Local Nooks: Revolution Roasters

I found myself a happy, colorful little nook here in Oceanside. As I mentioned in my previous post, I’ve been hankering to try the lavender honey latte at a nearby coffee shop called Revolution Roasters. I finally made it happen!  While I was at it, I splurged on avocado toast and a sort of grapefruit pound cake. And when I say “splurged,” I am not kidding. That “light lunch” cost me about $18 (not including tip!)

Shop local they said… it will be fun, they said.

I am joking. I do love shopping local, and gosh darn it – I was hungry. I also made a new friend and sat next to an adorable golden retriever. Totally worth it!

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Yum! And you can order just about anything gluten-free!

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Darling little boutique next to Revolution Roasters

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My kind of wall art!

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Colorful array of shops and yoga studios, next to the decidedly hipster Revolution Roasters

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Took a slight detour on my way home to my favorite perch overlooking the Pacific

Girls Trip to Singapore

IMG_2981When it comes to leisure travel, this year has been remarkably slow. Chuck’s schedule is itinerant, and we haven’t been able to lock anything down. One night, after imbibing a few spirits, I spoke with girl friends about taking a short getaway trip of our own – somewhere the guys wouldn’t miss. Singapore, perhaps? I knew Chuck wasn’t interested in Singapore, but it would offer all the essentials for a cosmopolitan girls trip – food, shopping, dancing, and shining lights! It would provide a glitzy adventure to balance our laid back lives in Okinawa…

My friend Sally agreed to book the trip with me, and we set out on our long weekend adventure full of energy, laughter, and hope. Never mind that we ended it hungover and exhausted, despite our best intentions to avoid such a scenario… but I guess there are some lessons we will just never learn! Continue reading

An Easter Update

It’s hard to believe that Chuck and I will hit our 2-year mark in Okinawa in just a couple of weeks.  One year left sounds like both a lot of time, and no time at all. Much has been done, and yet there is still so much to do!

I didn’t mean for this blog to turn into a travelogue, in which I only update when I go somewhere exciting. Even if no one ever reads it, I want to look back on it myself and remember all the adventures I had, big and small. So, here’s a quick re-cap of what we’ve been up to since our Thai Holiday, in reverse chronological order.

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Culinary Delight #13: Citrus Salmon Salad

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I was in the mood for something light and summery, so I threw a bunch of random things together and it ended up a delicious (and mostly healthy) burst of flavor. It helped that I picked up fresh salmon from the Japanese supermarket… soooo yummy!

Anyway, I was really bad about measuring exact quantities. I guesstimated based on what I thought would taste the best and what I wanted to dominate (mostly citrus.) In a small mixing bowl, I combined the following ingredients in order of decreasing amounts:

– Grapefruit juice

– Lemon juice

– Olive oil

– Soy sauce

– Minced garlic

I soaked the salmon chunks in the bowl for about 10 minutes, then sprinkled them with lemon pepper and baked at 375 for 20 minutes. They were perfectly flaky and juicy!

Meanwhile, I laid out a bed of organic spring greens and topped with

– Sliced peppers (red and yellow)

– Chopped tomato

– Mandarin oranges (the only thing out of a can!)

– Feta cheese

I forked the salmon into flakes and added to the pile of veggies and cheese, then topped lightly with the remaining marinade mixture and cracked pepper.

Seriously… flavor explosion!! Chuck and I both loved it 🙂

Culinary Delight #11: Ginger-Tomato Salmon with Coconut Jasmine Rice

#tbt to last night’s dinner! Ginger-tomato salmon with coconut jasmine rice. I think it’s a keeper!

Coconut jasmine rice (Start making this first):

1 cup jasmine rice (though I had basmati rice handy and used that instead)
1 1/4 cups chicken stock
3/4 cup coconut milk
1 tsp sesame oil (I used olive oil)
1/4 cup pre-sliced green onions
1/4 tsp sea salt

Place the rice, stock, coconut milk, and oil into a saucepan, and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer 18-20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender. Fluff with a fork, then stir in the salt and green onions.

GInger-tomato salmon

2 cloves garlic (I just threw in a heaping teaspoon of minced garlic)
2 tsp ginger paste
1 cup chicken stock
1 cup coconut milk
1 1/2 lb salmon fillets, skin removed
1 (14.5 oz) can petite diced tomatoes, drained
1/4 cup pre-sliced green onions
Salt & pepper to taste

Preheat a large saute pan on medium-high for 2-3 minutes. Place garlic, ginger, stock, and coconut milk in pan and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, season salmon on both sides with salt and pepper.

Add tomatoes and salmon to the sauce, then reduce heat to medium-low. Cook 8-10 minutes, basting fish with sauce occasionally, or until the salmon is 145 degrees (or opaque and separates easily). Place salmon and sauce on rice, then sprinkle with green onions and serve!

I Heart Carbs

Chuck and I have found a new obsession with making our own dough! This has led to delicious pizzas and pies (with the exception of the baked brie… I just used crescent rolls for that.)

Clockwise from top left: Spinach, gouda, feta, mozzarella, deep dish pizza | Apple pie | Traditional margherita deep dish pizza | Baked brie with blackberry preserves

Carbs… it’s what’s for dinner!