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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Curried Ground Beef and Green Beans


I've been feeling particularly sensitive lately. I don't know whether or not it's because two of my friends are at war with each other right now, but I've been reflecting on friendships. Many people have entered my life through the years. Many have stayed, but sadly some have left too. The thing is, is that I have my pride and I can forgive, but I can never forget. It's not one of my best traits, but it is what it is. So with two of my friends currently feuding, I tried to put myself in each of their shoes. It was hard. I don't want to take sides, although I am closer to one of them. But it is their story to fix; not mine. I do wish it would work out, but if it doesn't, then it doesn't. I, for one, hate to be taken for granted. Just because we're friends or linked doesn't mean one can pull me in any direction like a puppet. It's easy to say that you miss me or you wish to spend time with me. But how about doing something about it??? Or when you plan to meet up or set up something together. How about you show up???

Friday, May 16, 2014

El Rancho - Mexican Grill in Metz, France


I've recently started a short list of restaurants in Metz that I want to try before the year ends. These are mostly restaurants that I usually pass by or see a lot whenever I'm in the city and I make a mental note of. I also like to go online and search on the website Tripadvisor to see the restaurant standings and ratings. But even if a restaurant has an low-to-average rating that does not discourage me from trying it. One's experience is always different from others. That is why I insist on blogging only about my own restaurant story and nothing else (i.e. things that I hear from other people). To prove my point, I went ahead and had lunch at El Rancho - Mexican Grill today despite its average ratings online and I had an overall excellent time!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Blette / Swiss Chard, Filipino-Style


My next-door neighbor, LU, came to see me this morning and gave me a bag of Blettes, or Swiss Chard in English. These came straight from her garden and she already had a bag-full for herself. I had no idea what Blettes were, but I happily accepted her gift. I never refuse anyway. LOL. I decided I would make this for lunch, before my husband went to work, so he could also discover the flavors of Blettes.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Creamy Shrimp and Fish Roe Pasta


Leftovers never tasted so good. Spaghetti aside, the shrimps, fish roe, cherry tomatoes, fresh dill, and creme fraiche were all ingredients from the meal I hosted last Sunday that I didn't use. There was no way I would throw them away, especially when I could obviously come up with a Creamy Shrimp and Fish Roe Pasta dish. But sometimes I am guilty of forgetting what I have in the refrigerator and find them already gone bad. So before this could happen, especially with the shrimps, I figured I'd bring out my pots and pans for dinner tonight.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Paul Boulangerie in Semecourt, France


I started a new work project today. Something that will keep me busy for the next 2 months. It's about 65 kilometers from my house and I have to take the freeway, but I am excited. Excited and kinda freaked out too. I want to do good and that's always added pressure. If one had told me months ago I'd be doing what I'm doing now, I would have said they were crazy. I'm far from what I thought I would be doing last year. But I sure am enjoying myself and I'm told that I'm good and effective. That definitely helps my motivation. I left my work today totally proud of myself, thinking that I did real good. And because I'm happy, I wanted to make others happy - starting with my family!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Sunday Lunch at Home: Paella, Sangria, and Chocolate Mousse Duo


There are a few people on my list of to-invite-at-home-peeps and I decided that with the nice weather we've been having I would start inviting some. I handed out my invitations about a month ago, way before we found out that my husband, MR, would be working on that day. There wasn't much I could do about it and it was too late to cancel. Hosting a lunch party (and making sure it all goes perfectly) can be tricky business. But I figured that with advanced planning and organization, everything would go just fine.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Fromagerie Benestroff in Benestroff, France


I am not a big fan of cheese. *insert shock face* In French, I would have said je ne cours pas apres du fromage (I don't run after cheese). But like they say, when in Rome do as the Romans do. Except here we are in France and France happens to be the cheese capital of the world. So if you'd open my refrigerator, you would be sure to find a piece of cheese inside. MR and I have a very open home because we like having family and friends over. Whenever they know we are home, they come over to ask how we are and have coffee with us. I invested in a really good coffee machine and always make sure to have something to go with it (whether homemade or store-bought). And occasionally, some stay over to eat with us. I usually don't bother making something fancy. I just prepare what we would originally eat, even if it's just buttered pasta and ham. I've never had any complains. But I've also never ever not offered a piece of cheese after the main dish and before the dessert. If I didn't, I think I would get some complains!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Manchons de Canard aux Pruneaux / Duck Wings with Prunes


There's a French saying that goes, "Le malheur des uns fait le bonheur des autres". Roughly translated it means one's misfortune makes the happiness of others. I am talking about this today because of what has happened with my husband lately. His work colleague has hurt herself terribly and MR's contract has been renewed to replace her. Her misfortune, his fortune. We are hoping that his renewal will eventually lead to something permanent. Fingers are crossed. I am happy with these changes, but these days I feel like we are running all over the place. Balancing between my work schedule, MR's work schedule, and SO's schooling takes a lot of organization skills. Thankfully, we have wonderful people who we can count on to take care of SO for us if we don't make it home in time. And because my work schedule is slightly more flexible than MR's, I try to work around it. Which is why I stayed home today to be with my man. He is working this weekend so this was the only day for us to spend together this week. We picked up together SO at school at lunchtime so she could eat with us the wonderful Manchons de Canard aux Pruneaux / Duck Wings with Prunes dish I prepared today.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Super Wok in Moulins-les-Metz, France


After spending the day at La Foire de Mai in Metz, France (click here for the post), all that was left to do was to eat dinner. Thankfully, in the city of Metz, that isn't hard to do as you can find restaurants pretty much anywhere. But it seems like MR and I are in a somehow understood mission to try out together all the Asian restaurants in the city before declaring our ultimate winner. What can I say -- you can take us out of Asia, but you can't take Asia out of us!

La Foire de Mai in Metz, France


Finally a Sunday where we don't have to share Papa MR with his work and we can have him all to ourselves! It's definitely been a while. Naturally, we wanted to spend the day as a family out. I read somewhere that La Foire de Mai in Metz, France was happening he whole month of May at the Metz Exposition grounds and I thought it would be a great place to spend the day at. Growing up, I was always fascinated watching fairs in the movies. You know the scenes where the cute guy tries his best to win the leading lady a huge stuffed toy in a game of throwing the ball or hitting the target. I always imagined that I would someday go to fairs myself.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Angeluzzo Restaurant in Metz, France


A group of friends and I try to get together at least once a month. We come up with activities to do, but we usually just end up in a restaurant. That's more than alright with me though because I feel like I'm hitting two birds with one stone. First, I get to spend quality time with good friends and second, I get to discover different restaurants in Metz. It's a nice change as MR and I usually choose an Asian restaurant when we're out. Our group of friends started with a group of 30. Life has made it that we are down to only a handful now. But it's definitely a good handful! As I suspected, we spent the night chatting, laughing, catching up, and just talking about anything and everything under the sun! I left MR and SO together at home for some good father-daughter bonding. SO has been spending less time with her father since he started working full-time so I thought this would do them good.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Pick-Up: Navarin d'Agneau from Au Charolais in Morhange, France


It's Spring Break here. Luckily for SO, she has no school and is in the children's center all day for the week. Unluckily for MR and I, there's no break for us and we have to work! I guess going on a road trip or a weekend staycation will definitely be for another time. Instead today, I was home alone the whole morning and not looking forward to cooking lunch just for myself. I thought I'd keep that for tonight as we would be all together. But I was hungry! So I did the next best thing. I grabbed my bag and car keys and drove to the town's butcher shop to buy one of his prepared daily meals for sale.

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