1001 Days Later

Everyone goes searching for purpose once in a while. Especially when it comes to blogs. Sometimes it’s hard to make the transition when you’ve been writing and sharing all things wedding for a while. I’m totally just asking for a friend here #itwasme #blogidentitycrisis So I this friend was sharing tips and tricks, design ideas, dress ideas, flower ideas, her own wedding plans, wedding checklists, downloadable wedding planner kits…you get the idea. Then she got married and was ready for the next phase of life and blogging. She loved to write, loved web design, loved all things photography and food… View Post

Sunday Currently, vol. 84

I don’t want to jinx things by speaking too soon, but it feels like the heat wave we’ve been sitting under the last few months has finally broken! Yesterday was full of cool breezes and gorgeous clouds and was almost cool enough at night to pull out a sweatshirt. Almost. It’s funny how fickle my moods toward the island can be. There are plenty of times I resent living on a rock in the middle of the ocean and just how long it takes and how much it costs to get anywhere, that it feels the same all year round,… View Post

How to Cook An Amazing Steak

I’ve been more than a little steak focused this week thanks to looking back on my amazing dinner at Brisbane’s Breakfast Creek Hotel and the cheerful steak debate I had with my Australian counterparts. So in the interests of putting a bow on the steak discussion, I’m going to show you my absolute favorite way of making a delicious, flavorful, quality steak right at home. It’s definitely not something you have to leave to a restaurant or a professional chef, and it’s definitely not a task with only one way to succeed. But this version gives you an amazing flavorful steak… View Post

October Goals

October is the sunset of the year. Things are exploding with warm, rich color and getting cooler, and while there are celebrations to be had in the coming months, it kind of reminds you to stop, look around, and remember that the world is beautiful. We don’t have a lot of changing leaves in Hawaii’s perpetual summer, but we do have rainbow shower trees – which do exactly as you’d expect. From August through October-ish, they grow and shed huge clusters of pink, orange, and gold blossoms so that if you live around them, you see colorful showers of petals blowing… View Post

Restauranting: Breakfast Creek Hotel

Australia has a passion for good food. I figured this out early on during the couple of weeks I spent there this summer, as nearly everyone I worked with was ready to drop other subjects of conversation and discuss where to get the best steak, the best fish, the best prawns, the best curries, and just what made them the best – especially after our chief of staff pronounced American steaks sub-par. Okay, he called them “horrible,” but I’m trying to blot that out of my memory. Instead, I wanted to focus on what he considered a great steak. Since… View Post

Eat Like a Local: How We Find Local Food While Traveling

I love chatting with fellow travelers about their travel styles. It’s a lot of fun to see who’s super organized, planning out their itineraries down to the finest detail, and who’s super laid-back to the point where they’ve just bought open ended tickets and are going to wing it from there. I know people on both sides. I think the majority of us are somewhere in the middle, combining both structured and unstructured time so we’ve got plenty of time to explore and wander off the beaten path, but at the same time have booked the things we really, really… View Post

Sunday Currently, vol. 83

I am a morning person. I’m usually out of bed by 5 am most days, including weekends, getting my day started – whether that means going for a run, getting up and working on a project, or just rolling over in bed to scroll through social media. It’s not a set-an-alarm kind of thing. I’m just up. Not today. Today my eyes didn’t even open until 7:30! It didn’t hit me until then how exhausted I was. I’ve been pushing it really hard the last few weeks, between work and trying to get back in shape and starting a few… View Post

Berry Pavlova with Autumn Spices

In honor of the Australian exploration – and Australian food exploration – that’s been going on around here lately, I thought it might be fun to share in a beloved dish of the region – and a beloved food rivalry. Say hello to this beautiful, light, simple, sweet and surprisingly controversial dish – the Pavlova. The Pavlova is a simple meringue cake traditionally topped with whipped cream, strawberries, passionfruit, and kiwis. It’s named after famous Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova, and is said to have been created in her honor either during or after one of her tours Down Under in… View Post

What is Australian Food?

There are a lot of markers out there for national identity – and we’d be silly not to acknowledge food as one of them. Food and the preparation of food is an important part of cultural heritage, and it both creates and reinforces ethnic group identity, from the way it’s prepared to the traditions alongside with or in accordance with which it’s served. In tasting the food of a region, especially when prepared with the natural ingredients of that region, we are able to experience cultural identity through a whole new set of senses. It’s a magical, awesome thing. That… View Post

Running Stairs at the Sydney Opera House

This summer, I spent my first week in Australia waking up to an absolutely beautiful view of Sydney. From Sydney Harbor. I was camped out on a US Navy warship in dock there for the first half of my time in Australia. And each day, I came out on deck in the morning with my cup of coffee, feeling really spoiled – not just by the surprisingly good coffee {those Navy guys do love their coffee} but by having a job where I can get views like this. After a moment, I realized that the white building I could just… View Post

Anchors Aweigh

Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken” is a beautiful nuanced poem that, at first glance, seems all about not just taking the easy path, but exploring the other roads, the roads less traveled. As I’ve said before, though, Frost is a master of subtext. I read this poem for many years, thinking I should take the adventurous road, strike out on my own path, and so forth, which fits much with youthful vision and energy. A couple years ago, I pulled my book of Frost poems out again and reread it, and it was like someone tilted a kaleidoscope in my… View Post

Sunday Currently, vol. 82

I was fully prepared to work yesterday. Maybe not happy about it, but fully prepared. We’re in the middle of another training exercise, where working through the weekend isn’t altogether odd, but I haven’t had a whole lot in the way of free weekends lately with all this travel and the house needs some love. No dings against my husband – he’s a wonderful man and keeps the house amazingly clean – but whenever he and I are on our own, the single habits come back. You know, the ones where you aren’t producing as many dishes or as much laundry so… View Post

Warm Berry Buckle + Ice Cream

I almost started another blog – a cooking blog – under the title “Bright Red Notebook.” I decided against it for a lot of different reasons, but the recipe part of this blog might as well live under that title. My bright red Moleskine notebook is one of my most prized possessions. It’s where I jot down recipe and food notes from my trips abroad, where I start outlining the ideas and inspirations behind some of my favorite dishes, and where I keep my most treasured family recipes, the ones that my family can’t always really remember because they never bothered… View Post

Eight of our Favorite Oahu Staycation Destinations

Even though Oahu is fairly small, only about 44 miles wide at the widest point, and you can drive all the way around it in a couple hours when the traffic isn’t hideous, there’s a huge amount of variety in landscape, things to do, and the very culture and feel of the island. When you cross from one side of the Ko’Olau Mountains to the other, or you go from the North Shore out to the Leeward Coast, it feels like you’re on a different island. We love to get out and explore and absorb those different facets of our island as much as… View Post

Where We Stayed: Hawaii Prince Hotel Waikiki

When Scott and I chose Corks + Forks as the Hawaii Food + Wine Festival event we most wanted to attend this year, we knew that neither of us wanted the job – or to saddle the other person with the job – of designated driver. We trade off that responsibility pretty fairly and there are outings where nobody drinks, but this event was all about celebrating some of the best vintners in the world and some of their most fabulous wines! Buying tickets and having one of us abstain from tasting them would be heartbreaking! So we did what we usually do… View Post

Favorite Moments from Corks + Forks

Ever since we had our little culinary minds blown at the It’s a Food World After All finale event for the 2014 Hawaii Food + Wine Festival, Scott and I have been counting the days until the 2015 event. But when it came time for us to buy tickets, even when I had the mouse pointing at the finale Beauty and the Feast event at Ko Olina, I found my hand hovering over the mouse, unwilling to click “purchase.” But why? We’d had an amazing time at the finale event the previous year. We loved the venue – any gourmet food venue… View Post

Eat Like a Local: How We Find Hawaii Culinary Events

With two years in Oahu and a lot of culinary exploration behind us, Scott and I have gotten pretty good at finding amazing local culinary events. Between the Eat the Street food truck rallies, brewers festivals, and our favorite, the Hawaii Food + Wine Festival, we’ve managed to eat ourselves silly on the best food, the best ingredients, and the best hospitality that our island has to offer. While we’ve learned a lot about local food and flavors from these, we’ve also learned a lot of great lessons on how to tap into the local food scene in a place, and… View Post

Sunday Currently, vol. 81

What an amazing, epic, unbelievable week and weekend! I was lucky enough to link up with one of my favorite inspiring travel bloggers for coffee while she was visiting, and we managed not to drown in the deluge of rain the islands have been getting! It’s supposed to absolutely pour for the next couple of weeks. I’d be bummed, since rain and soggy roads mean I have to take the four-wheeled vehicle into work instead of the two-wheeled one, but it’s the one thing around here in Hawaii that actually makes it feel like fall. The rain broke beautifully, though,… View Post

Trip Report: Where I’ve Been Lately

I’ve rolled up a few frequent flyer miles since I dropped off my last trip report over here! Now that I’ve got {crossing my fingers here} a whole month here in Honolulu without a plane flight, let’s cap this summer of travel off with a look at what’s happened so far – and what I still have to roll up. You’ve pretty much gotten the scoop on our stops in London, Norway, Copenhagen, and Amsterdam so far. But since that time, I headed out to Denver and Alexandria in June, Australia in July, and Korea in August. So here’s a look at… View Post

Low Country Shrimp Boil, Hawaiian Style

There isn’t anything much more summery than a good beach boil. Every place does it a little bit differently. In the Bayou low country, it’s crawfish, and in Scandinavia, they’re crayfish. I’ve seen everything in New England from lobsters to crabs, shrimp to clams. Baltimore cooks up their famous blue crabs, and Virginia and the Carolinas go shrimping down the coast. Still, the recipe is about the same. Seafood. Corn. Sausage. Potatoes. And spices measured by the handful and not the spoon. I’ve been talking about hosting a low country shrimp boil around here for a while, and Scott finally asked me… View Post