Archive for July, 2017

Water Works

July 31, 2017

Our country is known for a having an abundant, free flowing water system that is deemed safe to drink. In light of the water crisis happening in Flint, Michigan, where the water has been unusable for several years, it isn’t unreasonable to wonder what contaminants might be lurking in your tap.

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has a database of contaminants in area water sources that can be searched by zipcode. Once the information is entered, it will show exactly what, if any toxins are in your water.

 

Bottled isn’talways better. We try to bypass drinking bottled water wherever possible, both to avoid the harmful chemicals in the plastic bottles and to limit our waste output. Be aware that many bottled waters come from the same source as tap water, and may not provide you with better quality than your faucet. The best option is to use a filter to purify your water and carry it in a reusable water bottle so that you always have some onhand when you need it.

 

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Kitchen Tips Tuesday: Getting Under Our Skin

July 25, 2017

 

I am mesmerized by all of those short little cooking videos. The ones where the entire recipe gets prepared and cooked in about 30 seconds. Today, as I was watching one from Food + Wine, showing New York restaurant Made Nice‘s chef prepping their chickens for roasting I had an epiphany.

It is fairly common for recipes to suggest rubbing some butter or tucking herbs under the skin of poultry before roasting to let the flavors really soak in, crisp the skin, and keep the meat moist. The problem is, it isn’t so easy to really get under there and get the mixture well dispersed. When I saw this chef using a pastry bag filled with herb infused butter to get under the skin, I had a major “aha!” moment.

The technique involved filling a pastry bag fitted with a large tip with very soft herb butter. The chef inserted the tip under the skin at the farthest point, releasing the contents as he slowly pulled the bag out, and then quickly massaged the area to disperse the herb butter evenly under the skin. It also allowed him to get into the harder to reach spots, such as the legs and wings.

This genius trick could totally change my poultry roasting game!  I can’t wait to try it with my roasted garlic and mustard herb butter.

Thanks Made Nice! 

Photo: Glasshouse Images

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Liquid Lipstick

July 11, 2017

This morning, I put on makeup and applied lipstick at 8:30 am. It’s 5:30, and I have had lunch, a couple of cups of tea and a few meetings, and my lipstick is still on. Liquid lipstick, where have you been all my life?

I am pretty lazy when it comes to makeup. Most days, I workout and work from home, so I just wash and go. An occasional smear of tinted lip treatment keeps me from chewing on my lips when the hills get hard in spin class. When I go out in public, I apply makeup, and then pretty much forget about for the rest of the day. That perfected version of myself seems to be gone the next time I glance in a mirror, with my makeup being almost invisable, barring the unsightly smudge of mascara under my eyes from time to time.

Last summer, I got a goodie bag of samples at Sephora, and one of the items was a Kat Von D liquid lipstick in a very dark, goth looking burgundy. I pretty much ignored it, since I figured the shade was a bit intense for me, and would make my lips look even thinner than they are. One day, on a whim, I tried it on for kicks, and had a revelation; it was so bold that it actually highlighted my lips, and more importantly, it was almost impossible to get off! The color was in fact a bit too much for me, but the formulation was a keeper.

Liquid lipsticks are not exactly new, but they are new to me. Kylie Jenner certainly didn’t invent them, but her lip kits may have had a major role in introducing the idea to the masses. I hadn’t given them a minute’s thought, until I tried a sample, and I am now a convert.

I noticed it was hard to get a perfect application on my lips, and if I missed, there was no easy way to correct it. The key to liquid lipstick is to use a pencil to create an outline, and then use the lipstick wand to fill it in. Once you have it applied the way you want it, you need to wait a minute to let it dry. If you smear it, you might walk around looking like a crazy clown for the entire day. Oil based makeup remover on a Q-tip would take care of it, but it would also take everything around it off as well, requiring a complete do-over; something few of us have the time to deal with.  It is a bit dryer feeling than a regular lipstick, and if you like sheen, you need to add a little gloss on top.

I am currently using a very reasonably priced Sephora brand product, which is more pigmented than what I usually use, but way less intense in hue than the Kat Von D sample. All the major brands seem to have their own version, and color options range from nude to almost black.

Sometimes, I opt for a more natural look, but on the days that I am wearing makeup, and want it to last, long wearing liquid lipstick is my new go to.

Have you tried it yet?

 

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