Thursday, May 31, 2012

Restaurant Review: Wasabi

When I first moved to Seattle in 2005 I had never tried sushi before, but it only took one taste and I was completely hooked. I've eaten a ton of sushi since then, but I keep coming back to my first and very favorite sushi restaurant: Wasabi. Located on Second Avenue in Belltown, Wasabi has undergone several renovations throughout the years but the delicious food never seems to change. I hadn't been there in a while, so my friend Margaret and I decided it was the perfect spot for our next happy hour rendezvous. 

Wasabi has happy hour every day from 4pm to 6pm with food and drink specials. You can choose any three items off an extensive list to make a combo for $14. Margaret and I were both starved so we chose six sushi rolls (which in hindsight was probably a mistake). I got a delicious glass of Columbia Valley Maryhill Riesling that went great with the perfectly cooked edamame the server brought for us to start with. Then we both had a cup of the miso soup followed by the most insane display of sushi I have ever seen! Every bite was delicious, but I think we only finished a little over half of what we ordered. At many restaurants happy hour plates can be quite small, but Wasabi really gives you your money's worth with large, delicious rolls. And I particularly love how fresh all their ingredients always are.

I really liked these light fixtures.

Large bar with friendly bar tenders.

Ultra modern interior.

Edamame.

Miso soup.

Our sushi feast: Spicy 101 Roll, Mango Tango Roll, Seattle Roll,
Philly Roll, Shrimp Tempura Roll and Las Vegas Roll.

I was so glad we picked Wasabi and I'm sure Stewart was too, since he got to eat all the leftovers.

Are there any other amazing Seattle sushi places I need to try?

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Skinny Taco Dip

Inspired by Pinterest, Haley and I decided to try a recipe this weekend in Sunland and since it turned out super delicious I thought I would share it here. Any recipe that is yummy but also healthy is a major winner in my book, and I even got Stew to try a few bites although he hates several of the ingredients. He actually liked it, too!

Here is the recipe, modified to our particular tates:

Skinny Taco Dip
Servings: 24
Calories: 59.2
Fat: 3.6 grams
Protein: 2.2 grams
Carbs: 4.7 grams
Fiber: 0.6 grams

  • 8 oz 1/3 less fat Philadelphia cream cheese
  • 8 oz reduced fat sour cream
  • 16 oz jar medium salsa
  • 1 packet taco seasoning
  • 2 cups iceberg lettuce, shredded
  • 2 large tomatoes, diced
  • 1 cup reduced fat shredded Mexican blend cheese
  • 2.25 oz can sliced black olives
  • 1/4 cup sliced green onions

In a large bowl combine cream cheese, sour cream, salsa and taco seasoning and mix well. Spread on the bottom of a 9x12" glass dish. Top with shredded cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, black olives and green onions. Serve with tortilla chips.

We didn't want to bring glass on a camping trip so we used a slightly deeper, plastic dish. This turned out to be a mistake because the chips (we used Juanita's brand gluten free tortilla chips) weren't strong enough to get through all the layers to the bottom part of the dip, so we had to use spoons. So we recommend using a shallower dish if you can. Also since we were going to be camping all weekend I decided it would be easier to prep everything beforehand. I chopped and measured each ingredient separately and put them in individual ziplock bags which fit nicely in our cooler. Then when we got hungry it was super quick and easy to assemble the finished product. Bon app├ętit!

Have you discovered any delicious summer recipes lately?

Monday, May 28, 2012

Sunland = Funland: Memorial Day Weekend 2012

I started going to my friend Evan's family cabin in Sunland for holiday weekends back in 2004, and Stewart began joining me in 2007. Since then I don't think we've missed a single Memorial Day or Labor Day weekend in this little Eastern Washington paradise, and these trips provide some of our favorite memories with some of our very best friends.

We're all starting to grow up a little bit these days. Most people are either engaged or married, and two of my very favorite Sunland ladies will have children by the time the next trip rolls around. The single-wide 1970s trailer is being replaced by a beautiful house, which means indoor water fights and wrestling matches are a thing of the past. But even though we're getting a little older and wiser we can still party with the best of them, which means boating out to the Sand Dunes (less to participate and more to people-watch these days), beer pong and flip cup tournaments, epic volleyball matches, and hours and hours of sun bathing while sipping on cool summer beverages.














Not to mention that as a product of the '80s we will always be children at heart, as evidenced by our theme night this year. '80s fashion, it just never goes out of style. (Yes, I realize these photos don't necessarily speak to our maturity level... but it was so much fun!)




  
















So once again we had a fantastic Memorial Day weekend and we hope everyone else did as well.

Do you have any holiday weekend traditions?  

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Book Review: Snow Falling on Cedars

Snow Falling on Cedars is a 1994 novel by David Guterson that has been gathering dust on my shelf for who knows how many years. Ironically it's another one of many books I have read recently that takes place in the Pacific Northwest; this time on the fictional San Piedro Island which is apparently somewhere in the San Juans.

Set in 1954, the plot revolves around a murder case in which Kabuo Miyamoto, a Japanese America, is accused of killing Carl Heine, a respected fisherman in the close-knit community. In the course of the ensuing trial the reader is taken back in time to memories of a love affair between a white boy and the Japanese girl who grew up to become Kabuo's wife. San Piedro is haunted by the memory of what happened to its Japanese residents during World War II, and an interesting story of land desired, paid for, and lost during this period is introduced as a potential motive in the murder.

I thought this book was a fascinating who-done-it, and as each past experience or memory was revealed I found myself once again changing my opinion regarding Kabuo's guilt or innocence. It literally wasn't until the last few pages when everything came together. I loved the suspense and the way the past and present were woven together throughout the book.

Honestly I had kind of been avoiding reading this book because I thought it might be boring or hard to get through, but it's actually quite a page turner and I'd definitely recommend it highly. I also just added the movie to my queue which stars Ethan Hawke (one of my faves). I just hope it's as good as the book...

Monday, May 21, 2012

Sheena's Bridal Shower

My darling friend Sheena is getting married this summer! It has been so fun to share this period of our lives... getting engaged, wedding and honeymoon planning, etc. Sheena and I met freshman year in the dorms at WWU and became fast friends. It's hard to believe that more than a decade has passed since that time, but I am so happy that we are still part of each other's lives.

Sheena has always loved the color purple, so of course that will be a theme throughout her wedding events. Her shower was hosted by her bridesmaids who did a fabulous job with gorgeous decorations, delectable drinks, and delicious food. The weather also cooperated so we got to sit outside on the deck and enjoy the sunshine while the bride-to-be opened her many gifts.

















We can't wait for Sheena and Nick's wedding on 07/28/12!