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Roost + Cultivate Wines

I love photography like the above… that dinner table in candle light… I have an obsession with shots like that. So it’s particularly awesome when those shots also include your wines!! Coco from Roost blog captured the Outstanding in the Field event at Blackberry Farm where Cultivate’s wines were poured!  The shot on the left features Dream Walking, our California Chardonnay.

I’m also so glad to have discovered her blog, it’s another healthy food (no sugar or grains) blog with seriously gorgeous photography!

My New Roots

I have a new obsession: this food and nutrition blog called My New Roots. It’s been around for a while, but I just discovered it, and I’ve been staying up at night reading it. Seriously. In addition to being a chef, the author, Sarah Britton, went to school for holistic nutrition, so the blog has a whole-foods, healthy-eating slant that I love.

With the recipes, Sarah explains the nutritional elements as well, so in addition to your mouth watering, you get the sense that if you make these dishes, you’ll be doing your body major favors.

She doesn’t label herself as vegan, or gluten-free, or raw-foodist, but rather takes a laid back approach to nourishing your body with as nutritious food as you can, and I’m already on board with that, but now I’m finding myself thinking maybe it wouldn’t be that hard to sprout my almonds or make my own almond milk (see video below, it’s really nicely done!). Ha! Things I’d never considered, but now think sound like a really good idea, and not that hard.

For those of you thinking that sounds pretty weird, she does have tons of recipes that are much more normal sounding! It’s just that I’m really loving her nutritional info and tips too! I feel like I’ve already learned so much from reading her blog. I’m currently dying to make this fig-lavender-thyme jam, black quinoa corn muffins, and four corners tomato-lentil soup,

Lake Chautauqua

Remember when I was gone for a week to Lake Chautauqua? Well, I thought I’d share a few photos of the trip, and in particular, our party for my nephew William’s 1st birthday, for which I made Smitten Kitchen’s Pecan Cornmeal Brown Butter Cake (which miiight have been selfish, as I personally love that cake, but he loved it too!) with homemade bunting decoration made from an old napkin.

The photos above show you pretty much everything you need to know to make bunting– an old cloth napkin or textile of some sort, twine, scissors, and coffee stirrers. The rest is very intuitive! Cut out the triangles (I made one and then used it as a guide for the others), cut a hole in both corners of the tops of the triangles, string the twine through the holes, and tie the ends to the coffee stirrers. Stick the coffee stirrers into the cake as the poles. Ta-da!

Go over here for the recipe and more images of the cake. I’m telling you, it’s delicious. So delicious, and unique, that I’ve decided this is my go-to cake for any occasion I need to take a cake to.

 

Call Me Cupcake

To balance out the masculinity of the last post, here’s some feminine frill for today.

I just went on a major food porn bender on Call Me Cupcake, a pastry blog out of Sweden with the most beautiful desserts! Baking is already such a labor of love, and the level of detail she goes to with her pastries takes it to another level (I love those layers of gradient color in the cake above!). My birthday is next week, and I’ve already asked my sister to make me this cake, but now I’m reconsidering… (don’t feel bad for her, she’s the world’s best at birthday cakes.)

PS – Did anyone watch the Bachelorette last night? Because I find it ironic that I came across a blog by this name today after last night in the episode, Ashley H. told one of the guys that she’s always wanted someone to call her cupcake as a nickname and thinks “the man she marries will call her cupcake.” Did anyone else throw up a little bit in their mouth when she said that? I cannot staaand Ashley H.

(And yes, I know the show is terrible and I have no right to expect anything quality out of it, but my roommate and I do a Bachelor fantasy league with a draft and everything, and it makes the show extremely entertaining when you get points for the various absurd things that happen.)

The Pantone Diet (and Public Art Project)

What you’re looking at above are Pantone matches to the colors of the fruits and vegetables that Tattfoo Tan (not Tattoo Fan, which is what you thought if you’re like me, and I thought it was a pretty cool moniker) brings home from his frequent trips to the Union Square Greenmarket in New York.

Tan, a Malaysian-born artist living in New York, is interested in using art to address social issues, and for this project, called “Nature Matching” (The Pantone Diet was my name… I just love anything Pantone so I thought it was catchy), he created a color-coding system to visually show people the colors they should be eating everyday. He put the Pantone squares together in murals that are being hung publicly in places with high volumes of walking traffic.

Another piece of this project were the fruit stickers he created with the clear patch showing the color of the fruit (image above in banner), which he used as guerilla art, going around to produce sections and sticking them on fruits and veggies in addition to the FDA/brand stickers. I also learned this highly useful piece of information on his site about the normal stickers you see on fruit:

“Did you realize there are these numbers on the fruit labels? What did they means? Well, you just need to look at the first number. Remember (9) is good, which menas it is organic. While is (8) means the fruits is Genetic Modify. (4) is bad, it is conventionally grown. That means with synthetic fertilizer and pesticide.”

Genetically modified anything freaks me out so I’m glad to know to avoid anything starting with 8!

I love this concept and the use of public art to encourage healthy eating habits, and for me anything visual is easier to learn and remember, so I think this “Pantone Diet” could go big (don’t you think he should re-name it that?)!

Hopefully it will inspire people to fill their plates with pretty produce (and hopefully they won’t notice that a lot of these colors look a lot like French fry and chicken nugget colors!).

What Katie Ate

If you’re the type who likes to read cookbooks in bed before you go to sleep, haul out your iPad tonight and check out What Katie Ate by Katie Quinn Davies.  Just a warning, you might be up late trawling through the archives bookmarking enough dishes to last you all winter.

The food styling and photography are so gorgeous that they could qualify as art.  I think I would gladly have prints of her images hanging on my kitchen wall.  I can’t wait until she puts out a cookbook!

Summer Lovin >> Tomatoes. Tomatoes in a tart shell with herbs and goat cheese.

 This week, I’ve been freaking out with excitement over my two new (birthday present) kitchen gadgets: a Cuisinart food processor, and a Kitchenaid stand mixer.  Oh my gosh even writing that sentence, proclaiming myself as the owner of these two things, makes me feel giddy.   I feel like my kitchen (and thus moi) just went through a major rite of passage.  
I daydream about the ease and speed with which I will now be able to make dough, pesto (no more mortar and pestle!), fluffy whipped cream, perfectly smooth crepe batter, etc.  I imagine myself flitting around the kitchen in a cute apron doing other things, like making flower arrangements, while the machine works for me.  Even though I am generally cooking in sweaty running clothes topped by my dad’s old oxford shirts, rather than a skirt and apron, and making a huge mess all the while.. not nearly so chic.  But that’s why this is the daydream version.
ANYWAY, sorry, that is mostly irrelevant, except to explain why I was so excited to find this tomato tart recipe from the estimable David Lebovitz.  Well for one thing, I almost had a fit over how delicious the roasted tomatoes were that I made earlier this week for my pesto pasta and urgently wanted more things to do with the wonderful summer tomatoes, but for another, it gives me an excuse to use the food processor (for the tart shell)!

It is simply a tart shell, tomatoes, herbs, and goat cheese. YUUMMM.  It is basically a big party to show off the tomatoes. 
Also, if you read David’s blog entry about making this with his friends in France, it all sounds so charming that you practically have to make it, just to try to relive some of that wonderment.  I’m going to serve this with rose over ice, just so I can try to recapture his experience.  No I’m not kidding.

Finally, can we just talk about how wonderful the packaging for the flour is in France??  I’m obsessed with it– the two-color palette, the fonts, the Matisse-esque birds…
Recipe and story on David’s blog here.

Tavern

Looks like a nice place to spend an afternoon with friends and family, no?

By the same team as Lucques, AOC, and Hungry Cat.

Recommendation and photos from Oh Joy Eats.

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