Archive for November, 2009

Unrecipe of the Week/ The Aftermath

November 27, 2009

The big Thanksgiving meal is over, the dishes are done and the tryptophan induced nap has been taken. Now, what?

How about turning all of that leftover turkey into something a bit more inspiring than a sandwich? Here is a simple recipe for crepes, with several ideas for fillings. Let you imagination and your leftovers lead the way……

Turkey Crepes

for the batter:

1 cup flour

pinch of salt

1 1/2 cups milk

3 eggs

vegetable oil (not olive oil!) for frying the crepes

Put all ingredients into the blender and mix until completely blended.

Let it stand in the refrigerator to thicken slightly, to become the consisitancy of heavy cream. If the batter becomes too thick, add a little more milk.

Brush  a small frying pan or crepe pan with oil and heat on the stove. Add a little batter to the hot pan, and swirl it until it is covered. You want as thin a crepe as possible. When the crepe is dry on top and the bottom is slightly brown, flip it over carelfully. Consider the first crepe or two a trial, as you figure out the correct pan temperature and the amount of batter needed. They are actually quite easy to make, once you get the hang of it!

Filling ideas:

Saute  minced garlic and mushrooms until soft and browned. Sprinkle with flour and continue to saute until vegetables are coated. Add 1 can of chicken broth and a 1/4 to 1/2 cup of heavy cream to the pan, and stir until thickened slightly.Toss in a shot of sherry if desired. Add in shredded turkey, and season liberally with salt and pepper. Top with a little shredded gruyere cheese.

Shred turkey and mix with gravy.

Shred turkey and cranberry sauce.

Saute garlic, onions and vegetables of choice (broccoli, zucchini, mushrooms etc,) Add in the shredded turkey and some shredded cheese of choice (cheddar,  gruyere or parmesean). Top with the shredded cheese before baking.

To bake:

Place filling in crepe about 1/3 of the way up from the bottom. Roll the crepe tightly but gently so it doesn’ tear.  Place in a greased oven proof pan and heat through.

Enjoy!

photo: Spencer Jones/Glasshouse Images

Give Thanks

November 26, 2009

What better way to give thanks this year, than to help someone in need?
Here are a few suggestions for some of our favorite charities that truly make a difference!

Cycle for Survival:
Founded 3 years ago by marketing executive and 4 time cancer survivor Jennifer Goodman Linn, this organization uses 100% of its donated funds to support research to treat uncommon, or “orphan” cancers. Join a team and take a spin with us at the upcoming studio cycling event January 31, or make a donation in someone’s honor.

Go to www.cycleforsurvival.org and click on our team, “Shari’s Spinners” to join us in battling this deadly disease.

World Wide Orphans Foundation:

“Orphan Doctor” Jane Aronson, a NYC pediatrician, infectious disease and adoption medicine specialist, has taken her expertise and passion for children, and created a foundation to help transform the lives of orphans around the world.

Aronson, one of this year’s “Glamour Women of the Year”, has established programs worldwide to identify the unique needs of orphaned children through medical, developmental, psychosocial and educational programs that are respectful of the cultural norms in each global setting. From AIDS/HIV treatment, to early intervention work, and an introduction to art, music and computers, this foundation provides every aspect of care to help these children become healthy, independent and productive members of their communities. To learn more about the incredible work this group is doing for children worldwide, or to make a donation go to: http://www.wwo.org

Invisible Children/MEND:

“Give a man a fish and he eats for a day, teach a man to fish and he eats for life.” Such is the philosophy of this organization, which trains women in remote villages in Africa and provides them with work.  New York designer, and photographer Marie Havens designs simple, yet fashionable bags and travels to Northern Uganda to help rehabilitate former child soldiers by providing them with training, giving them jobs sewing the bags and helping them start their own businesses. Each bag has the name of the seamstress who made it, and there is a profile of her online. Proceeds from the bags fund future projects, and mentoring services. What better way to “pay it forward” than to give a MEND bag for a gift? store.invisiblechildren.com/mend/

We are inspired by these incredible women, whose efforts are helping to make the world a better place. Why not join them this holiday season and give the gift of a better life to thousands of people who need our help to survive?

Please share this post with others you know, in hopes that we can all do our part to change the world, one life at a time.

Happy Thanksgiving!

photo: Glasshouse Images

Cooking Up A Storm

November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving is coming and I am cooking up a storm!  I started the day with yoga, to put me into my zen “cooking zone”. I have already baked 2 pumpkin pies, a flourless chocolate cake with a boozy white chocolate cream, cranberry jones, and sweet potatoes with bananas and honey. I am about to roast 6 heads of garlic, to make the herbed garlic butter paste that keeps the turkey moist and flavorful. The house is filled with music, delicious smells and anticipation of the meal to come.

Check back tomorrow for a special Thanksgiving post. I wish you all a wonderful holiday. It is important to step back, enjoy your family and friends, and give thanks for all that you have. Even though things are not always as you would like them to be sometimes, there is always something to be grateful for.

Happy Thanksgiving, and Bon Appetite!

Photo: Spencer Jones/ Glasshouse Images

Unrecipe of the Week/Thanksgiving Edition

November 24, 2009

There are no candied sweet potatoes with marshmallows at our table! We try to stay traditional, with a tasteful twist. You’ll go absolutely bananas over these sweet potatoes that are easy to make and have a unique flavor that you will love!

Honey Banana Sweet Potatoes

5 medium sweet potatoes

4 bananas

2 sticks butter

1/4 cup honey

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup flour

1 1/2 cups chopped pecans

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Prick the sweet potatoes with a fork and roast for 30 minutes.

Add the bananas in their peels to the pan and continue roasting for another 10-15 minutes until both are very soft.

Set aside to cool.

Scoop out the insides of the sweet potatoes, peel the bananas, and add them to a bowl with 1 stick of butter, and the honey, and mix until smooth and fluffy.  Sprinkle with a little coarse salt.
Spoon into a greased, oven proof dish.

In a seperate bowl, mix the remaining stick of butter, brown sugar, flour and pecans. Rub with your fingers until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

Sprinkle the mixture over the sweet potatoes, and bake another 20 minutes until golden.

Enjoy!

note: The banana peels will turn black when cooked. This will not effect the taste.

photo: Glasshouse Images

Unrecipe of the Week: Thanksgiving Edition:

November 21, 2009

Looking for a light way to start off your Thanksgiving dinner? Here is a great salad that is tasty, festive and healthy! It’s the perfect foil for the all the heavy food to come!

Fennel, Radicchio and Arugula Salad with Dried Cranberries:

(serves about 10 people)

Toast about ½ cup of pecans until golden and set aside.

Mix 1 thinly sliced fennel bulb, 1 head of radicchio and a bunch of arugula in a salad bowl.

For the dressing, combine 1/8 cup each of red wine vinegar and balsamic vinegar with ½ cup olive oil.

Add in a finely diced garlic clove, ¾ teaspoons salt, and ¼ cup of chopped, dried cranberries and whisk until well mixed, and slightly emulsified.

Add the pecans and a handful of dried cranberries to the salad greens, and toss with the dressing.

Enjoy!!

Indigo Jones salad making tips:
When cooking for a crowd, we wash and spin the salad greens and put them in a clean, white pillowcase in the refrigerator until ready to use. The cotton absorbs any excess moisture and its shape shifting ability makes it easy to store.

How much is enough?  A healthy handful of greens per person should the right amount for a pre-dinner salad.

Photo: Glasshouse Images

Knock Your Socks Off!

November 17, 2009

Looking for a cute, economical wardrobe update? Many designers from Chanel to Dior showed socks with sandals on the runway for their Spring 2010 collections. We know, it sounds like the ultimate fashion “don’t”. The trick is to keep the look chic,not nerdy. To achieve this, stick with the following styling rules:

1. Shoes should have high heels and platforms,

2. The straps on the shoes should be wide, not delicate.

3. Socks should be of medium weight, and be able to scrunch above the ankle. Sweat socks are the ultimate faux pas.

Try this look with rolled up jeans and a feminine top, or a flirty dress. It’s young, fun and a fashionable way to make last summer’s sandals look new, and seasonally appropriate.

Rock of Ages

November 14, 2009

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When was the last time you went to a rock concert? We hadn’t been in “too long to mention” and the experience certainly has changed.

We set out last might to see One Republic, Rob Thomas and Carolina Liar, at the beautiful landmark Beacon Theatre in New York City.

The show opened with a fairly new group called Carolina Liar. We had never heard of them before, but we did recognize “Show Me What I’m Looking For”, their current single.

The room was about 1/3 full at that point, but those of us that were there enjoyed their energetic performance.

We were struck by a group of  “50 somethings” swaying and dancing in front of the stage.  “Aww, how cute”, we remarked, ” They must be the band’s mothers!” It turned out they were not such an anomaly after all.

Soon after, One Republic came on, and truly rocked the house. The venue started to fill up, and by the time Rob Thomas stepped on the stage, the place was packed. What was shocking was the profile of those that were there.

Across the aisle, was a cute spectacle clad grey haired couple, on a big night out without the grandkids.

Gaggles of 40-ish woman wearing “mom jeans” and sipping Cosmos were on their feet, flabby arms in the air, swaying to the music. A well behaved but responsive crowd, singing along to the LITE FM hits.

As the show neared the end, a full 4 hours after it began, people were scampering for the door. Rushing home to relieve the babysitter, or just past their bedtimes?

We all enjoyed the show, (thanks, Walter!) and can’t wait to see another one. Apparently, we fit right in, although my jeans are way cooler, and my arms are much more toned!

“Just saying ……“

Photo: Indigo Jones

The Many Faces of Union Square

November 13, 2009

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Using chalk and concrete as his medium, New York City street artist Felix Morelo is changing the face of Union Square: literally.

When we met up with him this morning, he was creating an undulating path of hand drawn faces that snaked from West 16th Street through Union Square Park, and was planned to end at the corner of 17th Street and Park Avenue.

Taking inspiration from the similarities, yet subtle differences between people, Morelo draws faces in his signature “scribbled” style.  As is his mission, each face is unique, yet strikingly the same. He has chosen to work in an outdoor venue, as it allows the public to be part of the artist’s creative journey.

Check out his work today in Union Square Park today!

Photo: Indigo Jones

Unrecipe of the Week

November 11, 2009

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These nuts combine the perfect blend of salty and sweet, and hot and spicy. It’s an easy way to make simple mixed nuts a special treat.

Warning: they can be addictive!

Spiced Nuts

1 1/4 pounds of mixed unsalted nuts (you can buy them mixed or create your own combination)

2 tablespoons brown sugar

2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary

1/2 teaspoon (or more to taste) cayenne pepper

2 teaspoons coase salt

1 tablespoon melted butter

Toast the nuts in the oven at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, or until golden brown.

Combine the remaining ingredients in a bowl and and toss the warm nuts in the mixture until evenly coated.

Enjoy!

Tip: Nuts go from warm to burnt very quickly. Check on them frequently, and shake the pan from time to time to avoid burning them.

photo: Glasshouse Images

Sites We Love

November 10, 2009

ZC8X0540These days, some of the biggest fashion influencers are not the designers who create the clothes, but the fashion bloggers who feature great street style on their sites. But what about the kids who set sartorial trends on the playgrounds around town?
Enter Planet Awesome Kids, the premier kids street style blog dedicated to celebrating the individualism and spirit of children around the world. Their mission is not only to document the unique style and character of children, but to also help link up those in need with local and global charities to host kid-centric events.

Check out their site for aspiring junior fashionistas, and tips on where to shop for them.

Photo: Spencer Jones


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