What is lifestyle? Learn till old, live till old

cooking/baking, heathy lifestyle, crafts/diy, tips/new findings

Alternative to carving pumpkin: mandarin orange

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I have a thing about not wasting food. Carving pumpkin and place for a couple of days guarantee creating more garbage. (Or, who will want to eat it?) Last night, I saw a post from a fellow blogger that has a perfect solution. Why not try drawing faces to mandarin oranges. After halloween, you can still eat the meat of the fruit.

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Cream of mushroom with chickpeas on spaghetti squash

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Trying to create some low carb and vegetarian lunch without taking too much time to prepare. This is what’s in my lunch box today: Cream of mushroom with chickpeas on spaghetti squash. Highly recommended to people like me who wants to feel full without dieting by eating carrot sticks. 🙂

Recipe & instructions:

1. Cut spaghetti squash lengthwise in half. Season squash with salt and pepper and olive oil. Bake in 450F oven until strands separate. Can be stored in fridge for a couple of days.

2. Precooked in rice cooker (or stovetop) soaked chickpeas with garlic powder, salt, pepper, turmeric, ground cumin, ground coriander, chili powder. Can be used for other recipe (hummus, pilaf, salad, roasted or just eat it on its own.)

3. Saute minced garlic (2 cloves), 200g of mushroom slices and cooked chickpeas (3/4 cup) in a frying pan on medium heat.

4. Add in 1 can of cream of mushroom and wait until boil. Keep stirring to prevent burning. Add dry white wine to the sauce and cook until alcohol smell evaporated. Season if needed.

5. Serve sauce over spaghetti squash.

Enjoy!

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Turkey vegetable soup with freshly made ramen

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After Thanksgiving, I took the turkey bones to make a stock out of it. What I want to feature is the freshly made ramen from the Phillips noodle/pasta maker. From flour and water to ramen in 10 min.

Turkey stock:
Turkey bones (entire turkey)
Spring of thyme
Green part of leek
Top of the stalk of Lemongrass

Turkey vegetable soup:
Turkey stock
Carrot
Celery
Onion
Garlic
Spinach
Mushroom
Tomato
Turkey meat

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Reimagine the electric kettle

Miito_USP

A way to heat up water with energy saving idea in mind.

How many times have you filled up your kettle but only pour 1 glass of hot water to make yourself a cup of tea? What happens to the rest of the water in the kettle? It turns cool over time and when you need another cup of tea, you have to reheat it up. I came across this innovative way to heat up your water. Worth checking their website. I don’t think it is available to be purchased yet.

http://miito.de/

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Fallen off the diet wagon and need to bounce back!

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After 2 weeks of wedding preparation and having relatives in town, I have gain 5 pounds. Although 5 pounds is not a lot, but without doing anything about it, that number will only increase.

Here’s my plan:

1. Eat veggie soup & salad for lunch or dinner. Other choices are stirfry with mostly vegetables.

2. Plan my snack around 100 calories: veggie with yogurt dip, cooked apples, fruit, laughing cow cheese wedge with 2 rice cake, 14 almonds, hard boil egg, 3 crackers, low fat yogurt

3. Morning shake: whey powder, skim milk/water, frozen fruit, ice

4. Eat small meal/snack every 3 hours or whenever I feel hungry

5. Have enough rest so exercise is possible.

I will post my updates in the next few weeks!

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Unbelievable Paper Toy Transformer

I came across this very interesting paper crafty project that requires very little material and time to make. The product you get is pretty amazing. Great to do with the little ones.

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Sick of good old apple?

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How do you usually eat an apple? Most people just pick it up and bite into it. Is there another to enjoy apple.

Due to my regime of eating these days, I prepare many little snacks around 100 calories throughout the day. I have a very weird habit, I like my apple peeled and cored before eating. Having a knife around and needing to wash up became very annoying. During my prep for thanksgiving, I thought of a perfect solution.

Apple pie without the crust. To make it more healthier, I simply just heat up the apple (golden delious), put cinnamon and vanilla and a little bit of sugar. Apple gives its sweetness once soften. Sugar should be added in very small amount.To add a little liquid, I also put some homemade fruit dry wine. It smells just like apple pie but minus the calories.

Give it a shot when you want to change things up.

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Stress free thanksgiving dinner 2014 tips

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I hosted a 10 ppl dinner tonight. It was an absolute success. Not only food was well received, it was one of my stress free dinner needed to be remembered.
Tip 1: plan the menu 1 week in advance.
Tip 2: buy what is in season. They are usually on sale too.
Tip 3: decide the dishes based on what is on hand and can be pre made. Have a good idea what’s in your fridge and pantry.
Tip 4: revised the menu as much as you want. Keep in mind you can tweak as you go. Also, one hour before dinner serving time is going to be busy and usually can’t accomplish a lot. Have dishes that can be done ahead of time incase oven and stove top are used for other things needed.
Tip 5: separate your shopping trip. You don’t have to pick everything at once the weekend before. Something like fresh fruit and salad greens can be left to be brought a day before to ensure freshness.
Tip 6: write down a check list what needs to be done when. Ex. Frozen turkey needs to be defrost, vegetable can be pre cut, etc
Tip 7: follow list closely. Always have list accessible anywhere. I used a microsoft program called Onenote.
Enjoy! Sit down and have a sip of wine whenever possible.

Menu 2014

Finger food:
Platter: Cracker, sausage, carrot sticks, dill pickles, green grapes, dill yogurt dip, cheeseball

Appetizer:
1. Kale Salad with cranberry pumpkin seed
2. Butternut squash & roasted garlic soup
3. Tempera shrimp with Zucchini Fritters with dill yogurt sauce

Meat: Roasted Turkey with rosemary/thyme/garlic and onion

Sides:
1. Simple roasted acorn squash
2. Butter dill carrot
3. Caramelized onion with brussel sprout
4. Mashed potatoes
5. Asian style Onion & eggplant stir fry
6. Wild mushroom and hot itailian sausage stuffing
7. Turkey Gravy

Dessert:
1. Crustless Pumpkin pie in ramekin
2. Cinnamon Apple  crepes with ice cream and chocolate sauce & roasted almond
3. Frozen grape with chocolate sauce drizzled

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Cinnamon apple crepe

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For thanksgiving dinner this year, I want to make an apple dessert. I want a lighter dessert and low in carbs. No pie, no crumble, and no cake. I decided an egg base dessert which have much less flour in it. Crepe is very versatile. I can pre-make the crepes and the filling and ask the guest which topping they wanted. For example, I put toasted almond, drizzled with chocolate sauce, and also added a scoop of icecream in it too. Totally a successful finish to a thanksgiving dinner.

Recipes from allrecipes.com but revised me:
4 eggs
1 1/3 cup milk
2 tbsp melted butter
1 cup all purpose flour
2 tbsp white sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla

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Old book pages wreath

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This wreath cost me $2 in total. I made it for christmas last year. Still being hung on my living room wall since it doesn’t scream christmas only.

Here’s what you need:
1. Find a book that you don’t care for. Otherwise, try thrift store or local library old book.
2. Find some cardboard to be used as the base.
3. Have a stapler, tape, and glue gun on hand?
4. Leftover christmas ornaments you don’t really need? Or visit a dollarstore to get something shiny. That’s where I spent $1.50. The rest of my budget was the glue gun stick.

That’s it.
Oh, and full instruction in video format on you tube. So fortunate to have technology these days.

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