For Love of Exploration has moved!

It’s official!  I have taken my wordpress.com blog and moved it to www.forloveofexploration.com!

What this means for subscribers

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Thank you all for your continued support!

<3 Lindsey

This Weekend: Wine Tastings, Pub Openings, Food Photography & Ultimate Frisbee

LeiOut Beach Ultimate  Come out to Santa Monica for the largest co-ed Ultimate Frisbee Event in the world, 100+ teams show up with crushing thoughts of blood, sweat & tears!  LeiOut organization has been bringing together the frisbee obsessed since 1999!

  • When: Jan 14-15
  • Where: N of Pier, Santa Monica
  • When: 10am-4pm
  • Cost: Free to Watch

Around Australia in 80 Sips  Enjoy 80+ great wines plus artisanal cheese, charcuterie and more at the Pacific Design Center this Saturday night!

  • When: Jan 12
  • Where: Pacific Design Center
  • When: 8pm – 10pm
  • Cost: $75.00

Picture Perfect  Food photographer Christina Peters and prop stylist Amy Paliwoda will teach a natural-light food-photography class this Sunday.

  • When: Jan 14
  • Where:MDR Photography Classes, 4051 Glencoe Ave., Marina del Rey
  • When: 9:30am – 4pm
  • Cost: $249.00

The Pub @ Golden Road  Get a beer and a burger for 10 bucks cash on our patio BBQ. Chef Adam has prepared vegan and non vegan burgs and our cans of Point the Way IPA and Golden Road Hefeweizen are ready for you to enjoy.

  • When: Jan 15
  • Where:5430 San Fernando Rd West, Los Angeles, CA
  • When: 11am – 11pm
  • Cost: of food

Los Angeles Travel & Adventure Show The largest travel show in the western United States features rock climbing, ziplining, a scuba pool, Fiery Food Stage, live music and travel tips from speakers.

Crunchy Hot Sesame Wings & Cool Cucumber Salad

Crunchy Sesame Chicken Wings

I have fallen head over heels in love…with a cookbook!  Seriously my excitement for this cookbook is borderline insane.  I have cooked four meals from it since Sunday and am already dreaming about conquering the whole book!  I scored this masterful find at William Sonoma on sale for $7.00 which in itself was a treasure.  Chris called it out to me as the title smacked him over the head, MAD HUNGRY: Feeding Men & Boys – Recipes, Strategies & Survival Techniques by Lucinda Scala Quinn.

This cookbook is chock full of beautifully thought out and passion-driven recipes.  Classics with simple twists that make the difference between an Applebees and a fine dining establishment.  Tips of cast iron pans, good knives and meal servings.  Life knowledge that will change the way your family, your men and your kitchen operates.

My favorite cookbook introduction now goes as follows:

“Men eat differently from women — they eat more, they eat constantly, and they eat passionately.  They ransack a packed refrigerator and scrounge crumbs from an empty one.  They eat standing in front of the fridge, and they eat with their fingers.  They are all appetite and no pretense, “What’s for dinner?” is the most important, most burning question.  Food is everything to them and food is nothing until there is none.  And, if they’re “mad hungry” with no food in sight, life is a living hell.  But feeding them well is what many of us love to do and few jobs feel as satisfying.  It’s what keeps them healthy, keeps them happy, gives them some of their fondest memories, and teaches them to cook.” – Lucinda Scala Quinn

 

Mad Hungry: Feeding Med & Boys

So the first recipe I share with you from Mrs. Scala Quinn (trust me there will be plenty more) is one I never dare make at home — typically I can’t nor do I dare recreate the masterful wings of a local bar.  Buffalo wings are a delicacy you just don’t make at home.  Ahh…but Lucinda has clued me in on the secrets.  These wings not only look similar to the ones you dive into with a beer in hand but they taste that much better.  Try them out for a football Sunday and boys will go insane or serve them up on Super Bowl Sunday and (trust me) you will win girlfriend of the year!

Ingredients:

  • 20 chicken wings
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • vegetable oil, for coating the pan
  • 1/4 c sesame seeds
  • 1/2 c all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp coarse salt
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 c panko bread crumbs
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • bottle of hot sauce or wing sauce

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 375 F.  Place eggs in a large bowl and beat, add chicken wings and combine until wings are fully covered.  In a small bowl, combine the sesame seeds, flour, salt, cayenne, panko, and garlic.  Line a large rimmed baking sheet with baking parchment or coat the pan with oil.
Dip each wing into the flour mixture to fully coat.  Place the coated wings side by side on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 30 minutes at 375 F and then increase the temperature to 400 F.  Cook until the wings are golden brown and sizzling, 20 – 30 more minutes.  Immediately remove wings place in a bowl with hot sauce or wing sauce and toss to coat.

Crunchy Sesame Chicken Wings

Pickled Cucumber Salad

Cool Cucumber Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 c rice wine vinegar
  • 2 generous tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp siracha

Mix all ingredients together and place in the fridge until ready to serve.

Eats I Have Been Dying to Mention

It’s been a crazy couple of weeks with the Holiday season flying by, ringing in the New Year and getting back into the swing of things!  I have done a ridiculous amount of eating that I have been dying to share with you all!  Check out my latest hot spots!

Larry’s - Venice, CA

24 Windward Ave  Venice, CA 90291-4102
(310) 399-2700

Larry's sits steps from the Venice Boardwalk

Larry's sits steps from the Venice Boardwalk

Mark and Erwin Sokol (of Hotel Erwin) have teamed up with Waterloo & City chef Brendan Collins to bring affordable gastropub-ish plates to the art community of Venice Beach.  Larry’s opened in August 2011, was named after local artist Larry Bell, a pioneer in minimalism.  The interior bar

Larry Bell, local artist and a pioneer of California minimalism was the inspiration for Larry’s, his accomplishments and style was carefully used in the design and interior features that make this new spot shine.  The eats are nothing short of extraordinary and unique creative masterpieces.  SHRIMP & LOBSTER RAGOUT, capellini pasta, lobster tomato sauce, basil & truffle, GREEN CURRY MUSSELS, ginger, fresno chile, charred bread for dipping,  PIZZA, green chorizo, egg, chipotle, tomato sauce. The menu although foodie eccentric, never tops a $15 price tag making this the new hot spot for every local generation.

Ahi Tuna Tartar, white soy ponzu, prawn crackers, pickled vegetables

Ahi Tuna Tartar, white soy ponzu, prawn crackers, pickled vegetables

Bacon Wrapped Organic Salmon, roast beets, gnocchi & horseradish

Bacon Wrapped Organic Salmon, roast beets, gnocchi & horseradish

Dry Aged Beef Burger on ciabatta bun, house made pickle & fries

Dry Aged Beef Burger on ciabatta bun, house made pickle & fries

Hostaria del Piccolo – Santa Monica, CA

606 Broadway St  Santa Monica, CA 90401
(310) 393-6633

Hostaria del Piccolo

Hostaria del Piccolo

Opened just this year, Hostaria is the latest venture of Vittorio Viotti and chef Bobo of Venice, Italy’s Piccolo Venice, said to be one of the very best restaurants in Venice.  The menu is adorned with antipasti options that cause any palate to water.  ORECCHIE  crispy fried pigs’ ears and salsa verde, CINGHIALE  roasted wild boar sausage: soft polenta, MAIALI  selection of exclusive Italian cold cuts and VERDE arugula, spinach, avocado, pine-nuts and Parmesan crisp.  The pizzas have been rated nothing short of excellent and the staff is friendly and actually Italian!  When visiting Santa Monica next its a must try whether you’re looking for lunch of dinner, it’s not to be missed.  Perhaps than you can fly to Venice and sample Piccolo to compare notes.

Frittura, crunchy fried calamari, shrimp, white smelt fish

Le Pizze Bianche without sauce - squid ink dough, mozzarella, tomatoes & basil

Le Pizze Bianche without sauce - squid ink dough, mozzarella, tomatoes & basil

Gnocchi Marinara

Gnocchi Marinara

Bottega Louie – Downtown Los Angeles, CA

700 S Grand Ave  Los Angeles, CA 90017
(213) 802-1470

Bottega Louie

Bottega Louie

Walk by Bottega Louie on any given day and it will be packed, you will automatically decide its pricy and perhaps unaffordable — if your like me it’s best not to torture yourself and keep it in mind for another time, another place.  However, a tiny bit of research will prove your instincts immensely incorrect.  Bottega Louie may look to be a $30 a plate dining spot but its affordable and utterly brilliant.

Walk through the front door and your smacked across the face with an aisle of pastries, mini desserts, macarons, and tarts that scream beauty and perfection.  To the left you’ll see a cocktail bar that sends you back to the 20′s and off to the right a stainless steel open kitchen with 15 maybe 20 chefs and sous chefs cooking and plating dishes with the utmost care and precision.  The lunch and dinner menu may set you back $20 – $25 a person, but plates are enormous, pizzas feed 2+ and you will not leave disappointed.  Beware that they do not take reservations and a wait time can range from 10 minutes on a weekday to 2 hours on a prime weekend!

Mini Meatball Sliders

Mini Meatball Sliders

Portobello Fries

Portobello Fries

Infamous Bottega Louie Macarons

Infamous Bottega Louie Macarons

Bottega Louie Desserts

Bottega Louie Desserts

Cal Shabu – Santa Monica, CA

930 Broadway, Santa Monica, 90401

Cal Shabu - Santa Monica

Cal Shabu - Santa Monica

Shabu Shabu is an act of cooking, the dish is prepared by bring a pot of water to a boiling point and submerging very thin slices of meat and vegetables meanwhile swishing it back and forth until cooked to your desired doneness. In fact the swish-swish sound directly translates to Shabu Shabu. The cooked meat and vegetables are then dipped in a ponzu or sesame seed sauce and served with a bowl of rice.  Once you have devoured this simple yet delicious meal, the leftover broth from the pot is combined with the remaining rice, vegetables, and noodles and eaten as a soup.

The experience in itself is just a ton of fun and Cal Shabu does a remarkable job at making you feel as if you are dining at home.  The restaurant is located off any Santa Monica main drag and therefore the staff is genuine and it’s patrons all locals (they are literally located 6 buildings from our apartment!).  Next time you’re looking for something to warm you up or are in need of some comfort, Cal Shabu should be your first and only choice.

Two Item Combo - Prime Beef & Mussels

Two Item Combo - Prime Beef & Mussels

Soup made from cooking broth with fresh veggies and noodles

Soup made from cooking broth with fresh veggies and noodles

Happy Hour at Cal Shabu, Santa Monica

Happy Hour at Cal Shabu, Santa Monica

26 Beach – Marina del Rey, CA

3100 Washington Blvd  Marina Del Rey, CA 90292-5551
(310) 823-7526

Twenty Six Beach - Venice, CA

Twenty Six Beach - Venice, CA

Most notably known for their massive burgers, acknowledging and not letting it’s patrons forget that they have several times over been voted home of the “Best Burgers in L.A.” is my latest find.  I cannot prove the above theory as I stumbled on 26 Beach for brunch, but their brunch menu is not ordinary sporting entire sections of “Pasta Scrambles”, “The Royals – Eggs over brown rice” and somewhere around 20 French Toasts varieties that you will find creeping into your foodie dreams.  The atmosphere is eclectic and memorable and food is fantastically executed.  I am not sure while dining if I realized just what we had stumbled upon, but now looking back I am dying to test out the french toast and the infamous burgers.

Panchetta & Eggs Pasta Scramble

Panchetta & Eggs Pasta Scramble

Twenty Six Beach Outdoor/Indoor Patio
Twenty Six Beach Outdoor/Indoor Patio
Corned Beef Hash Scramble

Corned Beef Hash Scramble

2011 in Review: For Love of Exploration

In 2011 blogging became an extension of my everyday life.  I took pictures with it in mind, I cooked with it in mind, I planned my weekends with it in mind and honestly I constantly toyed with the idea of figuring out just how I could blog & promote my own brand 8 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Okay time to get real…the reality of the situation is that I am not in a position to take that leap just yet, but WordPress has given me a little gift of encouragement for my efforts in 2011.  As I still have a full-time job that demands some serious time (especially Jan-Jun) and other commitments (boyfriend, friends, family, my well-being) I don’t have a ton of free time to execute the post ideas that linger in my mind day-to-day, but the below was an encouragement that the efforts I do put out there matters to someone, somewhere out there!

For the New Year WordPress sent this ridiculously well thought out analysis of my blogs success over 2011.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 6,700 times in 2011. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 6 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Playing Around My New Toy: A Canon EOS Rebel T3i

This Christmas I died and went to heaven when I opened a rather small, but not too small package.  My ridiculously generous parents have spoiled me rotten with the camera of my dreams.  The newest model of the Canon EOS Rebel — The T3i!  Check out some photos of what is only the beginning of mastering this camera!

Toby, My Pup

Grandma

La Quinta, CA

Stone Eagle, Palm Desert, CA

Dani & Brianne

Buffalo Wings

White Shrimp PizzaDad at Stone Eagle

Chris on Ocean Blvd, Santa Monica

Santa Monica, CA SunsetSanta Monica, CA

Santa Monica Sunset

Shore Hotel, Santa Monica, CA, Ocean Blvd

Wanderlust: An Adventure of Selflessness

The notion of travel among a majority of the U.S. population is that of retreat.  We head out-of-town, out of country to escape the lives we currently live, to relax, to get present.  Yet, it has occurred to me in my adventures around the world that travel is an opportunity to immerse yourself, to learn about lives far different from your own, to experience people with priorities nowhere near yours, to test out and take on a new language rather than expect others to know yours, to step outside your comfort zone and live life from another perspective.  This type of travel may be extreme to some but for me its the type that live for.

I know you are now wondering what has brought on this explanation of what travel means to me and what I believe it should mean to others.  Honestly — it’s an ode to an individual that has done what others never dream of, perhaps never contemplate or think twice about.  One that has displayed an overwhelming amount of courage, selflessness and spirit of adventure.  My boyfriend — Chris’ brother, Cory joined the Peace Corps in June of 2011. He is currently stationed in the rather large pueblo of La Reina in El Salvador.

Cory will spend 27 months in El Salvador working within his pueblo to influence and encourage the community around him.  He writes a blog to keep all of us at home informed on his whereabouts and happenings.  I read each post with greater admiration than the last.  Admiration for the humanitarian he has become, for the courage to live life away from what is well-known, and mostly for the experience that will change not only his life but those that love him at home and all those he comes across within El Salvador.

Follow his adventure at http://www.crokodilelyle.blogspot.com/

Yolanda - Cory's first House Mom

Casa de la Cultura

Cory & some school boys

Cory giving a speech to his community (In Spanish)!

La Reina from above