Tuesday, January 26, 2010

another grey day

it was another grey day here in sf - its been so hard to photograph anything for the shop - and its really piling up! i did like the way this glass looked while drying on my kitchen window sill
- it will make it to the shop eventually too!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

4 things for happiness

- warm, homemade brown bread with butter and strawberry preserves

- the gently rounded mug my brother made for me - its shape is just perfect for cupped hands around it

- putting a clean tablecloth on the kitchen table, though choosing the perfect one from the collection can be difficult

and last but not least..
- tulips - all blown out and simply perfect - its funny how flowers look their most beautiful just before they die

Sunday, January 17, 2010

simple sundays

this morning i wanted to share one of my little collections - i have a few of these around my house and all of the objects have been collected in my travels, this one has grown quite extensive -

but here are a few of the places these items have come from, bolinas CA, New Mexico, Ireland, France, Boston, Utah, Pacifica CA.
do you have little collections?

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Woodblock Printing - the work of Sabra Field

i cant not believe that i havent posted about this wonderful artist before!! im not sure how that happened, especially since i have one of her gorgeous prints hanging in my house - i look at every day! the one below is the one I have-
The artist is Sabra Fields, and a few years ago i had the distinct pleasure of meeting her at her home studio where she walked me through her art making practice. She uses a version of ancient woodblock printing. Her home, an old farm house nestled into a valley in the GREAT state of Vermont - along with the field off the back and beyond that a pond where otters can be seen romping around is more than inspirational.
She is an artist who followed her heart and passion and has been able to create beautiful works for more than 30 years! i cant express enough how moved i am by her and her work - it really strikes a deep cord with me - i get tingles looking at these prints
im really into the snow at night prints if you havent noticed - it reminds me of so many of the reasons i loved living there - that crispy sound fresh snow makes on a freezing cold vermont night - there is no better sound

she makes a lot of different prints, not just of the rolling vermont landscape - i love this little red boat and the artichoke too!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

a dinner with friends

my lovely friend invited us all over for dinner this past weekend - she slaved all day in the kitchen preparing the yummy meal and all we had to do was show up - except she asked each of us to bring a few items to donate to the food bank - at a time of year when the donations can be pretty low, this was such a nice idea and a very lovely way to spend an evening with friends celebrating the new year.

yummmm home made from scratch challah bread!
and this very delicious butternut squash lasagna - recipe here

thanks alexis!!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

simple sundays

took this while back in massachusetts - i love the stillness of a winter night

Saturday, January 9, 2010

fruits of labor - stuffed cabbage leaves

these stuffed cabbage leaves were absolutely delicious and a different way to use a head of cabbage, it being winter an all lots of cabbage has been coming in my weekly produce box, and ive been trying to come up with creative and different ways of using it - this is and involved, but really really good one!!

this recipe is adapted from one found in the oct/nov '06 edition of Eating Well - these can be made up to a day ahead too!

1/2 cup of brown or wild rice (i used a really yummy wild medley from trader joes)
1 cup of water
1 large Savoy cabbage (approx. 3lbs)
1 tbsp of EVOO
1 med leek white and light green parts only
3 sm/med. cloves of garlic
6 tbsp of fresh lemon juice
1 lb veal (ground turkey would be good too)
2 tbsp of fresh dill
1 tsp of caraway seeds
1 tbsp of fresh or dried thyme
1 tbsp of hot paprika
3/4 tsp of salt
tsp of fresh black pepper
1 1/2 cup of no-salt-added tomato sauce
1 cup chicken stock
1 tsp of honey

Preheat oven to 375

first combine rice and water in a small sauce pan, bring to a boil. cover, reduce heat, and simmer until rice is tender and water is absorbed - set aside to cool

while rice is cooking - fill a large pot or dutch oven full of water and bring to a boil. carefully peal of the largest 14 outer leaves of the cabbage (you should only need 12 but its nice to have backups) - when the water is boiling, drop in leaves and boil for 6 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure all leaves blanch evenly. after 6 minutes drain and rise with cold water, set aside to continue cooling.

chop up approx. 2 cups of cabbage from what remains of the head and combine with chopped onion in a med sauce pan with the olive oil. cook, stirring often, until mixture is softened - 4-5 minutes. add the chopped garlic and continue cooking 1 additional minute. next add 4 tbsp of fresh squeezed lemon juice - continue cooking and stir until the liquid has almost evaporated - set aside to cool.

next combine in a large bowl the meat, dill, caraway, thyme,paprika, S&P, rice and the onion and cabbage mixture. mix all of this together thoroughly. when the mixture has been combined, clear a workspace, and lightly oil the bottom of a large baking dish (9x13"). lay one of the cabbage leaves on the work surface - place a small handful, approx 1/3 cup of the mixture in the center of the leaf - fold in the sides of the leaf over the filling and then roll closed. place in the baking dish seam side down - repeat until mixture is gone.

finally - whisk together the honey, remaining 2 tbsp of lemon juice, chicken stock and tomato sauce - pour evenly over rolls. cover the baking dish tightly with tinfoil and place in the over for one hour. after one hour remove pan and uncover, baste rolls then place back in the oven and continue cooking and basting for an additional 15-20 minutes or until meat is cooked through -

i served these with a mixed green salad with orange and pomegranate seeds - enjoy!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Inspirational Spaces

on the back of thinking about my apartment with its white walls that i can not paint, i started realizing that many of the rooms i am attracted to also have stark white paint on their walls, and celings, and floors and sometimes all three - below are a few photo of rooms with just such whiteness - i love the simple way these rooms come together - they really appeal to my minimalist side!

i am also pleased to have found a wonderful new-to-me blog called inspirational spaces (and truly that is what this blog is full of). the blog is written by photographer and writer Elisabeth Hudson from oslo norway and all photos in this post are from her blog. go check it out if you havent already!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

the whimsy of Felix Dolittle

a few days ago a very lovely wedding invitation came in the mail from a very lovely couple. I was so excited not only at the though of their nuptials but by the very invitation itself, i was pleasantly surprised when i flipped over the invite and found the insignia of felix dolittle -

i love the bright fresh design of this stationary and the little matching illustration on the envelope - its too perfect

the whimsy and simple elegance of this stationary press is wonderful! i spent the next few hours perusing the website and was even more delighted by each item i clicked on! any of these wedding invitations would be so perfect for a garden or country wedding -

i hope you find his designs as fantastic as i do!!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

fruits of labor: first produce box of the new year

i am so excited to start the new year off with such a great produce box - by the end of last year i was not feeling so creative on the culinary front - but this box has be really excited!!

im thinking about a roasted butternut squash and pear soup with some crumbly blue cheese or a filet of salmon with grapefruit and cilantro reduction sauce, maybe some cabbage rolls or perhaps a kale and white bean dish of some sort - cant wait to get cooking!!