October 22, 2011

Julia & White Wine Coq au Vin

To celebrate finishing Julia Child's "My Life in France" and today's rainy weather - tonight I made White Wine Coq au Vin from this month's Sunset Magazine. It was delicious and super easy to make. Our apartment smelled like heaven and the aroma even brought the neighbors over to see what I was cooking. Ok, so I don't even know if coq au vin is in any of Julia's cookbooks but I can say that after reading her book every night before bed, I'm feeling more inspired than ever to try French cooking.

White Wine Coq au Vin

4 1/2 tablespoons flour
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
1 teaspoon herbes de Provence
4 slices bacon (1/4 lb.), chopped
1 1/2 pounds boned, skinned chicken thighs
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 cups peeled baby carrots
3 stalks celery
1 medium onion
1 1/3 cups Chardonnay
2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup lightly packed flat-leaf parsley sprigs
1/4 cup lightly packed fresh tarragon sprigs
1. In a plastic bag, shake flour with 1/2 tsp. salt, 1/4 tsp. pepper, and the herbes de Provence; set aside.
2. In a 5- to 6-qt. pan over medium-high heat, brown bacon, stirring occasionally, 6 to 7 minutes. Meanwhile, cut chicken into 1-in. chunks, then shake half at a time in flour to coat.
3. With a slotted spoon, transfer bacon from pan to paper towels. Brown half the chicken in bacon fat, stirring occasionally, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with remaining chicken, adding oil to pan. Meanwhile, cut carrots in half lengthwise and cut celery into diagonal slices. Chop onion.
4. Add vegetables to pan with remaining salt and pepper and sauté until onion is golden, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, in a microwave-safe bowl, microwave wine and broth until steaming, about 3 minutes.
5. Add broth mixture, chicken, and bacon to pan, stirring to loosen browned bits. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, coarsely chop parsley and tarragon. Stir them into stew.

October 21, 2010


Head on over to Coco + Kelley today to catch #2 in her Vignette Series. It's a really nice q&a with Sixx Design, who never fail to inspire me to create a beautiful home and always take risks in decor. The only remaining question is, when will their Bravo series return? A few of my favorites among their designs:

Diana Mini: First Roll

Back in August, I bought myself a birthday gift. My first lomography camera. Isn't she cute? I took her to Vegas, Lake Tahoe and Big Sur hoping to capture some great scenery on my first roll. Well, let's just say that I was happy with what I got but I didn't get much. Here are pretty much the only shots that turned out on my first roll. Hopefully, there will be many more to come and lots of improvement too.

South Shore, Lake Tahoe

Cammie @ Lake Tahoe

Cammie @ Lake Tahoe

Zoey @ Lake Tahoe

Zoey @ Lake Tahoe

August 13, 2010

Style Icon: Nina Garcia

I haven't watched Project Runway since it moved over to Lifetime but Nina Garcia was always my favorite part of the show. I became mesmerized by her chic outfit, funky jewelry and the hair, the HAIR! I would start coloring my hair if I could get it to look the exact same way...

Nina's wrote several books, one of which came out this week. She sat down for an interview with NY Magazine and reminded me how much I adore her with this quote "I have seen everything possible covered in studs and grommets. Also, what I call angry shoes: those platforms with the multiple buckles and studs. I think the polished girl is back."

Yes, Nina. The polished girl is back and let's reveal in it.

Nina Garcia @ Vera Wang, Spring 2009

Nina Garcia@ W Lounge, Fashion Week

Nina Garica @ Bryant Park, Day 7, Spring 2010

Nina Garcia @Marchesa, Spring 2009

Nina Garica @ Bryant Park, Day 3, Spring 2010

August 12, 2010

Chic Napkins

I'm all about cloth napkins for entertaining at home. Since we live in a fairly small apartment, I don't have room to store fun serving plates or additional tableware so I tend to look to cloth napkins to brighten our tablescapes. Unfortunately, finding cloth napkins that don't look like your grandmother's seem terribly hard to find. Enter Hammocks & High Tea's organic cotton oh-so-chic line of napkins! I'm in love and greatly anticipating their foray into pillows in a couple of days.

Hammocks & High Tea - Maya

Hammocks & High Tea - Ikat Chevron

August 11, 2010

Shaved Zucchini Salad with Parmesan & Pine Nuts

Shaved Zucchini Salad with Parmesan & Pine Nuts

Shaved Zucchini Salad with Parmesan & Pine Nuts

adapted from Bon Appétit (portions only), serves 2 as a side dish

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

dash of dried crushed red pepper

2 medium zucchini, trimmed and scrubbed

1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil

1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted

Small wedge of Parmesan cheese

Whisk oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper in small bowl to blend. Set dressing aside.

Using vegetable peeler and working from top to bottom of each zucchini, peel zucchini into ribbons. Place ribbons in large bowl. Add basil and nuts, then dressing; toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Using vegetable peeler, shave strips from Parmesan wedge over salad.

August 10, 2010

Spanish Stuffed Bell Peppers

Spanish Style Stuffed Peppers

Stuffed Bell Peppers

adapted from Gourmet, serves 2 as main dish

3 whole red bell peppers

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, chopped

1 tomato, peeled, seeded, and chopped

1 garlic clove, minced

3/4 cup long-grain rice

1 1/2 cups chicken broth

1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted

1/2 medium sized zucchini, scrubbed and cut into 1/4-inch cubes

1 cup roughly chopped baby portabello mushrooms

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce

Halve 2 of the whole bell peppers lengthwise, leaving the stem ends intact, core and seed them, and blanch in a large saucepan of boiling salted water for 3 minutes, or until just tender. Remove the peppers and invert them on paper towels to drain.

In a heavy skillet heat the oil over medium-low heat. Sauté the onion, the 1/4 cup chopped bell pepper, tomato, and garlic, stirring, for 15 minutes. Stir in the rice and cook the mixture, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in the heated broth and salt and pepper to taste, bring the liquid to a boil, and simmer the mixture, uncovered, for 20 minutes, or until the rice is barely tender. Stir in the almonds, zucchini, mushrooms, cumin, cayenne pepper and Tabasco sauce. Divide the mixture among the bell pepper shells, mounding it. Bake the stuffed peppers in an oiled baking dish, covered, in a preheated 350°F. oven for 18 minutes, or until the rice is tender.

*This dish would be fabulous topped with a Mexican cheese like queso fresco or a nice crema. If you use queso fresco, sprinkle over the peppers just before the final 2 minutes of baking so it melts just slightly.

August 8, 2010

Weekend Soundtrack: 90's Flashback

This week's weekend soundtrack takes a turn for the silly.
Witness: Justin Bieber's new single vs. The Cardigan's original.

Hear it?

Isn't baby Leo such a cutie?

August 7, 2010

SF Renegade Craft Fair Favorites

The best part of the SF Renegade Craft Fair last week was discovering a few new artists.
Here are some highlights:

Tessa Kemp Necklace
I tend to gravitate towards more delicate pieces of jewelry and Tessa Kemp's is right up my alley. Small pieces, very well made with an earthy vibe. This necklace was one of my favorites.

Raeburn Ink Shirt
More delicate details in the form of screen printed tees, bags and scarfs. She's not local (based in MA), but I am loving her new tees inspired by a recent trip to India.

33 Stewart Avenue artwork
This guy takes great photos and turns it into even cooler art. I'd love to have one of these pieces in our apartment. Especially this one above. Check his website for large pieces not listed in the online store.