Monday, August 17, 2009

Flickr Five: Eggs

1. >:( -.-; ):< by yellowrubberduck
2. Eggbert is in Trouble... by ReRe
3. Eggbert - Intro by ReRe
4. Egg Wars by darkside_1
5. Eggs by featherdusting

OM-G & SD1000

I finally decided to go back to photography again - not for any commercial gain, not to compete with anyone, just because I love it and miss it. I still don't have a DSLR, but I have my little digital camera, a Canon SD1000. It's pretty well-worn at this point, because I take it with me everywhere and I love it to death. I even have a little mini tripod that is perfect for it, and makes it much easier to take pictures at night.

I mentioned before that I re-bonded with my old film camera the other day - I present to you a pristine model (although this one isn't mine) of the Olympus OM-G, a.k.a. the OM-20.

My camera was my mom's in the 80s, and I think can be specifically dated to 1983 (older than me!). It's one of the amateur models, but it still takes pretty rad pictures when I tell it to. The great thing is that there's a good line of lenses (Olympus Zuiko lenses) that people are still selling and for relatively cheap, so if I decided I want more lenses they're out there.

I'm excited to take some color photos with the camera, but I do have a fondness for digital when it helps me make something like this:

Sydney - Edinburgh Castle Pub, San Francisco, CA. July 11th 2009.

More photos will come soon :)

p.s. the last post was my 100th post! Go me!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Foodzie Triplet: Peach Jam

7x7 Magazine posted about Foodzie a few days ago, and a friend also sent me the link to this awesome site. Basically, the concept is that it's a DIY, small-goods site like Etsy, except that it focuses on food products! I live in an area privileged enough to stock many of the featured suppliers' products in my local grocery store, but for people who live in distant areas, this site is amazing.

I am a little iffy on the idea of buying things from far away, even if they're coming from individual producers - the product still has to be trucked to my door, regardless of the fact that it's not coming from a corporate/conglomerate farm. But I still think this is a step in the right direction - if people can convince their local communities that they want individualized products enough to order out of state for them, maybe more communities will begin producing their own jams and chocolates and sauces and actually trying to feed their people. It's an idealistic view, and not a very realistic hope, but I can dream :)

Here are three different sellers of peach jam (and variations):

1. Sunchowder's Emporia Jams (Longwood, Florida). Peach Jam Gift Basket: 3 8-oz sampler jars with Peach Lavender, Peach Cobbler, and Peach Habañero. $35 for the gift basket, which includes a ceramic plate, napkin, and spreader.

2. Terra Verde Farms (Rimrock, Arizona). Peach-Blackberry Preserves: 9.6-oz jar of peach-blackberry, with a hint of lemon and minimal sugar. $7 per jar.

3. Frog Hollow (Brentwood, California). Organic Apricot, Nectarine and Peach Conserves: 3 8-oz jars, 1/each, tree-ripened summer fruit jame with lots of texture. $21/set of 3.

All images taken from the Foodzie pages for the respective products, not trying to steal any images only publicize.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

About A Week of Saturdays

I began this blog a few years ago, with the intention of creating a sort of Tumblr-like photostream of my own photographs. Ever since, the site has evolved considerably, and the only constant has seemed to be that the posts themselves are about my own life and the things that interest me while I'm living in the SF Bay Area (Berkeley specifically).

I've posted photographs of my various outings, snaps of street art, reviews of various eateries and shops, commentary on design and culture, fun and/or artistic pictures of my friends, food I've eaten at restaurants or made at home, and even a window into what school tends to be like for me. I'd like to think that the common factor in all these posts is that the subjects they address matter to me in some way, regardless of what anyone else might think or want.

When I was pondering a title for the blog, nothing seemed to work particularly - everything was too cliche or too smarmy for my own good or too irrelevant. But "A Week of Saturdays" seemed to capture what I think this blog is actually about. Being an undergraduate has never proven easy for me, and yet it depresses me to think of how many people reserve pursuit of adventures, hobbies, and pastimes for the weekends, thinking that their job or their academic life precludes any kind of "indulgence" on weekdays. Well, I refuse to buy that - even at the height of finals, even when I am stressing about a paper or perhaps when I am simply on vacation, I've made an effort to choose to "indulge" my desire for culture, for social experiences, and for things that make me happy. Food, music, art, photography, fashion and friends are all things that continually pique my interest and keep me sane under the pressure of academic demands.

So, at the risk of sounding totally cliché, that's the blog: a metaphorical whole week of Saturdays, with nothing and yet the possibility of everything to do.


You can also find me on Yelp and Twitter.

Flickr Five: Hummingbirds

I've been on the internet all morning, trying to kick start my brain in terms of photography - I realized I had forgotten how much I love my film camera (Olympus OM-G, a.k.a. OM-20, 1983). It was a gift from my dad, and belonged to my mom. It's so gorgeous outside today, and all I want to do is go to Looking Glass Photo and spend a whole bunch of money and get enough film and accessories to last me a lifetime! But alas, I have to go to the library and write a paper. Oh, the woes of summer classes. In celebration of summer and in mourning of my sad restriction from enjoying it today, here are five summery pictures, yoinked from Flickr:

1. tanager55
2. {lemony}
3. ~Thái~
4. Momba
5. Kimclan

I guess a disclaimer to protect myself: I am not try to steal these images or make any money off of them, only to re-post them because they are beautiful and make me happy. If links are incorrect or you wish to have an image removed on the basis of copyright or something, don't hesitate to ask :)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Leftovers Sandwich

When I have people over for dinner, more often than not I'll make this tomato-cream pasta recipe. I usually have most of the ingredients (except for cream) on hand already in my pantry, it's easy to make a lot of it at fairly little expense, and it's totally delicious. Probably not something you want to be eating on a daily basis, since there's cream and butter in it, but in moderation or on occasion it's very filling and satisfying. (Note: I add frozen peas, for color and a little extra green-vegetable kick. And I like it with cappellini/angel hair pasta.)

Of course, since I tend to make a whole ton of it to feed my hungry guests, I sometimes end up with extra sauce and don't really know what to do with it except put it on more pasta. The last time I made it, however, I figured that I had nearly an entire loaf of bread I needed to eat, and a chicken breast left over from another dinner. Now, the sauce is pretty thick, since I use diced tomatoes not puree, so VOILA! Sandwich!

All right, so my food photog skillz need some work. Whatever. This was just the leftover sauce with sliced baked chicken breast on whole wheat bread. Yum!

Love at First Bite, North Berkeley, CA

Wow, I said I was going to be better about this blog, and look - it's been more than a month since I posted last! I guess I've just been gathering lots of new material to post about. Expect a bio/about post to get put up soon - I'll be linking it permanently in the navigation on the right but I think it's a good touch-base post, just for me. That'll get posted as soon as I edit it!

Now, onto today: exactly one month ago today, Jesse and I went to Love at First Bite, a delicious little cupcakery located on Walnut between Cedar and Vine Street in North Berkeley. The place is a little difficult to find since they're actually tucked behind another shop or two on a deck/patio, but the removal from the street is really lovely and a refreshing break. Additional access is by stairs on Vine.

We had just had a feast from Cheeseboard Collective (not the pizza, actually, but some of their excellent cheese assortment and some baguette pieces) and were ready for some dessert. Our choices were the Red Velvet and Bunny Love cupcakes. According to the website, the former is a "very red red velvet cupcake made with Guittard cocoa, topped with seductive cream cheese frosting." It was indeed delicious and very moist/light/fresh, as well as adorable:

The second cupcake, Bunny Love, is described as a "carrot cupcake with pecans and pineapple, frosted with classic cream cheese frosting." Seriously, ours was so good, even better than the Red Velvet cupcake, that I didn't even get a chance to get a picture of it before it got snarfed.

Love at First Bite (Yelp reviews here) has seriously taken cupcake-baking to new heights - again according to their website, they use "the finest, premium ingredients in our baked goods - Nielsen-Massey Madagascar and Mexican vanillas, Guittard, Schokinag, DeZaan and Callebaut chocolates and cocoa, premium Saigon cinnamon, Philadelphia cream cheese, and real butter, eggs, cream and milk from local dairies." And in addition to serving 12-15 different flavors of cupcakes daily, you can also find cookies, cakes, and cute baking/serving accessories for your own cupcake party. Seriously, my next birthday? Totally going to have a cupcake party.

Check here for ordering/package deal options, visit the store Tues-Sat 10-6 and Sun 11-5 (closed Mon), and contact them for more information if needed.