There’s something really special about the first time you buy a Christmas tree with your partner. Tom and I have already planned to head out to a Christmas tree farm in Virginia with my parents and sister, Sara. But before that happens, we’ve got to get some ornaments and lights. What about these?
I’ve been coming home feeling like the wind has been knocked out of my sails. So I’ve been staring longingly at beautiful things in an effort to circumvent reality.
Chanel now works alone out of his own atelier outside of Paris, handcrafting one-of-a-kind designs made of crocodile, leather, ostrich and other fine skins. Whether it’s a lamp, belt or handbag, he makes pieces of the highest quality meant to last a lifetime.
Today, fashion, on the highest level, is far more ‘accessible’ than ever.
It’s no longer uncommon to see a Louis Vuitton bag on a teenage girl, or a pair of Chanel sunglasses on a Mom in a suburban shopping mall. These products are mass produced and available all over the world, whether you’re on the streets of Tokyo or at the Mall of America.
The days when only the elite – celebrities, models, actresses and royalty – adorned themselves with fine clothing and accessories has long been over.
But, then, what say you for couture?
It lives on, but there simply isn’t a large enough market for it to thrive. Ready-to-wear clothing is what women want. It suits our frenetic lives and aligns with the relaxed, American sportswear aesthetic we’ve come to embrace (and that’s me being kind).
After all, how often does a 25-year old, entry-level office worker have an opportunity to dress up for a ball or attend the opera? Besides prom, or any sort of high school-related dance for that matter, when have most American women had a chance to wear a fine, floor-length gown of any sort?
So it is with great nostalgia that I watched Valentino: The Last Emperor tonight. 45 years of work as a fashion designer. He was a true artist and visionary who built one of the world’s greatest fashion houses in history.
In his last couture show, he showed the world that despite how much has changed in fashion, women still desire beauty.
(Images of final Valentino show via Style.com)
My friend, Heather, recently gave birth to her first child, Lilly, so I’m itching to get out to Cleveland to meet the little beauty in person. On top of that, our neighbors just had their first as well, and we recently had the pleasure of enjoying their daughter’s first dinner out a restaurant. She was a star — quiet and as curious as can be.
As a result of these two fantastic new developments, I’ve had babies on the brain. As much as I like reading about design, I couldn’t help but wonder about the choices inherent in decorating a baby’s room. Do you go for the standard pink or blue depending on the sex of the child? Do you scrap that altogether and just keep the room as simple as possible? Does it even need to be decorated because, in the end, does the child really care?
Lots of questions.
I couldn’t help but swoon for these two options, shown above. Obviously, the chalkboard one is more suited for an older child, but who’s to say you couldn’t offer that option from day one? I mean, what if your kid could be the next Rothko? Why not hand over the creative tools at an early age?!
And what about taking a sophisticated, modern twist on the room with an awesome lamp and chair that you’d want around regardless?
There are weekends that inspire a great desire to take on a ‘grand’ culinary challenge, and then there are those, like this one, where I long to find one of those ‘keeper recipes’ — something really simple, made with few ingredients and a pinch of love.
It dawned on me that Sprouted Kitchen had recently posted a Leek and Spinach Frittata recipe. I’ve not been known for being a fan of eggs. The most I’ve ever eaten of an egg on its own is in its scrambled state. Hard-boiled eggs, fried eggs, poached eggs…they’ve never interested me….until now.
I feel like I suddenly woke up and decided that I liked eggs a lot. In fact, this has been a very similar experience to that of my long-held disdain for blue cheese, again, until recently. Now the pungent smell of crumbled blue cheese makes my mouth water. Why??? I have absolutely no idea whatsoever.
This all being said, a frittata seemed like the perfect next step in my culinary exploration of eggs. And indeed it was.
Now that fall has arrived and is here to stay, leeks are the perfect companion to most of my dishes these days, and they were truly the star of this piece. I must also note that Sprouted Kitchen highly recommends goat’s milk gouda for the frittata and having used it, I do as well. It’s mild, but splashed with the right zing of flavor for this dish.
The full recipe, re-printed courtesy of Sprouted Kitchen follows. Bon appetit!
LEEK AND SPINACH FRITTATA // Serves 6
2 Whole Eggs
10 Egg Whites
1/3 Cup Milk
2 Leeks, White and Light Green Parts, Thinly Sliced
1 tbsp. Butter
1 Cup Fresh Steamed Spinach
¾ Cup Shredded Cheese (I used Goat’s Milk Gouda)
2 tsp. Hot Sauce (Tapatio, Chalua etc)
1 Cup Baby Heirloom Tomatoes, Halved
Salt and Pepper to Taste
Preheat oven to 500’
1. Warm the butter in a saucepan (preferably non stick) on medium heat, add the sliced leeks and sauté until they begin to caramelize, about 10 minutes.
2. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, egg whites, hot sauce and milk. Incorporate some air and break them up, whisk about 4 minutes, yes, your arm will start to hurt. Add a good pinch of salt and pepper.
3. Squeeze as much water possible out of the steamed spinach, give it a rough chop, and squeeze again.
4. Distribute the leeks in the pan, as this will be your frittata base. Turn the heat back to medium and pour the egg mixture on top. Scatter in the chopped spinach and the shredded cheese and allow the mix to sit for a minute. Use a spatula to lift up the sides.
5. As it starts to firm up, lay your tomatoes on the top, cut side up. Put the entire pan into the oven on the top rack. Let it bake for about 8 minutes and check. It should be set, but still have a little give when you push on the middle. Remove and let it cool a bit before serving.
(Photo via Sprouted Kitchen)