Someone recently asked me: How do you make a “DIY Michelada“. That got me thinking. We’re back from our summer travels so lets get right into it with some fav summer drinks for these hot days!  I don’t necessarily have a favorite drink; but rather, it kinda depends on where I am and what I’m doing.  Dive bar: Makers and Ginger; nice bar:  Bombay Sapphire martini extra cold and extra olives; Italian vibe:  Negroni first, then red wine;  Japanese vibe:  always both sake and Asahi beer; Thai vibe:  either an ice cold Singha or Heineken (yes, in Bangkok, everyone drinks Heineken) or an icy glass of whiskey and soda over ice, I can go on and on but you guys get the idea. 

Sooooo, summer time means lots of outdoor activities, and an old time favorite is going out to a baseball game.  We are so lucky to have some awesome ball parks within driving distance.  Our hometown park is of course Angel Stadium; Dodger Stadium is just a short jaunt away, and our family makes several trips during the season to Petco Park in San Diego.  

Michelada at the Ball Park

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We love female business owners, and Brittany Reenan has created a cool salon vibe on the East Side of Costa Mesa.  Brittany is the salon boss, stylist, and creative colorist leading her talented team.

Woman Crush Wednesday Brittany Reenan of Salty Blonde Cut Co

She has been cutting and styling hair for 15 years.  She started when a friend invited her to share a retail space.  Brittany started with 3 chairs, then continued to expand.  She eventually took over this space and filled the place with many more chairs by bringing in other cool and hip stylist and colorist.  She kept the shared commercial concept alive by inviting pop up boutiques that rotate in.

Woman Crush Wednesday Brittany Reenan of Salty Blonde Cut Co

I found The Salty Blonde Cut Company last year and have been very happy with my cuts.  Brittany keeps her cuts are fresh and current.  She is friendly and takes her time to make sure that you are happy with the services.  

My reasons why I love this salon:

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As a Thai gal, I doctor up every dish I eat with some kind of sauce, chili, or condiment.  For my everyday cooking, I keep it simple and quick.  Here are my favorite condiments that I use frequently.

Top 3 Thai Condiments for Everyday Cooking and Eating

Golden Mountain or Maggi Sauce

This is kind of the Thai version of soy sauce or seasoning sauce.  Both are pretty easy to find in any Asian market and in most traditional markets.  Costco actually carries giant bottles of Maggi Sauce!  It is used to flavor many stir fries and egg dishes.  Splash a few drops into a stir fry or fried rice for extra flavor.  Try marinating some pork or chicken in this sauce before throwing it into a stir fry!  My son’s favorite omelette is what he calls, his Thai omelette.  Whisk up some eggs and drop several splashes of Golden Mountain or Maggi sauce into your eggs.  Beat well.  In a frying pan, heat up 3-4 tablespoons of oil (canola, vegetable, or avocado) until hot.  Carefully pour egg mixture into hot pan.  Wait for it to start setting, don’t stir.  Then while lifting an edge of the eggs up with a flat spatula, gently tip the pan in that direction, allowing the runny parts to glide into that spot; repeat on other side. This allows for your omelette to rise and add some layers so that it is not so flat. When the bottom is nice and golden, flip your omelette.  Allow to cook until golden brown.  Note:  a Thai omelette is not cooked the way you would cook a French omelette.  Here, you would use a higher flame and you want the omelette to turn golden brown.  Serve it as is or over rice.  I also like mine with Sriracha hot chili sauce all over it!  And of course that leads me to my next favorite….

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Thai Kitchen brand curry paste is our go-to curry paste for an quick and easy Thai curry dish.  The only curry paste that is readily available at your local grocery store (I buy mine at Ralph’s) and that is also vegan.  I buy many other brands from the Asian markets as well, but most of them are not vegan.  An added bonus if you are cooking for kids whose palettes are still sensitive to spiciness (my kids are in training), is that these curry pastes are significantly milder than any other brands that I use.  Now I know that there are simmer sauces that are also good for a quick meal, but I prefer to be able to control how much paste I use.  And I would just start with a tablespoon for a milder curry and add more if you prefer.  I also like to fry my paste in a little oil before slowly adding my coconut milk.  I believe this brings out the aroma and flavor of all the spices.  A couple of tablespoons of curry paste and a can or two of coconut milk and you’ve got yourself an easy and delicious base for a Thai curry dish, adding pretty much any combination of tofu, meats, and veggies that you like.  Look out for some upcoming recipes for Easy (Almost Instant!) Thai Curries.

Looking for a a quick and easy Thai recipe to add into your everyday, weeknight rotation?  Let us know!

BEST Watermelon Margarita at Cha-cha's Latin Kitchen

The BEST watermelon margarita EVER at Cha-cha’s Latin Kitchen!  Go get one now!  All of their signature cocktails look amazing made with fresh ingredients; but our server enthusiastically recommended the Watermelon Margarita as her absolute favorite drink.  Don’t you guys love servers with opinions and good knowledge of the menu?  I do!  And she did not steer us wrong!  This was hands down the most delicious watermelon margarita ever!  I am usually a straight forward margarita gal, Cadillac or skinny margarita, on rocks.  I hate the syrupy store bought sour mixes that give a margarita that artificial flavor, and the fruity ones are usually the worst offenders made with prepackaged fruit juice or nectar.  But a well made margarita is a thing of beauty!  You can try to avoid bad margaritas by asking just a few questions.  I usually ask if the sour mix is house made, and if the mix is freshly squeezed lime/lemon/orange juices.  If ordering a fruity mix, is it freshly blended real fruit?  

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