Awesome in January

Awesome in January

Awesome in January

Yes, I know we’re solidly in February by now, but January completely kicked my ass there at the end. A bunch of stupid crap that nobody cares about has sapped my energy, but to be honest, I almost wish I had been in a coma for the past couple of weeks so I wouldn’t have to wake up every morning and read the horrible, scary news. But guys, we’re gonna get through this together and be more awesome than ever before. The struggle is real, but so is my love for humanity and my desperate desire to evolve into Star Trek culture where we finally figure out that we’re all connected and can stop wasting our energy fighting each other and start focusing on sharing some damn compassion.

Woe, that went off the rails a bit. Right. January. Good stuff.

I saw La La Land and was totally won over. I’ve had crushes on both Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling for ages, but they really broke my heart here. If only they’d spent a couple more weeks in dance class working on their arm extension and general epaulement. If you’re not a former dance teacher, you’ll never notice it, and even if you are, City of Stars will still make you cry. This film is completely immersive. See it in the theatre to be fully transported.

Or if you’re not up for leaving your house, watch Sing Street on Netflix. I promise you’ll be very very happy.

I ate some outstanding schnitzel at Bavaria Brauhaus in Glasgow. The food was stellar. You’ve gotta check it out. We also had some fancy burgers at Drygate Brewery. I’d definitely do that again.

Best news of all, we got a cat!!! I am a full on cat person, but because we were renting, I’ve lived in a cat free home since 2009. I’m so happy to have Leeloo in our house running around chasing shadows, knocking stuff over, and being generally awesome. I will never stop posting her picture. She’s a beauty.

Internet food is always my friend. Scottish people do a lot of things well, but they don’t really do Mexican food. I can’t wait to try making my own Spicy Chorizo Queso Dip a la Love and Olive Oil. I just hope I can find the right cheese.

Also, Taco Frachos, ’cause duh.

I’m totally smitten with these Chocolate Hand Pies from Sally. They’ve almost got me wanting to be into Valentine’s Day. 

Classic Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Your January favorites were Cheese-Stuffed Meatloaf, Peanut Butter Fudge, and Classic Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies. I could probably eat about 47 peanut butter cookies right now.

February will be over in a flash, and before you know it, the light will be back and we’ll be singing in the sunshine. Get into it.

Belgian Waffles | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Belgian Waffles

Belgian Waffles | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

I had no idea when I moved to Scotland that it would be so difficult to get my hands on decent waffle. For some reason, waffles here are tiny and dense, more like dense pound cake than what I would expect when I order a waffle. They’re nice, but they’re not exactly what I want. 

In my mind, a waffle should be the size of a dinner plate. It should be light and fluffy and crispy on the outside. It should be served piping hot so that when you spread the butter over it, it melts and makes little pools in all the dents. I prefer maple syrup on my waffle, and plenty of it.

Belgian Waffles | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

This Belgian Waffle recipe is exactly that. The way waffles are supposed to be. There’s an extra step that makes sure you get the perfect light and fluffy texture. You have to separate your eggs and whip your egg whites to stiff peaks, and then fold them into the batter for an extra lift. It may seem like a fuss, but it’s absolutely worth it. 

You’ll know it’s time to remove your waffle from the waffle iron when the lid lifts relatively easily. The steam coming out of the machine will also decrease. If you try to open it too early, your waffle might split and you’ll end up with two different sides stuck on the inside of your waffle iron.

Also, if you’re wanting to serve your waffles all at the same time, keep them warm by placing them on a rack in a low oven. Don’t put them on a baking sheet or you’ll lose your crispiness on the bottom. Also, don’t stack your waffles or the steam will make them go soft. And just go ahead and put out every conceivable topping. There’s pretty much nothing that’s not delicious on a waffle.

Belgian Waffles | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Sometimes you just have to bring the awesomeness into your own house. Make your own Belgian Waffles. It doesn’t get any better.

Belgian Waffles
Yields 8
Belgian Waffles exactly the way they should be, fluffy, crispy, and oh so awesome.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
5 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
5 min
Ingredients
  1. 1-1/2 cups flour
  2. 1/2 cup cornstarch
  3. 1 teaspoon baking powder
  4. 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  5. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  6. 1-1/2 cups buttermilk
  7. 1/2 cup milk
  8. 6 tablespoons vegetable oil
  9. 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  10. 2 eggs, whites and yolks separated
  11. 3 tablespoons sugar
Instructions
  1. Plug in your waffle iron and start preheating it. You'll need it to be fully heated in order to get that ultimate crispness.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In a smaller bowl, whisk together buttermilk, milk, vegetable oil, vanilla, and egg yolks.
  4. In a third bowl, use an electric mixer to beat your egg whites until foamy. Slowly add in the sugar as you continue beating until you've got stiff peaks.
  5. Add your buttermilk mixture to your dry ingredients and mix gently until combined. A few lumps are fine. With a rubber spatula gently fold in your egg whites into your batter until the streaks are gone.
  6. Add your batter to your waffle iron and cook until the lid lifts relatively easily. If it starts to pull apart in the middle, use a fork to coax the top of the waffle off the waffle iron. Serve immediately or place on a rack in a warm oven to keep hot.
  7. Make sure you have plenty of butter and other toppings for ultimate happiness.
Adapted from Cooking Classy
Adapted from Cooking Classy
http://awesomeon20.com/
Burgerology: Bloc+

Burgerology: Bloc+

Burgerology: Bloc+

Bloc+ was one of the very first restaurants we tried when we moved to Glasgow. Every weeknight, they have a different special, so you’re almost certain to get something awesome without getting depressed about how much money you spent. 

Burgerology: Bloc+

Tuesday is £3 burger night. How can you beat that? Their beef burgers are juicy and flavorful and served on a soft brioche bun. I pay a bit extra for cheese on mine. They come with crispy fries, making this an even better deal.

Burgerology: Bloc+

Geoff usually opts for the veggie burger and adds jalapeno. He says it’s pretty standard, but the price is right.

Burgerology: Bloc+

They also make a great white russian at the bar which makes me outrageously happy. 

If you want to splash out, Bloc+ has plenty of outrageous burgers and dogs. They also do a deal on pizzas during the week. Their poutine is pretty outstanding as well. 

Burgerology: Bloc+

It’s a small restaurant/bar that becomes a rock venue at night. The atmosphere is laid back, but what makes it extra awesome is that when there’s not a band playing, their tvs are all showing The Food Network. I don’t have to look at sports while I eat my burger for once. I can watch Jamie Oliver or Ina Garten in the background. It makes me happier than it probably should.

If you haven’t eaten at Bloc+ yet, you should definitely check it out. There’s something for everyone, and something cheap every night of the week. Do it!

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