Creamy Fettuccine With Leeks, Corn, and Arugula

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

I don't normally cook recipes from Real Simple magazine. A few blah recipes years back turned me off from trying any more and I sort of figure real foodies don't look to RS for menu ideas. However, a recipe for Creamy Fettuccine With Leeks, Corn and Arugula in the June issue caught my eye, so I tore it out. I didn't get around to cooking it until this past weekend, and boy am I glad I finally did. The combination of the leeks, corn and arugula was lovely, and it makes me curious to give Real Simple's recipes another shot.

I halved the recipe and served as a side dish to some simple, pan-seared scallops and we had leftovers. I was fairly faithful to the recipe: I used a bit more olive oil than the recipe called for (enough to coat the pan), one full ear of corn for 1/2 the recipe (use two for the full, for sure), and I used freshly ground pepper, which it did not specify, but I prefer. I also didn't have pecorino, so I used the Parmesean we already had on-hand. Otherwise, I made this as described -- we salted and peppered it a little extra at the table too. Definitely one to add to repertoire.

Creamy Fettuccine With Leeks, Corn and Arugula
From Real Simple magazine

12 ounces fettuccine (3⁄4 box)
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 leeks (white and light green parts), cut into thin half-moons
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
kosher salt and black pepper
1 cup corn kernels (from 1 to 2 ears)
1/2 cup dry white wine
3/4 cup heavy cream
2 cups baby arugula (1 1⁄2 ounces)
1/4 cup grated pecorino (1 ounce)

1. Cook the pasta according to the package directions.
2. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the leeks, garlic, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the corn and wine and simmer until the corn is tender, 2 to 3 minutes; stir in the cream.
3. Add the pasta, season with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper, and toss to combine; fold in the arugula. Sprinkle with the pecorino before serving.

Ships Ahoy: Porthole Medicine Cabinet

Monday, August 30, 2010

If I had piles of money and a house by the beach, I would be awfully tempted to spring for a pair of Restoration Hardware's Royal Naval Porthole Mirrored Medicine Cabinets ($395 each on sale), which they say are "modeled after an antique 19th century ship's porthole." Since I don't possess either, I will simply admire them from afar across the interwebs.

Heirloom Tomato Salads (and Beets!)

Sunday, August 29, 2010

This time of year, the farmers' market in Fort Greene is filled with tomatoes, tomatoes and more tomatoes. Usually I'll buy a couple of the pricey-but-beautiful heirloom tomatoes on Saturday, knowing that mid-week they'll make a simple, summer salad. When perfectly ripe, a good tomato is delicious all on its own, but I didn't need to tell you that. However, I usually make a salad of tomatoes, fresh herbs, a sprinkle of cheese, a drizzle of dressing and occasionally another vegetable (or fruit) like the avocado-tomato salad above.

Until a few years ago, I thought tomato, mozzarella and basil was the be-all, end-all of tomato salads, but in the past few years, I have delighted in finding new combination of flavors, like tomato, goat cheese and mint -- a revelation! A recent "aha!" moment was the Beet and Tomato Salad in the September issue of Everyday Food. The combo of the tomatoes, beets and fresh oregano was a whole new spin on the summer tomato salad -- I loved it.

For this recipe, EF recommends roasting beets, but we cheated and used Rocal Ready To Eat Beets (below), which I believe are a French import (we find them at Fairway). Slice 2 beets and 3 tomatoes to similar thickness and arrange them on a platter. Make a dressing of 3 t. olive oil, 2 t. red-wine vinegar, 1 minced shallot and salt and pepper. Lightly drizzle the tomatoes and beets with the dressing and then sprinkle with a tablespoon (or more) of fresh oregano leaves.

Bedside Lighting Solution

Friday, August 27, 2010

Last week I was mulling over purchasing PBteen Hi-Light Task Lamps for the bedside tables in our apartment. However, after spending a weekend in a bedroom with wall-mounted bedside lamps, my boyfriend and I got to thinking that this would be a better solution for our somewhat small bedroom and weeny bedside tables. While I loved the look of the traditional, brass fixtures that inspired our desire for wall-mounted lights, I didn't feel like it was quite right for our room.

Then, I noticed that PBteen made a version of its Hi-Light that mounts on the wall (!) -- and they were also on sale! I showed them to W. and he agreed they were a perfect solution, so we ordered them in navy last night. I can't wait for them to arrive so we can put them in the space!

Holy Craft Closet!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

I had to catch my breath when I saw stylist Erica Domesek's craft closet (she's the crafty genius behind the blog P.S. I Made This) in a house tour on CasaSugar. Be still, my heart: A fress-standing, craft supply closet! Organizing and storing my supplies for DIY projects is a major issue in my apartment, and this is just beyond my wildest dreams. Erica said she found this incredible storage unit at The Original Scrapbox. I would seriously consider investing in one myself.

Dying to Try: Zucchini Bread French Toast

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

How good does French toast made from zucchini bread sound? Pretty good, right? I normally eat a very virtuous breakfast of plain yogurt, fruit and just a bit of granola, but this recipe for Zucchini Bread French Toast from The New York Times (adapted from Heather Carlucci-Rodriguez at Print Restaurant) has me plotting a decadent Saturday morning meal -- and maybe a ten-mile run to work it off.

Love This Video from Creative, Inc.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Oh, man, this stop-motion video for the recently released, Creative, Inc.: The Ultimate Guide to Running a Successful Freelance Business, is just about the cutest book promotion I've ever seen! Three cheers for Chronicle Books for being so inventive with their publicity. And my admiration to the authors, Meg Matteo Ilasco and Joy Deangdeelert Cho, for the patience they must have mustered during filming.

Living Room Inspiration from Emily Henderson

Monday, August 23, 2010

I don't have a television, so I haven't been following each and every episode of Design Star like many of my fellow design writers and bloggers have been. However, the show has been downright impossible to avoid.

Immediately before Design Star hit the air, I discovered the blog of the show's winner Emily Henderson, The Brass Petal. I liked Emily's spirit and style right from the get-go and these snaps of Emily's living room above and below show why I'm drawn to Emily's vibe. I'll be curious to see her show when it airs. Brava, Emily!

Deborah Berke Shelter Island House

Friday, August 20, 2010

Before André Balazs opened his chic Sunset Beach resort, Shelter Island was just a sleepy place at the eastern end of Long Island -- I know because my family spent our summers on the island until the mid-90s. Shelter Island will always hold a very special spot in my heart, as it is the location of countless childhood memories. This weekend I am lucky enough to be heading out the island to visit family friends; in honor of my impending visit, I thought I'd share this lovely Shelter Island house by Deborah Berke & Partners.

While, the modern exterior and interiors of this home are is nothing like the wood-shingled bungalow my family lived in, it feels like Shelter Island to me, nonetheless. I believe, I first saw the home in O at Home magazine years ago, and from what I can recall of the article, it was built on a very modest budget. It's a house I have returned to look at on Berke's site many times over the years. Isn't it just lovely and simple in the best possible way?

Bedside Table Lamp: PBteen's Hi-Light Task Lamp

Thursday, August 19, 2010

When my fellow moved in, we swapped out my old Antifoni lamp from IKEA for a brass-based table lamp of his. While I love the look of the brass lamp, it doesn't seem quite right for a bedside table and it doesn't offer any control over the angle of the light. Plus, I feel like it would be nice for us to have a pair of matching lamps.

I've long-admired the classic Signal S1333 lamp, but at $450, it is nowhere near my budget. However, when I realized that PBteen's Hi-Light Task Lamp, a knock-off of Jean-Louis Domecq's iconic design, was on sale for $59, I thought to myself, that I may have found a good solution. The price is right and the dimensions for the Hi-Light and the old Antifoni seem similar, so I'm thinking about taking the plunge.

What do you think, dear readers? Will this lamp look good next to my bed?

One Last Test Run of Jasper...

We went down to Room & Board in SoHo the other night for one last in-person test-drive of the 86" Jasper sofa before committing to purchase. After sitting, laying down and bouncing up and down on the couch, I'm pretty convinced that this sofa is the one for me. Above and below are snaps of me testing out the couch in its standard upholstery option. What do you think? I look pretty comfy on Jasper, don't I?

Bright Idea: Painted Wooden Floors

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Today I have a post up on about an adorable cottage designed by Melissa Ervin. You can read the full post here, but I couldn't help sharing the kitchen here, as well. How great are those green floors?!? Ervin revealed that the paint was Martin-Senour's 'Green Leaf 106-4.' In addition to the floors, I love so many of the elements of this kitchen from the farmhouse sink and its apron to the vintage botanical print on the wall. It's just about a perfect country kitchen in my book.

Could Gold Flatware Be Chic Again?

Monday, August 16, 2010

After touring the New York International Gift Fair today, I remain cautiously optimistic that my set of gold flatware, which I inherited from my father's parents, might suddenly come back into fashion. One of my all-time favorite homewares brands, Canvas, was showing not one but TWO sets of gold-colored forks, knives and spoons at the show (see above).

What do you think, dear readers? Could warm metallic flatware be chic again?

Happy Birthday Mom!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Today is my mother’s birthday: Happy birthday, Mom!
When my parents lived in nearby Connecticut, celebrating a birthday or a holiday like Mother’s Day meant a quick ride on the train. Today, my mom is nearly 3,000 miles away in California. I wish I could be there to celebrate with her, and I wish that she could be here to celebrate my birthday this weekend, but alas, we’ll have to wait until I make my way out West for a visit in September.

I owe so much of who I am today to my mom (and dad). My interest in food and in homes comes directly from them, as does my love of words. I could name a thousand ways that my mother made me, me, but suffice it to say: I am a lot like her and I am proud of it.

Mom, I hope your birthday is lots of fun. I also hope that your gift arrived safely and that there's birthday cake in your future! I’ll be thinking of you here in Brooklyn.

Canal House Cooking

Monday, August 09, 2010

I've been curious about Canal House Cooking for some time now, and the online sneak peek of Volume No. 4 makes me think it's time to take the plunge and buy a copy. Written and photographed by Melissa Hamilton and Christopher Hirsheimer, Canal House Cooking is self described as, "home cooks writing about home cooking for other home cooks." The handsome soft-back cookbooks can be found at places like Anthropologie and Terrain and are filled with Christopher Hirsheimer's naturally lit, unfussy photographs and delicious recipes grouped into categories like "Avocado Love" and "It’s Always Five O’Clock Somewhere."

One of the reasons Canal House Cooking originally caught my eye is because Christopher was actually once the boss and mentor of my old boss and mentor, Sarah Gray Miller (now editor-in-chief of Country Living). It's rumored Christopher is the source of the phrase "fuck a duck," which many of us picked up in our tenure at Budget Living magazine. She's also Lidia Bastianich's go-to photographer for cookbooks. I've never met her, but from this information alone, I bet I'd like her an awful lot.

Published three times a year (Summer, Fall & Holiday and Winter & Spring) almost like a magazine, the cookbook has a devoted following -- I expect to become one of them myself. I mean, that tomato tart looks yummy, no?

Ditte Isager in Real Simple

Ditte Isager first hit my radar when I saw her credit on Canvas's catalog. I then realized that I'd been saving stories she shot (including her very own New York City apartment) for a long time without realizing it. She's hands-down my favorite interior photographer of the moment.

Apparently, I am not alone in my love for Isager's work: She's got a great feature in Real Simple this month (these images are from the shoot, pulled from Ditte's site). So pretty. Makes me want to decorate everything blue.

One Girl Cookies Cupcakes at Martha Blogger Event!

Friday, August 06, 2010

I promise to give a more detailed report of the phenomenal Martha Stewart blogger event last night. However, in the meantime, I have to say: Oh me, these cupcakes (above) were a little taste of heaven. I think there were strawberries and nuts in the batter; the frosting had a delightful texture I can hardly describe. I wish I had stuffed my purse full of them.

Luckily, I can have them again: A little google-ing reveals that One Girl Cookies, the maker of these sweet treats, is just a short walk away -- in fact, they are dangerously close.

Mason Jar Soap Dispenser in Country Living

I've got another project in Country Living magazine! Take a peek at this cute mason-jar-turned-soap dispenser that appears in the September issue. I'm thrilled that it was featured as the opener to the Idea Notebook section. Plus, I am loving the magazine's new, bigger page size--so luxurious!

UPDATE 2015: This has been such a popular idea, that I justdiscovered that you can buy a kit that adapts any mason jar into a pump! The Transform Mason Jar Lid Pumps cost just $4 on Enjoy!

Pink Punch? Yes, Please.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

I am a sucker for a glass of rosé in the summer, so it shouldn't be a big surprise that I was drawn in by this Rosé Punch featured in a recent issue of Martha Stewart Weddings. How yummy does it look? I'm beginning to think that I need to buy a punch bowl and mix up a huge vat of this stuff for my birthday party.

Here's the recipe from Martha Stewart Weddings:

4 peaches, sliced
1 bottle (750 ml) rose wine, chilled
2 cups sparkling lemonade (we used Lorina lemonade), chilled
2 tablespoons black-raspberry liqueur (we used Chambord)
27 raspberries

1. Place half the peach slices in ice cube trays, one slice per compartment; add water, and freeze.
2. Mix wine, lemonade, and liqueur in punch bowl. Add peach slices and some of the peach ice cubes. To serve, place remaining peach ice cubes in cups, and ladle in the punch; garnish with raspberries.

Photo: Martha Stewart Weddings

Slipcovering Electronics?

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

My wonderful boyfriend has excellent taste, and for the most part, I am thrilled with everything he has brought to our apartment. However, he arrived with some ugly electronics, in particular, a huge, hideous printer to print his photographs. While I'd love to hide it somewhere out of sight, it looks like it'll need to remain in the open.

Initially, I joked that I was going to sew slipcovers for the printer and the rest of his electronics, but then, after a moment's pause, I realized it wasn't such a bad idea. Above is a flat screen TV, which the editors of the now defunct Blueprint magazine slip covered. What do you think? Am I nuts?

A16's Raw Zucchini Salad With Green Olives, Mint and Pecorino

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

I've been slowly cooking my way through much of Nate Appleman's A16: Food + Wine, and I've loved every recipe so far. An unusual one that I tried recently is the restaurant's "Raw Zucchini Salad With Green Olives, Mint and Pecorino." I didn't take a photo, but it was a pretty dish and definitely worth making again. The combination of flavors is a refreshing and unusual combination.

Here's A16's recipe for Raw Zucchini Salad With Green Olives, Mint and Pecorino:

1 1/2 lb. zucchini
Kosher salt
1/4 c. olive oil
2 T. fresh lemon juice
1 c. green olives, pitted and sliced
2/3 c. loosely packed flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1/2 c. loosely packed mint, chopped
Aged pecorino for shaving
Black pepper

1. Trim zucchini and use a mandoline to slice the zucchini lengthwise into 1/8-inch thick ribbons (I also sliced each slice in half lengthwise). Toss with 1 t. salt and place in a colander over a bowl and set aside for then minutes. The zucchini wilts and softens as the salt leaches out the moisture.

2. Rinse zucchini under col running water, pat dry and place in a large bowl. Add olive oil, lemon juice, olives, parsley and mint and toss to coat evenly. Season with salt, if desired.

3. Top with shaved curls of pecorino (I used Parmesan and it was just fine) and freshly ground black pepper. Serve immediately, as this salad can get a little soggy.

Photo: adactio/Flickr

The Perfect Budget Retreat: A $57K Cabin

Monday, August 02, 2010

I am inspired: Homeowners Mariah Morrow and Ryan Lingard built this adorable cabin for $57,000 -- including the land! Don't believe me? Sunset magazine details how the couple managed to create this woods-y retreat on the tiniest budget.

All photos by Thomas J. Story for Sunset magazine.

Hurray for Anthropologie Lighting!

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Have you noticed that Anthropologie has slowly, but surely been adding a handsome collection of lighting to its housewares? The light fixtures available through reflect the brand's semi-boho-vintage vibe. I loved this Luncheonette Pendant Lamp ($268) when I saw it in person, and I think it would look adorable in a kitchen.


the little house in the city © All rights reserved · Theme by Blog Milk · Blogger