by Flat 15

by Flat 15

 

Turkey Day II my menu includes less fancy vegetables, but I still want them to be special. Fancy is not really the best word, time-consuming would be better.  So I’m doing broccoli with a brown butter sauce and toasted cashews. It’s Broccoli Almondine but with Cashews. There is a delicious stuffing on this menu, with an incredible cranberry sauce, so you do have to keep your menu work balanced, not everything needs to take an hour of careful prep, steaming broccoli and making a quick brown butter sauce is equally as yummy as a Caramelized Onion and Butternut Squash Tart.

 

Broccoli Almondine

Brown butter sauce needs to be tended carefully.

Ingredients:

1 head of broccoli cut into spears
3 tbs butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 tbsp. sliced almonds or cashews
salt and pepper
fresh lemon juice – to taste

Instructions:

1. Sprinkle broccoli with salt and pepper and steam for 5 minutes until tender. Sprinkle with a little bit of lemon juice and toss gently.
2. In a small saucepan melt the butter over medium heat, add the minced garlic and nuts and cook until golden brown. (Tend this pan carefully or it gets too brown, too fast.)
3. Arrange the broccoli spears in your serving dish. Spoon the browned almond/cashew evenly over broccoli spears.

To contrast with this easy but delicious recipe, we are doing a
Caramelized Onion and Butternut Squash Tart.

Your favorite pastry dough recipe or store bought
1 large butternut squash, peeled seeded and cubed
1 tbs olive oil
2 large onions, halved and sliced
3 tbs butter
2 eggs
8 oz crème fraich or sour cream
4 ounces Gruyere, Grated
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
4 sprigs thyme or what you have from your pantry

1.Melt butter in large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, thyme and 1/2 tsp salt. stirring to mix. Cover and reduce heat to low. Stir occasionally, until dark golden brown, about 45 minutes. This will vary, so keep an eye on these onions. If used fresh thyme, remove stems.
2. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Toss squash with olive oil and 1/2 tsp of salt and spread on baking sheet. Bake until browned and very soft, turning once about 35 minutes into roast.
3. Reduce oven to 350 degree. Roll dough til thin and press into well greased 10″ tart pan. Prick the crust with fork and bake in oven for 10 minutes.
4. In medium bowl combine eggs, crème fraiche (sour cream), gruyere, Parmesan and black pepper.
5. Spread caramelized onion in bottom of tart and top with butternut squash. Pour gruyere mixture over the squash, making sure to spread it evenly but gently through the squash.
6. Bake until golden brown and cooked through, about 30 to 40 minutes.

kids-table-2-by-a-blissful-nest

Guests arriving this coming weekend and kids included. Last party with young children we decorated cupcakes; what a great time we all had. This time we are going to make place cards, pilgrim hats, and turkeys. We will see what happens!

I love this idea of decorating the kids table, don’t you? Wow! More to do. More fun stuff to do! Play together, work together, eat together.

I’m making roasted butternut squash to go with the pears and cabbage. Here is the simple recipe.

Parmesan Roasted Butternut Squash
5 servings

1 lb or so butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 3/4″ pieces
2 tbs olive oil, more as needed
1/3 cup parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp dried thyme, sage, or basil crushed

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Coat a large baking pan with olive oil, place squash in prepared pan. Drizzle with more oil, add salt and pepper, toss thoroughly to coat.
2. Roast for 15 minutes, toss gently. Roast 5 minutes more. Stir in thyme and cheese. Roast 5 minutes or until tender.

by Pottery Barn

by Pottery Barn

Everyone wants to be included in the party! It’s fun to make things with paper and glue! A good time to giggle and surprise yourself with the great results!

by Williams Sonoma

by Williams Sonoma

Always remember whether we do something simply or extravagantly it can be and should be beautiful. Here we are at the Holiday’s and if we don’t move anything all year long, we do put out pumpkins and turkeys and gather with friends and family.

The same with our entertaining, the good time and the good food can be simple or extravagant but it should be equally fun and delicious.

Our menu whether traditional or innovative, whether we order out or go out is centered around the end result of happy and satisfied.

Do you subscribe to any food blogs? Food 52 is a favorite of mine and they have some great recipes and great ideas. Visit Food52!

I love the recipes I find in the newspaper, Woman’s magazines and my collection of old and new cookbooks.

My first menu goes like this:
1. Pot Stickers (Fresh Market has them – so delicious)
2. Roasted Cabbage with Pears
3. Lynn’s Delicious Cranberry Sauce
4. Sausage Cranberry Stuffing
5. Parmesan Roasted Butternut Squash
6. Baked Chicken
7. Dessert – Who needs it after this feast? But there is always chocolate and always ice cream.

I’m doing this next weekend for visiting family. I’m going to experiment with it this weekend. Remember Thanksgiving every weekend this Month. Enough joy to go around.

Here is the recipe for roasted Cabbage with Pears:

Mind you, I did roasted cabbage for the first time just a few months ago and it was divine. With bacon on top – OMG – how can you go wrong?

1 head cabbage, any color – cleaned, trimmed and sliced into wedges about 1 inch wide
1/4 cup olive oil
3 pears, halved lengthwise
2 tbs fresh lemon juice (I have fresh lemons from a friends nearby tree!)
3/4 cups chopped walnuts – toasted

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Prepare 9 x 13 pan with generous portion of olive oil.
Add wedged cabbage and add more olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to insure good coverage of oil and seasonings.
2. Roast cabbage for 45 minutes or until tender. Keep an eye on roasting vegetables. Toss occasionally. Add pears when cabbage almost done, giving the pears about fifteen minutes.
3. Drizzle lemon juice over cabbage mixture and sprinkle with walnuts. Enjoy!

I have this baked chicken recipe from my JOY Cooking Bible. You stuff the cavity with lemon wedges.
Turn it upside down – and bake. It is so good – you can’t believe it! Needs to marinate.

Roast Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic (I use as much as I have on hand – never close to 40)

Here it is in synopsis:

3-4 lb. chicken with giblets removed
1. Rub the skin with olive oil
2. Mix together 1 tsp each of thyme, sage, 1/2 tsp each of salt, rosemary and pepper
3. Rub this mixture on the skin and in the cavity.
4. Put the quartered lemon in the cavity. Truss the bird!!!!
5. Place in a stove top casserole, breast side up. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours – 24 hours

Preheat oven to 375 with the oven rack in the middle position. While the oven is warming:

6. Add to the casserole:
3 garlic heads, cloves separated but not peeled
1 3/4 cups chicken broth or as needed
1 cup dry white wine, or as needed

7. Bring to a boil on the stove top.
8. Cover with foil or a lid and transfer to the oven.
9. Roast for 25 minutes – then increase the oven temp to 450 degrees
10.Uncover the casserole, and roast until the chicken thigh registers 165-170 degrees, 35-40 min more.
11. Make sure there is always liquid on the bottom of the casserole, add more wine or stock if gets low.

I always take it out and enjoy at this point. JOY continues with making a sauce and more garlic.

day-bed-by-jon-staub-marion-philpotts-miller

by Jon Staub and Marion Philpotts-Miller

This delightful daybed sets the stage for this organic room. The rough timber tables, the modern sculpture, the hide layered atop a sisal, all wonderful textures layered against the shiny blue daybed. It’s very much like an ancient Chinese bed but in bright blue. Each of these pieces stands on their own beautifully, but blended this way we are given an oasis of rest or community. This is basically a contemporary room with the rustic tables that mix things up a bit. The rough texture is repeated in the polygon totem, again repeating a pattern or a texture, ties a room together.

 

The bright blue paint is contemporary, the rustic cocktail tables are organic as is the polygon sculpture.  A bed in a room, usually means the bed is the focal point. It is the largest item in the room. With this bed painted bright blue the remainder of the room needs to be neutral. The room stays restful even with the powerful punch of the blue bed.

Another good design tip, layering carpets is a nice touch, but remember that they are good for tripping – so only do this when all occupants are strong and lithe. Layering is a very professional way to decorate a room. It’s a great way to change a room, a little or a lot. You can modify the room seasonally by changing out the area carpet and/or pillows. Store your carpets rolled, keep them together with wide masking tape, they don’t take up much room, and you have a refreshing change.

I’m a bit off topic here, but it seemed an easy shift given the white hide in the room. Love to all. Your comments and questions are always welcome.

 

foyer-blend-of-ancient-modern-by-darryl-carter

This is a dynamite illustration of mixing styles. Everything is so classical except for the Z chair. It’s a perfect example of how the contrast shows the beauty of each style. You love them both more.

It does take a bit or quite a bit of bravado to pull this off, or to trust your designer, but once you do it and appreciate how the dynamic works, you won’t ever be hesitant to mix styles!

The beauty has to match. The power of each piece has to balance. We can say the straight line of the chair balances the curvy pattern of the exquisitely patterned console.

The dark wood of the console, floor and carpet perfectly offsets the white chair and wall. The oversized base molding stands up nicely to the oversized table. The teeny tiny picture somehow is a stamp of approval or a thread that ties everything together. Or an exclamation point. It is the second modern element so that the chair is not entirely alone. When you mix styles, you still need to follow the rules of good design – or most of the rules of good design.

The texture has been well thought out as well. The shiny chair and floor, the soft carpet, the tall rough brush arrangement, the intricate woodworking of the console. The matte bust and box contribute as well, to the beautiful variety of textures. Surely your eye doesn’t ever get tired of reviewing this lovely vignette.

Editing has been careful. There is nothing extra, there is nothing superfluous. There are only seven items that make this foyer or hallway so brilliant. All but two of the items are quite ordinary. Notice how even the shadows make the chair three different colors The shadows thrown by light create depth and I’m sure this changes throughout the day; it looks entirely different under day light and evening’s soft light.

Investigate how you might incorporate this into one of your rooms. If you are traditional, look for something modern. If you are modern, look for something vintage. Remember proportion and balance, color that  pops or blends. Good luck and always have fun! Enjoy your beautiful interiors.