The holidays are offiically over! A year ago, I spent December alone – studying for the CPA exam, avoiding all social outings, I was getting ready for my first busy season. I would never have imagined that 2012 would turn out the way it did – the people I met, the experiences I had, the relationships that got stronger, the ones that fell apart, the stupid things that I did, the lessons learned from such dumb mistakes. 2012 was an interesting 366 days.
I had an amazing 23rd birthday that made me realize that I can’t hang like I used to in college (these are dark times, friends.)
I never would have thought I’d make it halfway across the world to Russia.
I found a city that I think I like better than LA. Ruh roh. Time to move.
And somehow 12 months flew by and here we are at the end of December… I don’t know where time goes anymore. As you get older, each year get shorter. Terrifying.
That was pretty much my December. A lot of eating, a lot of drinking, and a lot of relaxing to recharge myself for 2013. This is the year where things get crazy. Crazier than 2012 – can’t imagine how that’s possible but I have a good feeling about what’s to come. Other than work busy season. That’s going to be the black hole of my year. New Year’s Eve just isn’t fun when you know your life is going to suck for the next four months of the year.
The only way to alleviate this feeling of FML is to plan an epic trip somewhere. Someone travel with me in 2013, please. I don’t want to be in LA.
vegetable oil for frying
8 halibut filets
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup frying tempura batter mix (or more to get the right consistency)
1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle beer
Heat oil in a deep fryer to 365 degrees F (185 degrees C). Rinse fish, pat dry, and season with salt and pepper.
Combine the tempura mix and gradually mix in beer until a thin batter is formed – you can adjust with more tempura mix or beer to get the right consistency. You should be able to see the fish through the batter after it has been dipped.
Dip fish fillets into the batter, then drop one at a time into hot oil. Fry fish, turning once, until both sides are golden brown. Drain on paper towels, and serve warm.
Lemon Matcha Pound Cake (from Joy the Baker)
makes one 9x5x4-inch pound cake, plus 12 mini muffins
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/3 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup sour cream
zest of one lemon and juice of half a lemon
1 Tablespoon matcha powder
1 stick plus 7 Tablespoons (15 Tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter the loaf pan, dust the insides with flour and tap out the excess. Also butter a mini muffin pan or line a regular muffin tin with cupcakes papers for the small amount of excess batter. Set aside.
Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt.
Whisk the eggs into the sugar. You can use a large bowl with a whisk for this. You don’t really need a big mixer for this recipe. Beat until the eggs and sugar are thoroughly incorporated. Whisk in the extract, then whisk in the sour cream. Continuing with the whisk, or switching to a large rubber spatula, gently stir in the dry ingredients in 3 or 4 additions; the batter will be smooth and thick. Finish by folding in the melted butter in 2 or 3 additions.
Divide the batter in half (just eyeball it) into two separate bowls. In one bowl add the zest and lemon juice. In the other bowl, fold in the matcha tea powder.
Pour some of the lemon batter into the pan. Top it with a portion of the green tea batter. Add more lemon and top with more green tea batter. Fill the loaf pan, leaving at least 1-inch of room at the top of the pan for the cake to rise. Swirl gently and minimally with a butter knife to get a good swirl effect. With the remaining batter, make mini muffins or cupcakes.
Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the center of the cakes comes out clean. The mini muffins will take about 15 minutes and the cupcakes will take about 18-20 minutes.
Once removed from the oven, allow the loaf to rest in the pan for 20 minutes before running a knife along the edges of the pan and inverting the cake onto a cooling rack.