Thursday, June 30, 2011

color: midnight in paris

I saw this movie last night and I couldn't help but create these color palettes today, drawing from films stills and old masters paintings/photography.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

craft: birds

I saw these birds on etsy awhile ago and they gave me inspiration for a stained glass wall sculpture. Just wanted to share.

Friday, June 24, 2011

shop: glasses

top row: beckett, colton, langston, preston
bottom row: nedwin, thatcher, webb, sibley

I got sucked into Warby Parker's website last night after seeing Jenny's new glasses. They have a nifty option where you can upload a photo and digitally 'try on' the glasses, AND they even have a complimentary service where you can choose 5 frames, have them sent out, return them free of charge and decide whether or not you want to get a pair!

I think my top 5 I'd want to try are:
(7) Webb in Amber
(2) Colton in Sandalwood
(3) Langston in Amber
(4) Preston in Sandalwood
(1) Beckett in Black (just so I can try some in black)

I think the Webb look the best, but who knows unless you try them!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

recipe: ricotta

As soon as this recipe was posted on Smitten Kitchen on Sunday I ran out to get some whole milk and heavy cream so that we could try it out. I read her comments and decided on the 3 1/2 cups milk to 1/2 cup heavy cream. It turned out super nice, and once it cooled was more the consistency of cream cheese with a very nice milky flavor. It was surprisingly quick and easy to make too.

straining the curds and whey

finished ricotta

Rich Homemade Ricotta
via Smitten Kitchen, via Tasting Table

I made this ricotta three different ways: with all milk, as the Salvatore recipe suggested (we found it a bit dry), with 3 cups milk and 1 cup heavy cream and with 3 1/2 cups milk and 1/2 cup heavy cream. Guess what? The last two ricottas were virtually indistinguishable.The extra cream did indeed add an even richer edge, but the one with less cream was also very indulgent. I imagine I’d use the richer version for toasts, for putting out at a party and the almost-as-rich one for pastas and things where I might need a larger, sturdier quantity. I’ll leave it up to you which way you go.

Makes about 1 generous cup of ricotta

3 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream (see Note above about using less)
1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Pour the milk, cream and salt into a 3-quart nonreactive saucepan. Attach a candy or deep-fry thermometer. Heat the milk to 190°F, stirring it occasionally to keep it from scorching on the bottom. Turn off the heat and add the lemon juice, then stir it once or twice, gently and slowly. Let the pot sit undisturbed for 5 minutes.

Line a colander with a few layers of cheesecloth and place it over a large bowl (to catch the whey). Pour the curds and whey into the colander and let the curds strain for at least an hour. At an hour, you’ll have a tender, spreadable ricotta. At two hours, it will be spreadable but a bit firmer, almost like cream cheese. (It will firm as it cools, so do not judge its final texture by what you have in your cheesecloth.) Discard the whey, or, if you’re one of those crafty people who use it for other things, of course, save it. Eat the ricotta right away or transfer it to an airtight container and refrigerate until ready to use.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


*click on the book to go to full screen*

unfortunately it's not due out until September!

via Liberty Blog, The Liberty Book of Home Sewing

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

I delved into my 'new' Gourmet magazines last week and made this Chunky Potato Soup with Dill. It turned out a bit runnier than I would have liked, I like my potato soups to be somewhat thick and creamy. So if you like them creamy as well, I'd recommend trying 3 cups of water instead... you can always add some later if you want.

2 carrots, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 celery ribs, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
1 1/2 pound russet (baking) potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 stick unsalted butter
4 cups water
1 cup whole milk
2 tablespoons chopped dill

Cook vegetables in butter in a 5- to 6-quart heavy pot, covered, over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown and stick to bottom of pot, about 15 minutes. Add water, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and simmer, covered, until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Transfer 3 cups soup to a blender with milk and blend until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids). Return to pot, then stir in dill and salt and pepper to taste.

Goes very well with some fluffy biscuits :)

week June 6

what I liked online a week or so ago

beds, inventive shelves, knitted socks, handmade blankets, stamp pad and lavender ball garlands, spiral rings and vintage ring, anjelica huston, cowgirls fishing, navajo rugs (still) and slatted benches, cat and dom, felt hearts, more benches, ioanna's art, buns

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Thursday, June 16, 2011


Maria Bosch Working from Toast Travels on Vimeo.

Watching this reminded me of my high school days in art class, trying out throwing pots and getting told off for always making 'abstract' pots. I couldn't help it, once I made something nice I would get an overwhelming desire to stick my finger into it as it whirled round, just to see what would happen.

Sunday, June 12, 2011


I came across tend the other day, via 3191 Miles Apart
and I just fell in love with their garden.

I like how it feels overgrown, but yet tidy

and the creativity with small spaces

like building planters on top of chicken houses

and window boxes filled with salad greenery

and a natural table top

it just looks a nice place to forage

Friday, June 10, 2011

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Last weekend I was looking at the large god's eye in my bedroom at my parent's house. My Mom showed me how to make them one summer when I was 9 or 10 and I remember making a few small ones out of 2 sticks and one large one out of 3 overlapping sticks. They're really fun to make and I hope this summer I can make some more. It would be neat to fill a whole wall with them, you could even add other bits of material, beads, feathers, etc.

Monday, June 6, 2011


I got a bunch of old Gourmet magazine issues recently on eBay, I think it was my way of coping with good-food-magazine withdrawals. I ended up with almost all of the issues from 2008 and I've slowly been going through them and marking off interesting recipes.

After getting two large zucchinis at an Amish farm near Lancaster over Memorial Day weekend I was inspired to make something else besides my normal go-to zucchini recipes, and then I found this recipe for zucchini-basil soup. I didn't have basil on hand so instead I substituted a bit of dill and some mint, which actually worked quite well. Though I'm sure basil would give it a bolder flavor.

Zucchini-Basil Soup Gourmet | July 2008

2 pounds zucchini, trimmed and cut crosswise into thirds
3/4 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
4 cups water, divided
1/3 cup packed basil leaves

1) Julienne skin (only) from half of zucchini with slicer; toss with 1/2 teaspoon salt and drain in a sieve until wilted, at least 20 minutes. Coarsely chop remaining zucchini.

2) Cook onion and garlic in oil in a 3- to 4-quarts heavy saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add chopped zucchini and 1 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Add 3 cups water and simmer, partially covered, until tender, about 15 minutes. Purée soup with basil in 2 batches in a blender (use caution when blending hot liquids).

3) Bring remaining cup water to a boil in a small saucepan and blanch julienned zucchini 1 minute. Drain in a sieve set over a bowl (use liquid to thin soup if necessary).

4) Season soup with salt and pepper. Serve in shallow bowls with julienned zucchini mounded on top.

Thursday, June 2, 2011


This is the second time I have made this lemon cake. It is just too good. I'm not a huge cake person, but this one really retains it's moisture, and it can't be a bad thing that you have to use about 6 lemons (depending on their size) to get you through all its components! The last time I made it I actually ran out of lemons and didn't make the finishing glaze, but even without the glaze (just the syrup) it's still very delicious.

Lemon Cake
From Smitten Kitchen

Yield: 2 loaf cakes (or one bundt)

2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 1/2 cups sugar
4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1/3 cup grated lemon zest (6 to 8 large lemons)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup plus 3 1/2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
3/4 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted.

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour two 8 1/2-by-4 1/4-by-2 1/2-inch loaf pans, and line the bottoms with parchment paper.

2. Cream butter and 2 cups sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment for about 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Mixing at medium speed, add eggs, one at a time, and lemon zest.

3. Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl. In another bowl, combine 1/4 cup lemon juice, buttermilk and vanilla. Add flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately to butter and sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Divide batter evenly between pans, smooth tops, and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until a cake tester comes out clean.

4. Combine 1/2 cup sugar with 1/2 cup lemon juice in a small saucepan, and cook over low heat until sugar dissolves.

5. When cakes are done, let them cool 10 minutes. Invert them onto a rack set over a tray, and spoon lemon syrup over cakes. Let cakes cool completely.

6. For glaze, combine confectioners’ sugar and remaining 3 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice in a bowl, mixing with a whisk until smooth. Pour over top of cakes, and allow glaze to drizzle down the sides.

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