Thursday, May 30, 2013


ph via
Americans celebrate Memorial Day not only to honor our fallen soldiers but also to kick-off barbeque season! Only, it seemed I was the only one crying for BBQ. I had to bribe my friends with two pounds of Korean-style short ribs to get them to fire up the grill! Usually, barbeque equals pie in my world but this year I picked up a dozen of what looked like scrumptious ripe apricots. I wasn't sure what I wanted to do with them but almonds seemed like a good pairing so I chose to bake a tart instead of traditional pie. I found this Lovely Summer Apricot Tart recipe from Honest Cooking, The Food Magazine.

ph: Kimberly Hasselbrink, The Year in Food

Lovely Summer Apricot Tart
Pastry Crust:
8 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 1/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon flour
2 Tablespoons almond flour plus more for sprinkling
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350º F. Butter a 9" round tart pan or a rectangular tart pan of your choice. 
  2. To make the pastry crust -- combine the butter and sugar in a large bowl. 
  3. Add the remaining pastry ingredients and stir until combined. I used a pastry cutter to cut in the fat/flour until it resembled course meal. If you squeeze a bit between your fingers, it will stick. It just won't resemble a dough ball. 
  4. Press the pastry crust mix into the bottom and up sides of your tart pan until it resembles a crust. 
  5. Bake the crust for 12-15 minutes, making sure not to burn it.
Tart Filling:
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoon honey
2 Tablespoons almond flour
6-8 apricots, sliced thinly
  1. Whisk together cream, egg, almond & vanilla extracts, and honey.
  2. Add in almond flour and stir to combine.
  3. Arrange sliced apricots in any patter you desire.
  4. Carefully pour the filling all around the fruit but do not cover it.
  5. Place tart pan on a baking sheet and carefully slide into the oven.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes, check to see if done. If not, continuing baking up to 20 additional minutes, checking frequently to make sure you don't burn it. 
  7. Remove tart from oven and let cool completely. 
Note: My luscious looking apricots ended up being overly-tart and under-ripe. After slicing them, I sprinkled them with about 1/8 cup of sugar and macerated them until slightly sweeter.

This tart was absolutely delicious! Slightly tart, rich in creaminess, but with a sweet crust. Perfect foil for BBQ.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013


Boys exploring cave with flashlights look up in wonder near Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, March 1957
I came across this photo by Vokmar K. Wentzel on National Geographic Found. I love it because it instantly reminded me of one of my all-time favorite films, The Goonies. Don't you miss those adventure-comedy films in which kids are kids, having the most unbelievable adventures simply through the power of their imaginations? I do.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


I was at the Chelsea Market yesterday and took a moment to pop into Anthropologie. I adore most of their home decor items, especially the ones which are vintage or French flea market inspired. I was flipping through a few books when a pretty jar caught my eye. It wasn't until I removed the lid that I realized it was a candle. Illume Boulangerie Jar are fragrance candles with the most delicious scents. You have a choice of seven candles, all capturing the essence of mouth-watering spices or desserts like Pumpkin Souffle, Apple Brown Sugar, Vanilla Fig, Sweet Vanilla Cinnamon, Whipped Cream Pear, and Coconut Macaroon. My absolute favorite was Coconut Banana Cream. It smelled like the most heavenly pie.

Saturday, May 4, 2013


via smorgasburg
I spent the day with my friend Cathryn and her son Diego at SMORGASBURG, an all-food market hosted by Brooklyn Flea at East River State Park, for what amounted to a food rave with New York City's best artisan food purveyors. It was a literal smorgasbord of good eating. This not-to-be-missed event happens every Saturday, 11am-6pm, rain or shine, so go get your eat on!

No Smorgasburg is complete without pie and lucky for me, there were two pie vendors present - cutie pies, 'hand crafted baked goods' by chef Alice Cronin and Butter & Scotch, a bakery featuring liquor-infused creations by Allison Kave (First Prize Pies) and Keavy Landreth (Kumquat Cupcakery).

As a nod to the Kentucky Derby and the "the greatest two minutes in sports", I opted to try Butter & Scotch's Mint Julep Cream Pie, and because one slice is never enough, their S'more Pie. Both were absolutely scrumptious although beware of the Mint Julep Cream Pie if operating heavy machinery immediately after consumption -- potent!

Deigo, who recently celebrated his first birthday, took his first bite of pie and Hooray! He's a believer!

Friday, May 3, 2013


via circus blog
Igor comes from a long line of circus people. His skill with horses is only surpassed by his indomitable will. It is forged in fire like the swords of yesteryear, dangerous and unyielding. He possesses no kindness or compassion, is defined solely by his brute force. At night, while others sleep, he schemes, his mind racing with ways in which to break others. Just as he does the horses.

Igor goes days, even weeks, without speaking. He is frugal with his speech like a miser hoarding his words. He does not shout, nor raise his voice. His will cracks louder than any whip. It flays your soft underbelly, exposing you to his contempt and ridicule. Like a skilled butcher he can slice away skin and bone, revealing your deepest fears and flaws; shave you down to a caricature of human weakness. If there is any softness in Igor, it is hidden. It angers him that such an Achilles heel exists within himself. But exist, it does, in the underfolds of his brute strength. In that space resides a longing with no name, a persistent ache that plagues him like an illness he can't shake. Until the day he sees Sasha. Suddenly that ache has a name and he wants to possess it. He wants to possess her.

Thursday, May 2, 2013


Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman launched his Godzilla-sized inflatable sculpture, Rubber Duck, into Victoria Harbour in Hong Kong. The famous duck has floated in waters around the world in cities like Sydney, Osaka, and Sao Paolo. This world record sized inflatable duck measures over 54 feet in height. Rubber Duck can be seen bobbing in Hong Kong's waters near Harbour City Tsim Sha Tsui from May 2 - June 9.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013