Thursday, March 29, 2012

currently loving: grant achatz

Just like Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential became a legendary must-read for all line cooks everywhere, Grant Achatz’s Life, on the line is an absolute must-read for anyone who works with - or even remotely gives a crap about - food.
While I’ve known of Achatz for a little bit (he does, after all, own the best restaurant in the freakin country. No big deal or anything), this is a whole new level of interest and admiration.
The story is remarkable, fascinating, and heartbreaking.
‘Workaholic’ is nothing but an insult to a man who is at home in a kitchen, who would rather be nowhere else, who wants nothing more than to create beautiful works of edible art everyday - and make people happy in the process.
And the book gives me something I’ve wanted for so long: a real, fantastic glimpse into the kitchens I’ve dreamed of: The French Laundry, Charlie Trotter’s, elBulli.
This is a book to read. And one to read for anybody who’s ever lost the passion, love, and dedication for their craft.
I am inspired. I haven’t felt this inspired in a long time.
This book is, simply put, the most important book that any cook can read right now.


Monday, March 26, 2012

weekend picture show

Spring in bloom.

Which means spring dresses are here! From Forever 21.

Followed by some fantastic Dippin' Dots. Best treat ever. In chocolate.

Sterling Confections Truffle Bar. Kind of a disappointment.

Lulu's Bait Shack. Rum Runner, Pina Colada.

Ft. Lauderdale Beach.

Mini Vanilla Cupcakes! Finally.

Goodbye Sir David Patino. And good luck.

Mom's fantastic empanadas. True family recipe. Delicious treat.

Photos 1,3,5,6,7,8 via Instagram @taliahomegirl.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

hello spring!


heat and beaches and tans and patio lunches and this wonderfully bright turquoise tank that I found at Forever 21 for under $5.
hello spring!


tank: forever 21. jeans: old navy. wedges: italian shoemakers / dsw.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012



In between the boredom of dressing myself and the baking disasters (banana bread brownies, anyone?), came this little gem.
Thursday night and I was craving something chocolatey, gooey, delicious (what else is new?).
It was a tough week, it was going to be an even tougher weekend, and I was in need of therapy.
I picked out a recipe for chocolate cookies that I had recently found in a cookbook and looked at it: over one pound of chocolate?!
I have a feeling this is going to be good.
I'll admit I was nervous. A lot of chocolate was about to be sacrificed for my fat ass, but I was ready.


The result was kind of fantastic: a warm brownie in cookie form.
Gooey, chocolatey, really, really delicious; the kind of cookie I was aiming for when I made the chocolate peanut butter ones.
They're oddly delicate with a crackly top. They're not the prettiest girl at the cookie exchange, but the one everybody wants.
And at the end of the day it's safe to say chocolate really is the best form of therapy.

Pure Chocolate Chunk Cookies
A couple of notes: I'm wary of making any cookie without salt. I did it once, it was terrible, never again. The original recipe doesn't call for any salt, but I added 1/4 t in. Also, these cookies are really tasty cold from the fridge. They retain their brownie-like chewiness and they're fantastic slathered with peanut butter (my breakfast the next morning). Oh, and I left out the 1 1/2 oz unsweetened chocolate.
Adapted from Fran Bigelow's Pure Chocolate.



12 oz semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 1/2 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 stick + 2 T butter, room temperature
3/4 c + 2 T brown sugar
2/3 c granulated sugar
1 1/2 t vanilla
3 eggs
1 3/4 c cake flour, sifted then measured
1/4 t salt
8 oz bittersweet chocolate, cut into chunks

1. Preheat oven to 325F.
2. In a double boiler, melt the semisweet and unsweetened chocolates over low heat. Also, you can melt the chocolates in the microwave in 30 second increments. Once melted, set aside.
3. In a mixer, beat together butter, sugars, and vanilla until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Add in the eggs one at a time until each is fully incorporated. Scrape down the bowl.
4. Pour in the melted chocolate and mix to combine.
5. Fold in the flour and salt until fully incorporated. Fold in the chocolate chunks. Chill for one hour.
6. Using a scoop or spoon, spoon a good hunk of cold batter onto lined cookie sheets. Space them a couple of inches apart because they will spread a good bit while baking. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes or until cracked and slightly puffed. Cool completely. Or, you know, devour while still warm and gooey with a glass of ice cold milk.



Tuesday, March 13, 2012

socal dreamin'


So I've been uninspired and bored lately.
I don't even want to mention how many times I've worn this shirt-and-shorts combo already, but it's just a no-brainer, effortless kind of outfit.
Usually paired with a cami underneath, the shirt just puts me in serious west coast mood.
The palm trees, the waves, the color yellow...I don't know.
And while I am an east coast girl through and through, I really need to make it a mission to get to the other coast.
Maybe next year.
As for the shorts, they used to be my favorite pair of jeans and then time got to them and ripped them open like a present on Christmas morning. So I took a pair of scissors and made myself some super comfortable shorts.
I love denim reincarnation.

Shirt: American Eagle / TJMaxx. Shorts: Levi's.

Friday, March 9, 2012

flashback friday: missing

I have been rather uninspired lately.
And also irritated and the loss of a box of clothes that seems to have been misplaced in the move.

Boothbay Harbor, Maine, July 2007.

When I was younger I had a Barbie that wore this fantastic hot pink one-shoulder dress, similar to this shirt.
Every time I wore the shirt I thought of that.
And, really, doesn't it just scream springtime?!
Well, it was in that box. And it's missing.
Which makes me rather upset.
I need a wardrobe update.

Shirt: Forever 21.

Happy weekend everyone!