<![CDATA[Mademoiselle Cochon - Foods for Fantasizing]]>Wed, 10 Feb 2016 05:20:51 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[Delicious Well BeingĀ ]]>Mon, 03 Mar 2014 00:02:31 GMThttp://mademoisellecochon.weebly.com/foods-for-fantasizing/delicious-well-being
If your mouth did not start watering the moment you laid eyes on the above picture, there is something wrong with you.

You are looking at Chaco Canyon Cafe's 16-oz. Triple Berry Smoothie. It is actually my first time trying it, and it is delicious! It is smooth, sweet, and filled with texture--not like any watery or excruciatingly sweet smoothies you might find at other places. What is even more satisfying is what's written on the tin cup: "Warning! If consumed this beverage may cause: Dissatisfaction with processed & packaged foods, peace of mind, and a cascade of healthy lifestyle choices." This put an instant smile on my face.

It also reminded me of how good it really feels to be healthy, and to tell you the truth this fact only hit me recently.
During each of the last ten thousand attempts I made to be healthy, I kept telling myself that it was the right thing to do because...it was just the right thing to do. But, each of those attempts were not so successful--before I knew it, I found myself inhaling mountains of chips, cookies and bowls of ice cream. Well, I didn't eat all three in one sitting, and it wasn't literally mountains of chips...though it did feel that way.

Anyway, it led me to discover that if I really wanted to stick to healthy routines, it had to be for a specific reason that made sense to me. Part of this realization came when I read the chapter of Do Cool Sh*t by Miki Agrawal that talks about living a healthy lifestyle; she suggested that instead of thinking of doing healthy routines as doing things out of obligation such as chores (exercising, dieting), you can associate exercise with releasing and dieting with having willpower. This quickly made it much easier for me to make the choices I needed to! Since then, I smoothly made the decision to do aerobics in the mornings because I wanted to release any tension I had; I have also been able to quickly decide on a smoothie over a brownie--I tell myself I don't want to lose power over my decision-making, because it wouldn't mean well for me if I did.

So here I am, enjoying a smoothie with antioxidants and color and flavor and deliciousness! And I feel more at peace knowing that the choice I made has pushed me toward a better well being. :)

<![CDATA[Cafe Cesura]]>Sat, 18 Jan 2014 22:02:11 GMThttp://mademoisellecochon.weebly.com/foods-for-fantasizing/cafe-cesura
I just want to start by saying, this is a great coffee shop! And you must be thinking, Well duh, Why else would MC write a blog post about it? And you are right, it would be weird if I actually wrote blog posts about horrible coffee shops--What good would that do to anyone? But I digress...

You know those instances where you discover a new, exciting place after years of driving by it without taking note of its existence? Cafe Cesura was one of those times for me. I never really noticed it until one day I found myself in the area with no plans and wondering what to do; then I got in the I-want-to-explore-my-hometown-because-anything-like-that-can-still-be-exciting mood, and I ended up walking into this coffee shop!

There are many cafes in the Seattle area featuring art pieces, loud trendy music, and the bustling of stacking mugs and saucers and friendly conversation. Cafe Cesura counts in the club, but it is still a venue worth visiting. Its location is definitely unexpected, at least for me because for a long time I had accepted the prejudiced notion that all coffee shops with such an energetic aura only existed in Seattle. This one sits in Downtown Bellevue. Its windows make up the entire wall where the entrance door is, letting in the much needed natural light to illuminate the paintings hanging on the purple-grey walls. Stark black chairs, wooden tables, and kind baristas add to this lovely atmosphere. All in all, you get the strong impression (strong as their coffee...) that they aim high to give the coffee fanatic a satisfying experience.

Speaking of their coffee, it is another reason to really take note of Cafe Cesura (well obviously). There is that bitter taste that excites you, in that you find yourself acknowledging that you are ingesting a cup of strong, nourishing coffee. But, the creamy flavor and smooth texture give the juxtaposing subtlety to your taste buds. Plus, you will find great art sitting on your drink and not just on the venue walls (shown in picture above)!

If you ever find yourself in town, or you are just a car drive away (hopefully not too long of a car drive), stop by and let me know what you think.

Much love,

<![CDATA[Food on your Face, Part Deux]]>Sat, 07 Sep 2013 16:52:33 GMThttp://mademoisellecochon.weebly.com/foods-for-fantasizing/food-on-your-face-part-deux
About a month ago, I told you about a new adventure that I was about to embark on--specifically, the act of using honey every morning rather than face wash, as a way to reduce acne. I promised you all that I would give an update, and voila!
Also, as mentioned in the previous post, I struggled to fully decide whether to write of this topic in this section of the website or in the Life au Cochon section. Oh well, some things in life are never certain.

One month after adopting the somewhat strange habit of rubbing the delicious sticky food all over my face, I noticed that my complexion has improved. I have to be honest, however, and say that the improvement occurred at the pace of a 100-year-old tortoise, so there were definitely times where I doubted whether I should continue using the honey. But, as one must do when faced with the dilemmas of life, I persisted.
Not only has the honey mask process taught me to be patient and persistent, but also to believe in natural products instead of short-cut products, like all the face washes you see stocked up in the skin care aisle of your Fred Meyers and Safeways. When switching in general to the natural ways of curing acne, the transition from pimple-infested face to clear-and-smooth-as-a-baby's-bottom face will be incredibly slower, but you will have the comfort of knowing you are doing good for your skin and adding healthy habits to your life. Besides honey, other natural ways of combating acne include replacing your nighttime face wash with jojoba oil, putting on a mask once a week that is made of egg whites and plain yogurt, and using lemon/lime juice and a cotton swab instead of a store-bought spot treatment. I actually have been adopting all three in the past week or so, as I will share more in future posts!

With that said, I will continue to use the organic raw honey (which is the type one should trust to sit on their face for 10-15 minutes every morning) and see how much more improvement takes on. Feel free to suggest other ways of reducing acne, or even to share your experiences with using the golden hued coffee-buddy food.


<![CDATA[Food on Your Face]]>Tue, 30 Jul 2013 17:09:16 GMThttp://mademoisellecochon.weebly.com/foods-for-fantasizing/food-on-your-face
Before I start, I just want to say that I had a hard time deciding whether to put this post in the Foods for Fantasizing section or the Life au Cochon section. Although I am about to write to you about a specific food, this time it won't be super saliva-inducing or something that will immediately motivate you to travel to the nearest cafe or store to attain the amazing experience I had...Rather, this post will describe a use for the specific food.

And that specific food is honey.
I never thought I could use honey other than the primal one--to enjoy the mild yet strikingly sweet taste that comes in the smooth, effortless texture as it captivates you with its hue golder than the Sun and melts in your mouth like no other food. Recently, while searching for natural ways to cure acne (because yes, I am among the huge portion of the people in their 20s who suffer from the embarrassment-inducing disease), I ran many times into the idea of using honey; mainly, replacing whatever face wash (whether that be Clearasil, Neutrogena, or Proactiv) you use every morning with the gooey delicious thing you mix in your coffee or tea, also, every morning. At first, I was skeptical; how could something so undeniably amazing in its taste and ability to magically turn any edible substance into pure Paradise be simply able to reduce acne just by sitting on your face?
But as I read on, I learned some interesting things about honey I did not know before--like the fact that honey is antibacterial and anti-inflammatory, as it hydrates while simultaneously slightly dries the skin (good for ridding oneself of those dreadful pimples!). I was excited to read these, and my skepticism soon skidded to a stop (yes, I couldn't help but use alliteration; I had to seize the opportunity)!

So this morning, I set aside my Clearasil face wash and brought on my jar of Trader Joe's organic raw honey. It definitely felt strange as I found myself slowly rubbing the stickiness all over my face. But, I was also surprised by how easily it all came off when I rinsed with tepid water; then, I noticed how the oily parts of my skin were no longer so oily, and yet how I didn't feel much dryness. This is something I will keep up at least for the next couple of weeks, and I will let you know how it goes as time goes on!
Also, you are more than welcome to share any other ideas you may have heard of or used to treat/help reduce acne. I am all ears!


<![CDATA[Mug]]>Sun, 10 Mar 2013 19:12:21 GMThttp://mademoisellecochon.weebly.com/foods-for-fantasizing/life-is-hell-without-coffee
Coffee. Coffee coffee coffee. Who can live without it?

Well, I guess lots of people...But when it comes to the mind of a coffee lover such as myself, saying that there are people in this world who don't mind going through life without coffee is the equivalent of saying Santa does not exist. Of course, this is not to say that I dislike non-coffee lovers; I am friends with plenty of people who enjoy tea more, as I respect their choice of hot beverage--And tea can be quite amazing...There is nothing like dipping a black tea bag in your mug of hot water before adding honey and milk to make the most tempting potion of deliciousness ever for a cold day (But, I digress). Also, I am well aware that Santa does not exist, as it was just brought up in terms of the context of how magical certain things can be, such as, yes, coffee. :)

And what is life like for a coffee fanatic if he/she decides to cross off one week on the calendar of having zero amount of coffee in their system? Well, it is absolute hell. Particularly if you live in Seattle, the city in the US that is most consumed by the endless list of cafes and countless number of people who stroll about the streets with cup in hand, it is nothing other than torture.

And when such a person decides to go through this ordeal, it feels like they are letting go of the part of their life that was comfortable, inviting, and heart-warming. Okay, heart-warming is maybe taking it too far, but what tops the moment of holding a mug that heats your hands and brings your mind to peace after walking in the brisk cold air, and then holding the edge of the mug to your mouth as you take that first sip of coffee (or whatever type of coffee drink you usually order; in my case it's a latte, no sugar, 2% milk because I prefer satisfaction from tasteless nonfat)?

When you not only let yourself focus on the very act of consuming that mug of coffee--in order to enjoy every moment of it, in the midst of a world that can become chaotic and unbearable--, but you therefore also let that mug of coffee consume you, why would you choose to experience anything else?

Well, I believe I have rested my case: Life is Hell without coffee.

(Again, please excuse my language.)

P.S. This blog post was based on a true story.

Today has been one week since I had coffee, as I believe writing what I just wrote has encouraged me to recapture those irreplaceable memories...So excuse me while I brew my mug of jo.

<![CDATA[Like a Composition of Melodies, Voices & Rhythms]]>Sat, 09 Feb 2013 00:23:04 GMThttp://mademoisellecochon.weebly.com/foods-for-fantasizing/like-a-composition-of-melodies-voices-rhythmsThere are times where your mind, body, or your mouth in general is just craving the taste of something truly substantial, a food that will satisfy your physical, emotional and spiritual needs during a time of complete desperation.
This is especially found to be true when you are going through an incredibly busy day that involves nothing but running around nonstop with few sitting/rest breaks, and that requires much energy from all facets of yourself.

For example, yesterday I had class at 8:30am, followed by taking the bus for 20 minutes and then a 15-min walk downtown to drop by the art gallery I'm interning for, so that I could pick up posters for their upcoming event to hang up around campus. I picked the posters up, ran back the 15-min distance and took another 20-min bus ride to campus, put the posters up in a couple of buildings, and finally sat down in the hallway 20 or so minutes before my modern French history class started.
Now you can imagine that I was exhausted beyond belief, from the running around and such. (Though, it also probably had to do with my lack of sleep or not having eaten much food during the day.)

Anyhow, those last 20 minutes ended up being the most enjoyable 20 minutes of my Thursday...When I took the first bite of a mini French baguette sandwich I had bought on my way back from the art gallery, it seemed as if every single one of my brain cells immediately turned its 'off' switch--all I could think about was how delicious, flavorful, and fulfilling the sandwich was!
In case you're curious, the baguette sandwich had walnut...paste? Wait, was it walnut pesto? I do remember there was bleu cheese in it, that's for sure...Or wait were there strawberries too?

...Yeah, I'm sorry, I can't remember exactly what was in that sandwich; I think that's what happens when you're enjoying a food so much that you start to forget what the components of that food were, as you instead absorb the pleasure that every bite or spoon brings you--the same effect as the composition of melodies, voices and rhythms that blend into what we call a song!

As my attempt to try and make it up to you, I have posted some other food that the bakery, called Dahlia Bakery (it's a must-visit! And I can't say I've ever seen that place not crowded), has been serving, just to bring your eyes as close as they can to visualizing what I ate!

Today's motto: Feast and enjoy!


<![CDATA[Richness & Addiction]]>Sat, 14 Jan 2012 21:17:37 GMThttp://mademoisellecochon.weebly.com/foods-for-fantasizing/richness-addiction
Courtesy of Google Images
Sooo today (well, literally, 10 min ago) my dearest mother made me a warm cup of peppermint hot chocolate. And by 'peppermint,' I mean a cup of regular hot cocoa (specifically, using the Trader Joe's hot cocoa mix, which I must say tastes surprisingly enticing for a pre-made chocolate powder, since usually I prefer melted dark chocolate...You may call me uber-posh or uber-high-standard, but richness and addiction are qualities that I look for in a hot chocolate ;) ) with whipped cream and flecks of peppermint bark we've still had in the pantry after Christmastime...It is very yummy, as I take a ginormous sip while typing this delicious sentence.
Now see, even drinking this hot chocolate has affected what I am typing. That last sentence wasn't 'delicious' at all, yet I used the word to describe the sentence. Next thing I know, I'll be calling cleaning the toilet delicious (hopefully that won't ever happen...).
By the way, the picture above is not the actual dreamy hot chocolate that was crafted lovingly by my mom. For some reason I couldn't post the picture I took, so I decided to Google an image of peppermint hot chocolate and decided that this one most accurately displays my personal ideal image of the drink!

Not only is homemade hot chocolate amazing, but also homemade hot chocolate while it is snowing outside!

We just had our first snow of the year (super late, I know, but Seattle's usually been like that; oh well! :) ), so that was probably what got my mom excited about making the cozy beverages for my brother and I. Like most snowfalls in the Seattle area, this one didn't last very long as it didn't leave very much powder on the ground. But still, it was uber lovely to watch the light, quiet shower of joy fall in my neighborhood, and to watch the entire scene transform into a mini-Winter Wonderland before my eyes.
Things like that don't happen often, at least where I live. More than that, things as drastically beautiful and quickly transformative as that don't happen very much in life in general.
So, there's no reason not to enjoy the falling snow while it lasts, and to have that warm mug of chocolate-y goodness in hand as the event unfolds before you.

Have a happy day!


<![CDATA[Peppermint Days]]>Sun, 08 Jan 2012 21:12:46 GMThttp://mademoisellecochon.weebly.com/foods-for-fantasizing/peppermint-daysThere is something special about sipping an extra-hot (by my request when I ordered at the cashier...I hate it when I want to study at Starbucks and I end up finishing my beverage too quickly because I'm afraid of it getting cold--whenever it happens, I end up sad that the extra fudge topping and whipped cream portion of my studying didn't last as long as I wanted) peppermint hot chocolate on a slightly breezy, cloudy (but not too cloudy; cloudy enough to be cozy) Sunday afternoon.

And just to let you know, I am quite aware that Christmas season is over. :) But still, there's no denying that anything peppermint makes the day just a bit brighter, snappier, filled with a bit more spontaneity. Especially when things have recently gone back to normal after Christmas and New Year's, it's nice to curl your hands around a cup of a freshly (and I assume lovingly, because the barista was so nice and friendly!) crafted fusion of the universally-adored hot chocolate, and that special element of sweetness of peppermint. Oh yes, and the right amount of sugar in general to get you hyped up enough to get studying done, in my case at least!
And the Starbucks I am sitting in is partially to blame as well for my slight attachment to Christmas-y things...because they are playing "My Favorite Things" as we speak. ;)

So go ahead, add some peppermint to your day whenever needed (or desired...). Enjoy!

P.S. I'm so sorry I haven't blogged in the last several months. Things have been very busy especially since I started my first ever retail job (exciting I know :D). To those of you who have been waiting patiently for new posts about sugar plums and hot yoga and any other thing that's healthy and delicious (obviously I wrote those adjectives in the wrong order...), I give you a ginormous thank you basket filled with everything with the essence of peppermint.

<![CDATA[Wake Up!]]>Fri, 16 Sep 2011 21:25:39 GMThttp://mademoisellecochon.weebly.com/foods-for-fantasizing/wake-upFor the first time in a long time, I've eaten something that's captivated me and my fellow taste buds. I feel alive again (cliche but totally true).

While the last few weeks had consisted of ignoring the usually-regularly-experienced excitement of savoring every bite of every food I eat (for reasons that would take another essay-long blog post, so I will spare you the boredom ;) ), today I made myself a stove-top apple cobbler (with vanilla bean ice cream, in case you were yearning for any sweet details) that picked me up like a double-shot vanilla latte, minus the post-caffeine crash.
It felt like I rediscovered the reason for eating, the reason for living, the reason why people in Seattle love walking through waterfalls to coffee shops and the reason for which the streets of France always smell like freshly baked baguettes...

In case you were curious about the star of this post (the apple cobbler), I made it for the first time a couple of days ago, and today it was just my second trial. I had watched my mom make the apple-pie filling of deliciousness on the stove a couple of times, but I didn't remember what directions she followed exactly or what ingredients she used; so I went online, found the recipe for the simplest way to make apple cobbler, and used what I remembered to later make this fabulous dessert!
The first time I made it, I made the mistake of thinking that I had to add water with the melted butter in the saucepan (in the first step, before the apples get thrown in)...so unless I wanted apple soup, I searched for a solution and then found that you can add a mixture of flour/cornstarch and water, so that the extra water can be absorbed--though it doesn't make sense at first since you're adding water to get rid of water, it worked! And not only did I miraculously dodge the tragic bullet of eating apple soup, but the dessert became an ensemble of grainy texture mixed with smoothly rendered sweetness, instead of just a pile of sloppy apple slices.

As for the actual recipe of the cobbler, all I did was melt some butter in the pan, added sliced apples, then spiced it up with cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice, brown sugar, and a touch of vanilla (I came up with that on my own, I feel so creative!). Then after the apple slices have gone soft enough, I gather them in the prettiest bowl I have in the kitchen and then throw in some oats, as I immediately inhale the dessert with some vanilla ice cream.

I only have made it twice so I'm still learning, thus I still don't know when you actually need to add all those spices and such (whether you do it before the apple slices release their juice or afterward), or if there's a way that I can avoid getting the melted brown sugar stuck to the bottom of the pan (because I don't want to keep solving the problem by adding more butter..which would eventually mean adding pounds)--I guess I'll have to wait until Trial 3 to find out. :)

P.S.  I don't know what it was about the cobbler, the tart flavor of the apples brought out by the lemon juice so distinctively, or the rich, in-depth sweetness of the brown sugar harmonized with that tartness...Something about the treat woke me up back to my love for food, and now I don't want to fall asleep again.

<![CDATA[A Bubbly Childhood]]>Fri, 26 Aug 2011 22:28:35 GMThttp://mademoisellecochon.weebly.com/foods-for-fantasizing/a-bubbly-childhood
Courtesy of the Dessert Comes First blog.
A couple of hours ago, I traveled back in time to 10 years ago. In this memory, I am sitting at the small dining table in my friend's kitchen, waiting for the rest of us to join with the paper cups and utensils. The initial hyper-ness of us kids had just died down as it was the dinner time portion of our sleepover, and the dark blanket of night had just draped itself over our quiet neighborhood. I remember how large my greasy slice of cheese pizza was that sat in front of me on my blindingly white paper plate, waiting impatiently for me with its burnt surface spots and thick flabby cheese to take in its rich fatty texture (you can probably tell by now that I don't like greasy delivery pizza).

But what I especially remember (and treasure) from that night is the large bottle of root beer that sat at my right, trying its very best to contain the burst of its bubbly, welcoming personality I simply could and therefore chose not to ignore. It was the night I had my first sip of that fizzing potion, and I can still feel the way it took over my senses and even my heart, as I have since then carried that spark of liveliness of that memory with me all the way to today. As super duper cheesy as that sounds, it's true. :)

In the routines of adulthood I live in today, the places I go and people I see almost never mention things in the way of the tangy-sweet, caramel toned beverage, in stark contrast to my world 10 years ago.
This is why I declare myself as someone whose ideal world includes a collective devotion to all things root beer (particularly root beer floats)--Bookstores entirely dedicated to books about the craft and appreciation of root beer, root beer float stands you may see appearing magically before you on the street every five seconds, and other signs showing that the bubbliness of life has not died down just yet.

The memory of my first sip of root beer was brought to life as I speedily yet lovingly crafted root beer floats for myself and my brother earlier today. Even on this fine sunny day, I felt like the air was slightly begging for some extra spark.

What's your spark, if it's not the refreshingly sweet root beer/root beer float? :)