Easter For Me As A Child Equalled Chocolate Bunnies and Friture, In 2022 Mother Hen Runs The Roost

Easter for me as a child equalled chocolate bunnies and friture. In 2022 mother hen runs the roost, thanks to La Poule de Paques, courtesy of Parisian classic shop A La Mere De Famille Easter collection.

Poule de paques  mother hen

It's been all of 11 years since I shared a prehistoric Easter creation of theirs with Have a Jurassic Paques, Bite a Chocolate Dinosaur, Happy Easter! (April 24, 2011)


Walk Into the Storm and Stroll Around Hokkaido in Ink with Illustrator and Digital Artist Mateusz Urbanowicz

Walk into the storm andstroll around Hakkaido with illustrator and digital artist Mateusz Urbanowicz, Polish born, based in Tokyo.

I picked Into the Storm for 2 reasons. First here in New Jersey as I write this thunderstorms are on the way, second it in a way illustrates our walk into (and hopefully through) the Covid storm.

Into the Storm Stand Alone Works Mateusz Urbanowicz

The stroll around Hokkaido, spoke to me through its ink illustrations. The small Hokkaido in Ink book contains 30 something ink illustrations, each with side notes. Book is available for purchase both in print and digital editions.

Hokkaido in ink Mateusz Urbanowicz

Let me give credit to Scott Pack for putting Mateusz Urbanowicz.

Watercolor and Ink for Tokyo Thursdays #320


Not Just Another Yard Sale, Location, Rich Mix from Paintings to Distinct Clothing and Garden Fare

Right Location, Rich Mix from Paintings to Distinct Clothing and Garden Fare Make for Successful Yard Sale

As in retail, you will get buyers, not just passing by visitors , if you have the right ingredients and not just a mass of things for people to dig through the piles.

Yard Sale Paintings

How to Not have Just Another Yard Sale?  Concierge Mondays # 20


Who is It For? What is the Occasion? When? Budget? 4 Questions I Ask Before I Order Flowers...Add Color

Who is it For? What is the occasion? When? Budget?

The 4 questions I ask before I get flowers for my New Jersey Concierges clients.

Over the years, I have ordered and, in most cases, picked up and delivered many flower arrangements, mostly bouquets.

When you add a vase to the mix, it raises the price significantly, so I often skip the vase.

In a small number of cases, I had to place order with out of state florists which makes the process a bit more challenging.

For local clients, I tend to rely on the same florist. 

Bouquets march 2020

Bringing a shop repeat business allows me to get orders filled on short notice and guarantees quality.

Color scheme is an element I add to the 4 main ones. It can add cheer to someone's day. 

Keeping some variety of color keeps repetition at bay.

Flowers of Happiness for Concierge Mondays # 3


You Can't Wear that Bonnet of a Galette des Rois from Lenotre Epiphany Cakes 2021 designed by Camille Ortoli

You cant' wear that bonnet of a Galette des Rois from Lenotre 2021 Epiphany Cakes selections on January 6.

It was designed by Camille Ortoli who I guess is the same artist best know for her Designer Papier creations.

Bonnet galette des rois lenotre camille ortoli

Galette des Rois comes in 3 versions, Chocolat, Dried Fruits and Candied Citrus.

For more mouth watering, check Épiphanie : Les plus belles galettes des rois 2021 on Elle-A -Table (December 18, 2020)

The article is in French yet even those whose French is halting can enjoy the visuals of the piece.

Learn more about the January 6- Epiphany tradition, read Having an Epiphany on January 6 with Galette des Rois, a French Treat (January 2010, from our pages).

(* Galette des Rois image from Lenotre Facebook page)

 


Feeling Crabby, Think Louisiana Sunshine with Garlic Crabs Recipe from Mosquito Supper Club by Melissa Martin

Feeling crabby! Think Louisiana sunshine with Garlic Crabs recipe from Mosquito Supper Club (Artisan Books, April 2020) by Melissa Martin.

Garlic Crabs with Parsley and Lemon

Serves 2 to 4

In Louisiana, when temperatures start rising to sweltering highs and the brackish water heats up, it’s peak crab season. From June to September, you can open just about any icebox on the bayou and find a tray of boiled crabs. We eat them for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. There are endless ways to eat leftover boiled crabs. You can eat them cold, stew them, throw them in gumbo, or roast them like this, with garlic and lemon. The crabs are already cooked, so you are just warming them through and creating a delicious sauce that will be partially baked on. You’ll need lots of crusty bread or rice to soak up the buttery, garlicky jus.

Garlic Crabs from MOSQUITO SUPPER CLUB

Ingredients:

Leaves from 1 small bunch flat-leaf parsley

12 garlic cloves, peeled

Zest and juice of 1 lemon

6 boiled large or medium blue crabs, halved and cleaned of their gills and lungs (see Note)

1 teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon cracked black pepper

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

2 tablespoons hot sauce, preferably Original Louisiana Hot Sauce

3 bay leaves (see Note)

½ cup (120 ml) canola oil

½ cup (1 stick/115 g) unsalted butter

Crusty bread or cooked rice, for serving

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 450°F (230°C).

On a cutting board, combine the parsley, 6 of the garlic cloves, and the lemon zest. Finely chop them together, transfer to a bowl, and set aside.

Put the crabs in a large bowl and season with the salt, black pepper, cayenne, and hot sauce. Add the bay leaves.

Warm a large cast-iron skillet or ovenproof sauté pan over medium-high heat for 3 minutes, then add the oil and the remaining 6 garlic cloves. Cook until the garlic becomes fragrant, then use a slotted spoon to transfer it to a plate; set aside.

Working in batches to avoid crowding the skillet, add the crabs to the hot oil and cook until starting to brown on the bottom, about 3 minutes, then flip and cook until starting to brown on the second side, about 3 minutes more. Transfer the crabs to a roasting pan and repeat to brown the remaining crabs.

Add 2 tablespoons of the butter to the skillet and let it melt. Return the crabs to the skillet and turn them to coat evenly with the butter. Transfer the crabs and the reserved garlic to the roasting pan and place the pan in the oven. Roast, flipping once after 3 minutes, until the crabs are golden, about 6 minutes total.

Remove from the oven and add the remaining 6 tablespoons butter and the parsley-garlic mixture to the pan. Toss until the crabs are evenly coated. Season with the lemon juice and serve with crusty bread or rice.

Note: A cleaned crab is a live crab that has had the top shell, gills, and back flap removed. Ask your fish market or seafood purveyor for fresh cleaned crabs, or ask if they’ll clean some crabs for you if they’re not already on hand.

Note: I like to leave the bay leaves in the final recipe. They’re not meant to be eaten, but it makes for a beautiful, rustic presentation.

(“Excerpted from Mosquito Supper Club by Melissa Martin -Artisan Books- Copyright © 2020. Photographs by Denny Culbert")


Sheep Stories, From Awassi, The Comeback Kid, to Black Faced Manech, A Mountain Dweller via A Field Guide to Cheese

Sheep stories, from Awassi, the comeback kid, to Black Faced Manech, a mountain dweller via A Field Guide to Cheese (Artisan Books, September 2020) by Tristan Sicard.

P.10-11_A FIELD GUIDE TO CHEESE

The Awassi is indigenous to the Middle East (Syria, Turkey, Israel) yet found his way to the United States. 

The Black Faced Manech can be spotted in the French and Spanish Pyrenees as well as Portugal.

As for A Field Guide to Cheese, it will teach you everything you wanted to know and more about cheese history, geography, taste, pairings and much more.

You will find yourself going back to that cheese well of a book throughout the year and those to come.

(*Excerpted from A Field Guide to Cheese by Tristan Sicard -Artisan Books- Copyright © 2020. Illustrations by Yannis Varoutsikos.”


Let Light Shine with these Stained Glass Snowflake Cookies, Merry Christmas 2020!

Let Light Shine with these Stained Glass Snowflake Cookies.

Stained glass snowflake cookies

Feeling crafty Recipe is Here (from December 2011) archive.

Merry Christmas!

(* Image and Recipe from Gifts from the Kitchen by Annie Rigg reproduced courtesy of Kyle Books, September 2011/ Photos by Catherine Gratwicke, all rights reserved)


Get a Zoom Free Bird's Eye Perspective, Book a Tree House at Loire Valley Lodges, Near Tours

Get a bird's eye perspective, book a tree house at Loire Valley Lodges near Tours (France)

Want to take a break from Zoom world, Loire Valley Lodges offers 18 tree lodges sprinkled around a forest with no WiFi and spotty cellphone reception. They opened in July 2020.

Loirevalleylodges

Each lodge opens onto the forest and the sky thanks to large windows.

Green Lap of Luxury for Green Day # 274

( Photo: November 4, Autumn Sunrise on terrace of  lodge Via Nilo, via Loire Valley Lodges Facebook Page)