Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The Perfect Fall Recipe: Braised Short Ribs

 I have a confession to make: I watch The Chew regularly on ABC. It's the first show I turn on when I get home from a long day at work. Aside from being super entertaining (they play so many games, and they're all so funny!), the food they make looks killer. I always save my favorite episodes so that I can go back and try my hand at the recipes later. I recently watched an episode where Michael Symon (of the famed Lola restaurant in Cleveland, OH) cooked this dish, and I knew I HAD to try my hand at it. I am a lover of short ribs, and I've never braised anything before, so the challenge just got me totally excited, plus it's perfect for fall since October is, well, today! It actually was one of the easiest meals I've ever made because it cooks in one pot!

Notes / /

I stuck to the recipe pretty much 100% but I bought less short ribs than the recipe called for because only two people would be eating it (I mean I bought only 2 pounds when the recipe called for 5! Pretty big difference, I would say), and reduced the other ingredients as well. The recipe also called for a cook time of three hours in the oven, but I took mine out after 2.5 hours, because I was worried it would burn (and it didn't - it was perfect!) I think I must have forgotten to not put as much flour in, as well, because the sauce was SUPER thick, but it was so, so delicious. I can't wait to have this for leftovers tomorrow!

On the side, I just cooked up some simple brown rice and added a little olive oil, salt + pepper.

For the full recipe and more great fall dinner ideas, visit The Chew's website and enjoy my photos below!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Bookshelf Wallpaper DIY

When Chris and I first moved into our 1920s apartment, it took us a bit of time to find the perfect bookshelf for our living room. We ended up purchasing our black and white simple shelving unit from Ikea, and I was very happy with it until recently. I started to feel like it was just blending in with the white wall behind it, and I knew I had to do something to make it stand out, but painting it was out of the question because I am TERRIBLE at painting anything. So, I decided to pick up some pretty paper and glue it on. And... it worked! It's SO easy and such a genius idea, because it's cheap, doesn't take that long to do, and adds SO much in such a small way! I had thought about adding colored paper to all of the walls behind each shelf, but decided against it at the last minute. I'm so glad that I did because that would have been way too overwhelming.

This is how it used to look:

The Look //
Go to one of your favorite stationary stores that carries fun wrapping paper (I went to Paper Source for mine, and I purchased the fine paper, which I was told would hold up better than the regular paper wrapping paper), and pick out your paper! Next, be sure to pick up a bottle of modge podge and a foam brush to apply the glue with. Make sure to pick the right kind of glue! I chose matte because I didn't think that a shiny look would be good but to each your own!

The Steps //
First, you will want to take your paper and cut it to the length of the area you're trying to cover. Once you do that, you will take your modge podge and brush the glue all over the area that you are going to adhere the paper to. Next, lay the paper down as flat as you can, smooth the paper out so that there are no bubbles, and then go over the paper with more modge podge and voila!

Thanks so much to Paper Source for providing me the cutest paper, and for always giving me great inspiration! You can find all necessary supplies at Paper Source, so yay for a one-stop-shop and a three step process!

And here's a photo of Ringo being cute as usual.. Oh! If you have a cat, be aware that they might get curious about the new addition to your furniture and he might try to scratch it off when you're not home (that's how I figured out how easy it is to remove the paper if you choose to switch up the print)