Archive for June, 2011

sophisticated lemon drink syrup

photos: m&j

This recipe from Laura Calder’s French Food at Home is a great lemony twist on simple syrup for delicious summer lemonades, lemon sodas or even spiked adult beverages with the sophisticated flavor of citrus zest, rather than just the usual juice. It’s easy to make and keeps well in the fridge for a week or so.

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pasta primavera redux!

photos: Yunhee Kim illustrations: Sarah C. Rutherford

In this mouth-watering Sunday Times Magazine piece, Mark Bittman deconstructs pasta primavera, or “springtime pasta” down to its most essential and delicious basics and reworks it into eight simple and savory recipes worth trying out with the season’s fresh farmers market offerings – we’re going to!

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gimme s’more bespoke ice cream

photos: m&j

Our June custom flavor of the month arrived from MilkMade this week – a fantastic concoction of freshly churned, handmade graham cracker ice cream mixed with wonderful ingredients from two local purveyors – homemade toasted vanilla marshmallows from the glorious Baked in Redhook and generous bits of 72% Madagascar truly special chocolate bars from the craft chocolatiers, Mast Brothers in Greenpoint. MilkMade has definitely succeeded in taking this ever-popular combination of campfire flavors to an entirely new level of epicurean deliciousness – thank you, once again, Diana & Co!

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Florent: Queen of the Meat Market

© Magic Lantern Entertainment, 2010

We do so miss this downtown icon – with a party-like atmosphere and reliably tasty, relaxed French fare that was open 24 hours a day for pretty much our entire adult lives in New York. We started coming with large, rollicking groups of old and new friends back in our twenties when we first arrived in New York City after college. This was a restaurant where many a buttery grilled cheese sandwich, sumptuous French onion soup and frothy chocolate milk replete with the requisite paper straws were enjoyed after 3:00 am. Thank you for this documentary, David Sigal – it brings back some delicious memories!

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the humble loaf

photos: m&j

To us, rustic bread is just so beautiful – whether torn and gobbled in chunks, sliced for sandwiches or toasted and slathered with butter and jam – it just makes these rainy late spring and summer days so much less dreary. Thank you Le Pain Quotidien!

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Ruth Reichl’s gilt taste

photos: gilttaste.com © GILT GROUPE, INC. All rights reserved.

Anything the former editor of Gourmet Magazine, Ruth Reichl does is good by us. In this case, she’s overseeing the larder of gilttaste.com – a website where all things up-scale culinary are available to be shipped anywhere. For those of you not lucky enough to have the world of food so readily available to you as we do here in NYC, this should be a welcome and valuable resource. Fresh Hama Hama oysters delivered straight to your soiree in Cincinnati? Youbetcha!

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foraged flower bouquets

photos: m&j

We know it’s finally summer when we can pull over to the side of the road on the way down to St. Michael’s or on our drive up to The Poconos and pick a glorious, weedy, messy bouquet to put on that first night of the long weekend’s dinner table – the more haphazard, the better. Isn’t nature perfectly amazing!

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Days of Heaven

© Paramount Pictures, 1978

How is it possible that Terrence Malick wrote and shot this movie in 1978 and we can watch it today for probably the 7th time and it is still one of the most exceedingly gorgeous pieces of filmmaking we’ve ever viewed? Filmed almost exclusively at magic hour, this sparsely dialoged work is a breathtaking look at nature and humanity from the perspective of migrant workers who come to sow the crops of a rich landowner in rural middle America near the turn of the last century. Brooke Adams, Sam Shepard and Richard Gere are as beautiful as they’ll ever be. And Linda Manz (who had never acted before or since) is eerily fascinating as the cigarette-smoking “little sister” seemingly wise beyond her years, yet almost entirely without affect – a striking choice by Malick for the film’s narrator. With an Oscar nominated score by Ennio Morricone, Oscar nominated costume design by Patricia Norris (who was decades ahead of her time with a rucksack-inspired look we now purchase for hundreds of dollars a piece from Matteo) and Oscar winning cinematography by Nestor Almendros, Days of Heaven is as stunning to watch now as it was 30 years ago – quite simply amazing!

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homestseading in Silverlake …

photos: Laure Joliet for The New York Times

Kelly Coyne and Erik Knutzen are living off the land in their suburban Los Angeles home. And in a recent New York Times Home section interview, we got to read about their fascinating and definitely offbeat ideas about everything from raising their own chickens, baking their own bread, making homemade dog food, oil lamps out of oyster shells, their own household cleaning products and even … sewing washable sanitary napkins out of Mr. Knutzen’s old flannel shirts. Eeek! Living in a “sustainability lab” is not always a pretty picture. But some of the items these two are growing and making are quite romantic, even if the thought of sharing a “dry toilet” is not. For those of you who think you may want to jump on the bandwagon, the couple has a blog, entitled Root Simple. And for those of you who just like the idea of growing chamomile to make tea or of eyeing a loaf of freshly baked levian from afar, perhaps just checking out the Times slide show might be self-satisfying enough …

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the best of peony season

photo: m&j

Whenever we’re fortunate enough to find these oversized, stunning, bright coral, double charmers, we buy at least three and just stare in amazement as the petals fade to a tea-stained antique white and then begin to fall. This is truly one of the most beautiful of all flowers.

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