The Horse Says, “Neeeeeiiiigh!”: The Before Pictures

So, yesterday, I laid down the master plan: remodel kitchen, replace floor. Many asked, how bad could it be? And that’s a fair question. I’ve lived with it for the greater part of three years now, and I’ve somehow managed to publish a food blog based on stuff I presumably turned out of this kitchen. To explain, it might be helpful if I went into a little history first.

Much like the Animaniacs, we live in a water tower. Well, under one at least. We quite literally live on the roof of a 21-story building. So, the thing about water towers: They’re not sizable structures. They’re tall, but they’re not wide. So, being the structure directly below said water tower, our apartment is a 480-square foot studio. The person who owned this place before us used it as a pied-de-terre, and my husband bought it before we really even met or started dating. So, this was meant to be a bachelor pad, plain and simple. So why stay here? Well, here’s our view. It’s also a really, really fun place to live, kids and all.

The view from our West-facing terrace.  Not too shabby, no?

The view from our West-facing terrace. Not too shabby, no?


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New Additions

Greetings from the World’s Laziest Food Blogger! My husband protests against this title, because he asserts that, with taking care of three children, and staying home with a 20-month-old toddler all day, I am, in fact, quite busy. Oh, did I mention I’m about half way through growing another one (She’s due at the end of April)? So, we thought, what better time than now to remodel our kitchen and apartment? Yes, welcome to my life.

Truth be told, the remodel didn’t come up all of a sudden. In fact, this was planned about four years ago, and was supposed to be finished before Max was born. I put my foot down and said that remodeling was difficult enough, and I would NOT be remodeling with a baby around. I must have accidentally put my foot down in my mouth.

The problem with remodeling a New York City apartment, of course, is going through a coop board, which our apartment happens to have. For those of you not familiar with coop boards, think of them as neighborhood associations, only much more in your business and with about 50% more control issues. Each contractor must be approved and provide insurance certificates dated for the date of work; only, nobody knows the date of work, because nobody’s yet been approved, and nobody knows how long that will take. Also, it costs money every time the contractor requests the insurance certificate. That’s the bulk of the reason why it’s taken the greater part of four years to get anything done, and many of the contractors who initially want to do the work, end up not wanting to do it because of the board members they must deal with in the process. Then the process begins again.

We finally got the ball rolling by getting our cabinets picked out and arranged. That’s a huge step, actually. Now, I need to pick out appliances so that they can start building the cabinets. Yes, they really do need to make it that complicated. So, after calling a bunch of people and getting pretty much nowhere with many, I settled on a company in Coney Island to get me my appliances, The Buzz Electronics. I spoke to Shaya, and he was extremely helpful in helping me get what I need, and also giving me Black Friday prices to boot! Definitely talk to them if you’re in my area. After we get a delivery date for the cabinets, we will be ordering our new floors. Oy to the vay. Really. Needless to say, I’m not looking forward to installation day.

At any rate, I thought it might be fun to blog about this experience. Also, I’d like to hear about yours! But go easy on the horror stories…I have a weak heart at this point! LOL

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Product Review: Zico Chocolate Flavored Coconut Water

Chocolate flavored coconut water?

Chocolate flavored coconut water?

I am writing this right now while eating two slices of pizza drizzled with a healthy dose of sriracha; right after spending an hour moving my body in accordance to the torturous ways of Pilates. Luckily, this review isn’t about the effectiveness of Pilates in improving one’s eating habits. Rather, it’s all about the Zico coconut water.

In Thailand, my grandmother used to smack open coconuts to give me the juice inside. Luckily, it’s become a lot easier to enjoy coconut water recently. All I have to do is twist the cap. That said, I can’t say a lot about coconut water. They pretty much all taste the same to me from brand to brand. My recommendation is to simply get the one thats most available, and appeals to your sensibilities. I’ve tried the different flavors different brands had to offer, to include the ones by Zico. I guess I’m a purist in that I like my coconut water unadulterated. Why mess with perfection, right? Continue reading

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The Not Challah. Garlic Knot Challah.

My Garlic Not Challah is garlic bread from the inside out!

My Garlic Not Challah is garlic bread from the inside out!

Do you ever get a craving for something, and then realize that you then must have it at all costs? Me too. Lucky me, the thing I wanted didn’t exactly exist yet. Not that I went out and invented something new and different, mind you, but it presented itself as an idea with many possibilities. I love garlic knots. I needed a challah for Shabbat. Can you say two things that work great together?

The thing about garlic knots is that they’re usually made from left over pizza dough (one does, after all, acquire these doughy knots of happiness from pizza parlors), and pizza dough tends to like being baked at high temperatures. I wanted something more like a diner roll, and just a little bit of chewiness to it. And lots of garlic. Lots. Continue reading

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Kosher Paad Thai. No kidding.

The secret to good Paad Thai is getting the sauce just right.

The secret to good Paad Thai is getting the sauce just right.

Possibly one of the most well known and beloved Thai dishes among Westerners is Paad Thai, and really, what’s not to love? Hot, greasy, spicy noodles flung at you from a street cart promises all kinds of gastronomic adventure. And it delivers. Even bad Paad Thai is not bad. Well, generally speaking.

So what’s the secret to perfecting this divine heap of pasta? It sounds kind of obvious, but it’s mostly in the sauce. The “real” Thai dishes (that is, excluding the curries, heavily influenced from India and the Middle East) are simplicity incarnate, and it should come as no surprise that Paad Thai sauce is no exception. The ingredients are simple, but balancing them is an art; and this is what distinguishes good Paad Thai from great Paad Thai.

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Product Review: Trader Joe’s Coconut Oil Spray, and a Basic Blintz Recipe

This spray coconut oil won't disappoint, even if you don't like the taste of coconut!

This spray coconut oil won’t disappoint, even if you don’t like the taste of coconut!

A couple of weeks ago, I came across this little gem at my local Trader Joe’s: spray coconut oil. Friends of this blog know how much I love all things coconut, so it shouldn’t surprise any of you that I checked out with a can in my shopping cart. Continue reading

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A Giveaway: You’re In The Spotlight!

Hens on a Henhouse LadderMost of the Thai food I know how to make centers around chicken. This might have to do with the fact that my grandparents had a chicken farm in Thailand. “Free range,” and “organic,” weren’t buzz words back then. In fact, if you asked them whether or not their chickens were organic or free range, they’d probably look at you funny and simply conclude that it was part of the craziness of being an American. How else would you raise chickens, if not on a farm like theirs, and who on earth ever thought to give a chicken a shot? In fact, I doubt they’d ever even seen a sick chicken. Continue reading

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