Takin’ It Outside

April 8, 2018

It won’t be long before we’ll be moving outdoors for our morning coffee, a sunny lunch or relaxing dinner.What could be more simple and welcoming than a long planked table and bench cozied up to a sprawling banquette? I’ve been inspired by this photo for so long, I’m thinking it might be time for a little weekend DIY before the weather breaks.

Photo: http://remash.tumblr.com

 

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To Spring

March 18, 2018

No time like the present…middle of March…snow and ice up to here, still…and the official start of Spring just a few days away…to lighten up the cocktail menu. I was intrigued by a cocktail combination of Bourbon, lemon and tonic. So, I started with a glass of ice, a nice shot of Bourbon, a squeeze and drop of a lemon wedge and a topping off of tonic. The BLT. After the first sip I have to admit it was surprisingly fresh. Who knew? Especially when tonic is typically reserved for mixing with vodka or gin. Then the wheels started turning. Could the lily be gilt with the addition of St. Germaine? The answer is yes. The addition of 1/2 oz. of elderflower liquor is lovely. Either way, despite the weather, it tasted like Spring to me.

Photo: gp

 

Which Came First?

March 15, 2018

Clearly, these special chickens lay special eggs that require special packaging. And, that’s exactly what Catherine Delphia and Aaron Dunn of  The Fancy F provide. Their collection of rare breed chickens produce eggs in colors from mint and olive to pink and brown. If the colors weren’t enough, Catherine designed the minimalist packaging to showcase each dozen beautifully…in mixed or single shades. With Easter around the corner can you imagine the look on a recipients face upon receiving a gift of these? It could be worth a road trip to this Hudson Valley farm to find out.

Photos: https://www.thefancyf.com/ and  https://www.gardenista.com/posts/colorful-eggs-and-designer-egg-cartons-from-the-fancy-f-farm-hudson-valley-ny/

 

 

Mix ‘Em Up

March 12, 2018

Or, stick to a solid in neutrals or brights. Even though the weather has been too inclement to entertain the thought of a Spring picnic, you can start planning ahead. And, if not a picnic, why not elevate a simple working lunch at your desk? These recycled bamboo place settings will add a bit of simplequietmodern style to either scenario and have you ditching the plastic serve ware and utensils at the same time. Light weight, stack-able, dishwasher safe and made of recycled sustainable bamboo a single place setting could fit neatly in your desks snack drawer or several would take up little space in a packed hamper once the weather breaks.

Photos: https://food52.com/shop/products/4476-recycled-bamboo-4-piece-place-setting#

 

Sweet

March 8, 2018

If it’s March, then it’s maple syrup season. The first of the new year’s harvests begins this month with the tapping of the trees and the cooking down of each precious drop. The soft rounded sweetness of maple syrup enhances everything from savory to sweet, morning till night. I have a preference for grade B dark amber for its particularly deep rich maple flavor. Here are a few favorite uses you might try to carry you through to the end of this relentless winter.

Top to bottom:

Gently simmer maple syrup to reduce by a third. Off heat, gently add fresh blueberries to warm and serve with your favorite pancake recipe. https://simplequietmodern.com/2014/04/13/blueberry-pancakes-the-remake/

A simple maple syrup vinaigrette is just right on a bitter green like frisée. https://simplequietmodern.com/2012/11/11/i-dont-love-brunch/

Jack Daniels Maple Ketchup? Yep. Pretty tasty. https://simplequietmodern.com/2013/06/08/i-do-know-jack/

You don’t need a special occasion for Spicy Maple Bacon Wrapped Shrimp…just a snowy night in.       https://simplequietmodern.com/2014/02/05/valentines-day-befores/

Maple Walnut Fudge…pretty classic. https://simplequietmodern.com/2014/03/25/liquid-harvest/

Simple, simple, simple. Cayenne Maple Glazed Walnuts https://simplequietmodern.com/2013/11/30/mmmm-maplely/

Photos: gp

Everyone loves…

February 11, 2018

a happy ending. No matter what your Valentine’s Day plans are for Wednesday, finish things off with these Chocolate Raspberry Champagne Truffles. Gather your handful of ingredients and it’s as simple as melt, set, cut and dust.

 

G’s Chocolate Raspberry Champagne Truffles

Prep an 8″ loaf pan by buttering it lightly and lining with a piece of parchment leaving a couple of inches of overhang on the long sides.

Gather your ingredients:

20 oz. dark chocolate, chopped

1 cup heavy cream

a pinch of kosher salt

1/2 package Trader Joe’s Freeze Dried Raspberries ( 1.2 oz package) lightly crushed

1/3 cup Champagne or Prosecco

1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted, for dusting finished truffles.

 

In a heatproof bowl over a pot of simmering water combine chocolate, cream and salt until smooth. Make sure the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl.

Remove from heat and stir in champagne until thoroughly incorporated and then mix in the freeze-dried raspberries.

Pour mixture into prepared pan and smooth top.

Refrigerate to set up at least 8 and up to 24 hours.

Remove truffle loaf from pan using parchment sling after loosening edges with a knife warmed in hot water, then dried.

Cut the loaf in half crosswise. Cut each half into sixteen pieces, re-heating and drying the knife as needed. Toss the individual rectangular truffles in the sifted cocoa powder to coat.

Yield: 32 two bite truffles

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 days.

Photos: gp

My inspiration was Cindy Rahe’s recipe for found here: https://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/champagne_chocolate_truffles/

 

 

 

 

Let’s Review

January 3, 2018

Another year has passed, and with it, another year of  simplequietmodern. As I prepare for year seven, I’m  excited to see what held your interest over the last twelve months. The MidCentury seating of Van Keppel Green, modern black fences, the “folded” plywood works of Harry Roseman, factory inspired windows and a cozy white Christmas topped the list. Thank you for your continued interest, for stopping and sharing your kind words, for your friendship…for indulging me.

 

 

We can’t celebrate without cake, can we? I’m thinking a Burnt Almond Torte from Prantl’s Bakery in Pittsburgh might be in order. And of course, some flowers.

 

Top to bottom: links to each of your favorite posts:

https://simplequietmodern.com/2014/08/03/case-study-van-keppel-green/

https://simplequietmodern.com/2014/03/31/black-fences/

https://simplequietmodern.com/2014/02/19/a-single-sheet/

https://simplequietmodern.com/2016/03/10/let-the-sun-shine-let-the-sun-shine-in/

https://simplequietmodern.com/2017/12/24/white-christmas/

torte photo: https://www.goldbely.com/prantls-bakery/15395-burnt-almond-torte