This past weekend, the weather was GLORIOUS. It was in the 50s and sunny. I spent all day Saturday in Soho checking out pastry shops, galleries, and boutiques. It was a fab day filled with amazing food and no set agenda. Here are some snaps of my adventure.
Dominique Ansel Bakery – Home of the Cronut
African Burial Ground National Monument
Lunch at Le Pain Quotidien
I had some eggs that were reaching their expiry date, so I hit Pinterest to see what kind of quiche recipes I could find. I typically keep a box of frozen pie crust in the freezer along with a box or bag of spinach and I happened to have a tomato, cheese and some bacon in the fridge, so I knew I could make something tasty.
I ended up using this recipe and it was delicious. The only change for the next time is to first saute the onions to bring out their sweetness. The oven time didn’t cook them enough and their bite was more overwhelming than I prefer. I ended up freezing half of the quiche and enjoying some as leftovers for breakfast.
It’s been crazy with snow here, so I’ve spent my weekends bundled up in my sewing studio putting quilts together. There is no shortage of half-started projects that need to be wrapped up. Thank goodness for winter!
This beauty is a sampler of squares I received in a quilting bee on Flickr. It’s definitely one of my favorites!
And here is a stack of quilt tops and backs all bundled up and ready to go to the longarmer. Can’t wait to get them back so I can bind them and move them into the cozy rotation!
Growing up in Florida, cold, winter days were few and far between, but when there was a chill in the air, my Nana would make her beef stew. This was hands-down my favorite meal that she cooked. It’s probably because it was so rare that we had it. It’s been in the 20s here in New Jersey for about a month now. I’ve been making soup regularly, but I wanted something a little more hearty this weekend. I decided on Nana’s Beef Stew.
Here’s the recipe with a few tweaks. It was delicious and will be even better tomorrow. For some reason, stews are always better the second day. Must be that overnight flavor mingle that happens in the fridge.
Nana’s Beef Stew
Serves: 12 (or 6 big bowls)
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours
2 lbs boneless chuck roast, cut into 2-inch piece
2 T vegetable oil
2 yellow onions, cut into 1-inch chunks
1/4 c flour
3 cloves minced garlic
1 c red wine
3 c beef broth
1/2 t dried rosemary
1 bay leaf
1/2 t dried thyme
4 carrots, peeled, cut into 1-inch slices
3 stalks celery, cut into 1-inch slices
3 large red or Yukon gold potatoes, peeled (or unpeeled and scrubbed clean) and cut in eighths
1 14oz can cut green beans
1 c frozen peas
1 T red wine vinegar
salt & pepper to taste
fresh parsley to garnish (optional)
On medium-high heat, add oil to a large heavy pot.
When the oil begins to shimmer and smoke slightly, add the beef and brown it. If necessary, brown the beef in batches.
Once browned, remove the beef with a slotted spoon set aside.
Add the onions and sauté for about 5 minutes, until softened. Add a pinch of salt to help them sweat.
Reduce heat to medium-low, and add the flour and cook for 2 minutes stirring often.
Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute.
Add wine and deglaze the pan, scraping any brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan. The flour will start to thicken as it comes to a simmer.
Simmer for 5 minutes, then add the broth, bay leaves, thyme, rosemary. Return the beef (and any juices collected) back to the pot.
Bring to a gentle simmer, cover and cook on low for about an hour.
After an hour, add potatoes, carrots, and celery, and simmer covered for another 30 minutes or until the meat and vegetables are tender. Taste and adjust seasoning, salting and peppering to taste.
Turn off heat and add peas, green beans and stir in vinegar.
Let sit for 15 minutes before serving. Garnish with the fresh parsley if desired. Serve with bread and butter and a side salad.
Madonna launched a new skin care line in Japan earlier this week. The official press release is below along with a promo video. I’ll be curious to check out the line when it makes it stateside.
‘MDNA SKIN’ – the new innovative and revolutionary skin care brand created by Madonna in collaboration with MTG, Japan’s leading beauty company, is scheduled to open in Omotesando for a limited time beginning Thursday, February 13th thru Sunday, February 23rd between 11:00 and 20:00. This will be the exclusive location to buy ‘MDNA SKIN’ in the world. The brand’s goal is to challenge women and their awareness about the art of beauty and skin care.
The state-of-the-art treatment system consists of three components: The clay oil therapy inspired CHROME CLAY MASK, made with a base of clay from Montecatini Terme in Italy, which performs multiple functions that enrich the skin.
The SKIN REJUVINATOR – the specialized Magnetic Force and Deep Derma induction system devised to remove impurities and revitalizes the skin.
THE SERUM – based on an original formula that was created exclusively for Madonna, it creates a glowing effect when used alone and is further enhanced when used with the CHROME CLAY MASK and SKIN REJUVENATOR.
Using these products routinely as part of daily skin care regime creates firm, resilient and radiant skin overflowing with energy after every use.
The MDNA SKIN POP UP STORE will give customers the opportunity to see, feel and experience the products and enjoy the multiple screen projected visuals. The store will also host a VIP area and the location for special events.
MDNA SKIN will be available at selected department stores in Japan on February 26th.
More details http://www.mdnaskin.jp/
MDNA SKIN POP UP STORE
DATE: 2/13 – 2/23
OPEN TIME: 11:00 – 20:00
VENUE: BA-TSU ART GALLERY
5-11-5 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
5 minute walk from Omotesando Station, Exit A1
Tokyo Metro Ginza Line, Chiyoda Line, Hanzomon