Friday, March 30, 2012

Friday Fun: Lego Imagine Campaign

Lego has launched a new advertising campaign with a minimalist yet very creative approach to get imaginations in motion. Isn't this fantastic? Do you see it?

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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

With Little Sound

Amy Hildebrand is the photographer behind the blog With Little Sound, featuring a new photo every day for 1,000 days (she's currently on number 924, slated to finish the project on June 10th of this year). Her blog features many amazing, soulful photos with few textual posts mixed in.

What may give you pause after looking at her blog, is that Amy was born blind due to Albinism, and through medical intervention  (first with contacts and then later through surgery) she slowly began to gain eyesight, and eventually picked up a camera....






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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Solid Diamond Ring

Check out this ring! It takes the diamond ring to a whole new level, where this is not a diamond set in gold or platinum, the whole thing is diamond. This ring is made by the Swiss jeweler Shawish, is 150 carats and valued at $68 million.

It doesn't look super comfortable, but it sure is pretty and sparkly!


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Monday, March 26, 2012

Roasted Garlic Cheese Bread

Garlic bread is a favorite food of mine, and I had set out on making a perfect version at home. After a few different types, I settled on one with roasted garlic which has a more subtle flavor, but still delicious. I tried this with and without cheese, and while both are very good, the variety with cheese was the clear winner.

Roasted Garlic Cheese Bread
2 heads garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1 teaspoon parsley, finely chopped
2/3 cup shredded mozzarella
1/2 cup shredded mild cheddar
2 short baguettes or one long baguette, cut in half lengthwise

Cut off the top of the heads of garlic, exposing most of the cloves. Please each head onto a piece of foil and drizzle with olive oil. Wrap up into two little bundles and roast at 400 until very soft and lightly browned. Allow to cool.

Once the garlic is cool enough to handle, squeeze out the garlic into a bowl and mash with a fork until smooth. Add softened butter and mix until well incorporated. Then stir in cheese and parsley. Spread mixture evenly over the baguette halves. Put on a cookie sheet and bake at 350 until bubbly and lightly browned.

this recipe is also shared at some of my favorite food blog hops


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Friday, March 23, 2012

What's on my nails: China Glaze Capitol Colours Collection in Smoke & Ashes

Happy Friday everyone! What do you all have planned for the weekend ahead?

We are going to see The Hunger Games tonight and I am so excited for it! Have any of you seen it already?

In honor of the film's release, I am wearing another shade from the China Glaze Capitol Colours Collection (of course!). Today's color is Smoke & Ashes (originally called 'Fight to the Finish'), named for District 12, the mining district. It's a really hard color to describe (and photograph well), but I am loving it. It has a rich black base with these great tiny flecks of green and blue.


Have a lovely weekend, and may the odds be ever in your favor!

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Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Hunger Games


With the movie out in theaters tomorrow (well, technically tonight at midnight), this week there have been some great posts from other bloggers who are also counting down to the big release:

HelloGiggles has two great posts; a list of 14 things to do to get ready to see The Hunger Games, and another about the fashion of the Captiol
Christina from Christina's Pop Life has a pic loaded roundup of all magazine articles
Haley at Cardigan Junkie has put together some amazing outfits for Katniss
Kristane from Confessions of a Cookbook Queen has created a whole Hunger Games Party
Erica at Erica's Sweet Tooth made some awesome cupcakes
PopSugar has launched DistrictSugar, full of everything Hunger Games related, from a recipe for lamb stew to gossip about the cast
Fictional Food has a huge amount of recipes based on food references in the books

Who else is excited for the movie premiere?

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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Crumbs Cupcakes Open in Boston

On Monday the newest location of Crumbs Cupcakes opened within walking distance of my office. I have been enamored of these cupcakes for such a long time now, ever since Maxine started bringing them with her from NYC whenever she would visit. Now I have them available whenever I need (want) them! Dangerously delicious.

So I went on Monday after work to pick up some cupcakes, and the shop was completely empty of sweets, it was so sad. I chatted a bit with the girl who was at the counter delivering the bad news to everyone (she seemed so genuinely sad to have to tell everyone there were no cupcakes left) and then headed out, determined that Tuesday would be my day. Yesterday I went before work and was greeted by full cases and free coffee (delicious hazelnut roast) and picked up two delicious cupcakes for our dessert last night:

The Squiggle, my all time favorite from Crumbs, same concept as a Hostess cupcake, but times a million

Boston Cream, this one was new to me, delicious but could have used more custard in the middle
(though more custard tends to be my stance on many desserts)

A cupcake box built for two
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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Purple Heart Recipient Reunited with Dog

This was on Good Morning America today, and as I love a good dog story, I needed to share.

Corporal Megan Leavey, a purple heart recipient has recently been reunited with Sargent Rex, her bomb sniffing dog. Rex had lost his sense of smell and was taken off duty and was in danger of being put down when Leavey intervened. She petitioned to adopt the pup and was successful with a little help from Senator Chuck Schumer.

Here are the happy pair, how cute is that dog?:


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Monday, March 19, 2012

Cheesy Buttermilk Bread

Buttermilk is an ingredient that I don't always have in my kitchen. It's an ingredient bought for specific recipes. (I only just found out that a powder version exists, so this all changes soon) When I buy buttermilk, I end up looking for ways to use up that which wasn't used in the recipe, which is how I came across this quick bread recipe, which is so easy and very customize-able for any taste and meal. And it's incredibly tasty.

This version is packed with cheese and so savory and perfect with any dinner.

Cheesy Buttermilk Quick Bread (adapted from here)
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cup grated cheese (cheddar is my favorite, I like to do a combo of mild and sharp)
1 cup buttermilk
1 large egg
2 tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350. Grease your loaf pan and set aside.

Stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and 1 1/2 cups of the cheese.

In a seperate bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, egg, and butter until well combined. Pour the wet mixture over the dry ingredients. Mix together gently until just combined into a 'shaggy' batter.

Pour batter into the prepared pan, top with remaining 1/4 cup of cheese and bake for 45 minutes.

this recipe is also shared at some of my favorite food blog hops


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Friday, March 16, 2012

The Pioneer Woman!

On Tuesday this week, Ree Drummond's (The Pioneer Woman) new cookbook Food From My Frontier was released. And with the release was a book tour that finally included a stop in my city of Boston. I was so incredibly excited when I found out she'd finally be coming to Boston! I have been reading her site for quite a few years now and love reading about a life so different from my own, seeing her amazing photos, and trying out her recipes. I called Brookline Booksmith within minutes of opening on the day tickets were available and then tried to sit still for the next two weeks.

Yesterday the wait was finally over and I headed to Brookline to see Ree speak (complete with a powerpoint presentation) about her blogging, cooking, family and the frontier at the Coolidge Corner Theatre. It was such a fun evening which happily concluded with a book signing at Brookline Booksmith and I got to meet and chat with Ree for a few minutes and she happily signed the three books I brought. She is such a sweet, personable and gracious lady.



Marlboro Man





Charlie










yay!

all my signed books

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Thursday, March 15, 2012

Rosemary Focaccia

I love focaccia, it has a wonderful texture that's chewy and delicious and always has great toppings. It makes excellent sandwiches, it's perfect for dunking in soup or with pasta.

This is a simple recipe for a rosemary focaccia, but the toppings can be changed to basically anything you like, it's so versatile.

Rosemary Focaccia 

Dough:

3/4 cup water
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups bread flour
1 1/2 teaspoons bread machine yeast

Topping:

3 tablespoons olive oil  
3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
coarse sea salt

Place all the dough ingredients into the bread machine and select dough cycle. After the cycle completes, move dough to a lightly greased bowl, cover and allow to rise another 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400.

Press dough into a large circle (about 1- 1 1/2 inches thick) and then use your fingers to dimple the dough. Drizzle the olive oil over the top (it will look like a lot but it really makes the texture of the bread) and then sprinkle the top with the rosemary and sea salt.

Bake for about 15 minutes until golden brown.



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Wednesday, March 14, 2012

What's on my nails: China Glaze Capitol Colours Collection in Dress Me Up and Luxe & Lush

Today is a two for one with nail polish colors! I love this China Glaze collection so much! I keep wanting to change my mani just so I can try them all out quicker.

Today I have on Dress Me Up (originally 'Primrose'). It's rosey color with a very subtle brown tint to it. It's a really pretty and neutral pink.

Layered over that is Luxe & Lush (originally 'Flaming Gems'), which is a topcoat filled with iridescent flakes. The flakes are really gorgeous and the colors in them range from gold and green and pink to blue and purple (click on the photo below to enlarge it so you can see the flakes better...they're so pretty!); it's original name really suits the color. I'm going to love layering this over lots of different polishes, it's such a fun addition.

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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Fried Camembert

This is a sophisticated twist on mozzarella sticks. One of my mom's favorite restaurant makes these so I set about recreating them for part of her birthday dinner. They're a snap to make and were a huge hit. Brie would also work really well with this.

Fried Camembert
1 8 oz wheel of Camembert cheese, cold
2 eggs, beaten
Bread crumbs (plain or seasoned, depending on your preference)
Vegetable oil

Cut the Camembert into small wedges ( I cut the 8 oz wheel into 16 wedges), no need to remove the rind dredge each piece into the beaten egg and then the bread crumbs. Return the cheese to the fridge while the oil heats.

In a small saucepan, heat about 2-3 inches of oil until it reaches 375 degrees. Carefully rop about 4-6 pieces of cheese in at a time. Once they turn brown and golden (it only takes a couple minutes), remove with a slotted spoon and put onto paper towel lined plates to drain the oil. Serve warm with honey mustard or other favorite condiments.


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Monday, March 12, 2012

OPI Spiderman Collection

OPI has announced a polish collection celebrating the new Spiderman movie coming out this summer. I was already psyched for the movie, and now I'm really excited for the polishes too. These are set to be released in May. The pink, orange, and white (and possibly the blue, I need to see it in person) seem like great summer colors while the others feel very autumnal to me (and Just Spotted the Lizard reminds me a lot of Peridot from Chanel's 2011 f/w line).

(via)

What do you all think?

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Friday, March 9, 2012

What's on my nails: China Glaze Capitol Colours Collection in Fast Track

Happy Friday everyone! I am so happy this week is finally over! Do you all have anything up this weekend? 

My package full of China Glaze's polishes inspired by The Hunger Games arrived earlier this week, and they all look great in person! The first shade I was drawn to is Fast Track (originally named Catnip in honor of Katniss before all the polishes were renamed), which is a beige color with lots of teeny gold sparkles. It's a neutral with a little bit of a kick and I am really loving it on.


Have a lovely weekend everyone, don't forget to 'spring forward'!

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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Sprinkles Cupcake ATM


Last week, Maxine told me that Sprinkles Cupcakes was opening a Cupcake ATM machine so you could get your sugar fix 24/7. Yesterday she sent me a video of this amazing contraption in action. It's so cool. I hope these become as common as Bank of America ATMs, it would be heavenly.

Isn't this amazing?:


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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Etsy love: Tea Towels

I adore tea towels, they are sweet and add a touch of whimsy to my kitchen. I collect them and rotate the one that hangs on my oven door on a regular basis. Etsy has so many great ones that are different from those I come across usually. Here are a few I am currently coveting:















Do you all collect anything fun?

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Monday, March 5, 2012

English Muffin Bread

My grandfather made english muffin bread for me once when I was a kid and I absolutely loved it. I was craving it recently so did some research to find a similar recipe. This one is quite close to his, but I need to remember to get the 'official' one from him soon.

It's wonderful toasted with butter or jam or butter and jam. It's especially good with peanut butter. And it makes an amazing breakfast sandwich! I tried this method from Deb of Smitten Kitchen that I found on Cup of Jo a little while ago, I was really happy with the results.

English Muffin Bread (adapted from here)
1 cup warm milk
1/4 cup water
1/2 tablespoon white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon baking powder
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 tablespoon butter, softened (for greasing pan)
cornmeal (for coating pan)

Put all ingredients except butter and cornmeal into the pan of your bread machine and set to the dough cycle. After cycle ends remove dough and let it rest while you prepare a pan.

Butter a loaf pan and coat liberally with cornmeal. Shape dough into a loaf and put into pan, cover and let rise until doubled.

Bake at 400 for about 20 minutes until the top is golden brown.


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Friday, March 2, 2012

Boston Bruins

Happy Friday everyone! Do you all have any fun weekend plans?

The other night we went to the Bruins game against the Senators, and although the Bruins didn't win, we still had a great time. Here are some pictures from the game:







I was really entertained by this ad
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Thursday, March 1, 2012

China Glaze's Capitol Colours inspired by The Hunger Games

In just over three weeks The Hunger Games opens in theatres. I just recently starting reading the series and am about halfway through Mockingjay (the last book) right now. I cannot wait to see how they translate it to film!

China Glaze released a series of twelve colors (one for each district) in honor of the movie's premiere, now available online and in stores. I am loving the colors and have already ordered half the collection, I'm really excited to see them in person.

(via)

Are you a fan of The Hunger Games? Will you see the movie? What's your favorite shade from this collection?

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