Photo credit: Deviant Art The culprit: Phantom Power. The power/energy/money that appliances drain when they are plugged in, but unused. So why not unplug? You may not be able to unplug everything, but try some of the appliances on this list from Daily Finance: Desktop computers Laptop computers Televisions DVD players and VCRs Modems Cable TV boxes Cordless phones Stereos and...
Bike to Work Day: May 17th
Bike to Work Day, the national holiday celebrating your two-wheeled commute, is this week. I love biking to work, though I usually walk, biking cuts my commute in half. I’ve made the pledge to join Bike to Work Day… I only wish one of these fuel stations was on my way to work!
Local Roots CSA
We’ve joined our summer CSA. Local Roots NYC. Looking forward to a weekly half share pick up at 61 Local.
Consider a few ways that you can conserve water: Photo Credit: Gomestic.com Turn the faucet off while cleaning dishes Turn the faucet off while brushing teeth Turn the shower water off while sudsing up Take a shorter shower When running a bath, plug the tub before turning the water on; adjust the temperature as it fills. Wash only full loads of laundry (and if you have a dishwasher, only...
Use Less Plastic
MicroEmpowering posted from askthegreenfairy 9 easy ways to use less plastic. Tip 10: Buy in bulk so you use less packaging.
What Can You Recycle?
As of April 2013 there are new plastics to recycle. No more deliberating on what can and can’t be recycled, all hard plastics are worthy. Read about it here. What can you recycle in NYC? Not everything you might hope. It’s confusing to remember what can, and can’t, be recycled… and not everything with the recycling symbol is eligible, so here’s a little review: ...
Winter Compost Warrior
Photo Credit: GrowNYC I’m a Winter Compost Warrior!… a incentive program initiated by GrowNYC, each week when I drop off compost at the Greenmarket, I sign in to mark my attendance. Though I’ll compost anyway, a competition is always fun, and there’s a compost-related prize for those who drop off for 10 tens (in the next 11 weeks)! Since the pilot program launched in...
This year, I will..
…Stay in touch. According to the resolution generator at moninaavelarde.com. What will you do?
Preparing for Christmas
I’ve been counting down the days until the 23rd (when my family arrives!) - though now it’s just three days away! We have our first Christmas tree, and can’t wait to celebrate Christmas in Brooklyn!
We recently partook in the tasting menu at Battersby (after making our reservation a month out). Check out our view from the Chef’s table. Our five course meal included: Amuse-bouche parsnip apple soup crostini with chicken liver and a sliver of mushroom rosemary flatbread with sea salt with housemade ricotta First crisp kale salad, with kohlrabi, brussels sprouts, peanuts, fish...
Leftover Turkey Pot Pie
Use leftover pie crust, homemade turkey stock and leftovers from the meal to make Leftover Turkey Pot Pie. Saute chopped onions and celery in butter. Add turkey broth and bring to a boil. Add shredded turkey, thyme, corn, etc. Layer pie crust, gravy, mashed potatoes, stuffing, turkey broth mixture and top with another layer of pie crust. Bake at 375 for 45 minutes. Enjoy!
As I prepare to host Thanksgiving, for the first time in my own home, I have some preparations to do over the weekend. Brooklyn Based posted a great article titled How to Throw an Excellent Dinner Party. Just in time for the big holiday next week. Start with Menu Daydreaming. I’ve dreamt up a menu, lots of whole, healthy foods, and ran it by my guests. We’ll have: Turkey Mashed...
Photo Credit: The Next Great Generation I recently read about the percentage of dollars spent that stays in the community when you shop local, versus shopping “locally”, and versus shopping online. More money stays in the community when you shop local. A Forbes article distinguishes “local” from “locally” as follows: When I say “shop locally,” I’m...
Pok Pok Ny
This new neighborhood restaurant was an instant hit… with lines around the corner. (check out this list of reviews). We’ve been a few times, and will definitely go more. We can also have “pok pok” at home, unfortunately they don’t deliver, but they did post their famous wings recipe: Ike’s Vietnamese Fish Sauce Wings As described on their menu, the wings...
Sweet Potato Fries
I just got word that our CSA farm picked 10,000 lbs of sweet potatoes last weekend. I except to see a lot of sweet potatoes in my future. I loved baked sweet potatoes, topped with caramelized onions and parmesan. I also love sweet potato fries, and have found a self-proclaimed perfected recipe: Perfect Oven Sweet Potato Fries The key I’ve found is the baking - line your hand cut fries...
Salsa season has passed. But for future reference, this is my favorite salsa to make in the summer! Fresh ingredients, easy to make. In a Food processor add in this order: 1 bunch of cilantro 4 large tomatillos (quartered) 1 large onion (quartered) 1 clove garlic 1 jalapeno 1 T sea salt 1 lime squeezed in 2 avocados Pulse til chunky.
With scraps of fabric, buttons, bobby pins and a hot glue gun, you can make something like this: The yellow matched perfectly with the groomsmen boutonnieres: The gray fabric with gray buttons complemented the dress: Photo credit: Kate Murray Photo credit: Kate Murray
Start with an idea; to replace the black sash. Find the fabric. “Try it on” for the Bride’s approval. See the gray color palette. Make the sash. Tie it in a bow. Wear it at the wedding!
Store bought vs. Homemade
I’m always up for a challenge to make homemade versions of pantry items. The Etsy Blog highlights a few of those items: Salad Dressing (one of my favorite recipes below) Granola (see the recipe I use here) Chocolate-Hazelnut Spread Pesto (I love parsley-walnut pesto) Poppy Seed Salad Dressing: 1/3 cup canola oil 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar 1/4 cup sugar 1 tsp. salt 1/2 tsp....
Are you composting yet?
Every Sunday I set my alarm for 8am. I grab bags of food scraps from the freezer, toss them into my bike basket and bike down to my neighborhood Greenmarket. You’ve probably read about how I save my food scraps through out the week to compost. I am always amazed at the amount of food scraps that accumulate throughout the week - though I promise it’s easy to store them in the...
"Pick Your Own" Peach Cobbler
What do you do with a box full of peaches? Make peach cobbler. Or is it a crumble? Using Aunt Michelle’s “Famous Blackberry Crumble” recipe, we made something delicious. Be it a cobbler or a crumble… or a crumbler? Combine the following and pour into a greased 8x8 or 9x12 dish: 4-5 cups berries (or peaches!) 1 cup sugar Combine (and double if more crunch is...
Ten household items to clean right now!
This list is from Apartment Therapy (check out the details here). Sponge Ceiling fan Kitchen towel Cell phone Pillow Lint trap TV remote Silverware organizer Makeup brushes (see my post about this here) Showerhead
Bike Tour with 61 Local
One Saturday morning I took a ride with 61 Local, an amazing bar in our neighborhood (also referred to as a “public house” which focuses on community and locally sourced food and drink). They host bike ride tours as well! And the tour I joined took us to Red Hook. (You can join the next Red Hook Ride on August 4th!) See 61 Local’s blog post about the outing here. And see my...
Care for your share
The challenge of getting veggies from the CSA is that more often than not, they tend to go bad before you get to use them. I found this tip sheet for guidelines on what is most perishable and what is heartier… hopefully following these guidelines will help minimize waste. (Note: if your veggies do spoil, don’t throw them away - take them to the compost!) EAT NOW Corn, fava beans,...
This morning I wanted to make a breakfast that could go with raspberries, as I had raspberries sitting in my fridge just waiting to be used (and you may remember that raspberries are my all time favorite fruit). I thought pancakes would go well with the berries, but I was briefly discouraged that I didn’t have any pancake mix… But then I realized you don’t need a mix to make...
Are you saving your scraps?
Last year I posted about a pilot program run by GrowNYC, in which you could drop off food scraps at your local Greenmarket. The program is still running, and I highly encourage you to save your food scraps throughout the week! I place scraps (banana peels, egg shells, coffee filters, kale stems, etc) in a plastic bag in the freezer. I am amazed at the amount of food waste that I would...
You Are What You Eat
Teacher & Actor | Brooklyn, NY | 2-Person Household | Green smoothie drinking, Trader Joes shopping, want to be full-share CSA members living in a neighborhood with (arguably) some of the best restaurants in NYC | 2012 I was fascinated by this article, showcasing Mark Menjivar’s photography of strangers’ refrigerators. It reminded me of my healthy refrigerator post. My fridge...
Roasted tomatoes and radishes. Roast Sunday, eat during the week. I’m trying a new method of preparing food on the weekend for weeknight dinners. It’s not large batch cooking but rather preparing individual ingredients that can be put together in a variety of ways. This new method, inspired by an article I read in Edible Brooklyn (which focused on Ronna Welsh, owner and chef Purple...
MAKE bread crumbs
Save bread that is going stale in the freezer. When you’ve accumulated enough bread pieces, put in the oven for 10-15 minutes. Then put in a food processor. That’s how you make bread crumbs! (store in the freezer).
I will always make guacamole from scratch versus buying guac in a tub or bag. It’s so easy and delicious! My go to recipe is from Dos Caminos (a Manhattan restaurant chain). They make their guacamole table side and say it’s best when made just before serving - which I agree… though a bowl of guacamole never lasts 30 minutes in my home anyway. Ingredients: finely chopped...
Make the bread...
I’m reading Jennifer Reese’s “Make the Bread, Buy the Butter”. Like Reese I am a “Michael Pollan-reading, price-checking, over thinking” homemaker. Personally since reading Michael Pollan’s “In Defense of Food” I’ve tried to hold fast to the 5 ingredient rule (Don’t eat anything with more than five ingredients, or ingredients you...
One of the best things about my new neighborhood are the bakeries. Nona Brooklyn takes “A Look Inside Carroll Gardens’ Old-School Italian Culinary Treasures”. I visit Mazzola’s annd Caputo’s weekly (if not twice a week… or more…). Mazzola’s is our go to for pastries and lard bread (you have to try lard bread… check it out). Caputo Bakery...
Red, White & Blue
Inspired by Dunk and Crumble, who made red, white & blue cupcakes for Memorial Day - I’m reposting my red, white & blue spiked lemonade. Originally made for the 4th of July, but why not Memorial Day as well… or any spring/summer day for that matter? For an individual serving: Put ice in a glass Pour 3 parts fresh squeezed lemonade and 1 part vodka Toss in a few...
a custom made buffet from reclaimed wood
Just one custom piece in our new home wasn’t enough (see our custom made coffee table) - we needed something else to fill an empty wall in between our living room and dining room. So my husband built us this: We call it a buffet (though it doesn’t have storage space as is typical for buffet furniture). But it great for laying out food for parties: Storing wine: And keeping...
How to Host a Card Making Party
A card making party is a great way to use up old art and craft supplies. I had a container full of old scrapbooking supplies that I no longer use. I thought it’d be great to use it to make cards - something more practical. And even more fun to make cards with friends! To host your friends for card making, follow these simple steps: Invite your friends. They can bring old supplies as well...
It’s time to switch from a winter wardrobe to spring! Don’t be intimidated, be excited! You’ll get rid of some old pieces to make room for some new! Look through your closet, assess what is winter (pack it away) and what can transition into spring (light cardigans and layering long sleeve shirts). For each piece in your closet, as yourself: “Did I wear it? Do I like...
A staple for our weekend breakfast, the buttered egg comes from Nana & Poppa (my husband’s grandparents). Ingredients are simple (butter, eggs, toast). It’s the technique that makes it special. This Gordon Ramsey video provides a great demonstration of the technique and is quite humorous as well: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dU_B3QNu_Ks
This was a long standing DIY project on my list, and moving into our new apartment provided the perfect opportunity to make a display of painted frames! Photo Credit: Vintage Dutch Girl. I found this inspiration from Vintage Dutch Girl on Pinterest. A box of unused frames had been left unpacked & unused from our LA move through the 3 years in our first NY apartment. It was time to toss...
Family dinner is a weekly event (usually on Sunday nights) - sometimes involving family, sometimes with friends. It’s our goal to continue the family tradition. This week we had family dinner with eight people around our expanded dining room table, with chairs borrowed from the neighbors (there’s no place to store a set of eight dining chairs in a NYC apartment). This might have...
Most Walkable Neighborhood
Survey says… New York City is the most walkable city in the U.S. — and my new (and old neighborhood) are deemed some of the most walkable neighborhoods. I read this first on South Brooklyn Post — and Slate.com lists the map and the info. Walkability is measured by the number, and proximity, of amenities in a given neighborhood.
It’s time to start getting excited about Farmers Markets. Winter is truly behind us… and spring’s bounty is just around the corner. Brooklyn.com offers a search engine to find what markets are open in your neighborhood. For a New York City wide list, Grow NYC shows which markets are open (and which are still closed). Wondering what’s in season now? Check out Grow...
Mini Pie Pops & Nana's Pie Crust
I made these for a baby shower. They were fun to make and relatively easy (for me, a non-baker). I had dough in the freezer… leftover from pie baking at Christmas-time (ala Nana’s recipe, see below)… so that made the prep even easier! The recipe for the pie pops comes from Food for My Family. Nana’s pie recipe: ” When I make apple pies I usually make 4 or 5....
friends (and family) on tumblr. Cafe Talk The Lytton Report Mandy Fish-ing lalalife
In a Whole Living article titled “New Foods to Fight Inflammation and Aging”, this paragraph caught my eye: Even if you’re already eating healthy foods such as fruits, nuts, and leafy greens, we’ve got new ways to supercharge their health benefits and update your diet. I was curious to see what those new things could be. Here are a few of the 11 new foods: ...
I recently helped a friend decorate for a Panda Party — for her 8 year old niece — with black and white streamers, black and white lanterns, fun panda faces… Photo Source: Oriental Trading Co …and panda treats: cookies in the shape of a bear and paw prints and… …and a panda bear cake (ala Betty Crocker).
National Quilting Month
I saw this on my twitter feed yesterday: I had no clue it was National Quilting Month! And now it’s the final day. Better get back to my hand quilting project and do some work on it today! l
Twitter has a hashtag of #FF - meaning Follow Friday. A chance to highlight and recommend people worth following. Here’s my list of #FF blogs: Dunk & Crumble Hip Girl’s Guide to Homemaking Cupcakes and Cashmere The Beauty Department
a custom made coffee table from reclaimed wood
My husband and I spent a lot of time thinking about the furniture we would purchase for our new apartment. Asking questions like: what is the purpose of this piece? what do we want it to look like? how much are we willing to spend? where should be purchase it? We’re still asking questions about what couch to purchase (ala Steve Jobs and his wife). But one of the pieces we decided on...
So, as you may know, I’ve been finding a lot of inspiration from Apartment Therapy. I love the House Tours and am going to submit our home! I have to submit a brief essay (telling about our home and why it would make an excellent Apartment Therapy House Tour) and 5 photos. Here’s my submission: Moving into a bigger space, from a junior one-bedroom to a one-bedroom, made us feel...