Take that, Emeril!

January 4, 2010

We always knew the Obamas were eatin’ good in the neighborhood, but we didn’t realize how good until last night’s special Iron Chef America, which pitted Emeril Lagasse and Mario Batali against Bobby Flay and White House Chef Cristeta Comerford.  The secret ingredient: anything from the White House Garden.  The four chefs scavenged the garden for their pick of seasonal produce, then returned to the DC set of Kitchen Stadium to make good on Michelle’s challenge: create a meal that inspires Americans, and focuses on eating healthy and locally.

Fashion faux pas survey: To match your Crocs to the First Lady's dress? (AP Photo)

Team Flay and Comerford won handily with: a fennel and apple salad with oysters; Fresh garden salad with fried lobster and squid in carrot juice, sweet and sour eggplant with pine nuts and currants; Broccoli clam “chowder” with a hint of ginger; all American BBQ with pork, slaw, collard green tamale, cauliflower gratin and watermelon radish pickles;  sweet potato tart with honey, topped with pecan brittle and ginger ice cream.

Isn't it considered cheating to smear caviar all over your dish? (Food Network)

This wasn’t Flay’s first interaction with the Obamas, though.  Our POTUS got a little training in the art of grilling from the master…

Born to run (the US)

December 7, 2009

The Kennedy Center was abuzz last night with yet another red carpet event–who needs LA when you’ve got the glitterati visiting DC every week?  The Honors went to Bruce Springsteen, Robert De Niro, Mel Brooks, Grace Bumbry, and Dave Brubeck.  Attendees included everyone from Eddie Vedder to Nancy Pelosi to Mikhail Baryshnikov. 

Of course, the First Couple were in attendance looking glam as ever.  At the reception, Obama showed some respect, saying “On a day like this remember, I’m the president, but he’s the Boss.” 

Lovely, as usual! (Reuters/Jonathan Ernst, US Politics Entertainment)

Hillary's in heaven--who wouldn't be when sandwiched between the Taxi Driver and the Boss! (AP Photo/Kevin Wolf)

Just remember who the REAL Boss is... (AFP/Mandel Ngan)

Even Wonder Woman made an appearance! (AP Photo/Kevin Wolf)

MODOC and FLODOC-Mayor and First Lady of the District of Columbia, of course! (Kris Connor/Getty Images)

Asian Invasian!

November 25, 2009
Last night’s event can’t be considered anything less than success for POTUS’ first State Dinner!  This much glamour hasn’t hit DC since…the inaugural balls? 
The invitation list was a veritable who’s-who of South Asian A-listers, including Deepak Chopra, Bobby Jindal, Kalpen Modi, Sanjay Gupta, Jhumpa Lahiri, Amartya Sen, Fareed Zakaria, and M Night Shyamalan.  Other guests included Colin Powell, Katie Couric, Steven Spielberg, Alfre Woodard, and Blair Underwood.  In addition to Jennifer Hudson’s vocal stylings, AR Rahman, Oscar winner for the “Slumdog Millionaire” score, also provided entertainment.

Mirror mirror on the wall, who's the fairest of them all? Hands down, FLOTUS! (Kamm/Getty Images)

 FLOTUS donned a gorgeous dress by Indian-American designer Naeem Khan.  The dress apparently took 40 people three weeks to custom create for the First Lady.

Is this the Oscars or the State Dinner? (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

Is Katie wearing a sari??? (Reuters/Jonathan Ernst)

Kalpen really pulled a "Kumar" here--did someone not get the "black tie" memo? (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

We know who was there, but what did they eat?  Guest chef Marcus Samuellson prepared a mostly vegetarian meal, and used arugula, pineapple sage, fresh dill, oregano and thyme from the White House Garden.  Guests had their choice of roasted potato dumplings with tomato chutney, chick peas and okra or green curry prawns and caramelized salsify with smoked collard greens and coconut aged basmati for the main course, not to mention a bevy of dessert options.  Yum!

Beautiful! (Mandal Ngan, AFP, Getty Images)

Wow, that's TEMPORARY? (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

The Red Carpet meets the White House

November 24, 2009

As the White House prepares for POTUS’ first State Dinner, it’s not international relations with India and guest of honor Dr. Manmohan Singh that are of utmost concern.  The media is abuzz about who will show up and what FLOTUS is gonna wear:  Will she sport a new hairdo?  Show off her blazing guns?  Looks like the First Lady has always been a fashion plate, even as a wee lass at her 1984 senior prom. 

Va va voom! FLOTUS is scandalous with that thigh high slit! (Splash News)

Word on the street is that Jennifer Hudson will provide some American Idol-style entertainment at the gala event.  Other rumored guests: Deepak Chopra, Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Bobby Jindal, and Kal Penn.  BoL can’t wait to see who else will grace the “red carpet” tonight! 

Be sure to catch the live streaming of the State Dinner tonight at 8:15 pm.

FGOTUS–First Gardener of the United States

October 30, 2009

Our FLOTUS (dubbed FGOTUS for the day) has outdone the average home gardener with the White House First Garden.   The First Lady invited local DC school children to help her with the fall harvest yesterday, and surprised everyone with the math behind the cost of said garden.  Michelle asked the students how much they thought it cost to start the famous garden, and their guesses ranged from $300-$6000.  In truth, FGOTUS told the crowd that for merely $150 for soil and $55 for seeds, the White House Garden has produced anywhere from 740 lbs to 963 lbs of vegetables, most of which either goes to the White House kitchen or Miriam’s Kitchen.  Students carted away over 240 lbs of veggies yesterday, including carrots, sweet potatoes, lettuce, and fennel.  Now’s that’s a green thumb!

sweet potato

Behold--the world's LARGEST tuber! (Photo from Huffington Post)

What a doll!

October 19, 2009

Jailbreak Toys recently announced their new line of Michelle dolls, which add to their already burgeoning line of POTUS dolls.  For a mere $12.99, you too can have one of these three “life-like” renditions of our FLOTUS.   In US Weekly tradition, who did it best?

The likeness is...surreal? (Jailbreak Toys)

Where are Michelle's guns? (Jailbreak Toys)

Michelle did it best! (Chip Somodevilla/Getty)

Michelle did it best! (Chip Somodevilla/Getty)

The infamous Election Night dress (Jailbreak Toys)

The infamous Election Night dress (Jailbreak Toys)

We love ya, FLOTUS, but the doll may pull this dress off better (Getty Images)

We love ya, FLOTUS, but the doll gets our vote (Getty Images)

Michelle's appearance on The View in this dress was a fashion do! (Jailbreak Toys)

Michelle's appearance on The View in this dress was a fashion do! (Jailbreak Toys)

Michelle did it best! (Steve Fenn/ABC)

Michelle did it best! (Steve Fenn/ABC)

White House goes artsy fartsy

October 7, 2009

The White House announced Tuesday that our FLOTUS has chosen 45 pieces of art (on loan), to be strewn through the Obama private residence, and the East and West Wing.   The First Lady chose a number of pieces from modern artists.  Sadly, Shepard Fairey didn’t make the list.  Neither did these guys!

Although BoL had trouble finding the exact list, here are samples from some of the artists:

"Variant/Adobe" (The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation)

"Variant/Adobe," Josef Albers (The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation)

"Scalp Dance, Sioux" (Smithsonian American Art Museum)

"Scalp Dance, Sioux," George Catlin (Smithsonian American Art Museum)

"I baptize thee," WH Johnson (North by South)

"I baptize thee," WH Johnson (North by South)

Update: the Obamas weren’t enough…

October 2, 2009

The IOC has apparently dismissed Chicago and Tokyo as possible hosts for the 2016 Summer Games.  Now, the race remains between Madrid and Rio de Janeiro.

The REAL Power Couple

October 2, 2009

Copenhagen got hit by a serious one-two “O” punch–Oprah and Michelle O, that is–as they bid for Chicago as host for the 2016 Summer Olympics. 

Work it, girl! (AP Photo)

Work it, girl! (AP Photo)

With the vote happening this afternoon, Michelle and Oprah both arrived in Copenhagen Wednesday, ready to spend some serious time wooing the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and meeting various Olympic athletes.

Furtive whisper heard: "It's in the bag, honey" (AFP/Getty photo by Matt Dunham)

Furtive whisper heard: "It's in the bag, honey" (AFP/Getty photo by Matt Dunham)

It wasn’t all work and no play, though.  Ladies O made sure they had some glam time at the Opening Ceremony, held at the Copenhagen Opera House.

Pay attention, ladies! (Photo by Charles Dharapak-Pool/Getty Images)

Pay attention, ladies! (Photo by Charles Dharapak-Pool/Getty Images)

Where was our POTUS through all this?  Never fear, Obama joined his beloved yesterday, and they addressed the committee together.  Obama was the last of the Chicago team to speak, and is the first sitting president to ever address the IOC.  Those other cities don’t have a chance!

"Our dedication is clear.  Michelle here is dressed like a gold medal."  (REUTERS/Denis Balibouse)

"Our dedication is clear. Michelle here is dressed like a gold medal." (REUTERS/Denis Balibouse)

Since the committee members are not allowed to visit the potential host cities, such visits make a huge difference.  Members were impressed by more than just the Power Os; Chicago explained plans to convert the temporary Olympic stadium seats into wheelchairs.  Nice!

Pittsburgh is more than just ketchup!

September 28, 2009

A few months back, The Economist honored Pittsburgh as America’s “most livable city.”  But was the City of Bridges up to the challenge of hosting the G20?  You betcha!

The Obamas kicked things off with a reception at the Phipps Conservatory, followed by a spouses-only dinner held at Tereasa Heinz’s Rosemont Farm.   

"Does my breath smell okay?" (Photo by David Karp)

"Does my breath smell okay?" (Photo by David Karp)

"Don't pretend you can't hear me, Manmohan!" (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
“Don’t pretend you can’t hear me, Manmohan!” (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

While Obama and his counterparts got down to business, Michelle took the spouses on an art tour of sorts, which included the Pittsburgh Creative and Performing Arts School and the Andy Warhol Museum

"That Warhol was trippy! "(Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

"That Warhol was a trippy one! "(Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)