It's raining again. I'm happy that it's cold and raining. I grew up where it's cold, wet, and moist practically every day of the year. After moving to the California Valley, where the temperatures reach three degrees Fahrenheit, I miss the cold.
As the rain began to pour heavily, I curled up on my couch to read "The Host" by Stephenie Meyer. I've been trying to read this book for over a year now, but I just can't seem to get into it. A friend of mine said that it's a bit slow at first, but it gets better. I hope she's right.
I looked at the weather outside and hoped that the rain would somewhat ease from a downpour to a light drizzle so I could sit outside and read. I wanted to take some more photographs, but the rain kept on pouring. Last week's rain was actually better since it wasn't pouring for over an hour. I had some photographs taken last week.
I've wanted to bake pumpkin pie from scratch. I don't want any of that canned stuff this year, so I chopped up the pumpkin Michael's mum gave us for Halloween. I felt bad for chopping it up after she said that they keep until april. But really, who wants halloween decorations during Easter?
As I baked the pumpkin to be pureed later for the filling, I've forgotten how long it takes to for it to soften up and I was running out of time. I was almost tempted to make a break for the pantry and open up a can of that Libby's Pumpkin Puree. I held off and I was thankful I did. The pie turned out scrumptious. Too bad I didn't have a photograph of the finished product.
Black Friday is actually here. For those of you who don't know, Black Friday is this American past time of getting up at the bloody crack of dawn, stand in line in front of the store (some even camp out on Wednesday night) to do some shopping. This involves a lot of running, pushing, and pulling over a product that's been marked down ridiculously low. This year, Michael and I decided to forgo Black Friday shopping. Instead, we woke up at 9:00, had a light breakfast, and made our way to Sears to buy my camera and some tools. The next stop was Ulta to purchase my Bare Escentuals make-up.
So...You'd think that after banishing an immortal and a fallen High Priestess, saving Stark's life, bitting Heath, getting a headache from Erik, and almost dying, Zoey Redbird would catch a break. Sadly, a break is not in the House of Night school forecast for the High Priestess in training and her gang. Juggling three guys is anything but a stress reliever, especially when one of them is a sexy Warrior who is so into protecting Zoey that he can sense her emotions. Speaking of stress, the dark force lurking in the tunnels under the Tulsa Depot is spreading, and Zoey is beginning to believe Stevie Rae could be responsible for a lot more than a group of misfit red fledgling. Aphrodite's visions warn Zoey to stay away from Kalona and his dark allure, but it also shows Zoey who has the power to stop the evil immortal. Soon it becomes obvious that Zoey has no choice. If she doesn't go to Kalona he will exact a fiery vengeance on those closest to her. Will Zoey have the courage to chance losing her life, her heart, and her soul?
Stars: 5 out of 10
My Review: I'm really disappointed in this long awaited installment of the House of Night series. They've put so much hype about how Zoey will deal with Kalona in the last book Hunted. This book mainly touched on Zoey's dreams about Kalona and her sordid love affair with Heath, Erik, and Stark. The only thing worth reading was Stevie Rae and the Raven Mocker as well as Stevie Rae's imprint with Aphrodite. Although it covered bits about Kalona's history and Zoey's role as modern A-ya, it failed to capture my interest. In the end, "Tempted" left most readers including myself wanting more substance; more action; more inner story. The authors made a hasty ending with a cliff hanger. It was as if they decided to stop writing. They even had the audacity to put "The End for Now" at the end of the book. I wouldn't recommend purchasing the book. It wasn't worth the sale price of $10 I paid at Target. I do advise reading the book so that you're not 10% lost when the next one comes out. I suggest borrowing it from the library or from someone who purchased the book. Don't buy it. Spend that money at Sbux and buy a peppermint mocha.
The park and the little lake in Folsom is actually beautiful this time of year. I'm surprised with my camera phone as well. I took some really good photographs. The sun was somewhat peeking out and I could feel my hands still getting cold. So after taking the last photograph, I curled up on the bed of Michael's truck with a blanket, a large back pillow, and read my book.
I finally finished the "Time Traeler's Wife." I really love the romance between Claire and Henry. I was fascinated with it since I saw the movie trailer, so I went out and bought the book. I figured, I can get the book finished in a week and watch the film. Unfortunately, summer ended and life began. Now that I finished the book, I can't wait until the movie comes out on DVD. I especially love the ending (I'm not going to give it away)... it was very romantic.
One of my favourite parts of the book...
It's dark now and I am very tired. I love you, always. Time is nothing.
The Time Traveler's Wife (2009) - Official Trailer #1 [HD]
After a nice long day at the park, I went home to try a new cookie recipe. Instead of making the traditional chocolate chip cookie, I decided to substitute the chocolate chips for peppermint bark. The first batch came out, but the next one really sucked. It stuck to the pan and the dozen went straight to the ice cream topping jar. The next batch, I sprayed the pan with PAM, so the melted peppermint wont stick. It worked, but I think instead of using peppermint bark the next time, I'll use Andes mints.
It's amazing how once the month of November arrives, the christmas cups come out. I was at school way too early in the morning and was feeling rather crappy, so I headed over to the coffee shop to buy me a soy chai, but instead, got the peppermint latte.
It's the Autumn season and the weather begins to get a little chilly. When this weather hits, it gives me the excuse to fire up my ovens and do a bit of holiday baking and the first order were the Lava Cakes.
Michael loves lava cakes and I say this because whilst we were on a Caribbean cruise, he's ordered the dessert every night with vanilla ice cream. Most people are intimidated or possibly scared of making lava cakes since it resembles a souffle. It is actually easy, and I will provide you step-by-step instructions in making these awesome cakes!
If you're trying this recipe for the first time, don't make it on the day you have guests. Make it for your family first. If you make a mistake, you don't run the risk of embarrassing yourself at your own dinner party.
Molten Lava Cakes
2 ounces bitter sweet chocolate
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
1/2 cup unsalted butter
2 large whole eggs
2 large egg yolks
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup cake flour
Begin making the centers by melting 2 ounces of chocolate with the cream over a double broiler. If you do not have a double broiler, you can melt this on top of your rice cooker or place a ceramic or microwave-safe dish on top of a pot with boiling water. Whisk the chocolate and the cream gently to blend it together until there are no lumps left.
Refrigerate the melted chocolate for about two hours or until firm. With a cookie scooper, scoop out six small round balls of chocolate and place them back in the refrigerator in you need them.
Preheat the oven at 400F and spray six-4 ounce ramekins or custard cups with non-stick cooking spray. If you don't have cooking spray, butter and or vegetable oil to grease your cups.
To make the cakes, melt four ounces of chocolate and the butter, stirring until the chocolate is smooth. Make sure the chocolate has no lumps or else your cake batter will have lumps as well.
With an electric mixer, whisk the whole eggs, egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla on high speed for about five minutes or until thick and light. Fold the melted chocolate and the flour into the egg mixture just until combined. Do not stir in the chocolate and the flour. The point of folding is to allow you to mix the the two without deflating all the bubbles that you whipped into the eggs. These air bubbles are vital to keeping your dessert light and airy.
Spoon the batter into the ramekins and place the chocolate ball in the middle of each ramekin.
Bake the cake for about 15 minutes or until it is firm to the touch. Remove it from the oven and let it sit for about five minutes. You can serve this dish right in the ramekin or on a plate by running a small sharp knife around the inside of each ramekin and placing it upside-down on a plate. Serve with vanilla ice cream, whip cream, with a side of berries.
Note: It is normal for the molten lava cake center to collapse because they are soft in the center from being the ganache and being under baked.
After putting some gruelling hours in Scuba at Sport Chalet this morning, I've got a hankering for some good sushi and since the Japanese Grocery store is close to my house, we stopped by to get some stuff for a Japanese Food Night.
Mike was craving a Tsunomono salad that we had at Oshima Sushi just a couple of months ago. It's composed of tuna and another type of fish. He made the salad... it was yummy!
See the chunks of tuna and to make it more healthier, Mike added some Tofu to the mix as well. He got his salad, but I wanted spicy tuna and the sauce for the spicy tuna calls for Japanese Mayo and chili. I don't have Japanese Mayo so, I went and bought Japanese mayo. It's really funny how it's packaged and what's more crazy is that it has to be consumed in 30 days after opening.