Monday, October 21, 2013

Outfit Photo Dump

I figured I should just post all the #OOTDs and entries to fashion contests I've made ever since I went AWOL. Here they are! :)

Yes, I photoshopped my lip color. Otherwise it would be an odd shade of dark lilac, because the lipstick I was wearing gradually turned lighter and thus did not match my outfit :/
(Kenneth Cole Contest) Wearing: a handmade genuine dagger earring from the Renaissance Festival, Hudson jeans, Calvin Klein heels, Kenneth Cole top, Bernardo leather jacket, Michael Kors belt

Top left: Forever 21 top, Halogen patent leather brogues, Sanctuary Clothing jeans (a steal at Rugged Warehouse for $7 from $130 O_O).
Top right: Chambray button-down from Ross, LOFT faded skinnies, Sara Bareilles tour shirt
Bottom Left: (for a DKNY contest) DKNY shirt and bag, Target skirt, F21 wool jacket
Bottom Right: (goofing around/pretending to be a Korean actress in a romantic comedy) Plains and Prints top, H&M skirt, Ivanka Trump shoes, Target blazer (supercute!!!!)

Top left: (CFDA/Tommy Hilfiger contest, the theme was Red/White/Blue. I won tix to Tommy's show in Feb :D ) Tommy Hilfiger dress, Old Navy jacket, Banana Republic bag, Nine West shoes
Top right: (another entry) Polo Ralph Lauren shirt, Old Navy top, Simply Vera by Vera Wang boyfriend pants, BCBGeneration heels
Bottom left: (yup. You know it!) BCBG top, DVFxCurrent/Elliot jeans, BCBGeneration heels, Kate Spade clutch
Bottom right: Aeropostale top, Hudson jeans, Ren Fest leather earrings (they're so cute!), thrifted squirrel pin

Top left: Dress from my aunt, Givenchy accessories, Jessica Simpson clutch
Top right: Parachute concert tee, Simply Vera bf jeans, Coach bag
Bottom: Locket by my cousin of the tutorial-iffic, Chinese Laundry sandals, Ross dress, Gap top-as-jacket

And the pièce de résistance, another entry to the Kenneth Cole contest (haven't heard anything from them though, so I assume I lost :( Ah well, you can't win them all!)
Fergie peep toe booties, Coach bag, Kenneth Cole top, Kenneth Cole sunnies, Forever21 coat

Oh, and I also made these Instagram videos for a Stuart Weitzman contest. Sadly, I didn't win either of them. I did enjoy the process of filming them and coming up with a gimmick that echoed their new campaign with Kate Moss titled "Made for Walking" :)


Sunday, October 20, 2013

Scrumptious Sunday: Lemon Pound Cake / A Baking Mishap

When I made these cupcakes I was left with four egg yolks (just using egg whites for baking a cake, like in angel food cake, makes it fluffier, hence the leftover yolks). I had no desire to throw them out (that would be such a waste!), so I used them as an excuse to bake again. As luck would have it, the first result for my google inquiry of "four yolks" led me to a page from which lists links to recipes on other blogs that use one yolk up to twelve yolks! Clever, really, and now I have it bookmarked just in case I have leftover yolk again (or the next time I bake vanilla cupcakes, which will be pretty soon!)

I settled on the Lemon Pound Cake because it sounded easy to make and I had most of the ingredients on hand. Granted, I used an 8"x8" pan, which resulted in a denser cake (I miss my equipment! I have a loaf pan that I used once to make banana bread before it was put into storage), but it's delicious as promised by the author that it is almost gone. Mostly eaten by me. Hahaha, Winter is definitely coming :)

Baking mishap: On hindsight I should have cut the baking time by a couple of minutes since the pan I used has a larger surface area than a loaf pan, but I was about to be late for an SFC meeting and thus wasn't thinking all too clearly (thank God my roomie was there to take it out once the timer went off), which resulted in a drier cake. My bad! Good thing the texture was similar to toasted mamon (with a hint of lemon), so that made up for my mistake (I looove toasted mamon). The next time I bake this, it'll be in an actual loaf pan, and it would be soooo good it would be gone in a day. And not just by me ;)

Click here for the recipe --> Lemon Pound Cake by :)

Happy baking (or eating, if you can bribe someone else to make this for you hehehe)
and have a great and blessed week ahead!

Scrumptious Sunday: Vanilla Bean Cupcakes

So... I used a real vanilla bean in making cupcakes for the very first time, and it brought the cupcakes' yum factor into a whole new level. Seriously. Thank goodness the beans were on sale though (I hoarded 3! They usually sell for $5 PER PIECE, yikes!), so that made it a little easier on my wallet. My latest mini-project was for a friend's baby shower, and of course it's pretty obvious if the baby's a girl or a boy ;) A dash each of white pearls and gold sprinkles completed the look. Voilà!

Sooo pretty <3 Those little black specks are vanilla seeds and a sign of "scrumptiousness" to come! lol
Click HERE to see the recipe and for some more information about vanilla on vanilla cupcakes. Check out for more delish recipes <3 This is now my go-to recipe for vanilla cupcakes.

-I only used one bean for the entire recipe (1/2 for the cake, 1/2 for the icing) and it turned out pretty well. If you can afford it, then by all means use two whole beans :)
-I was able to make 24 cupcakes from the recipe, and the icing was more than enough for all of those cupcakes. I would suggest to cut the icing recipe by 1/2.
-Save the yolks! You can still use them to make a lot of other baked goods, and for multiple cupcake batches I think there will be enough to make flan. Almost everybody loves flan!
-The recipe called for sifted flour (to get the lumps out and make the cupcake fluffier), but since I didn't have my sifter with me (it's in storage, along with most of my baking equipment) I improvised by fluffing the flour with a fork (some suggest using a whisk), which resulted in a teeny-bit dense cupcake.

Happy baking!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Winner Wednesday: Part Deux

Who doesn't love Filipino breakfasts? I certainly do, though for health reasons I don't eat it everyday (fruits or honey oats with almond milk are my usual go-to meals). But during those heavenly, glorious moments where I get to eat anything with -silog at the end ("si" is the shortened term for "sinangag" or garlic rice, and "log" for "itlog" or egg), be it longsilog ("longganisa" is a garlicky, oftentimes sweet sausage), bangusilog ("bangus" or milkfish), tocilog ("tocino" or sweet cured pork) or the best of them all (although my college freshman self would disagree, because there was a period where I ate nothing but tocilog for lunch at CASAA) TAPSILOG ("tapa," not to be confused with the Spanish "tapas," is cured/dried beef that can be either fried or grilled), OH MAN, I become giddy like a pre-teen in a 1D concert. Or maybe just regular ol' me in a Walk The Moon/John Mayer/Jason Mraz/Hanson concert.

The different "-silog"s
Photo by Norm R.

One particular memory I have is of weekend mornings where my Mama, who is not really a cook (but she is awesome in a lot of other things, and her specialty dishes and desserts are guaranteed hits at parties) would make for us the BEST TAPSILOG EVER. I have been dying to eat something similar to her take on the ubiquitous tapsilog (it actually spawned all the other -silog versions) but alas, every time I badgered her she tells me that her recipe got lost a couple of years back. *sigh* *grumble* Yes, that was from my protesting stomach. I remember how my older borther and I would fight over the crispy small pieces that had a higher marinade/sauce:meat ratio. Mmm. (Same goes for when my friends and I eat at Honey Pig hahaha) Her version was sweeter than usual (I most definitely got my sweet tooth from her) and cut into smaller portions, which made the meat pieces all the more tastier. And ahh, the garlic. This kind of food should not be eaten alone, lest you want other people to ask if your breath spray is named "Eau de Garlic" to which the appropriate response would be a long and breathy "OHHHHHH YEHHHSSSSSSSSS." I always say, it's better to stink as a whole group than by your lonesome because there is stench strength in numbers! :)) Thanks to the power of the world wide web and through my excellent and unparalleled detective skills (jk) I was able to track down the exact recipe for my Mama's tapsilog! I literally had to fight back tears of joy when I found it after a long and arduous search during my lunch break last week. Here's what I typed in:

Yes, I have a link to The Last Unicorn on my browser.

*facepalm* SO OBVIOUS. The first result was the one I used because it asks for copious amounts of sugar (usually it's only 2 tbsp. as opposed to this recipe's 6 tbsp.) and well, it just clicked. Ahh, serendipity <3 *cue music from a romantic movie* And as they say, the rest is history. It was all gobbled up by my friends in my church group, SFC. They were girls. They were girls with an insatiable appetite for Filipino breakfast food hahaha. Here it is (I can hear you say "finally, Julie, we were waiting for this for so long." Or you might not have read any of the above and skipped to the recipe, for which I will be very disappointed because I poured my heart, blood, tears and neurons into this blog post. *cries* Just kidding.):

(say it with me: "tap" like in "tap water" but faster + "si" like the Spanish word for "yes" and "log" like dog but with an L)

Many, many thanks to for making my taste buds happy <3

Garlic Fried Rice / Sinangag (scene-na-ngag)
(the simplest way is to fry a lot of minced garlic until it is about to get crispy, add salt, then add day-old refrigerated rice (this makes it less sticky))

Fried Egg
(I add a bit of water to the egg and cover it so that the resulting steam will cook the top part but the method below is an easier way to make sunny side up :) )

  • 1 lb beef sirloin, thinly sliced


  • 3 1/2 tbsp vinegar
  • 2 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 6 tbsp white sugar
  • 1 tsp ground back pepper
  • 1 head garlic, minced
  • cooking oil for frying
Cooking Directions:
  • Combine marinade. Stir well.
  • Arrange meat in a container or ziploc bag.
I used a freezer bag since it's thicker than the regular kind. No marinade mess :)

  • Pour marinade. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Turn at least once.
  • Fry until brown. (I covered it during the first half so that the beef cooked more evenly, plus the marinade                                                       seeped through the meat for a longer time which made the beef tastier and more tender)

(Please pardon our splattered refrigerator, it's from the marinade)
  • Serve with sunny side up eggs and plain rice or garlic rice. 
  • Enjoy! (I did :D )
Top your garlic rice with chopped scallions for a touch of color :)

Happy eating!

Winner Wednesday

Sorry for neglecting you for so long, my little corner of the world wide web! To satiate your appetite for updates, I will post two recipes of food I've recently prepped for my friends :) Here's one of them.
I lovelovelove this recipe, it has the right amount of vegetables, grains and protein. It is a little on the sweet side though, so if you are watching your sugar intake you might want to find another recipe. It's very n00b cook-friendly that even if you don't regularly cook (like me), it would be hard to mess this up. I cooked for approx. 10 people (I got a large slab of fresh salmon from Costco) and adjusted the recipe accordingly.
Recipe from

  • Low-sodium teriyaki sauce
  • 2 (6-ounce) salmon fillets
  • Sesame seeds
  • 2 small zucchini, thinly sliced
  • 4 scallions, chopped
  • Canola oil

Combine 5 tablespoons teriyaki sauce and fish in a zip-top plastic bag. Seal and marinate 20 minutes.

I used a baking pan since it was a large amount of fish!
Toast sesame seeds in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat, and set aside. Drain fish, discarding marinade. Add fish to skillet, and cook 5 minutes.

Turn and cook for 5 more minutes over medium-low heat. Remove from skillet, and keep warm. Add the zucchini, scallions, and 2 teaspoons oil to skillet. Sauté 4 minutes, or until lightly browned. Stir in 2 tablespoons teriyaki sauce. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, and serve with salmon.

*side note*
-use really low fire because the sauce gets burnt really easily. I learned that along the way haha. Better to cook slowly and evenly than fast and charcoal-y, right?

 Happy cooking!