Zaru Soba

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetRewind to a couple of weeks ago when it was still summer and amazing and I was living off of these cold soba noodles because the nights were warm and who wants to be hovering over a stove in that kind of heat? Not me. During the summer, cold soba noodles (commonly called “zaru soba”) are a “thing” in Japan! This dish is healthy, light, and easy to make. Here’s my take on it:

Cold Soba Noodles (Serves 1):
- Soba noodles, however much you plan to eat. Usually they’re in bundles and I use 1/2 to 3/4ths of a bundle.
- 2 to 3 tbsp of soy or tamari sauce, depends how salty you want it to be
- 1-2 tsp rice wine vinegar
- 1 tsp agave nectar or honey
- 1-2 tsp sesame oil
- 1 green onion, I used chives because that’s what was in my fridge
- 1/4th of a carrot, cut into matchsticks
- 1/4 C edamame beans, OR whatever protein you want to eat
- toasted sesame seeds to sprinkle on top

Instructions:
Bring a pot of water to boil with some salt. Cook the soba noodles for ~6 minutes or until they’re tender but not mushy. Once they’re cooked, dump them into a bowl of ice water OR run them under cold water until they’re no longer warm.

In a larger bowl, mix the soy sauce, vinegar, agave nectar, and sesame oil. Add the drained noodles and mix. Add your carrots, onion, and protein, mix. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, mix.

Leave the dish in the fridge for 20-30 mins to let the flavours deepen (or eat it right away, whatever. If you’re hungry, you’re hungry).

See you next year, summer :(

XO, MC

Container Bar

Container Bar, Kensington | Calgary, AB

I’VE GOT THAT SUMMER TIME, SUMMER TIME SADNESS. Currently missing: warm summer nights & sitting out on patios!!!

Calgary increased its hipster quotient with a container-turned-bar; Container Bar is a fully recycled patio in an alley in Kensington, and it’s lots of fun because:

1. They bring candy to your table once you sit down, how awesome is that?
2. Their white balsamic salad dressing is so good?!
3. Different kinds of GIN & TONICS!

Austin is one of my favourite cities in the world and while this isn’t quite “Austin-y” enough (i.e., the tables & chairs were matching, plus it could stand to be a little more gritty like Remedy Cafe on 109th street in Edmonton), it will suffice for now!

Mother Nature dumped a ton of snow on Calgary earlier this week, which was a shock to everyones systems! I now understand what One Direction is singing about in “Summer Love” –> “cuz you were mine for the summer / now we know it’s nearly over / feels like snooowww in September” (HAHAHA, yeah I just referenced 1D in a post. Ain’t no shame in my game). Hopefully we’ll get a few more weeks of REAL fall weather *fingers crossed*! My heart can’t handle another episode of Snowtember.

XO, MC

Product Pantry: July/August 2014

It's a 10, NEST fragrance, L'Oreal Miss Manga Mascara, Maybelline Fit Me Concealer, OrganixHere’s a small collection of beauty products that I’ve been really enjoying these past few months… aka a blog post version of “show and tell” in elementary school.

1. “It’s a 10″ Miracle Leave-in Product: In June, I got bored of my hair and decided to have it lightened. For us dark-haired girls, achieving lighter hair is a journey and not a one-time session where voila, your hair is the shade you want it to be after 1 session. As such, I’ve had my hair processed twice (1st to remove the pigment, 2nd to put the new colour in) to get it to the shade it is right now, which is an ashy light brown with ombre and highlights so I’ve needed to step up my hair care game. Lo Bosworth raved about this in one of her videos as well as Amy Pham from The Platform and so I figured I’d hop on the bandwagon. I spritz this in my hair after I get out of the shower & just let my hair air-dry. Sorted. 

2. Organix Root Boost Spray: In addition to “It’s a 10″, I spray this in my roots for added volume. My hair is already thick to begin with, but I’m not a fan of that super slippery clean-hair texture so this also gives it a nice grip at the roots. It doesn’t feel heavy, it doesn’t leave any sort of residue or build up, so it’s pretty much awesome and I will definitely repurchase.

3. Maybelline Fit Me Concealer: This + Tarte Amazonian Clay Airbrush Foundation has been my go-to, minimal effort, get your face on in under 5 mins summer face routine.  Sidenote: People claim that this is a dupe for NARS radiant creamy concealer, and it’s NOT. Fit Me is still a great product but it’s lighter coverage, and more gel-like in consistency whereas NARS is creamier, fuller coverage, and longer lasting.

4. NEST Fragrance “Midnight Fleur”: I’m not good at describing scents. But Sephora describes it as “Exotic wood, patchouli, and black amber … blended with sensual notes of night-blooming jasmine and vanilla orchid. The combination of these notes is bold, irresistible, and purely sensual.” I’ve been on a never-ending search for a night time perfume; Elizabeth & James Nirvana “Black” smells amazing in the bottle and spritzed on those fragrance cards but it lacked depth when it was on my skin, so disappointing! I don’t know what it is about “Midnight Fleur”, it’s sweet and dark, and I kind of want to bathe in it.

5: L’Oreal Miss Manga Mascara: I’m a loyal Maybelline mascara fan, but after seeing tubes of this everywhere I decided to try it out because my logic was, manga = asian = thick voluminous eye lashes for asians with dinky lashes. This is a great mascara that does everything it says it will do (mega volume). I tend to enjoy mascaras after they’ve tried out a little bit but this formula was already great when I opened the tube. Good stuff, L’Oreal.

AND NOW WINTER IS COMING THIS WEEK. BRB GONNA GO OUTSIDE NOW BYE.

XO, MC

Music Monday: And If My Heart Should Somehow Stop


I missed the boat on Edmonton Folk Fest tickets, which meant that I also missed James Vincent McMorrow! SAD FACE. This song is perfect for a chill Monday morning like today. If you tell me that his voice doesn’t make you swoon, I won’t believe you!

XO, MC

Superfood Green Smoothie Bowl

At last! A breakfast post where I describe what I actually ate for BREAKFAST (rather than dinner). This smoothie bowl was inspired by my semi-recent trip to Australia where you could buy acai bowls at almost every other corner. Making them seemed pretty straightforward so I couldn’t justify paying $10 for one. As such, here’s my attempt that definitely costs less than $10 and it comes together in 3 easy steps:
Superfood Green Smoothie Bowl

INSTRUCTIONS: Step 1, blend up your favourite smoothie ingredients (I like a frozen banana, mango, pineapple, and spinach blend with a scoop of protein powder), hold back on the liquid so that it errs on the thicker side. Step 2, pour it into a bowl. Step 3, top it with fresh fruit, granola, nuts, or seeds. Above, I used banana, goji berries, frozen blueberries, granola, sunflower seeds, and some apple slices. If you need a little more direction on assembling a smoothie bowl, this is a great post over at Oh My Veggies.

I have a smoothie for breakfast (almost) every single day, so dumping it into a bowl with some extra toppings was a nice way to switch things up. It’s SO filling and SO nutritious, it certainly beats a bowl of yogurt and granola any day! Plus, it feels like you’re eating ice cream for breakfast so what’s not to love? Confession, I also eat this for dinner sometimes… old habits die hard.

XO, MC

Music Monday: Sam Smith “Lay Me Down” (Live on SNL)

It’s been a while since my last Music Monday post… I almost forgot that I did these. It also isn’t lost on me that today is WEDNESDAY, but it’s my blog and I’ll do whatever I want!!

Sam Smith’s acoustic performance of “Lay Me Down” is EVERYTHING right now. The arrangement is divine and doesn’t distract from the insane quality of his voice. FLAWLESS.

He’s a diva, but in the best way possible.

XO, MC