summer list), take deep breaths, build a fire and star gaze. i loved hearing all the beauty coming your way, thanks for sharing.
i finally updated my current inspiration links. i hope you'll take a look over on the sidebar, there is some good stuff going on. i have more photos from mini-trips to share with you soon. until then...
29 July 2010
27 July 2010
what is summer for, if not for meals outside? we've been sitting on our back patio for dinner and staying until the sun goes down. when the sun reaches a certain point on the horizon, a range of mountains appear perfectly back lit and in shadow. our alley is filled with golden and pink light.
what kind of beauty are you enjoying lately?
26 July 2010
23 July 2010
i am looking forward to going into work today because i have a new project starting up and it involves an interview with this funny food writer and his wife, an all-star school librarian. sitting down with a recorder and interviewing someone is a first for me, so i am a bit excited, anxious, and nervous. i have a little relief because my new project includes an interview buddy, also by the name of anna. we're going to have a blast! and i'll let you know when we feature the interview.
speaking of feature, i was invited by sheri to participate in the stir's summer inspiration series, all about table settings. i had a lot of fun putting my setting together and i've really enjoyed reading about all the other table settings featured this july. go take a look, it is a great collection! (and thank you sheri)
we've got canning in the works this weekend. hope it's a good one for you.
21 July 2010
one sunny day i accompanied my roommate to a oaxacan festival called guelagetza, that is celebrated yearly. i loved the beautiful colored flags against the bright sun and it was a lot of fun watching people dance and play music, eating mole, and meeting new people.
a few things i'm enjoying lately:
summer in seattle through allison's lens
sauteed snap peas with the prfect mix of salt, butter and garlic
saveur magazine, especially their market issue
this photo. (i might have to play with patching two photos together)
19 July 2010
sometimes it is hard for me to come back to this space after the weekend. during the week it is a place of regeneration and inspiration, but then i take a few days away and forget how to come back. i find i just have to hold my breath and dive in.
today is a black and white sort of day. i am reflective and quiet and thinking about mid-summer. i get so nervous for summer to fly by without me taking full advantage of it. but i will, and i have. my party on friday was everything i hoped it would be. lots of ladies hanging out in my back patio with good drinks (the leland palmer and hard limeade) and good fresh food. this weekend we had a day trip and a big family gathering.
i have to share with you these words i read by my friend, shari. this is just how i've been thinking lately...
summer is rushing along like the creek that runs through the center of my village. i keep meaning to stop and photograph it. the creek, that is. if only we could photograph the rushing of time.
15 July 2010
tomorrow night i'm having friends over for cocktail hour in my backyard. i've had a lot of fun planning the menu this week, but menu planning is always something i meet with mixed excitement and terror. i'm the type of person to get so pumped about researching an idea, that i end up finding a million ideas shooting off from my original one and feeling overwhelmed by all the options. for example, i decided to have my cocktail hour be simple, fresh and inspired by summer's seasonal bounty. i have a lot of ricotta in my fridge, so i figured i would make crostini spread with fresh ricotta, deviled eggs, fresh vegetables and homemade ice cream for dessert. simple, right?
while looking for a solid deviled eggs recipe, i found 4 spreads that i could use with the crostini, all completely unrelated to ricotta. then i thought ooh! i'll make that leek tart i just learned how to make. and i'll make pasta salad! and i really should bake something with that ice cream, shouldn't i? and then i realized none of those go together, i didn't have any vegetables in my supposedly simple spread, and i was thinking way too big for my budget. i ended up deciding on a vegetable platter with this dip to go with the crostini and deviled eggs. to relinquish some control and decision-making pressure, i snuck out of work on my lunch hour to the wallingford farmer's market and let whatever was fresh and good looking dive into my bag to be used on the veggie platter or to be stewed and spooned over ice cream. i ended up finding beautiful thumbelina carrots, a round orange carrots that i've never before seen. i also got fresh rainier cherries and bright yellow string beans. shopping at the market was a great way to clear my mind and really stick to my plan. after all that fuss, i know my cocktail hour will be bright and beautiful, and that's all that really matters.
13 July 2010
i don't know if i've ever experienced strawberry season so thoroughly as i have these past few weeks. it all started with a pint we got in our csa. it was full of perfect little sweet strawberries that were so beautiful one day and then turned mushy and moldy the next. with our second delivery of strawberries, i realized the best thing to do was to not try to savor and elongate the season, but to dive full force into it and use up the 'fleeting' strawberries in every way i could. here's a few examples...
two individual strawberry cobblers and one gluten-free strawberry crisp.
straw and cherries macerating in sugar, vanilla and balsamic vinegar
early-morning strawberry hulling for a fourth of july dessert
and right before time ran out, i sliced and layered strawberries on top of foil to freeze for a later day.
11 July 2010
this week i have a lot of projects going on and i'm working hard to stay organized - keeping lists and schedules for myself and enjoying the process. i will be rewarded with an end-of-the-week backyard happy hour i'm hosting on friday. i just whipped up some sweet cream ice cream in preparation. (by the way, to make sweet cream ice cream, you just make vanilla ice cream without the vanilla flavoring).
hope you have a good start to your week.
09 July 2010
fridays are for relaxing, good friends, good drinks, good food and good laughs. a couple fridays back, six of my favorite people trekked down to south seattle and filled a table full of amazing mexican food at huarachitos. have you ever had huaraches? they are homemade corn patties, with delicious vegetables on top. the deck of haurachitos was so colorful, with it's multi-colored umbrellas and vibrant plates. this friday i am meeting a special new friend for drinks and a photos walk. then i'm off on a mini trip to visit another friend. hopefully i will get a little reprise from this heat wave we are having. (90 degrees in seattle?!) it should all be very fun and relaxing.
hoping the same for you this weekend.
07 July 2010
adrienne and selah, come back soon!
*p.s. that blurry photo was accidentally with my bulb setting--it turned out pretty cool.
06 July 2010
light, tender greens go crazy in early summer. there are so many types to choose from, so instead of narrowing it down, i try to throw in as much as possible for a lot of variety. i like a mixture of head lettuce (butter lettuce, green oak lettuce, red oak lettuce), leafy salad mix, and flavorful greens (mustard greens, spinach, arugula). our chard has been really beautiful in the garden, so i throw bits of those leaves in sometimes, too. wash and spin or pat dry all your lettuce, put your greens in a big salad bowl and tear or leave leafs whole, depending on preference.
this part is so fun! work by what's in season and what colors make you happy. i choose easter egg radishes because they are red, pink and purple, young carrots add a sweet crunch, and spring onions for extra flavor. add fresh herbs like basil, chives or even mint and - my favorite - edible flowers.
whereas in winter i grate carrots, in summer i cut them on a diagonal for maximum flavor and a big crunch. cut the radishes in half moons and chop any mixture of sweet onions, chives, green onions or garlic flowers. throw all these goods on top of the lettuce.
everyone has their favorite dressing and i usually tend towards a simple vinaigrette with mustard and honey. here is a shallot vinaigrette that i recently tried from olaiya land catering that was just perfect on top of a bed of lettuce. the recipe she gave is all approximate because dressing should be made to taste.
sherry vinegar (about 1/4 cup)
shallots, finely minced (about 2 tbs)
dijon mustard (about 1 tbs)
coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
best-quality extra virgin olive oil (about 1/2 cup)
mix all ingredients but the oil. add oil in thin stream, whisking until emulsified. taste and adjust seasoning
makes 1 cup
really, you can pull anything together and call it a salad. just harvest what is fresh in your garden and experiment with new things at the farmer's market, and remember to get creative!
01 July 2010
instead of a july list this month, i am going to write a summer list. of course, later in the summer i'll have to update the list because there is always more to fit in.
this summer i want to...
harvest and eat everything i grow (well, i got a little lazy on the harvest in the end. brocolli went too long in the sun and came out bitter. there are still more potatoes in the ground)
lay in a grassy field (greenlake, i love you)
go on bike rides
see the ocean
...wow, that could go on forever.
any plans for you this summer? leave them in the comments or leave a link to your post about it.
p.s. picture is of our edible flowers, i threw them in a delicious salad!