Sunday, October 28

In the Kitchen: Chai Snickerdoodles


A plain old snickerdoodle is usually my go-to cookie, but recently I had a chai snickerdoodle that was perfectly spicy and a little less sugary sweet than the traditional snickerdoodles I've had in the past.  I attempted a couple of recipes, and this one is the closest to the bakery treat I tried.  Mmmm... fall baking at its best!

Ingredients:

2 1/3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks), room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon cardamom
1/4 teaspoon dried ginger
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare at least 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl, combine dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, salt, cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, cloves, and nutmeg). Set aside.

In stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time.  Slowly add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, and mix until combined.

Form dough into 2 inch balls and place on the baking sheet. Leave space for cookies to spread. Bake for approximately 13-15 minutes.  Remove cookies and transfer the parchment paper to a cooling rack.

Photo Credit: The Novice Chef   

Tuesday, October 23

Apple Picking

 
Yesterday Laurent and I took a little daytrip to Fishkill Farms about an hour north of Manhattan.  After a few months of busy work schedules and noisy city life, we were ready for a relaxing and quiet trip.  We picked up a couple of pumpkins, drank apple cider, snagged the last of the apple cider doughnuts, and had a little feast on the back patio overlooking the farm. 
 
If you're in the NYC area and looking for a idyllic activity, I highly recommend taking the Metro North train (the trip itself is relaxing and beautiful) and stopping off in Beacon for some fresh produce.  We opted to go on a weekday, but you can also swing by on the weekends for hayrides and live music.

Tuesday, October 16

Horror Movie October


Laurent and I are ringing in year two of Horror Movie October, and I'm turning to the interwebs for some advice.  This year we've watched: An American Werewolf in Paris, Halloween, and The Thing, and we have Silence of the Lambs, Rosemary's Baby, and the Exorcist waiting in the wings (against my better judgement).

Any suggestions?  The campier the better, and I would prefer to not be traumatized. 

Photo Credit: The Eye of Faith

Monday, October 15

What's Your Fall Look?

When fall rolls around, I stop getting creative with my wardobe and I fall back (no pun intended) on the basics. I am always on the search for comfy dresses, warm wool socks, and grandpa sweaters.
 

After searching far and wide this season, I have found what may be the coziest cardigan yet: the Bookshop Cardigan from Madewell.  Soft wool, reinforced elbow patches, two flat pockets for cool walks... be still my heart.  Here's how I would wear it, if I had a few hundred bucks laying around.

What's your go-to fall look?

Photo Credit: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Thursday, October 11

Braid Bar


I read an annoucement over on For Me, For You today and while I don't like to repost what others have already posted, I think this is such a worthy cause and fun idea that I wanted to spread the word!

If you're in L.A., you can stop by Braids by Breslin, a fundraiser for Alison Breslin, who is facing enormous debt after having a tumor removed from her ovary.  You get to donate to a great cause and walk away with a great do!  Here's Alison's story:

Over the summer I had to have emergency surgery to have a grapefruit sized tumor in one of my ovaries removed, a sudden and shocking discovery during a routine exam. It was rapidly growing and compromising my organ function, and having been cut off of my insurance just mere days prior by my ex-boyfriend, I had no choice but to hand over my credit card to the hospital to perform the surgery. Which leads me to where I am today: buried in $15,000 of debt. I was incredibly fortunate to bounce back health-wise and I’m doing great now, but it’s impossible to get ahead and a daily stress on my life.

My friends and I put our heads together to figure out a fun way to have a fundraiser to help pay my medical bills. I’ve been braiding hair ever since I was a little girl, when my mom taught me how on my American Girl dolls. I’ve never stopped! Braids By Brislin is a braid bar fundraiser and a fun night of hair braiding and friends – to help me shave off some debt and to make some ladies feel pretty. Whitney of Myrtle has been lovely enough to host the event at her store, so I hope you can join us for a wonderful time.  We’ll be scheduling braids and accepting walk-ins, so email me to schedule a time or if you have any questions. Thank you so much for your support, I’m incredibly grateful!


If you don't live in L.A., but would like to help Alison out, please consider supporting her here.

Photo Credit: For Me, For You

Wednesday, October 10

Listening Library: Don Covay

 
When the weather's cool and the nights are getting darker, there's nothing better than the soulful bluesy style of Mr. Don Covay on his albums Mercy, Mercy and See-Saw.  I think I have to first suggest my favorite, I Stole Some Love.  Enjoy!  There's more where this came from. 


Saturday, October 6

Monday, October 1

Required Reading


My work schedule this week was such that I ended up with a long weekend!  After a couple of busy weeks, I decided to stay in with some hot tea, a pile of blankets, and a few good reads. 

Here's what I have on my shelf right now:

  • Kinfolk, Volume Five (I'm trying to pace myself... I usually go through each issue far too quickly!)
  • Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple (a smart, satirical read by a former Arrested Development writer)
  • The Thin Man by Dashiell Hammett (an old mystery favorite about Nick and Nora Charles, a glamourous couple who solve homicides on the side)
  • The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion (a beautifully written memoir chronicling the year after her husband's death)
  • The Family Fang by Kevin Wilson (a story about two adults returning to live with their eccentric, artsy parents)

I would love to hear some more suggestions for great fall reads!

Photo Credit: Kinfolk Magazine
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