Monday, September 21, 2015

Salmon Avocado Scrambled Eggs

A breakfast/ Brunch classic. (I will not blame you if you have this for lunch or dinner as well!)
You probably know how home food always tastes better than anything you can eat at a restaurant or in a café; it must be because either you’ve done it yourself or you were more generous in putting more of that and a little bit more of that.
For this recipe, I got inspired from Urbanista’s Salmon Avocado plain scrambled eggs I ate on Friday. My recipe of the scrambled eggs will be less bland and tastier, and you can bet on me that I will be adding more smoked salmon pieces.
A serving for one person counts an average of 2 eggs to make your scrambled eggs. If you are having this as your only meal, you can count 3 or 4 eggs for a serving. But 2 eggs with a cup of milk or juice and a fruit perhaps will work for you if you’re hungry. There are 4 easy steps to make this recipe, try it out!

For one serving you will need,

2 large eggs
1 tsp of olive oil (preferable than butter)
½ a small avocado, diced
75 g of smoked salmon
1 tbsp of Greek yogurt/cottage cheese/sour cream (makes it creamier, optional)
1 tsp of dried dill (Aneth) if you don’t have fresh leaves (dill is great to enhance the taste of the salmon)
1 tsp of onion powder (don’t waste your time mincing an onion, onion powder will do)
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pinch of kosher salt
¼ of a lemon

Cookware and cutlery
Non-stick pan
Heatproof spatula
Whisk or fork

1- Add olive oil to a large non-stick pan over medium heat.

2- Crack eggs into a bowl and add the yogurt, salt, black pepper, dill and onion powder. Whisk them all together to incorporate air into the mixture and make the scrambled eggs lighter and fluffy. 

3- Pour the eggs mixture into the pan. As it starts to set, I stir, bring in, and turn over the cooked parts with the help of a heatproof spatula in order to form large, soft clouds; this will take about 4 to 5 minutes.  

4-When ready, remove the scrambled eggs from heat and serve immediately on a plate. Garnish with the salmon and avocado pieces (and fresh dill if you have). Don’t forget to press the lemon quarter over the salmon!

Now it’s time to enjoy your royal meal, I hope you do! 

Monday, September 14, 2015

Mitsu Ya, Gemmayzeh

[A look over the counter at the bar]

Mitsu Ya is a Japanese restaurant and a joint partnership between a Lebanese and Japanese chef Mitsu whom is himself the chef behind the bar. The restaurant is known for its fresh fish, mainly the sushi and sashimi but also everything in between. The food literally tastes and breathes freshness.
 Mitsu Ya is located in Gemmayze in Gouraud Street where most restaurants in the area sit quietly afar from the crowd and the noise of the pubs. You can find it facing Tabliyit Massaad, and for those of you who know where Urbanista is, it would be before it, on your right, at driving direction. If you are driving, you can either leave your car in a parking several meters on your left at walkable distance from the restaurant or leave your car with the Valet next to Tabliyit Massaad, on your left. If you are lucky, you can park in the space near the sidewalk. 
The interior decoration of the place is very charming, and I was first pleasantly surprised with the entrance door that opens with the push of a button. Don’t look for the button on your way out like I did, it will work automatically with a sensor! The deep rectangular elongated area of the premises gives you a view over the entire restaurant from the bar. Although the restaurant is considered to be rather small, it gives it a sense of coziness and comfort to this otherwise upscale and classy restaurant. 
The dress code, as I was expecting before going there, is casual elegance and it could even make the sparkly attire for women happen on the weekends. Jackets are not required for men. Also for summer, the place is not extremely AC cooled, so you can pass on the jacket or cardigan. The dress code for Mitsu Ya can be summed in a few words, “dress for the occasion”.
The value for price of the menu is great considering the average price of the Japanese and Sushi restaurants in Beirut. When we left after one appetizer, several main dishes, and three orders of dessert, my friend Rita and I had a full stomach and marveled taste buds. 
With a shared dinner of two, the bill divided amounted to $55 each excluding waiter tips. The appetizers reasonably range between $10 and $15 while the desserts we ordered were somewhere between $3 and $5 per piece. For the main dishes or roll, the prices can vary inconsistently depending on what you are ordering. For instance, beautifully rounded medium sized scallops and imported fish and food are tagged at a higher price than the Maki crazy rolls. Moreover, many of the ingredients are actually imported from Japan such as the yellow tail fish Hamachi, the sea urchin “Uni”, and the tuna belly “Toro”. Chef Mitsu has also been inspired from western cuisine and is offering fusion delicacies such as the Wagyu roll served with foie gras, which is my favorite item on the menu and what is usually the final surprise when your order the $85 “Chef-Mitsu-will-take-care-of-you” straight off the menu—I just forgot how it is precisely named on the menu, but you will see this option on the first page of the menu, on the lower left.  
Follow the pictures to know more about what we ordered. I definitely advise you to try Mitsu Ya, it will just turn a regular night-out more special. I would also recommend you to sit by the bar to witness Chef Mitsu effortlessly cook all of his orders.  Call 01/561110 or 71/561110 to book your reservations. 

Hamachi (yellow tail), Salmon, and Shutoro (tuna belly) Sashimi

Aubergine (eggplant) Miso, just so delicious!

Negitoro wrap

Maki rolls: Louisiana, Lotus Avocado, Crazy California.
The exceptional Wagyu Aburi roll topped with Foie Gras

Vanilla Ice Cream with Black Tahini

Green Tea Mochi with cream, (favorite piece of dessert)

Strawberry Mochi with Cream

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Porsche 911 GT3 RS Launching

A couple of weeks ago, I had the opportunity to attend the private event launching of the new Porsche 911 GT3 RS since my dad belongs to the Porsche club—“belong” is a strong word but he is definitely mad about fast cars, particularly his Porsche. He drives a brown anthracite Porsche 911 Carrera 4S with dark espresso leather interior. The event was hosted in Gemmayze upscale restaurant, The Gathering, and we had the chance to participate in a tombola to win the car!
 Just kidding, I wish… I got there late and that’s what my parents told me to rag me, I had missed the tombola… it was too good to be true so I believed them because I wanted to!
Everyone at the event was scattered around the car, taking pictures, checking it out from the inside—it has a really beautiful red suede interior with a slightly coral tone. 
The seats are, well, like that and they remind me of track racing cars. 

Timelessly elegant but a beast, (I need to get better at talking about cars).
As for performance, I advise you to check it out here, I will not be à la hauteur of talking about what is usually a men conversation—calm down woman I am a pro-feminist, no sexism ova here.
I was heading to Caprice French night shortly after to party so I tried to compromise my outfit choice. I was wearing a suede fringed mini skirt from Mango, a vintage white lycra top (that dates from my mom’s early adulthood years), Vince peep toed leather ankle heels, Saint Laurent Paris leather fringed bucket bag and Swarovski necklace. 

With my friend Patrick

With my friend Mia

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Favorite 5 Nightlife Spots in Paris

It was about time to blog about my personal top 5 nightlife spots all over Paris. The first two I am featuring are night clubs, the third one is a circus-shaped theater-like venue, and the last two are more chilled out options— or places where I could ditch my lovely high heels. I’ve been to all of them and I am trying to share some pictures I have on my phone (unless they turn out to be too crappy, peace out!)

 Queens Nightclub

               Queens is a very reputed night house in Paris on l’Avenue des Champs Elysees, 8eme arrondissement. Queens Disco night is a French more laid-back version of what we know of Thursday’s 80s Night at BO18 back in Lebanon, except that it happens on Mondays at Queens. You should also check their “Shake”HipHop music edition on Thursdays. You can have the Queens experience either with an affordable paid entrance and enjoy your night on the dance floor or by booking a table in the VIP section, which is totally worth it and is so much fun given us Lebanese are used to tables and there are no bars in Queens.  

The selfie at the hotel lobby before going

The selfie at the party

VIP Room

I was invited to an after-party at VIP Room this past January after an Haute Couture show of designer Bilal Barrage. VIP Room is located in the 1er arrondissement of Paris, on Rue Rivoli, next to the Louvre museum. It is rather a small and cozy place with a baroque decoration, good music, and a glitzy atmosphere and crowd. In fact, you are expected to dress to the nines and be wearing high heels unmistakably (if you want to get in and fit in). Likewise, if you want to enjoy your night there, thou shalt not worry about money—you will have to expect to pay premium knowing the VIP Room is a high-end nightclub and is chosen by international celebrities (with prices similar to White in Lebanon). However, this should not be a problem for us Lebanese since we are already used to this type of dress code and bottle prices (particularly for the ones who party at least twice per week).  Concerning the service quality, I don’t really remember about the bouncers but the barman was kind enough to charge my phone before it was about to turn off. VIP Room are also famous for their "Afterwork" edition. 

The selfie at the Ladies room

Le Cabaret Sauvage

Le Cabaret Sauvage is a “salle de spectacle” located in le parc de La Villette in le 19eme arrondissement. I love its circus-shaped venue with the carved pillars and the circular wooden dancefloor. In fact, Le Cabaret Sauvage hosts multiple events including club nights, live music, and other different type of events; it is actually fully booked for events ahead of time and you can check their website. I really like the outdoors space, (even though it is made of fake pelouse) there are bean bags, chairs, and benches and food trucks on several occasions—just great for nighttime binges and cravings.

Le Point Ephemere

Le Point Ephemere is arguably my favorite place in le 10eme arrondissement of Paris. It is located next to Canal Saint Martin and I’ve got to tell you it is “under” le Quai de Valmy—because I got in a fight with the cab driver who would go around and around Quai de Valmy and not find the place. I paid 30 euros for what was supposed to be a FIVE min drive from my hotel; needless to say, I was a very pissed consumer. After I had really enjoyed my night and an unexpected rock concert, I decided to walk back to the hotel for this short distance of “un quart d’heure” or 15mins. I enjoyed the walk along canal St. Martin and discovered quite several pubs on my way. Le Point Ephemere is an acclaimed center for the arts and dedicates spaces to artists’ workshops, dance studio, and music repetition. It is undeniably an art hub and an inspiration for all artists and passers-by. When I visited in June, they had set a really nice outdoor terrace for which you would need to book a table to sit by the waters of canal St. Martin of be facing the graffiti walls.

I guess I sighed out of relief when I finally discovered here Le Point Ephemere under le Quai de Valmy!

Australian Rock Band playing

On Snapchat: @ PrettyCap

Le Perchoir Rooftop

Le Perchoir is located in the 11eme arrondissement on Rue Crespin du Gast. It is a very nice roof top bar with affordable cocktails and a restaurant one floor down. (I would have to compare it to Iris bar in Beirut slightly) There is a nice view over the city that shows loads of chimneys and the beautiful Sacré Coeur in Montparnasse. The restaurant has an exquisite menu with the plates very elegantly presented. The bar is open all week long and until 2am on weekends (fiya BO ba3den eh?), but the restaurant only from Tuesday to Saturday. Le Perchoir is a crowded place so it is advisable to book a dinner table (48euro le Menu Chef) to cut the line or the roof-top cocktail bar and therefore not having to queue for an average of 15 mins.