I love flowers and plants, I love to look at them, arrange them, smell them, give them, receive them and grow them.
They add beauty and a little magic to my life. Flowers and plants convey love, encouragement, sympathy, and joy.
280g plain flour
450ml whole milk
4 tbsp butter, melted
3 large, free-range eggs
3 tbsp good quality cocoa powder
3 tbsp instant coffee
2 tbsp caster sugar
2 tsp vanilla essence
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 Tsp baking soda
Pinch sea salt
240ml double cream
115g mascarpone cheese
2 tbsp Tia Maria
2 tbsp maple syrup
Handful toasted almonds
1. Firstly, make the cream filling. Beat all of the ingredients in a medium bowl and whip until you have soft peaks. Set aside in the fridge while you prepare the pancakes.
2. In a large bowl, sift the flour and cocoa powder.
3. Add the sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
4. In a separate bowl, mix the milk and instant coffee powder until fully dissolved. Whisk in the eggs, melted butter and vanilla.
5. Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients, mixing gently until you have a batter without any large clumps of flour. If the batter is too runny, add a tablespoon of flour.
6. Cook the pancakes on a hot, greased griddle pan. When bubble appear, and the edges easily come away from the pan, flip and cook the other side.
7. Once the pancakes are cooked, transfer to a plate. While they’re warm, layer the pancakes with a generous amount of the cream filling and dust with sifted cocoa powder.
8. Add a handful of toasted flaked almonds for a delicious crunch finish and serve on a beautiful plate.
Via: Oh Comely
In this highly sophisticated confection, soft chocolate ganache and crumbly black sesame streusel sit on top of a salty-sweet black sesame and miso cream. Eaten together, the flavors veer toward the savory side — as perfect for people who don’t usually like sweets as it is for dessert lovers looking for nuance and depth.
FOR THE SESAME-MISO CREAM:
1 cup/240 milliliters whole milk
1 teaspoon powdered gelatin
1 cup/240 milliliters heavy cream
¼ cup/80 grams honey, more to taste
7 tablespoons/120 grams black sesame paste (see note)
¼ cup/58 grams sweet miso (see note, or use 2 tablespoons/29 grams white Shiro miso)
FOR THE GANACHE:
¾ cup/150 grams chopped dark chocolate (around 70 percent)
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons/150 grams heavy cream
1 ½ tablespoons/30 grams light corn syrup or honey
1 ½ tablespoons/20 grams unsalted butter, at room temperature
FOR THE CHOCOLATE BLACK-SESAME STREUSEL:
¼ cup/50 grams finely chopped dark chocolate (around 70 percent)
4 tablespoons/66 grams unsalted butter, cold and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
⅓ cup plus 1 tablespoon/50 grams all-purpose flour
2 ½ tablespoons/32 grams packed light brown sugar
2 ½ tablespoons/30 grams Demerara sugar
1 ½ tablespoons/7 grams unsweetened, Dutch-processed cocoa powder
Pinch kosher salt
¼ cup/30 grams black sesame seeds, more for serving
Micro herbs, edible flowers or berries, such as red currants or wild blueberries, for serving (optional)
Prepare the sesame-miso cream: Place 1/2 cup milk in a small bowl, then sprinkle gelatin over the top. Let sit for 5 minutes to soften.
Combine remaining 1/2 cup milk, cream and honey in a small pot, and heat until simmering. Remove from heat, and stir in gelatin mixture, black sesame paste, and miso. Mix with an immersion blender (or transfer to a regular blender to mix) until smooth. Taste and add a bit more honey, if you like. Divide sesame cream among 6 shallow bowls or small gratin dishes (or ramekins), cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 8 hours and up to 5 days.
Prepare the ganache: Place chocolate in a heatproof bowl. In a medium pot, bring cream and corn syrup to a boil. Pour over the chocolate, then let sit for 1 minute. Stir together with a spatula until combined, then stir in butter until melted and smooth.
Cool ganache to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate until needed, at least 4 hours and up to 5 days. (Allow ganache to soften at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before serving).
To prepare the streusel, heat oven to 325 degrees, and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. In a food processor, pulse chocolate until just chopped into mini chocolate chip-size pieces, about 1/8 inch. (Try not to go any finer so you preserve some texture.) Transfer to a large bowl.
Add butter, flour, brown sugar, Demerara sugar, cocoa powder and salt to the food processor. Pulse just until the dough comes together into a crumbly mass. Scrape into bowl with chocolate, then add sesame seeds; fold to combine. Transfer to prepared cookie sheet. Top with another piece of parchment paper and roll out to a ½-inch-thick slab. (It doesn’t have to be round as long as it’s evenly thick.) Remove top layer of parchment paper.
Bake until darkened all over top, and the butter is bubbling up throughout the dough, about 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool. Break into bite-size pieces.
To assemble, uncover sesame cream and dollop or pipe some of the chocolate ganache on top. (You probably won’t need all of the ganache.) Top with crumbled streusel, black sesame seeds, and micro herbs or edible flowers, if using.
A modern shade of muted pink is taking over everything, including your home!
Millennial Pink is although that does little to help describe the color. It’s technically pink with the blue removed resulting in a soft, muted shade that sits somewhere on the spectrum between peach and blush. However, the classification is not a strict one; you might prefer to think of it as any kind of muted pink used in a modern context.
To incorporate millennial pink at home first off, you should not be worried that embracing this trending color will turn your home into a ‘girly’ domain that will frighten off any male within a 10-foot radius. As mentioned above, the whole point of Millennial Pink is that it’s a gender-neutral shade. A lovely color for everyone to enjoy! So much so that it’s been hailed as a ‘new neutral’ and hence, can be incorporated at home quite easily.
This year’s design fairs in Paris, Cologne, and Milan featured a lot of pink in different color schemes. You can mix with sophisticated reds or in some cases dark greens, and then at the other end of the spectrum gelato shades of green.
If you are a little less confident mixing colors, the easiest way to incorporate Millennial Pink into your home is to start with soft furnishings/accessories such as cushions, throws, bed linen.
The inspiration for how your garden grows.
The next best thing to a personal tour of some of the world’s most covetable gardens is a lushly photographed tome of them that can sit on your coffee table. You’ll find yourself regularly (green) thumbing your way through the hundreds of pages of DIY projects, design ideas, planting guides for all climates and color palettes, and in-depth case studies on outdoor spaces as diverse as a yoga studio and a chicken coop.
Photo: Rocky Luten
A creative DIY couple has turned an industrial Brooklyn apartment into a cozy and characterful home.
Jewelry designer Jessica Barensfeld, photographer Simon Howell, and their son Lakota, 21 months, live in the middle of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NYC.
Their hip Brooklyn neighborhood Williamsburg offers a lively art and music scene, cafes and second-hand stores along with industrial buildings, humble homes, and luxe waterfront high-rises. Just over the bridge from Manhattan, this appealing mishmash has attracted creatives like Jessica Barensfeld and Simon Howell.
Jessica and Simon live in a characterful building that Jessica describes as “a quilt of style, pieces and periods.” She grew up in Manhattan but moved into the 13 sq m flat share in 2006. Then she met Simon, from Yorkshire, UK, who took up residence when friends moved out.
The pair turned their rented apartment into a cozy, characterful home. The landlord allowed Simon to add new walls and install more windows for light. He also made most of the timber furniture.
A huge variety of indoor plants were added to enhance the fresh feel and define areas in the open-plan living space. Jessica describes their style as a “hodgepodge,” but the jumble works.
The layout is quirky, too. The central living area has a loft at either end – one is the couple’s bedroom, and the other is toddler son Lakota’s room – with each accessed by its set of stairs.
Beneath the master bedroom, at one end of the open-plan living room is the workspace/office, while under Lakota’s room is a guest bedroom and the kitchenette.
The workspace/office is important as both Jessica and Simon work from home. While Jessica is a jewelry designer, selling pieces through stores, such as Anthropologie, and Simon is a photographer, they also run a beanie business together, Lynn and Lawrence (their middle names). The couple also occasionally work as models, and a few years ago were shot by legendary photographer Annie Lebowitz for French clothing brand Moncler.
1 1/2 cups butter, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
200g of dried fig
300ml dry white wine
150g chèvre cheese
50g of prosciutto
1 – Soak the figs for 30 minutes in the wine and then drain.
2- Cut the figs in half.
3- Place a spoonful of cheese on top of each slice and fold it gently.
4-Wrap a slice of prosciuto around figs.
Put them in the oven at 350ºF for 15 minutes.
Recipe: Milena Addad e Magloni Franco – Addad Franco Gastronomia
Photos: Monica Melsness
Making a kokedama with an Orchid is a perfect choice. That’s possible since this houseplant has aerial roots for taking up nutrients and the pot is really only there to stand it up, which can be done more unusually and more naturally if you wrap the roots up in a moss ball. It’s easily done and looks amazing.
You will need: Orchids, sheet moss, winding wire or fishing line, wire cutters or scissors.
Carefully remove the Orchid from the plastic pot.
Fold the moss around the roots and try to keep as much of the root ball inside the moss as possible.
Secure the moss by wrapping the wire around it. Keep the moss damp with a plant sprayer.
4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper
2 1/2 cups white wine vinegar
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup finely chopped mixed fresh herbs, such as parsley, tarragon, basil, thyme, rosemary,sage and mint.
Crusty bread, for serving
1- Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Tightly roll them up lengthwise and secure with toothpicks at 1 inch intervals.
2- In a large saucepan, combine the vinegar, 3/4 cup of water and a pinch of salt and bring to a gentle simmer. Add the chicken and cook over low heat until just white throughout, about 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a work surface and let cool slightly. Discard the toothpicks. Slice the chicken crosswise into 1-inch-thick rounds.
3- In a large bowl, whisk the olive oil with the mixed herbs and season with salt and pepper. Add the chicken, turning to coat evenly in the herb oil. Let cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight. Bring to room temperature and serve with crusty bread.
Recipe: Katie and Giancarlo Caldesi
Photo: Monica Melsness
A Fresh, Healthy, and Delicious Step-by-Step Guide to Sprouting Year Round.
Sprout Lady Rita began sprouting in 1987 and is the owner of “The Sprout House.” In her 153 page book Rita shares useful information and fantastic photos of every kind of sprout you can think of. She categories sprout varieties as she gives “step-by-step” instructions on the best ways to sprout and the best sprouters out there. The beginning sprouter will love the accessibility of information in this book and the more experienced of us will appreciate the new ideas, recipes, organization, and inspiration of why we sprout and simply what to do with all those sprouts.
A beautiful idea for the children’s room is to use house- shaped wall shelves. They have colorful backgrounds that match the decor. You can use them as a bookcase or to expose your kids’ favorite toys. It enhances a girl’s or boy’s room. They are cute, inexpensive, and easy to build yourself ! Or you can buy them in stores like DWR, Target, The Land of Nod, and Michaels. Prices range from $10-200.
Here are some examples to inspire your creativity and transform your little one’s room into a magical space!
These are good examples of how to use house wall shelves in boys’ rooms.
What a great store! It looks like a studio with beautiful and original pieces from famous designers like Ted Boerner, Giorgio Soressi, Flemming Busk, Charles and Ray Eames, Jane Risom and others.
Everything looks very expensive, but I recommend this store for a window-shopping exercise and the occasional floor sample or sale item. Give attention to accessories. Last week, l bought wonderful “Puntino Demitasse Cups” designed by Giulio Capellini for just $27.00. Even in an expensive store, you can buy some pieces for affordable prices.
If you don’t have enough money to buy a sofa designed by Giorgio Soressi, don’t buy it! Buy a couch that’s less expensive and dress it with accessories such as pillows or a throw designed by Ivan Pratt. This will make your living room more attractive to the eye.
Below, I have some examples of Design Within Reach accessories. If you ever dreamed of having extremely well-made pieces, this is the time for your long-term dream to come true.
After training at Central Saint Martins, one of the world’s leading art and design inst… [More]
Ellen Van Dusen studied the psychology of design and the brain’s reaction to visual sti… [More]
Born in Sønderborg, Denmark, in 1958, architect and designer Anders Nørgaard became ver… [More]
In celebration of the “feeding the planet” theme of the Milan World’s Fair Expo 2015, G… [More]
Trained as an architect but proficient in nearly all design disciplines, Alexander Gira… [More]
Based in Oslo, Norway, Kristine Five Melvær holds master’s degrees in industrial design… [More]
“To me design is all about creating objects that are impossible not to notice, objects … [More]
In the late 1980s, Ron Rezek was hired by a ceiling fan company to conceive a modern de… [More]
In 1926, the Kispester-Granit factory in Budapest hired Eva Zeisel, who was 20 years ol… [More]
In celebration of the “feeding the planet” theme of the Milan World’s Fair Expo 2015, G… [More]
Samuel Wilkinson thrives on bringing elegance and “a bit of soul,” in his words, to ext… [More]
Metalworker Xavier Pauchard not only brought the art of galvanizing steel to France but… [More]
A native of Copenhagen, Jens Risom studied in his youth under furniture maker Kaare Kli… [More]
The Eames Wire Base Low Table (1950) is remarkable for the elegance it achieves using s… [More]
This amazing plant with dark green leaves, prominent white colored veins, and wonderful yellow flowers originates from Brazil.
The Zebra plant is a tropical plant, and loves humidity, therefore the best place for it to grow well is within a greenhouse or any glass room, with bright, indirect sunlight and protected from the cold.
The Christmas count down. But don’t worry, there is still time to find the perfect present. I gathered some gifts for everyone on your list that will arrive in time to go under the tree.
Pink Agate Coasters, Set of 4 – $99.99
Medium Black Box w/ Himalayan Crystal – $99.00
from: One Kings Lane
S/4 Gold Luster Stemless Glasses – $45.00
from: One Kings Lane
Eames House Bird by Vitra – $250.00
The American Mule Gift Set – $39.99
Player Turntable – $99.95
Night Clock by Vitra – $490.00
Kings County Guide to Urban Moonshining – $24.95
from: One Kings Lane
You will need: string in chosen color, adhesive hooks and ruler
Using your ruler, create the triangle shape of your tree by marking its three outer points, and additional 5cm spaces along these points with adhesive hooks. Start your tree design by knotting the end of your string at a base hook, and wrapping it around opposite hooks on your frame. Keep wrapping up and down, and side to side till your heart’s content, fastening off your design at a base hook.
Via: The home http://www.thehome.com.au
In the fall, wreaths are created with magnolias, rosemary, and plums, and gourds are used to create an unexpected garland. Winter highlights cedar, pine, and juniper, yielding unexpected table settings and new wreath shapes. The Wreath Recipe Book provides 100 recipes There are detailed ingredient lists and hundreds of step-by-step photos as well as chapters covering basic techniques, sourcing, and care information.
These aren’t just evergreens for Christmas — the book is organized seasonally, with dozens of projects to make throughout the year.
$24 – http://www.amazon.com
This luminescent collection represents a collaboration with Lindsay Emery, the North Carolina-based ceramicist at the helm of Suite One Studio. Each and every only-here piece is inspired by watercolor paintings and finished with a flourish of genuine gold.
$14.00 – https://www.anthropologie.com
An emerging Spanish designer redefines his role by pursuing philanthropic projects with indigenous peoples in Colombia.
Turning the manufacturer-as-patron model on its head, Madrid’s Alvaro Catalán de Ocón is his own best client. The designer, who trained at London’s acclaimed Central Saint Martins College, is committed to the process of self- production—at a rate of one project per year. “In the recent past, there’s been an excess of products in the market which didn’t respond to a real demand from the public,” he says. “Manufacturers have taken advantage of this. They come to you with a brief that creates a necessity we don’t need. I am not interested in this model.”
In 2011, Catalán de Ocón traveled to Colombia on holiday with his partner. He had arranged to meet Hélène Le Drogou, a psychologist and activist concerned with the plastic waste that contaminates the Colombian Amazon. Upon returning home, Catalán de Ocón came up with the idea for the PET Lamp, a pendant whose basic form comes from the reshaping of a polyethylene terephthalate bottle. The lamp shade is made from woven straw or strips of textile, using traditional Colombian basket-weaving techniques. The next year he returned to Colombia to jump-start production. The only missing factor was seed money, which is where Coca-Cola stepped in with a onetime donation to get the initial design workshop off the ground. “They are aware they are part of the problem,” says Catalán de Ocón. After all, it takes minutes to consume the contents of a PET bottle and hundreds of years for it to decompose.
Catalán de Ocón knows his PET Lamp won’t solve the issue of waste, but he does hope it will raise awareness. Colombian artisans from the southwestern Cauca region, which has become the epicenter of the country’s armed conflict, collect the bottles themselves and receive a regular, fair-trade wage (at a rate stipulated by the nonprofit organization Artesanías de Colombia). The artisans shape the plastic material over a wooden mold and are given creative liberty in the choice of colors and technique they use for the weave. The shade is then shipped to Europe and fitted with a textile-covered cable and a plug. Catalán de Ocón sells the lamps online and through a handful of high-end European retailers. Each piece is unique, with its own variation in shape and artisan impression. “We wanted to do something that represented the rich visual culture of Colombia,” says Catalán de Ocón, “and bring that to Europe.” petlamp.org
Via: Dwell Magazine
We already know that green and pink is an amazing combination. Can you imagine putting this divine combination in the garden? It’s very easy; you just need to paint the wall or fence and add your favorite plant. I chose some examples to help you have some inspiration.
2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground fennel seeds, coriander seeds, aniseed, and/or celery seeds, or favorite spice blend (optional)
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons Diamond Crystal kosher salt or 4½ teaspoons Morton kosher salt, plus more
1 11–13-pound turkey, neck and giblets removed and reserved, patted dry
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 pound turkey or chicken wings (optional)
2 large onions, unpeeled, quartered
4 celery stalks, halved crosswise
1 head of garlic, halved crosswise
2 cups dry white wine
¼ cup all-purpose flour
6 sprigs thyme
4 cups (or more) low-sodium chicken broth3 tablespoons soy sauce
Mix brown sugar, spices, pepper, and 3 Tbsp. or 4 ½ tsp. salt in a small bowl to combine; sprinkle all over surface and inside cavity of turkey. Place turkey on a V-shape roasting rack set inside a large roasting pan (if using a disposable pan, place it on a rimmed baking sheet). Chill, uncovered, at least 8 hours and up to 1 day.
Let sit at room temperature 1½–2 hours.
Place a rack in middle of oven; preheat to 450°. Smear butter all over outside of turkey. Arrange turkey wings (if using), neck, and giblets, then onions, celery, and garlic around turkey and pour in wine. Roast on center rack until skin is golden all over, 25–35 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300° and continue to roast turkey, rotating 180° halfway through, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of breast registers 150° (temperature will rise as the bird rests), 1½–2 hours. Carefully transfer turkey to a cutting board and tent with foil.
Increase oven temperature to 450°. Push vegetables, neck, giblets, and wings (if using) into center of roasting pan and sprinkle flour over. Roast until flour is very lightly browned in a few spots, 12–15 minutes. Scrape contents of roasting pan into a large saucepan. Add thyme and broth. Bring to a gentle boil and cook, stirring occasionally, until reduced by nearly half and gravy is thick enough to coat a spoon, 25–30 minutes. Strain mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a medium saucepan; discard solids. Stir in soy sauce; season with more salt if needed. Bring to a gentle simmer over low heat while you carve the turkey. Thin with a bit more stock if needed.
Recipe: Claire Saffitz
Photo: Alex Lau
Not everyone celebrates Christmas, but if you do, then now’s the usual time to start thinking about Christmas trees. Personally, I love the smell of a good pine. But if you’re looking for something that’s neither an actual tree nor a standard plastic faux, then we’ve got alternative Christmas tree ideas to get you inspired!
Before he moved to Portland and switched to upholstery, Leland Duck was a hot-rod specialist in Wyoming, chopping up classic cars with his father, an automotive welder. In 2009, after years of restitching the interiors of souped-up roadsters, Duck joined Portland’s crafty DIY ranks. “I take the same approach to furniture as I did with cars, bringing old things back to life,” the 27-year-old says.
Set above Beam & Anchor on N Interstate Avenue, Duck’s light-filled studio tumbles with swatches of old World War II tent fabric, thick tufts of foam stuffing, and the skeletons of 19th-century armchairs. “You tear open a vintage couch and it could be a nightmare inside, but as long as the bones aren’t destroyed, you can bring almost anything back,” he says. Duck combs estate sales for discarded furniture with potential, strips it down, and stitches in new life using distressed vintage fabrics, high-end threads from Denmark and New Zealand, and classic Pendleton wools. From hundred-year-old rocking chairs to contemporary inventions, Duck’s work is refined, precise, and practical.
Soon, Duck will launch a new line of vintage work wear–inspired furniture, taking his cues from Civil War–era uniforms and transplanting iconic button flies and leather elbow pads to cushioned recliners. “I’ve always loved the way jackets and coats are constructed,” says Duck. But it’s not all aesthetic. “Those little details are reinforcements for wear points,” he explains. “On a good old frame, they’ll last forever.”
Caipirinha is the most popular cocktail in Brazil. It’s made from cachaça, a clear distilled spirit made from sugar cane juice. If you can’t find cachaça, just swap it for vodka and you’ll have a Caipiroska cocktail instead.
1 tablespoon superfine sugar
2 onces cachaça
Cut up a lime into 8 wedges. Muddle the wedges in a rocks glass with sugar. Add Cachaça and top with ice. Stir and serve. Enjoy
Photo: Monica Melsness
Recipe: Bobby Flay
This beautiful home belongs to the Brazilian actor Bruno Gagliasso, 31, where he lives with his wife, actress Giovanna Ewbank, 27, and his five dogs – golden retriever Zeca, the Corsican Menina, boxer Johnny, the labrador Peste, and their mutt Favela. The first description he makes about his house is: “My home is where I’m happy, where I feel good with my friends and with my family, where I grow up and raise my children.”
The house is located in Itanhangá, in Rio de Janeiro, and has a huge garden with space for them to play with the dogs, and a garden with a jabuticabeira (fruit tree), palm trees and a lush bougainvillea. “The environment has a very good vibe. Our friends come here and nobody wants to go, “says Giovanna.
It was on a trip to New York that they were enchanted by an exhibition of Robert Mars, known for paintings that mix skulls and logos of Louis Vuitton. Bruno is fascinated by skulls and has at least seven scattered around the house.
“The skull gives me a sense of reality, a reminder that we are here in passing,” he says, showing one of the skulls of his small collection hidden behind the picture with the image of James Dean.
Despite being a fan of design and architecture, Bruno curiously has no piece by a great designer. “I do not buy anything for investment, but for visual pleasure.”
Each object, mobile, ornament or book shelf has a little bit of the story of the couple. “Everything is here for a reason. I find it cool, for example, to look at an object or picture and remember what we live on a given journey, “said Giovanna.
Photos: Fran Parente