Thursday, March 28, 2013

Stuffed Meatloaf. Baked Sliced and Mashed Potatoes

Hi! Today I want to share a recipe of a delicious meal that I love to cook for my family. Stuffed meatloaf! As a side dish I usually like to serve mashed potatoes, but this time I tried a new recipe of a baked potato, that I also want to share with you. Let's get started!
I want to start from the side dishes. 

Baked Sliced Potatoes. I saw this recipe on pinterest once (I couldn't find the actual pin or website to post here), and decided to try it. For this recipe you'll need: potatoes, olive oil, herbal spices, pinch of a salt and butter or cheese. 

First, wash potatoes, make sure they are clean or just peel the skin off. Slice potatoes thinly almost all the way through. In a plate/cup mix all of your desired spices, pinch of a salt and add olive oil (1-2 tsp per potato). I mixed: basil, parsley, paprika and some garlic salt. Then just cover the sliced potatoes with the spice mixture (I had to slightly open the slices with my fingers in order to get spices between them). Put the potatoes in the preheated oven at 425 F for 40 minutes. However, it might require few more minutes to cook completely (mine took 50 minutes to be done). 
Once they are done, you can put some shredded cheese on top or some butter.  I went with butter.
I loved how delicious these potatoes turned out!

Baked Mashed Potatoes. The way I prepare mashed potatoes is simple. All I do is wash clean and put potatoes in the oven for an hour at 425 F. Once they are ready, I cut them in half, empty the inner part into the bowl and save the skin. Then I add some butter (1/2 tbsp per potato), some salt and start mashing. I add milk along the way until the mashed consistency is soft. You can also add some sour cream if you want. Once mashed potatoes are the way you like them to be, just put them back in the skin and add a thin slice of a butter on top for extra touch of yumminess. Done! These are my hubby's favorite!

Stuffed Meatloaf. For this recipe you'll need:
1/2 lb of ground meat
2 medium sized carrots
1 medium sized onion
1 egg
Vegetables of your choice
1 tsp of salt

Grate onion and take only mashed part, discard the juice. Grate carrots on a part of a grater with smaller dimension. Now add grated onion and carrots to ground beef. Add an egg, salt and your favorite spices and mix together.

Once meat is ready, take a cling wrap or a clean plastic bag. Spread the meat on the wrap and put vegetables of your choice in the middle of the meat, as shown in the picture. You can choose any type of the vegetables or multiple vegetables, or you can even put hard boiled eggs instead of mushrooms. Now, using the wrap, roll the meat and stick the edges together. Still using a wrap, lift the ready meatloaf and slide it to the baking pan. Optional: you can cover meatloaf with some mayonnaise, so that the ready meatloaf will have some pretty shiny look. Preheat oven at 375 F and cook the meatloaf for 45 minutes.

Once the stuffed meatloaf is ready, cut and serve it with your favorite side dishes. I hope you will find these recipes helpful and will definitely try them! Enjoy!!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Four Different Ways to Fill In and Shape Eyebrows

For my most recent updated brow video-tutorial click here

My sweet little daughter is taking her morning nap, which means I can sit down in front of my computer and update my blog. I'm planning to update my blog twice a week, but haven't chosen exact days yet. I will try my best to keep up with updates and share all my knowledge about beauty world, cooking and many more! So many things I want to share with you! Of course, you are always welcome to leave a comment if you have any questions. I will try to answer them to the best of my knowledge.
Well, intro is done, let's move on to business. ;) Today I want to show you four different ways how to fill and shape eyebrows. Any woman, whether she has thick or thin eyebrows, needs to know how to fill and shape her eyebrows. Eyebrows are frames of the face, and any picture looks good in a beautiful frame. In this post I will talk about filling eyebrows and creating shape you want for your brows using different techniques and beauty tools.

Initial shaping of the brows. This topic is long and detailed itself. Therefore, I decided to expand and discuss it in one of my upcoming posts. At this moment, I want to shortly go over some important tips. You can shape your brows by plucking, threading or waxing and eliminating unwanted brow hair. One of the most important advice I want to give you is, when plucking or waxing brows, try to follow the natural curve/shape of your brows as much as possible (you can ask ladies in the beauty salon to keep the natural curve/shape of your brow). You can always choose whether you want them thicker or narrower, but try not too much innovate with the shapes of your brows. In my opinion, every person is born with the perfect shape of the brows for their face and trying to change them in different ways sometimes changes the appearance of the whole face and facial expressions.

Filling in and shaping the brows using makeup is another important step in creating perfect brows. There are many ways to fill in and shape the brows using makeup tools, and in this post I will show you how you can create beautiful brow shapes depending on the type of your eyebrows. Let's begin!

1. Filling in the brows using eyeshadow or browshadow. This is my favorite way of shaping my brows. Since my brows are thick, they do not need much coverage, and using eyeshadow to fill in some little hair gaps will create soft and accurate final look. But this way of filling the brows works for any type of the eyebrows. Just make sure to find the correct shade of the shadow. For light brows go with 2-3 shades darker shadows, for dark brows go with 2-3 shades lighter shadows. For blonde and brown hair, I suggest to go with the brown colors. For black brows, go with grey. If your brow hair is red, go with burgundy colored eyeshadow.

1. The first picture above is my actual brow without any product on. I posted it for the comparison with the final result.
2. Start by lining your brows using angled brush and eyeshadow/browshadow.
3. Fill in the whole brow with a shadow using the same brush.
4. Using wand brush (looks like a mascara brush) soften up and evenly distribute the shadow by gently brushing the eyebrow. 
5. Using concealer brush apply concealer right under your brows to define the browline and clean up the smudges of the shadow. You can also apply concealer on the upper part of your brow as well (I usually apply to just the outer half of the upper browline). This will make the look of your brows more dramatic, edgy and very defined.
6. Blend the concealer. Apply some highlighter on the browbone area. 
7. Optional: Apply a clear brow gel on your brows.

2. Filling in the brows using eyeliner pencil or browpencil. I recommend this technique to people with very scarce eyebrow hair. Since coverage of a pencil is fuller, it helps to fill the gaps better and create desired shape. For the color and shade choices, you should follow the same rule as in the point one above. Since my brows are dark and black, I'm using liner of lighter shade and grey color.

1. Again, the first picture is my natural brow without any product on.
2. Line your brows with an eyeliner pencil or browpencil and create the desired shape. Fill in the whole eyebrow or the gaps you want to cover.
3. Using wand brush soften up and evenly distribute the color by gently brushing the eyebrow.
4. Using white eyeliner pencil, define browline by applying it right under your brows.
5. Blend away the white liner.
6. Optional: Apply a clear brow gel on your brows. Apply some highlighter on the browbone area.

3. Filling in the brows using mascara. This technique is perfect for the brows that are nicely shaped, but the brow hair is too thin or too light, that makes the brows unnoticeable.

1. Eyebrow before any product on. Please, do not mind my bad-looking eyeliner on my eyes.
2. Apply mascara to your brows. If not satisfied with one coat, apply another coat to the part of the brows which you want to look bolder/darker.
3. Using q-tip, clean up all the smudges and mistakes.
4.  Using concealer brush apply concealer right under your brows to define the browline and to reach clean finished look. You can also apply concealer on the upper part of your brow, if you wish.
5. Blend the concealer and apply highlighter on your browbone area.

4. Filling in the brows using combination of techniques and tools above. Well, sometimes our brows are perfect in one part, then scarce towards the end, or too light with no distinct shape and etc. In this case, you can always use combination of the techniques above depending on the type of your eyebrows. You can always line and define brows using eyeliner/browpencil, then fill them in using eyeshadow or mascara, apply either concealer or white eyeliner pencil underneath your brows. Just pick the way that works best for your brows. 

Hope this post was helpful for you. Enjoy!

PS: Edited to add my updated brow shaping video that includes and demonstrates more ways, besides the above listed!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Everyday Shimmery Spring Makeup Look

As much as I love artistic and dramatic makeup looks, I'm not brave enough to go out in public with creative eye look or super black smokey eyes. I like subtle and elegant looks when it comes to daily makeup. 

In my experience, I have seen ladies who would not consider colorful or shimmery colors wearable  for work, school and etc. I disagree. When applied moderately, colorful or shimmery shades can be worn in our daily lives, as well as neutral and matte colors. Today I want to show you one of my favorite looks, featuring shimmery shades with pop of a color. Let's get started!

1. As usual, start with priming your eyes. 
2. Using eyeshadow brush apply shimmery beige/champagne color on the inner half of your upper lid. 
3. Now, add pop of a rosy color, by applying it on the outer half of your upper lid. Blend lightly the edge where the colors meet. You can use the same eyeshadow brush as in step 1, but don't forget to pat it on a paper towel to clean it from the previous color. 
4. Apply shimmery grey shadow to the outer corner of your eyes by bringing down color to outer 1/3 of your lower lids. 
5. Using blending brush, blend the grey shade slightly for a smooth transition. Apply highlight color on browbone area and if you wish, apply the highlight on the inner corner of your eyes as well.
6. Apply pencil eyeliner on the top lid. Pencil eyeliner will help to keep the look softer than liquid or gel liner.
7. Apply your favorite mascara. If you are not satisfied with your natural lashes, you can apply demi-lashes (half-lashes) on the outer corners of your eyes. (You can create demi-lashes by yourself! Simply cut your whole false lashes into half!)
That's it! Everyday Shimmery Eye Look is ready! I like to combine this look with light pink lipstick.This look is perfect for spring.You can always modify this eye look according to your outfit by changing the pop/rosy color to the one that matches your outfit! Hope this pictorial/tutorial was helpful for you. Enjoy recreating it!

Products used:
1. Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion
2. NYC Sparkle Eye Dust in color 893 - Champagne
3. BH cosmetics 120 eyeshadow palette
4. Urban Decay 24/7 glide-on pencil in color Zero
5. Clinique high impact mascara in black
6. Eylure Naturalites Lashes cut in half

Monday, March 18, 2013

Olivier (a.k.a. Olivye) Salad

Today I'd like to present you how to make very delicious salad Olivye! Historically, this salad was named after its inventor Belgian chef Lucien Olivier, but all over the world it's known as Russian salad. This salad can be served as a side dish or even the main dish. It is very nutritious and delicious at the same time! Let's get started!
You'll need:
2-3 medium sized potatoes, boiled or steamed, cooled down
3 carrots, boiled or steamed, cooled down
3 eggs, hard boiled
1 can of peas
4-5 pickles
4 oz sausage 
3-4 tablespoons of mayonnaise
1/4 teaspoon of salt

Dice all of the ingredients into small cube forms (approx. 1x1 cm cubes). Eggs, potatoes, carrots, sausage and pickles need to be diced. Then put the ingredients into the bowl, add peas, salt, mayonnaise and mix everything together. That's it! Healthy and very delicious salad is ready to be served! Enjoy!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Easy Homemade Bread Recipe

Hello my dears! Today's topic is going to be about cooking passion!
If you remember, in my post about making healthy hamburgers and baking fries, i promised to post a recipe of buns. Well, here I am! In this post I would like to show you how I make bread and buns using a simple recipe.

Making your own bread at home is always cheaper and healthier. There are so many recipes of homemade bread! The following recipe is my favorite recipe to make homemade bread.

You will need:
1 stick of margarine (113 g) OR 1/2 cup of cooking oil
1 cup of milk
1 tablespoon of instant yeast
1/2 teaspoon of salt
3-4 cups of flour
Optional: 1 tablespoon of plain yogurt and little bit of sesame seeds.

First, start with melting margarine and add milk. If you are using cooking oil, just add milk. Heat mixture until it is warm (120-130 F) and add instant yeast and salt, mix until creamy. Pour it into the large bowl, start adding flour and mix the ingredients until you get a homogeneous mixture. You can add more flour if the dough is too sticky. But make sure that the dough isn't stiff, it should be very soft. This way the dough will rise well and the bread will be light and airy. Now cover the top of the bowl (not dough!) with plastic bag or cling wrap. Wrap up the bowl using tablecloth or towels, and let it sit for 3 hours in a warm and dry place.

After 3 hours, the dough should be risen enough. Preheat oven for 475 F and flour the pan. Take dough and form buns or any shape of the bread you want. If the dough is too sticky, grease your hands using cooking oil, it won't stick to your fingers. Once I shape the bread, i like to cover it with plain yogurt for a shiny finish and add some sesame seeds on top. Next, put it in the oven for 20-25  minutes. 

That's it! Fresh and delicious, easy to make homemade bread is ready. Let it cool down before serving. Enjoy!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Five Different Ways to Create Ombre Lips

Salut! Today I want to show you 5 different ways to create ombre lips. The word "ombre" is a French word, which means "to shade". Nowadays "ombre" is widely used term in beauty and fashion world: ombre hair, ombre lips, ombre clothes, ombre decor, etc.  
In this blog post I want to show you how you can create your own ombre styled lips using different techniques and tools. Let's get started!

#1. Ombre lips using lipliner or eyeliner pencil. Use lighter color as a base color and apply it all over your lips. Then using darker colored pencil create ombre effect by outlining lips or darkening inner center of your lips, whichever you prefer. I applied white eyeliner pencil as a base color, and using my brown-ish lipliner I outlined the shape of my lips. Then, took the white liner again and blended the colors until there were no edges, but smooth transition between the colors. When creating ombre effect remember to blend the colors using lighter shaded pencil. For a glossy finish, apply a lipgloss carefully, so that the colors won't mix together, losing the ombre effect.

Products used: NYC Kohl Eyeliner Pencil - 926, White; Essence lipliner - 04, Honey Bun; NYC Plumping Lip Gloss - 465, Big is Beautiful.

#2. Ombre lips using lipsticks. Just like it was described in point #1, apply lighter lipstick as a base color all over your lips and create ombre effect with the darker shade using lip brush. If you are not comfortable using a brush or don't have one, fingers work just as well as any lip brush. Blend the colors smoothly, and that's it! Apply gloss if you want a glossy finish. 

Products used: NYC lipstick - 314, Petal; Studio Gear Lipstick - Winter Red; NYC City Proof Lip Gloss - 450, Everlasting Blossom.

#3. Ombre lips using lipstick and a lipliner/eyeliner pencil. This is my favorite way to create ombre lips, and i think it is one of the easiest ways as well. Apply lipstick all over your lips, create an ombre effect using darker or lighter shaded lipliner/eyeliner pencil. You can use either lip brush or your fingers to blend the edges of the colors together. Apply lip gloss for a glossy finish. I've created this ombre look by applying liner on the corners of my lips. 

Products used: NYC lipstick - 305, Ruby; NYC eyeliner duet (black side) - 880, Mockingbird; NYC Plumping Lip Gloss - 465, Big is Beautiful.

#4. Ombre lips using lipstick and eyeshadow. Apply lipstick of your choice all over your lips. Take a little bit of the eyeshadow on your brush or a finger tip and carefully apply it on the center of your lips by gradually blending the edges. I would recommend you to pick lipstick color which has a higher contrast with an eyeshadow color, since ombre effect is less visible when the base color is light (as you can see in the pictures). 

Products used: Guerlain Kisskiss Lipstick - 541, Peche Fougueuse; The Color Workshop Shimmer Powder.
Here is another ombre lip look I've created a while ago using bright pink lipstick and gold eyeshadow. 

#5. Ombre lips using eyeshadows. On my previous post I posted a picture of purple ombre lips, which were created using eyeshadows-on-lips ombre technique. You can play around with different colors and create various looks using this method. Let's do rainbow lips! First, apply concealer all over your lips and apply lip primer or an eyeshadow primer. Now start packing the rainbow colors one after another. Once finished, clean up the outer edges of the lips using concealer. Apply gloss for a glossy finish. Enjoy!

Products used: Clinique Line Smoothing Concealer - Light, Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion, BH cosmetics 120 color palette.

Hope you find this blog post useful. Have fun creating lovely ombre lips!