Monday, December 28, 2015

Hands-on Christmas Dinner 2015

Christmas eve was always hosted in my house since the time I was born.
Family getting together was not the only part of my excitement this day.
It was not only about the presents either.
As a kid, it was not only about getting permission to sleep at 2am as well, (after playing with my new karaoke Singstar playstation CD).
As an even younger kid, it was not about getting scared by Santa Claus either, (yes haha! I actually once ran away and hid in the toilet when my grandpa, disguised in the silly big fat man, knocked on our door. I was about 5 years old) or driving my Barbie in her new plastic pink “Ferrari”.
It was not about getting surprised again when opening up the presents, (because we already knew exactly what we had asked for Christmas).
Of course, it was about all these memories.
But what Christmas means to me is even beyond that, it is a lot about my Mom’s homemade Christmas dinner and the full day of preparations, the supermarket shopping during the couple of days ahead, the arguments we had about the turkey weight to check if it was enough, etc.  My mom researched, drafted, and created the recipes ahead of weeks and designed the decoration as well! For instance this season, my mom decided to ditch the traditional Christmas decoration and decided that it will be some kind special…
Back home from a party late at night, passing by the living room on my way to my bedroom, I discovered, agape, the funeral of the grandiose Christmas tree my mom has ditched for 14 small trees, standing naked of any lights and Christmas decoration and filling up the vast empty space. Her Christmas ambition was a forest and not just a tree.

My mom cooked dinner herself for the entire family with the help of her elves every Christmas eve.
When I was younger, my mom would let me take charge of the appetizers as I took pride in contributing to her perfectly conceived and tasteful menu.
As I grew up, along with my siblings, my brother, almost 18, started to take last-minute cues from the supermarket and my sister specialized in cooking the turkey with mom.
Later in the early evening, the rest of the family, the tetas and the aunts would come a bit earlier to help finish up the last details. Then, an inter-generational girls talk involving the grannie and the 7 year old cousin who sneaked in the kitchen to grab a glass of water, would kick out any men who entered the kitchen.
With time, I have come to cherish and appreciate those precious moments.

As for my mom's exclusive Christmas dinner menu, there was two salads as usual, a cheese platter and a charcuterie platter, some foie gras biensure, caviar toasts, salmon verrine cups, and a Buche de Noel cake that no one is ever able to eat following the big turkey main dish.

Foie Gras with fig jam and some brioche bun slices.

Raw salmon verrine cups with cream, avocado and salmon eggs.

Charcuterie Platter: parma ham, iberico ham,  lomo ham, bresaola, Salami (sausage) rosette, smoked turkey,pepper salami, salami brie, smoked ham, (and spare me your processed mortadella sausage)

Mini buttered toasts topped with caviar and lime.

Fresh Gambas marinated in honey, wine, ginger, garlic, onions, and pepperbell.

Fresh Salmon marinated in Soy Sauce, honey, garlic and ginger.

Turkey with a honey orange and ginger sauce.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

BDL Accelerate 2015 Day 2

BDL Accelerate is the conference to attend for entrepreneurs, wantrepreneurs, web developers, techies, to learn from and connect with success stories from all over the globe. The international speakers are carefully handpicked and the panel talks and presentations are invaluable.
The conference, curated by the Central Bank of Lebanon or la Banque du Liban, aims to boom the startup ecosystem in Lebanon and accelerate positive change. I am already a big follower of BDL Accelerate since its successful first edition, but this year I also attended as community developer for MakeSense in Lebanon & the MENA region.

On day 2, I stumbled upon the stand of RagHunter and finally met one of the founders of this badass online fashion magazine, Sereene Abbas. Our conversation lead to an unexpected discussion about the future of my lifestyle blog, practical blogging, photography tips from a smartphone (yes, seriously), Ivanka, and "being real".
Sereene confirmed and validated the need to keep going with my blog and really be myself, which in that case would be integrating my career lifestyle into my interests in fashion and food.
I aspire to be a leading business woman who's in tune with the latest fashion updates and top culinary experiences (popular or fine dining), so why not blog that? Let's say this blog post is a pilot sample of what 's to come in a couple of months, a rebranding and a stronger comeback for la capricieuse in a more grownup format.

Here, I was wearing a Joe wrap chemise I bought from NYC, leather pants from the limited edition of Isabel Marant x H&M, a snakeskin printed blazer from Sinequanone, and white & black Stan Smith Adidas sneakers.



Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Updated myself

[past 2 am. mood]

i still feel change is happening.

i still love this page, but i want it to be better eventually.

and i want it to be more adapted to the new me.

so i'm planning a new capricieuse with a rather business mind and a cooler blog in a couple of months.

i went to paris for a month (big deal, no, i still want to be in Lebanon even though paris lightens up my eyes) for a job training! (oh what a fool, you did not post about paris on your blog!) 

no no, i diid take lots of pictures,

and i have been to this like cazy restaurant on the rooftop of Centre Georges Pompidou that overlooks over all paris. i should share with you the pictures some time! Le Georges, that's the restaurant and so far my favorite in the world, i guess. You have Notre Dame Cathedral and the Eiffel Tower on one view. sick!

what about the outfits? no i didn't really ask people to capture me, felt like a hassle to ask.
But one of my favorite outfits was pairing up my black culotte from Zara with a trois-quart tweed-like shirt with silvery army socks and leather Nike running shoes.
i'm also quite happy of my over-the-knee Stuart Weitzman highland heels purchase.

i should train my new housekeeper (yes we all have housekeepers in Lebanon) to take pictures.

when i have the time...

right now I'm really focused on change.

But you can still check my instagram page @ak_elsa or @capricesdelsa which is updated really often.

If you want to see my face even more often, try Snapchat (I'm an addict). i guarantee you will have your dose of Elsa.

i will be back tomorrow maybe, when I meet up with my friend for dinner and he will make me feel bad for not blogging for such a long time.

i promise that work doesn't stop before 7-8pm in paris...
and then you've got a life or you just want to sleep.

i will catch up on you, 

Meanwhile, check out I am currently developing the community in Lebanon and the Middle East region and encouraging social entrepreneurship.