No Microwave, No Problem


When I moved to my most recent rental, it came furnished. But didn't have a microwave. The house was old, over 100 years old, and while the owner assured me that it could handle a microwave, I wasn't so sure based on none of the outlets working with my fast charger. Between that doubt and me being too busy to read reviews for microwaves online, I never got around to getting one. The previous two and a half weeks I'd been petsitting for a friend who didn't have one and I'd gotten used to it. I just had to heat thing up on the stove, in the oven, or not at all.

So living without one actually wasn't a huge adjustment.

The biggest adjustment was waking up early enough to heat up the oven to heat up my breakfast burritos. I'd been doing that while petsitting, but his oven worked. The one at my house? It stayed on once every fifteen times you turned it on. I wish that was an exaggeration but it's not. There were days it just wouldn't stay on, no matter how many times I started it. So I just ate something else for breakfast.

But I heated up soup on the stove, milk for hot chocolate on the stove, leftover thai on the stove... And it all worked pretty well! There were a few things I chose to eat cold, but they weren't bad cold, they were just meant to be hot.

Overall it wasn't a huge adjustment to live without a microwave. I didn't think I could do it, but it was pretty easy. I understand that not everyone has the time or the budget to do it, the fact that I had the time to wait for the oven to heat up and for it to heat my food says a lot. And honestly, environmentally-wise, and utility-wise it may not have been better to use the oven than the microwave. Someone else might be able to figure that out; it'd be interesting to see what difference is.

And finally, adjusting to living without a microwave makes me think I could adjust easier than I think to other lifestyle changes. Like a smaller house or less stuff. 

Has there been anything you've adjusted to living without?

Homemade Chicken Pot Pie

Northwest Pearls: Homemade Chicken Pot Pie I was recently craving comfort food, in particular Chicken Pot Pie, so I decided to make one!

In the past, okay, it was one time, I haven't had much luck with pie crusts. But I decided to try again and make my own pie crust. So I found this recipe from the New York Times and followed it for the crust.

And for the pie filling, I followed this recipe from All Recipes.

Northwest Pearls: Homemade Chicken Pot Pie

Both recipes were fairly easy, well, I had some trouble with the pie crust, but it turned out this time. (Last time I ended up going to the store to buy a crust.)

I could have cut the slits in the top a bit more symmetrical, and I could use some practice in rolling out the pie crust, but oh well. It tasted good anyways!

The one thing I would change is to not add so much salt to the dish. I think most of the salt was in the pie crust because when I ate the filling and bottom crust, I enjoyed the dish more than with the top crust. But that's a pretty easy fix!

What's a pie you like to make?

Roasted Green Beans

Northwest Pearls: Roasted Green Beans I'm not always good at eating healthy, or at cooking. Usually I'm too lazy/tired/hungry to bother.

But one easy side to a meal is roasted green beans. They're yummy and a great side to something else like chicken and rice!

  • First turn on the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Wash the green beans and drain/dry them.
  • Then place them into the dish/pan you're planning on roasting them in. Be careful to not layer them too deep, I try to keep it to 1-3 beans deep.

Northwest Pearls: Roasted Green Beans

  • Brush them all with olive oil then add garlic all around. (I use already chopped up garlic and sprinkle it around them spread the pieces more evenly with a brush.)

Northwest Pearls: Roasted Green Beans

  • Sprinkle with salt.
  • Cover with aluminum foil. Covering them will prevent them from getting crispy. If you don't do that, they'll get crispy before they've gotten soft.

Northwest Pearls: Roasted Green Beans

  • Place in oven until they've reached their desired softness level. About 20-35 minutes.
  • Take out and enjoy!

Northwest Pearls: Roasted Green Beans

What's a simple recipe you like to cook?

My Own Place

I've been longing to get my own place, a dream that won't happen for a while, but in the meantime, I can look around for what I hope one day to have. How cute are these measuring cups? I have a love of copper.

And this? Of course, I would need to start wearing rings, but how cool is it?

I don't need many (or any) tea cups, I've got so many from my grandmothers, but I do need everyday plates and silverware. My family has a mismatch of silverware, and I like that idea. When I have my own place, I want to go to a local antique store, go through their silverware basket, and mix and match until I have a few sets.

It is somewhat hard to find everyday plates (that I like), but I did find these from Pottery Barn. They're simple and classic enough to last for a while.

Great White Traditional Dinnerware

And a serving tray. Any old one, from online or an antique store would work. This one is from Pottery Barn.

Silver-Plated Breakfast Tray

One can never have enough aprons right? Anthropologie always has adorable aprons.

No kitchen is complete without a mixer. I love this mixer from KitchenAid, and it comes in so many colors, my favorite is this Aqua Sky.

What's something you've always wanted for your own place?