Girl's Night Out w/ Puccini
I had been working non-stop for weeks and hadn't gone out with the girls for over three months! A night out was in order and what better way to spend it with a neighbor nearby? So off we went to an even and then I suggested a dance club, but stumbled upon this place instead. When we got there it was pretty empty as per usual on a weekday night in Hawaii. But after an hour or so, members of the Honolulu Symphony came and word got around that I was an opera singer, so you can guess the rest. From my seat, I sang Puccini's infamous, O mio babbino caro" from the opera, "Gianni Schicchi", with the symphony violinist. It was heaven to sing from a passionate place--my soul and spirit. Flowers followed along with drinks. I have the drinks away, but I kept the flower:) Pix of the violinist to follow soon.
Plus-size Fashion Model?
This beautiful model does not look 'plus-size' to me, just healthy. I think it's a great response to all the anorexia and bulimia cases which have plagued the fashion industry and consumers for 30 plus years. Balance is the key. A beautiful heart inside will make you glow any day, no matter what your size may be.
"Nomnom Persian"-Week 1
Qualifier: The purpose of this "Nonnom Persian" blog is to help those like me who are skilled at many many things-except cooking in the kitchen. Part of it has been from laziness, part of it has been due to having an easy convenience of take-out food, part of it is because I live with a roommate (Cooking for 1 or for 2 tonight?) & part of it is due to my apprehension of messing up any dish if I accidentally burn it to a scorch, etc. Get the idea? Thus this blog is going to be very detailed to help novices like me in the kitchen & to prove that it's never too late to learn a new skill. It's also tailored for singles or for two to avoid waste with too many leftovers.
Chicken Tagine and Tah-Dig Rice
Living in Hawaii is beautiful, but like mostly everywhere - has its' good and bad points. Must I echoe its' good points? I am sure you would agree with me that the palm trees , ocean, sky, and beaches are just some of the empirical reasons why tourists flock to these islands daily. However, one of the bad points is convenience for things are not always easy. Case in point? Persian restaurants. (You know, where THE Persian Empire used to be that is now modern day Iran..Confused? Persian/Iranian will be used interchangeably). Oh, sure, there are delicious Greek & Indian restaurants, but not one authentic Persian restaurant, that is opened for dinner (frown). There is also this saffron spice - a main ingredient for the Persian food flair-& I can't seem to find it...yet.
Thus, I looked in my fridge & decided to take matters into my own hands with what I could find in the kitchen. I enjoyed cooking this recipe so much, that I decided to try a new Persian dish every week & blog here about the process, including the results.
Keep in mind that I am not a master chef, but would like to enjoy a home cooked meal of my making, once a week to start. It may seem like nothing, but with my schedule, it's daunting that I could commit to once a week at all with my full plate. Thus, below is the modulated recipe for (drum roll, please)...
Chicken Tagine and Tah-dig Rice:
Ingredients & Directions:
Add layer of vegetable cooking oil to bottom of rice cooker
Add 3 cups of washed rice (any rice, except brown)
Add 4 cups of water (This will vary depending on your rice cooker)
Add saffron spice or tumeric spice if saffron is not available
Add garlic & onion powder
Add layer of olive oil to top of rice
Turn on rice cooker and let it cook!
Now you're ready to prepare the Chicken Tagine:
2 boneless/skinless chicken breasts or thighs
1/2 onion, sliced & diced into tiny, tiny pieces
1 clove of garlic chopped (or just use garlic powder)
1 skinless potato, sliced & diced into tiny, tiny pieces
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup of water
1/2 cup of vegetable cooking oil
3 dashes of sugar
Sautee (This means in a medium sized saucepan with sides, add the vegetable cooking oil, then turn it on medium high) and throw in the onion and garlic
Turn the stove top up to high heat
Add the chicken.
Brown each side for 4 minutes (making it 8 minutes total)
Turn stove top down to low heat
Sprinkle with slat and pepper
Sprinkle with 3 dashes of sugar
Cover saucepan with saucepan & cover for 35-40 minutes.
*Turn chicken over at the 20 minute mark just once*
After 40 minutes, add tomatoes
**Your Tah-dig is now done. Turn off rice cooker and let it sit, covered, in room temperature.**
Turn the heat up on the stove top to a low-medium setting
Cover for 10-15 more minutes
After 10-15 minutes is up, making it 45-55 minutes total since stove top was turned on-check the chicken with a fork utensil to make sure it's cooked all the way through. Chicken should be a white/cream color-not pink!
Voila! Ready to eat and enjoy.
*I cooked this at 10 o'clock in the morning before I was off to appointments all day & didn't return home until 7pm that night to enjoy it. The leftovers the next day & the next were just as tasty!*
Try it for yourself & let me know what you think in the
"Ask Lani" section of this website.
Stay tuned for next week's Persian Dish in Hawaii Project, Modulated by Lani (smile).
~Nomnom your way to Persian flairs in the kitchen this week~
Living the dash. It may have had something to do with my selection of a movie last night to unwind from a hectic month of errands, ministry, performances, private teaching, or the mundane routine
of life-but I had a very real and vivid dream last night about the future..not sure if this was from God and I will have to pray about that later. But I just have to type out this dream to try and make sense of what it meant.
I had a dream that I was with an ex-boyfriend and then all of a sudden, in a blink of an eye, I was in a cemetery where I was planning to bury my mother in the same grave as my father. In the dream, she had passed away. In real life, my father passed away in 1991 and his grave is seldom visited until recently-by me. I have been making plans to insure that my mom's plot was purchased years ago and that she will be buried next to him or with him. My mom is very young. She is 70 years old, but has the energy and zest of a 16 year old!! This is the result of many years of speaking life and youth based on the Psalms, to her body, on a daily basis. She is an example to me of growing better, not bitter, with age because of the intimate time of worship spent at Jesus Christ's feet.
Back to my dream. At the cemetery, I knew that the eldest of my two brothers, Tony, had been buried. My last brother, Greg, had just been laid to rest, in my dream, on top of Tony. I wasn't informed of this and I ordered the grave to be dug so that I could get Greg to open his piercing blue eyes-the eyes similar to Tony, passed down from my father's eyes. When I opened his eyes, they were black. In my dream, I refused to admit he was in fact, dead. I had known in this dream that my older and only sister, Kim, had passed away as well. The cause of their early deaths were unknown to me. I just remember that I had this recurring thought in my dream-"If only".."If only I had visited them more, called them more. Even tho they rarely reached out to me (which is true in real life), I could have at least looked past that to reach out to them.
Then I awoke. Back to real life. I immediately thought that my days were numbered here. Our days are numbered. Am I truly making an effort to cultivate the DNA of my family? Currently, my mother lives on the other side of this island I'm on-Lately, it seems that I only see her during ministry activities. To think that losing my father at an early age would cause me to treasure each day with my her..this I do. But bills need to be paid and I work very hard just to responsibly pay for them. On my off days, I am too tired to make the effort to see them or visit them. I must change this way of thinking- now.
You Expire on ../../....
Have you ever wondered why is it that we know when a carton of milk expires or a certain bottle of medication or even our car registration--but why oh why do we not know when our bodies expire on this earth? I believe God does not want us to know the time of our expiration because then we would have no reason to increase our faith and our character. Character grows in the unknown, hidden cocoon places of our lives before we can emerge as butterflies with His love abounding in the world. Still-this is a question I will continue to ask My Father in Heaven when I get there..amongst other questions. I have His Shalom/Complete Peace as I rest in the questions. Let me add this: Tho our days are numbered, God's will for our lives is to live a full life, not to be cut short in any way. Thus, don't live your life in such a way that is foolish and would lead to an early death of your doing. Let me put it this way~
Job 5:26,27 says~ “You shall come to your grave in a FULL AGE, like as a shock of corn in his season. Lo this, we have SEARCHED IT, so it is; hear it and know it, FOR YOUR GOOD.”
GOD. The embraceable God..many have God so backwards..thinking He causes destruction and is distant..They couldn't be more wrong. He longs for intimacy with us and fellowship..He longs to love us and embrace us. He longs to turn our pain into joy..oh if only our stubborn hearts would drop our pride and let Him love us so..
LOVE. Many songs, books, and journals have written about this mysterious thing called LOVE. What is it to you? To me it is a life preserver, beautiful, nourishing, pure, passionate, exotic, and mysterious. It is our mirror on earth. We reap what we sow. We harvest what was planted by us. That's all for now..your thoughts?
This is a blog about nothing major-just everyday normal things. I will blog at least once a month (smile).