Sunday, September 30, 2012

Bouchon Bakery, by Thomas Keller

Keller and Rouxel's new book, Bouchon Bakery, will be released on October 23, 2012 still in time for fall and winter baking!  The hardcover copy will be $31.50.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

The Rockridge News

We've been getting the Rockridge News since we've lived at our house.  I really enjoy looking it over as it is news for our neighborhood.  Also, there are activities and updates on controversial  events going on in the area.  It is free and delivered to our house each month!


The Rockridge News
sponsored by the Rockridge Community Planning Council
4123  Broadway
PMB 311
Oakland, CA  94611

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Dreams vs. Reality in buying an old bungalow

Recently I've been remembering when we first got our bungalow years ago.  We had so many hopes and dreams for this home, and truly wanted to be stewards to preserve the home.  Yet, today, as I look at our home,  I feel extremely frustrated in the way it has taken so long to get things done.  Also, it has been more expensive than we could ever have expected.  Our most recent kitchen bid was more expensive than an entire home in my home town of Michigan.   Neeedless to say, we  decided not to remodel the kitchen at this time.  We are not sure of our next step......

When people buy these bungalows, it is so hard to be realistic and practical.  I wish we'd actually done the work BEFORE we moved in.  That is my advice.

Monday, September 24, 2012

The Craftsman Home Store, Berkeley, CA

There used to be a store on Claremont Avenue in Berkeley, CA that sold craftsman styled furniture, lights, books, etc.  The Berkeley retail store has since closed but now they have an extensive website.  They also do home design services, and there is a gallery of over 50 pictures of their work.


The Craftsman Home, Honest Furniture for home and rent
Order by calling, 510-655-6503
(They do not offer online shopping, but they can arrange for shipping for anything they sell.)

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Taste of Bali for an Old Bungalow

I love the Monkey Forest Road Cafe and gallery in Oakland, CA on Grand Avenue.  They have some gorgeous storage options for toys, art supplies which is crucial for our old bungalow.  Also, they have some beautiful natural wood and other bungalow friendly accessories.  Who wants everything old and dark?  This place has some beautiful things to lighten up the spaces in your house.

Plus, it is fun dreaming of living in Bali!

There is also a nice patio area that is enclosed and is dog friendly.


Monkey Forest Road Cafe and Gallery
3265 Grand Avenue
Oakland, CA  94610
Phone 1-510-327-2400

Books on display at the cafe:

Bali Modern The Art of Tropical Living
by Gianni Francione
Periplus Editions
ISBN 962-593-466-9

Bali Living:  Innovative Tropical Design
By Gianni Francione with Kim Inglis
ISBN  978-0-7946-0567-4

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Orinda, CA Classic Car Show Weekend

There will be classic cars on display in Orinda at two weekend events.  On Friday, September 21st at 7PM there will be a "Dancing with the Cars" paid event and on September 22nd there will be a free car show from 10AM-2PM.  Saturday's earnings benefit the "Seniors Around Town" transportation services.


Orinda Car Show
September 21  7PM (pre- show party, tickets needed.)

September 22  10AM-2 PM  (free event)

Monday, September 17, 2012

Rockridge Out and About Festival, Oakland, CA

The Rockridge Out and About Festival is coming up on Sunday, October 7, 2012 from 12-6PM.  This is a wonderful festival to showcase some of  the wonderful resources of the Rockridge area.  There will be a jazz, wine, chef's stage, artisan alley, picnic foods, kids court, and a wellness area.


Saturday, September 15, 2012

Market Hall, Rockridge district, CA

I made an amazing dinner tonight of salmon, spinach salad with goat cheese and strawberries, and Challah fresh from the oven.  I got all the ingredients from Market Hall, our local market, and my son and I walked there.   Though houses in our area are small, I still love the convenience of living so close to a market.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Stay Overnight in Rockridge!

Since I have family visiting soon, I have been researching places to stay near Rockridge District in Oakland, CA.  I discovered where you can rent an entire 1 bedroom, 1 bath apartment with a flat screen tv with built in DVD player and wireless internet.  This is also a great location for walking to the Rockridge shopping area!  Check out their blog at!


Rockridge Bungalow B&B

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Yummy Seared Halibut

I find myself missing summer, though officially summer isn't over!  I made a delicious island teriyaki seared halibut this past week that everyone loved and with the tropical flavors it felt very summery!   Plus, I didn't even have to create the marinade.  With school starting and work busy, I really want to start making mealtime delicious and nutritious for my son, yet reasonable for me to cook in a short amount of time.

Island Teriyaki Seared halibut Recipe-

Before cooking the halibut, wash it thoroughly under cold water, pat dry with a paper towel (or clean towel).

I like to use my lodge cast iron skillet for searing food because it is also oven safe.  Pan searing adds a delicious crust to the outside of the halibut.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In the lodge cast iron skillet (the pan needs to be oven safe for this recipe), sear halibut 2-3 minutes on each side, with a generous amount of Organicville Island Teriyaki sauce and marinade.  This marinade is all natural plus gluten free.  Transfer the pan to the oven and finish cooking for  5-6 minutes.

Yummy!!!  My four year old (and my husband and I) loved this recipe!


Lodge cast iron pan (I recommend the 12 inch preseasoned skillet from Lodge; the 8-inch is a bit too small for this sort of recipe).

Organicville Island Teriyaki Sauce and Marinade
Sky Valley Foods
878 Firetower Road
Yanceyville,  NC 27379

I found this marinade at Whole Foods Market.  It is also available online:

With love,

Bungalow Mama

P.S.  I do not recommend this marinade for cooking shrimp.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Grilling Chicken Wings

This week I tinkered a bit with our recipe for the marinade for our chicken wings.  We had run out of pineapple juice and didn't have time to run to the store to get more (I was starting to run up against our son's bedtime).  Pineapple juice is sort of the backbone for my wife's wings marinade.

Without the pineapple juice, I decided to risk salty wings and increased the amount of tamari sauce in the recipe to about 3 1/2 ounces.  Any more and I thought the tamari would overwhelm the wings.

I substituted honey for the agave nectar, which we were also missing.  The honey goops to the bottom of the marinade, and so you need to both stir it well and also be sure to thoroughly rub your baster in the honey goop.

I believe the marinade was a success.  In fact, I think it was a bit better than our standard recipe, which I think ends up being a bit too liquidy with the 6 ounces of pineapple juice.  It kept the wings moist, which is a key objective.  And it was tasty -- not too salty (though definitely not sweet).