Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Project 333

I first heard about Project 333 a few months ago and it's popped up on my radar with some regularity ever since.  Usually accompanied by raves of how participating in this changed lives (for the better).  The idea originated here and basically, what you do is choose 33 items (not including workout clothes or underwear/socks, but does include shoes/accessories/handbags) and you can only wear items from this list for the next 3 months.  On paper I seem like the perfect candidate for this project because let's face it: 1) my wardrobe is small, 2) it is composed almost entirely of neutrals and 3) I already wear the same things over and over anyway.  For some reason though, something held me back.  Until now of course!  Summer is a good time for me to try this out because I don't have to wear a billion layers just to keep warm.  And it turns out, I was only able to identify 29 items for my list, which I have stuck to since July 1st.  Here it is (UPDATE: ADDED SOME ITEMS TO INCREASE TOTAL TO 32 33):

Tops (9 8 total)
3 luxe t-shirts from Banana Republic (black, navy, gray) - these are awesome
Short sleeve black top (pleated bib front)
3/4 sleeve black knit shirt
Long sleeve gray knit shirt
Elbow-sleeved white collared button down shirt
Purple sleeveless tank (added)
Blue collared long sleeve button down blouse (added)

Sweaters (2 total)
Gray cardigan
Black cardigan

Bottoms (5 total)
Pleated gray skirt
Black pencil skirt
Blue skinny jeans
2 pairs dark blue skinny jeans

Dresses (3 total)
Black sleeveless dress
Black strappy dress
Navy short sleeve dress

Outerwear and jackets (4 total)
Trench coat
Black blazer
Gray blazer
Navy blazer

Shoes and Accessories (11 total)
Black thong sandals
Gold sandals
Black ballet flats (added)
Black leather belt (added)
Black leather handbag
Brown leather handbag
Black sunglasses
Straw hat
Cubic zirconia stud earrings
Pearl stud earrings
Black and gold watch

Since I still have 4 slots, I give myself leeway to add to this list as the weeks wear on.  I'm curious if I'll feel really held back by this challenge or if I'll get sick of my clothes at all.  I think not, because I wear this stuff all the time anyway, but we'll see!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Casual Dinner In With Kindle

I've been largely too busy/traveling hectically the last month or so and have therefore not been cooking beyond the basics and certainly not trying any new recipes.  I finally had a couple of weeks of being solidly at home though and took the opportunity of 4th of July to take myself to Fubonn to replenish my Asian groceries.  While there I picked up some Korean ribs and one google search and several hours later, I had something very delicious on my hands.  I also made a batch of kimchi and I have to say there is not much better than Korean ribs with rice and kimchi.  The recipe came from allrecipes - I don't have a grill so I sealed up the ribs in foil and just roasted in my toaster oven for 45 minutes at around 425F.  Several commenters also say slow-cooking turns out delicious meats so I might have to give that a try next time.  And the book on my Kindle is World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War.  I highly recommend!

Korean BBQ Short Ribs (adapted from allrecipes)

3/4 cup soy sauce
3/4 cup water
3 tablespoons white vinegar (I used some champagne vinegar I had in my cupboard)
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons white sugar
1 tablespoon black pepper
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1/4 cup minced garlic
1/2 large onion, minced
3 pounds Korean-style short ribs (beef chuck flanken, cut 1/3 to 1/2 inch thick across bones)

Pour soy sauce, water, and vinegar into a large, non-metallic bowl. Whisk in brown sugar, white sugar, pepper, sesame oil, garlic, and onion until the sugars have dissolved.

As one commenter noted, it helps to wash and drain the ribs first to get rid of bone chunks.  After that, submerge the ribs in this marinade, and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate 7 to 12 hours; the longer, the better (I used a glass Pyrex baking pan and that worked nicely).

Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat.  Remove ribs from the marinade, shake off excess, and discard the marinade. Cook on preheated grill until the meat is no longer pink, 5 to 7 minutes per side. (As mentioned above, I cooked in toaster oven, sealed in foil about 45 minutes at 425F).