Kamis, 21 Maret 2013

Handbag (Baru)

Hari pertama Spring. Tanggal 20 di bulan Maret 2013, suhu masih awet beku, salju melayang-layang di udara membuat white out di mana-mana (terutama karena kami di bagian utara Amerika), dan ditambah banyak angin kencang.
Parah.
Malam hari, suara angin di antara pepohonan menderu-deru, terdengar lebih jelas, terkadang membuat sulit tidur. Brrr!!!
Suatu malam beberapa hari yang lalu, aku terbangun di tengah malam, sekitar jam 2 AM dan sulit untuk kembali tidur. Pikiranku memunculkan ide untuk membuat handbag (lagi).

Pilihanku kali ini adalah kain warna merah dengan corak bunga dan sedikit warna "tan", kubeli beberapa bulan yang lalu.  Dalam keseharianku, menjahit handbag bukan hanya membutuhkan ide model, tapi juga mood.  Perlu waktu relatif lama ternyata untuk mencari-cari ide model apa yang sreg.
Aplikasi berbentuk hati dari perca bernuansa biru muda & biru tua yang dijahit tangan di atas kain putih (printed cotton warna corak paisley warna putih juga) itu sudah kubuat di bulan Januari, dan kusimpan di kotak kain sekian lama. Dan akhirnya, setelah utak-atik dan berkutat beberapa lama, barulah jadi sepenuhnya seperti yang kita lihat di sini, akhirnya!


Handbag ini boleh dibilang handcrafted di USA, tepatnya di state Michigan karena (mau nggak mau) di situlah tempat tinggalku. Materialnya kain katun 100% berkualitas sangat baik. Itulah salah satu keuntungan untuk crafter di USA, kain-kain di sini kualitasnya top markotop :) Mata langsung menjadi 'ijo", nggak ketulungan deh kalau jalan-jalan ke toko kain. Ini bagus, itu bagus, arrrggg...!

Rabu, 13 Maret 2013

Lebih Dalam Tentang Kejujuran Berbisnis

Kejujuran berbisnis, apakah itu?
Anda mungkin seorang pemilik usaha, atau bekerja untuk seorang usahawan, atau memiliki kenalan seorang pengusaha. Mungkin Anda termasuk dalam kategori tsb. di atas dan berpikir sudah tahu tentang kejujuran dalam berbisnis.

Contoh saja. Sebuah perusahaan/toko mengiklankan produknya aman, tanpa efek samping, dan dijamin berhasil padahal tidak demikian adanya. Memasang iklan untuk sebuah jasa dengan melebih-lebihkan keunggulan tanpa membagikan informasi tentang sisi negatif yang akan diunduh oleh pemakai jasa. Sebuah ol shop tidak memberikan informasi bahwa barang yang dijual tsb. lebih murah dan bukan import (produk lokal atau bahkan handmade) karena pembeli melihat foto di situs yang adalah model baju import ala Korea.
Kejujuran adalah kebijakan berkomunikasi tentang kebenaran dan membentuk kepercayaan di dalam pemikiran orang lain. Untuk itu, kejujuran berbisnis memiliki arti sebagai sebuah kebijakan dalam mengkomunikasikan kejujuran dalam berbisnis dan membentuk kepercayaan bisnis di dalam pemikiran orang lain / pengusaha lain. Komunikasi di sini bisa saja verbal ataupun non-verbal dan akan berlanjut secara berkesinambungan kepada pelanggan, karyawan perusahaan, investor, kreditor, partner bisnis, pemerintah, publik, bahkan siapapun yang mungkin tertarik pada bisnis.
Kejujuran dalam berbisnis tanda-tandanya adalah sbb:
1. Membayar pajak dengan semestinya.
2. Mempromosikan keadaan barang/jasa dengan jelas dan benar.
3. Melaporkan laporan keuangan dengan penuh kebenaran.
4. Memproduksi barang/jasa berkualitas.
5. Membagikan jumlah dividen kepada shareholders dengan perhitungan yang benar.
6. Mengumumkan kabar bisnisnya secara jujur.
7. dan melakukan berbagai tindakan bisnis yang menjamin kebenaran yang dapat dipercaya.
Apa keuntungan dari kejujuran dalam berbisnis?
Seorang entrepreneur atau pengusaha jujur akan mendapatkan keuntungan sbb.:
1. Teman-teman yang baik.
2. Karyawan termotivasi.
3. Nama baik di kalangan publik dan pemerintah.
4. Kepercayaan dari para kreditor dan investor.
5. Kepercayaan dari pelanggan dan pemakai jasa.
6. Barang dan jasa yang aman dan dapat dipercaya.
7. Income yang bersih dan terus yang meningkat.
8. Keluarga menjadi bangga.
9. Perasaan tenang.
10. Makan & tidur enak.
Apakah kerugian dalam menghadirkan kejujuran berbisnis?
Pengusaha yang gagal dalam melakukan kejujuran berbisnis kemungkinan akan meraih sukses secara finansial namun akan mengalami :
1. Pesaing dan musuh makin bertambah.
2. Karyawan memiliki moral rendah.
3. Potensi ancaman hukum dan tindak pidana.
4. Kreditor dan investor mengurangi kepercayaan.
5. Pelanggan dan pemakai jasa menjadi kecewa.
6. Produk dan jasa yang tidak terbukti kebenarannya.
7. Income tinggi namun sementara.
8. Keluarga dipermalukan.
9. Stress dan tekanan depresi.
10. Susah makan dan tidur.
Kesimpulan:
Kita perlu memiliki kejujuran dalam berusaha/berbisnis, bukan hanya karena sekedar demi moral baik, namun juga hal itulah yang akan membuat kita merasa menjadi pribadi yang lebih baik dan berkenan; yang akan membawa kita menjadi lebih sukses dalam berbisnis. Jika kita berbohong, menutupi kebenaran, menipu orang, menghalalkan segala cara demi uang, maka yang akan diraih hanyalah sebuah kesuksesan jangka pendek. Kejujuran akan membangun kepercayaan. Hubungan bisnis yang baik akan membawa hasil yang hebat dan awet. Jadi, mengapa tidak berusaha untuk jujur?

Senin, 11 Maret 2013

Beef Rendang Recipe With Soy Puffs and Hard-Boiled-Egg

I believe a lot of Indonesian dishes are gluten free. One of these famous dishes is Rendang. The good news is that I just learned how to cook Rendang yesterday.
It is an Indonesian dish from Sumatra Island that was voted the best food in the world (read here). The flavor of rendang unfolds in layers, like a stick of Willy Wonka's three-course-dinner chewing gum. When I was eating it, my taste buds were detecting zingy flavors of ginger, lemon grass, also savory beef. As I continued to chew, the taste of creamy coconut milk hug my tongue.

Today is a rainy day, on the 10th day of March 2013, and we have left over rendang from yesterday. That means this rendang tastes much better today.

Before refrigeration was available, when wealthy Minangkabau (a tribe in Sumatra) farmers dispatched a cow for a special occasion it was often turned into rendang. With its blistering spiciness (capsaicin is an antimicrobial), low moisture content and high fat content, rendang provided a way to make the kill last for weeks in the sweltering Indonesian heat.

I like it better if it's 'dry' and nice brown (see pictures), after nearly all liquid has evaporated, and the remaining sauce is caramelized on the pan, that creates extremely flavorful coating for the beef, soy puffs (tofu), and hard boiled eggs;  while my husband likes it when the sauce was more watery (look like Terik dish from Java Island).


To serve Rendang, the companion of steamed rice, casava leaves in light coconut milk / asian cabbage with long bean in light coconut milk, sambal ijo (green chili), and sator nuts (petai/pete) are the best. Or if you'd like it just with steamed rice, it's good too!
If you're vegan, you can use this recipe by eliminate the beef & egg, use vegan meat, and cook it on a large pan.


Ingredients:
2 pounds chuck roast beef or beef shanks, cut into thick slices
1 pack of soy puffs (24 pcs small soy puffs)
6 hard boiled eggs
2 inch galangal, sliced into thick coins
1 can of coconut milk ( I used 5.6 fl oz = 165 ml)
2 tbs wet tamarind, meat only
2 stalks lemongrass (white part only, smashed with the side of the knife)
5 kaffir lime leaves
10 pcs candle nuts, dry roasted on the pan until golden brown
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 inch ginger, sliced into thick coins
8 large cloves garlic roughly chopped
2 red onion or 10 shallots, roughly chopped
2 tbs chili pepper flakes or to taste (I used about ½ tablespoons)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon palm sugar ( I used 1 round block, roughly chopped)
Salt to taste 
*⅔ cup of water (for pressure cooker)

Instructions:
1. Add all the candle nuts, turmeric, ginger, garlic, red onion/shallot, chili pepper, and olive oil to a food processor and run until there are no clumps left and you have a smooth spice paste.
2. If you use pressure cooker : Put the beef, water, coconut milk, and spice paste into the pressure cooker and set for 8-10 minutes at 40 psi. (Mixture 1)
If you use large pan (no lid) : Heat the pan over medium high heat. Put in the beef, coconut milk, and spice paste, then cook until the beef is lightly brown and sit for about 30 minutes, then skip the step number 3.
3. Heat the large pan over medium high heat, pour all of the Mixture 1 onto the pan.
4. Add remaining ingredients except palm sugar, soy puffs, and eggs. Let it simmer for another 15 minutes.
5. Turn down the heat to medium low, and stirring by folding them with flat utensil regularly until most of the moisture has evaporated. You'll see there should be quite a bit of oil in the pan (from coconut milk, candle nut, and mostly the meat) so you're essentially 'frying' the sauce and concentrating the flavors. 
6. Add the palm sugar, soy puffs, and hard-boiled-eggs into the pan. Continue stir the rendang periodically until the colour turn darker.
7. The rendang is done when there is almost no sauce left and the meat is darker brown. Ideally you'll let this sit overnight (I put it in the fridge) for the flavors to evenly distribute into the meat. During this time, the flavors will deepen. 


Sabtu, 02 Maret 2013

Homeland Skies {Another Journey of A New Quilter}

So, I bought 2 jelly rolls in 2012. It's A Walk In The Woods by Aneela Hoey for Moda Fabrics.
I love jelly roll fabrics. Jelly roll is fabrics precut into 2½ inch. strips. Like this:
I also bought 2 yards of white fabric with white paisley print.
I didn't start to work on it until the end of the first week of February 2013, when I saw a pattern on a magazine. I remember, that time I really-really wanted to make this quilt!
So before bed time, I read the pattern from top to bottom. *Sigh. I have to. Yes, I have to eventhough I had no patient to read all of it. (I fell asleep!)
The original pattern called for 16 blocks which have 9 LeMoyne Star, 37 Pinwheel Blocks 4" x 4", 7 Log Cabin Blocks, and 4 Rail Fence Blocks 6" x 6".
But shoot, I already used up some of white fabric for 3 blocks of applique quilts and also for a bag! And another 'shoot' was I don't have all the fabric requirement for this project. I was worried if I had to buy more fabrics for this project. I wanted to use my stash, but...
Then I said to my self, "Just do it! And make it my own style."
At that time I just want to make sure I have enough fabrics.
The next day, I began to cut my fabrics.
To make LeMoyne Star Blocks, the pattern said I would need 3" strips. But, I didn't really follow the pattern. 
It's called modification. Ha! 
I cut my jelly roll strips which had 2½" width. Like I said, just go for it! Kinda rebellion.
Some adjustment also had to be made to make Pinwheel Blocks, because originally it should be made from 2 7/8".
Then, in the afternoon, tada... 
And the next day, I got more blocks...
For Log Cabin Blocks, it was a lil' bit different story. The pattern called for 2½" strips and 6½" x 6½" rectangles. That made my red and green fat quarter stash joined the crowd.
The more I looked, the more I thought that the red & green color in each block especially LeMoyne Stars were very contrast and catchy, so I tried to arrange it in different position for every blocks.
Then, I was so ready to sew all blocks together!

 It was winter, snowing so bad outside. When I got a chance to take picture outside, I quickly grab my small camera.
It took me a few days to think about what kind of border I wanted to do. 
Finally, I decided to make the most inner border using 

Dash Stripes.

Next, small white frame as the middle border and a lot of 7" length strips for the most outer border. 
A lot of works. 
Good thing that everything needed to be sewing just straight.

Showing off the corner using fuzzy cut technique. ≧◠◡◠≦ My favorite technique.
I would say the corner stone idea was pop up from my head at the last minute. I drew 7" block on a piece of paper to figure it out.
Do you think I'd be considered as a new quilter in town? :)

Hopefully y'all would like this quilt.
God bless y'all!


Yen~

 *Inspired by Lynn Lister - from America Loves Scrap Quilts magazine.