from my seat and while heading out the door yelled for CQ to join us.

While going down the stairs the one flight to the first floor Lorna and Runa started to explain that they had seen one of the workers from the travel agency lying on the ground in their office.  Sure enough as we approached the glass door I could see her on the ground lying on top of some scattered paper.  She was facing the door, and looked as if she had fainted.  The door was locked, so I crouched down and pounded on the door.  I noticed that her eyes were partly open.  She blinked several times.   I yelled, "Are you okay?" No response.  I yelled again.  I think CQ started yelling too.  Her lips started moving.  It was as if she wanted to say something but couldn't.  I imagined her mouthing, "Help me. I can't move." or something like that. Thinking that she might've had a stroke, I reached into my pocket, grabbed my cell phone and started to dial 911.  Before I could complete the call, she suddenly stood up.

She then walked to the door, unlocked it, opened it and said, "Yes?" in a tone which seemed to imply, "Can't you see we're closed?"  I told her that we saw her lying on the ground and were worried that something was wrong.  I repeatedly asked her if she was okay, and she insisted that she was, and that she was just waiting for her brother.  She then asked the strangest thing.  She asked how we were able to see her.   ??????   I said that she was lying on the ground in front of a glass door. She seemed puzzled, so I told her to come outside and look through the door herself, which she did.  She repeated that she was waiting for her brother and that she was eating . . . and she started chewing. I didn't see any food around.  Was the food in her mouth all this time?

We lingered . . . reluctant to leave.  She seemed okay . . . she wasn't slurring or limping or anything . . . but it was all just so weird.  After awhile, after making doubly sure that she was okay, we parted . . . Lorna and Runa homeward bound and me and CQ back upstairs.   Me and CQ can be quite animated at times so you can imagine our conversation when we got back to the office.  Wait til we see Runa and Lorna tomorrow.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Brandee's European Adventure - Part 3

Brandee calls this episode:

Lost in Translation Part 3: Week 2 July 11 – July 13

The week in Yssingeux, France was all about the cakes. We did amazing cakes that I cannot explain the amount of work that goes into a piece of cake. I myself was amazed at the work I had done in the past 3 days. Our Chef is amazing, and the best part is when we put our artistic talent on the design of the cake. If its chocolate swirls, chocolate patterns, airbrushing the top, decorating with different fruits, or just pouring ganache all over.

 Every Friday we display our work of art with the rest of the class and the other students from the other classes. You get to showcase what you made for the week. This was a short week, due to the fact that in France on the 14th of July they celebrate Bastille Day which is a national holiday. We had class up to Wednesday. Thursday and Friday was a Holiday.

So in the weeks before Niki, Kate, Karin and I had decided since there was no class for the next 4 days and we don’t have to be back to school until Monday morning at 6 am we were going to head to the south of France to the “French Riviera” and go to Nice and Cannes for the 4 day holiday.

Here are some of the picture of what we did in class, along with the Beginner class that made bread all week, and The Perfecting Class that made Valines (small little desserts in edible cups), and of course we made different styles of cakes.

In the class this week was cakes, everything has a French name for it, but I will explain it in English. There is a picture of my classmates with me in the middle along with our chef Jocelyn and the man who runs the program. He is the man next to chef wearing the vest with French flag on his lapel which stands for “M.O.F” Un des Meilleurs Ouvriers de France. It’s a highly praised award here in France. It is the equivalent to an Olympic Gold Metal or the Super Bowl Ring. (Google it and look it up)

Hope you enjoy the pictures this week. Next installment we are off the “The French Riviera” for Bastille Holiday!!

Saint Domingo - Passion Fruit cream, White chocolate mousse with a white chocolate glace with coconut

Millefeuille Praline - layered puff pastry with Praline cream and crispy crepe batter on the edge

La Valenta: A Raspberry Bombe with Chiboust cream, on top a sponge cake with fresh strawberry and chocolate handmade squares

Fleur damande fraises - like a strawberry short cake with pink airbrush frosting

Cremeaux caramel chocolate - almond cake with apples, caramel and a chocolate ganache

Picture of my classmates, chef Jocelyn and the Head of the program the M.O.F.

Next set of pictures in the other class and the desserts and bread class. 

Caroline, Maria Louisa and Victor - Bread week for them

Perfecting class did Valines desserts which is basically small dessert in edible chocolate boxes or cups

Perfecting class's cake

Our class's buffet of cakes

Next is my weekend in Nice and Cannes for Bastille Day in the French Riviera.  I am off the the "French Riviera".



Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Dd's Limoncello

In response to a special request, here's Didi's Limoncello recipe. She said that it'll be in her Dd's Table Talk III Cookbook. I didn't even know there was gonna be a III.  Thanks Didi!


10 lemons
1 (750-ml) bottle vodka

Simple Syrup:
3 1/2 cups water
2 1/2 cups sugar

Using a vegetable peeler, remove the peel from the lemons in long strips (reserve the lemons for another use). Using a small sharp knife, remove any white pith from the peels; discard the pith. Place peels in a 2-quart container with vodka, seal or cover with plastic wrap. Allow to steep 4 days at room temperature.

For syrup; stir the water and sugar in a large saucepan over medium heat until the sugar dissolves, about 5 minutes. Cool completely. Pour syrup into vodka mixture. Cover and let stand at room temperature overnight. Strain mixture through a mesh strainer. Discard the peels. Transfer limoncello to bottles. Seal the bottles and refrigerate until cold, at least 4 hours and up to 1 month. Makes 7 cups

Monday, July 18, 2011

Want Some Meyer Lemon Juice?

Yosh gave me 4 bags of Meyer lemons and one bag of Hawaiian lemons!!   I squeezed about 1 1/2 bags so far and got about 2 1/2 quarts of juice.  I think that means that I'm gonna get over a gallon of juice.  Is that right?   Seems like a whole lot of juice, yah?


I got the 2 quarts in the freezer . . . one is for CQ.  So does anybody want the other one?  You can make The Best Ever Lemonade or the even better Lemonade Iced Tea.  I'll give it to the first person who answers.  Only thing is you gotta pick it up.  If there're more of you who want I'll put you on a list (in order of response) and I'll contact you if and when I have more juice to spare.  Yosh said that he'll probably have more lemons in a week or so.   If you're a stranger, I'll meet you in front of Keeaumoku Walmart and I'm gonna call Erick to be my bodyguard. 


Sunday, July 17, 2011


I just know you  all want to see my latest beanies!!   Hahahaha!

I wanted to show off my flower made with ribbon.  You just glue one end in the center then twist the ribbon around and around.   So neat!

Here's my monkey wearing a beanie.  Should I leave the button eyes?  I kinda hate them, but people always say, "Where're the eyes?"   Let me know.  I wanna take um off so badly.

My Hello Kitty!  Made with Leslie's leftover yarn.  IMG_4615

Susie's Family

I'm almost pau with the calendar I'm doing for my working place!  Coworker's Susie's family is one of the last that I needed to get, so I went to Hau'ula today to see if I could catch the WHOLE FAMILY!   Hooo hooo! Things went so smoothly, it was pretty unbelievable.    Thanks for all your help gang!  See you next month at Logan's birthday party.










Saturday, July 16, 2011

Wendell's Beef Stew

OMG people . . . I think I'm getting sick AGAIN.  My body is all achy and my throat is scratchy. I was just sick about 3 months ago.  Don't you develop an immunity kinda thing after you've been sick so that you're good for at least a year or so after that?  I hate being sick.

Anyway, you should see the cute beanies I just made!  I made a monkey-wearing-a-beanie beanie and a Hello Kitty beanie.  Soooooo cute.  But too dark to take pictures now.   I'll show you tomorrow.   In the meantime, here's Wendell's beef stew . . . very, very ono. 


Season 2 lbs of stew meat and 1 lb of short ribs (with bone) with salt and pepper. Dust with flour and brown in some oil with one chopped onion.  

Add 4 cups of beef broth and 1 14 oz can of tomato sauce.  Simmer for 1 hour.

Add potatoes, carrots, celery and long beans.  Cook for another 20 minutes.  Thicken with flour/water.  Season with garlic salt.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

3D Printer and 2D Photography

3D Printer
Thanks Didi!

2D Photography
Thanks Kevin!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Jalna's Garlic Edamame

I like Side Street Inn's Garlic Edamame, so I looked for the recipe online and found this Star Bulletin recipe


But you know how I'm too lazy to go through too much trouble when I cook, so I did it my lazy-man way and used these ingredients instead of following the recipe exactly.

I melted one WHOLE blocka butta with a whole lotta chopped up garlic.

Then added about 2 tbs of this awesome Meyer lemon-flavored olive oil .

Not sure how much of this Yoshida sauce I used . . . 1/4 cup?  1/2 cup?

Add about 2 pounds of soy beans and stir around.  Turned out yummy.   I took this to Mano's birthday celebration at Ho'oulu 'Aina and it was a hit!