Thursday, September 29, 2011

Green Envy

Can't get enough of Kelly green lately.  Inspired by a recent shirt purchase!
Green envy

Diane von furstenberg dress, $400
Old Navy pea coat, $60
Hunter boots, $125
Mulberry cross body handbag, $1,200
Dries Van Noten bangle bracelet, $405
Kendra Scott green earrings, $58
tokidoki Brillante Glitter Eyeliner Unicorno, $5

Happy Thursday lovelies! 
How are you all this morning?  I'm doing just great.  So it seems fall is finally here in STL.  I'm loving the cool crisp days  that we've been having.   Its my absolutely favorite season to dress for.  Time to break out all of the sweaters, boots, and scarves.   Can you believe that October is only a few days away?  I love everything about October, seeing the leaves change, drinking pumpkin spice latte, picking apples and pumpkins.  I'm hoping to squeeze that next weekend.

What do you all have planned for this weekend?  Whatever it is, I hope you have a fabulous one!
* Don't forget to enter the giveaway.

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Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Orange-Honey Madeleines and 100th Posts Giveaway

orange and honey madeleines-7
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Printable Recipe
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/8 tsp. kosher salt
2 large eggs
1/3 cup of sugar
2 Tbsp. honey
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. finely grated orange zest
5 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted, cooled, plus more for molds
madeleine pan
Sift flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl. Using an electric mixer , beat eggs and sugar until pale yellow and thick, about 3-4 minutes. Beat in honey, vanilla, and orange zest. Carefully fold in dry ingredients. Add melted butter; gently fold into the batter. Press plastic wrap directly onto surface of batter; chill for at least 3 hours or can be made 1 day ahead.
Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 400F. Lightly brush madeleine molds with butter. Drop 1 tablespoon batter into each mold. Bake until golden brown and a tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 8-10 minutes.
Remove pan from oven, invert, and quickly knock madeleines out of pan. Serve with coffee or  tea.
Hi everybody! I cannot believe this is my 100th posts and my blog has hit over 100000 page views! Honestly, I can't believe it! How the heck did that happen? It seems like just a short time ago that I started A cup of Mai.    I am shocked that people are enjoying my blog, it means a lot to me to have found this online community that shares the same food/fashion/decor obsession with me and it has been more than a pleasure interacting with you guys.  Thanks to all my blogger friends and my sister for their wonderful comments and encouragement.  I am already looking forward to my 200th milestone.
In honor of my 100th post I am giving away a little something for both foodie and fashion bloggers.

1. Measuring spoons ( isn't it gorgeous? I have the yellow set)
2. Dior mascara ( I picked it up from Sephora last week and now I'm hooked. Its absolutely gorgeous on)
How To Enter:
1. Follow A cup of Mai publicly via Google Friend Connect(GFC) this is the minimal requirement for an eligible entry.
2. Leave a comment below. I will close the giveaway on Oct 3, 2011 at 11:59 pm and the winner will announce the next day. GOOD LUCK!
*This giveaway is open both domestically and internationally.


Monday, September 26, 2011

Kiss and Tell

Hi Everyone!
Let me tell you I usually don't put on makeup unless I am going out somewhere.  My everyday makeup routine is apply my favorite Aveda moisturizer on top with two coats of mascara and I'm out the door.  Yup, I am a very simple girl!!!

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My favourite beauty products. Pin It

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Black Walls= Sophisticated & Chic

I'm in the process of turning my small guest bedroom into a home office/dressing room.  Right now the walls are bright yellow but I'm seriously considering painting the walls black.  What do you  think? 
 A misconception about painting a room dark is that it will look smaller, when in fact it makes a room look bigger.  Black  is dramatic and oh so darling.
What's your favorite black paint?

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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Chinese Lettuce Wraps

Feel like something fresh, crisp and healthy? Try this lettuce wrap recipe for a quick and easy lunch or appetizer.  You can make this in less than 15 minutes.  I threw this together for dinner lastnight and turned out great, will definitely make again only next time I get boneless chicken breast.
Chinese Lettuce Wraps-3
Printable Recipe
1/4 cup of water
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon canola oil or vegetable oil
1 lb ground chicken breast or boneless chicken breast
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
2 cloves of garlic minced
1tsp minced ginger
1 can of 5 oz diced water chestnuts
1 can of 5 oz sliced bamboo shoot ( diced)
2 stalk scallion ( finely chopped)
pinch red chili-pepper flakes
1 fresh and cold iceberg lettuce head
1 cup of mushrooms chopped
salt and pepper to taste
Lettuce Wrap Dipping Sauce 
1/4 cup soy sauce 
1/8 cup seasoned rice vinegar 
1 tablespoon fresh minced ginger
Chinese Lettuce Wraps-2
In a small bowl, combine water, oyster sauce, soy sauce, lime juice, and sugar mix well and  set aside. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Add garlic and ginger saute until light brown and then  add chicken, using a wooden spoon to break up the meat. Cook until browned, about 10 minutes. Add mushrooms, water chestnuts, bamboo, scallions, and red chili-pepper flakes, and cook 5 minutes. Stir in reserved seasoning mix. Cook until liquid evaporates, about 2 to 3 minutes.  Garnish with herbs and peanuts.
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Monday, September 19, 2011

Candle Light Dinner

On September 8 was my hubby's birthday. I decided to celebrated at home by cooking some of his favourite dishes. Viet food recipes takes only few minutes to cook and I even had extra time to baked him a chocolate cake.  Before he comes home from work, I finished all my cooking and set the table for candle light dinner.  The table setting was pretty simple, I grabbed all the empty jars that I can find in the house and filled with tea light candles.  It turned out quite gorgeous.  Hubby's really enjoyed his birthday dinner!

The Menu
Vietnamese Shaking Beef( Bo Luc Lac)
Tomato fried rice
Chocolate Cake

Make a nice dinner, light a few candles and throw on your favorite play list. You're bound to enjoy it!
Thanks for visiting and have a great week ahead. Pin It

Friday, September 16, 2011

What's in my purse? (RM Mini Mac Clutch)

When I go to work I always lug around a huge tote bag, stuffed with EVERYTHING! so on the weekends I try to travel as light as possible!
Good morning darlings! So happy its finally FRIDAY.  I’m loving this fall weather that is going on right now.  I'm all cozy in my new sweatshirt and jeans and fuzzy socks. The weather can stay like this as long as it wants. 
Have a delightful weekend, sweets! Pin It

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Fall 2011 Must Haves

Thank you, Lauren over at L.A. in the bay for including me in her fall 2011 favorites series.  Check out her blog here.
must have fall 2011-9

J crew dress, $198
H M jumper sweater, £7.99
Tory Burch flat shoes, $195
Zara leather bag, $149
Michele Watches link watch, $1,225
SEPHORA by OPI Urban Ballerina Collection Break A Leg-Warmer!, $9.50

Have a nice day everyone! Pin It

Monday, September 12, 2011

Vietnamese Caramelized Spare Ribs| Suon Ram Man

I prepared this for tonight's dinner.  The pork is marinated in a mixture of garlic, shallot, sugar and soy sauce.  The meat was incredibly tender and having absorbed the sweetness of the coconut juice, it tasted delicious!
Btw, recipe is for the gorgeous AubreyohDang.  Hope you enjoy this Suon Ram Man recipe as much as I do! :)
Vietnamese Caramelized Pork Spare Ribs
Printable Recipe
2 lbs of spare ribs
1 cup of young coconut juice or 1/2 can of coconut soda ( coco rico)
1 cucumber,  thinly sliced (optional)
1 tomato, thinly sliced (optional)
Marinade: 1-2 hours
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon of minced shallot
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3 tablespoons of soy sauce
1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Cut spare ribs in small pieces ( 1.5 inches).  Soak ribs in cold salt water for about 30 minutes and rinse. In a large mixing bowl add ribs, shallot, garlic, black pepper and 2 tablespoons  of soy sauce for at least an hour.
In a large nonstick pan, heat oil add 2 tablespoon of  sugar into pan. Stir sugar unit it caramelizes to a medium brown color.  Add spare ribs and cook for 2 minutes.  Add coconut juice or coconut soda.  Let the meat braised in the sauce for 10-12 minutes on medium heat.  Once browned on all sides. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of soy sauce and stir. Turn the heat up a little and let it cook until the sauce begin to charring the outside of the meat.  Be careful not to let it burn.
Serve with a bowl of white rice. Enjoy!
Vietnamese Caramelized Pork Spare Ribs
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Thursday, September 8, 2011

Happy Birthday, John.

Happy 29th birthday to my best friend and life partner.  Everyday I feel so blessed that I am the one you chose to grow old  with.
You've probably heard that the way to a man's heart is through his stomach.  Cooking for your boyfriend/husband is a great way to show your appreciation for him.  So John, if you're reading this SURPRISE!!! I'm taking a half-day off work to cook you a special dinner.
Here's to celebrating the next 29+ years together...
Your wife
Mai Pin It

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Fall Classics

If money were not an object, these would be perfect for fall.
fall lux wish list

J Crew trench coat, $350
Prada leather tote bag, $1,790
Rebecca Minkoff mini clutch, $195
Tom Ford Lip Color Pink Dusk One Size, $48
Kiehl's Since 1851 Lip Balm #1 Tube/0.5 Oz., $7
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When Life Gives You Lemons...

Here is the first recipe from Pierre Herme’s “Macaron” book this time its for Lemon Macarons.  Yeah, I'm on Macaron "madness" lately, LOL.  What can I say, these Lemon Macaron with Lemon Butter Cream Filling are my latest creation.  Which they were amazing!
Printable Recipe
Ingredients for macaron shells
300g ground almond powder
300g powdered sugar
110g "liquified" egg whites ( placed in a bowl and put in the refrigerator for at least 72 hours before use)
1/2g  yellow golden food coloring ( or 1/4 tsp. coffee)
10g lemon yellow food coloring
300g granulated sugar 
75g mineral water
110 g "liquified" egg whites
Sift powdered sugar and almond powder together.  Add food coloring to the first bowl of "liquified" egg whites and mix.  Pour onto the sugar-almond mixture, without mixing them together.
 Bring water and sugar to a boil, 244F. When the syrup reaches 239F, start beating second batch of egg whites with a stand mixer. Pour syrup onto the whites (which should be at soft peak stage by now), continue beating and wait until mixture is down to 122F before incorporating it into the sugar/almonds mixture.
Pipe mixture onto a parchment paper-covered baking sheet, making round shapes approx. 1 inch in diameter. Space them approximately one-inch apart from one another.
 Tap baking sheet on kitchen counter, and let macaron tops crust for at least 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350F.  Bake tops for 12 minutes, opening oven door twice.  After removing them from the oven, place parchment paper on counter or table.

The Lemon Cream Filling
lemon macarons
You could fill your macarons with regular lemon curd (store bought or homemade).  This lemon buttercream recipe is in both Tartine Bakery cookbook and in the Pierre Herme cookbook.  Its so much better than regular lemon curd. 
For this recipe you will need a blender as well as a good hand held electric mixer, or better a Kitchen Aid.
1 cup superfine sugar
finely grated zest of 3 lemons
3/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice ( about 4-5 lemons)
2 sticks plus 5 tablespoons best unsalted butter, at room temperature and cut into tablespoon-sized lumps
lemonmacarons2 Put the sugar and zest in a large metal bowl that can be fitted into the pan of simmering water.  Off heat, work the sugar and zest together between your fingers until the sugar is moist, grainy and very aromatic. Whisk in the eggs followed by the lemon juice.
Transfer this to a double boiler and cook over simmering water, stirring with the whisk as soon as the mixture feels to the touch. Keep whisking until the mixture is very pale and thick, about 10 minutes. The whisk must leave tracks in the mixture.  Once you get to this point, keep cooking for another few minutes then remove from the heat.
Strain the mixture into the container of a blender or, into a large bowl (that of your stand mixer, if you have one).  Discard the zest.  Let the cream rest at room temperature, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes.
Turn the blender to high and, with the machine going, add about 5 pieces of butter at a time. Once all the butter is incorporated, keep blending until the cream is smooth.
 Transfer to a stand mixer beat on medium speed, using the balloon whisk attachment, for 5 minutes.
 Cover and store for up to 5 days in the fridge.
This recipe makes way more than you need for filling this quantity of macarons. So you can use it to make a lemon (meringue or otherwise) tart, or make more macarons!

Pair up your macaron shells, pipe a circle of the chilled lemon cream onto half the shells and top with a second shell.
Place macarons in the fridge for 24 hours, bringing them back to room temperature for 2 hours before 

I baked these for my brother couple of weeks ago.
Flavors: Pistachio, Raspberry, Mocha, and Chocolate.  Aren't they cute! Pin It

Monday, September 5, 2011

What's your signature fragrance?

Hello, I am still here!  And I plan on posting regularly again for a while at least.  Phew! What a busy few weeks! I haven't really had time to breathe...or blog!   Nevertheless I'm back with a quick post.
I love perfume and thought it would be fun to share my collection.
perfumecollection perfume
1. Chloe
2. Coach
3. Jo Malone English Pear and Freesia
4. Narciso Rodriguez
Which perfume in your collection do you wear the most? My favorite of all of the fragrances is Narciso Rodriguez "for her"  I bought it for my wedding and I haven't stopped using it since.  Definitely my favorite year-round, and I get lots of compliments! perfume Pin It
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