Aprons, Market

Fall Market Sunday October 8th

fast forward to fall market

So Sunday October 8th is my wedding anniversary, what better way to spend it then working in the first big market of the season! My husband was understanding. You can also come by and visit, pick up some fall picnic blankets, napkins for Thanksgiving or a new apron for the holiday cooking coming up!

This market is in Manhattan in the Upper Westside at 77th and Columbus.  The group that I am part of, the NY Handmade Collective, has joined together with Grand Bazaar NYC.  There will be about 30 Etsy NY vendors.  Hope to see you there!

Tracey

tea towels

Aprons, Inspirations, Tuesday's Apron

Vintage Aprons

VINTAGE APRON BOOKS.jpg

I am always interested in seeing older aprons, be it 20 years or 50 years.  Inspiration comes from all places and to see the fabrics, the style and the fit of aprons from the past gives me ideas or sometimes a laugh or wonderment.  Delicate pockets, frilly trims, ruffles, sheer fabrics, reused fabrics, flour and grain sacks, every apron tells a story. Women wore aprons in the home all day to protect their clothes while they tended to their chores and duties.  The thought of this makes me shake my head but those were the times. I won't glamorize or romanticise it.  I think it must have been a very difficult and not a very satisfying life for most. On the other hand, it may have been very satisfying and fulfilling for some women.  

 I received an email newsletter the other day about vintage aprons from Threads Magazine. The writer found a collection of aprons in her parent's house.  The collection is varied, functional and pretty.  As I start a new season of design and making, this article inspired me to pull out some of my vintage apron books. 

from the book Aprons by Joyce Cheney, a 1940's apron. Very wearable today in 2017.

from the book Aprons by Joyce Cheney, a 1940's apron. Very wearable today in 2017.

This apron is genius! Perfect for bathing a new baby. Terry cloth is sewn on top of the apron.  From the Apron Book by EllynAnneGeisel

This apron is genius! Perfect for bathing a new baby. Terry cloth is sewn on top of the apron.  From the Apron Book by EllynAnneGeisel

The best for last, a Kitty Apron. The date is not given but looks like a 1940's or 50's graphic on the apron. Also from the Apron Book by EllynAnneGeisel

The best for last, a Kitty Apron. The date is not given but looks like a 1940's or 50's graphic on the apron. Also from the Apron Book by EllynAnneGeisel

Have a great weekend!

Tracey

Baking, In the Kitchen

The Best Granola

FRESH GRANOLA

I know there are numerous recipes out there for granola. And a zillion choices to buy at the store but there is something special about making your own.  First it's super easy, two it's not that expensive to do, three you can do it with kids, four you know what you are putting into it, five filling your kitchen with a sweet and toasted seed smell is the best.

I've been experimenting with different recipes and this one I think may be the best. And coincidentally it is called the Best Granola. I think the secret ingredient which is not so secret, is the salt.  I also like the fact that you can mix it up and use what you have on hand.  Or don't have. 

The Kitchn has quite a number of granola recipes.  But this is my favorite. Click here to visit their website. 

Makes about 6 cups granola

 

Ingredients

3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
2 to 2 1/2 cups your choice of nuts and seeds*
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
1/2 cup oil, such as olive oil
1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon liquid sweetener, such as honey or maple syrup
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cups dried fruits, chopped

Note: Nuts that are already roasted should go in at the end after the granola is baked so as not to burn.

Equipment

Mixing bowls
Measuring cups and spoons
Spatula
Parchment
Half-sheet pan or baking shee

Instructions

1. Set out your ingredients: For this particular run of granola we are using: 3 cups old-fashioned oats, 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds, 1/2 cup sesame seeds, 1/2 cup almonds, 1/2 cup wide-flake, unsweetened coconut (added near the end of baking), 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon cardamom, 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon maple syrup, 3/4 cup dried cherries, chopped (added at the end), 1 cup roasted pistachios, chopped (added at the end)

2. Preheat oven and mix dry ingredients: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Mix the oats and any untoasted nuts or seeds together in a large bowl. Stir to combine.

3. Mix in the spices: Add salt, cinnamon, and cardamom and stir thoroughly to combine.

4. Stir in the liquids: Stir in the oil, sweetener, and vanilla.

5. Bake the granola: Turn the granola out onto a parchment-lined half-sheet pan and bake for about 40 minutes, or until the mixture is light brown and toasty.

6. Stir the granola: Stir every 15 minutes or so for an even color and to make sure the granola is cooking evenly. (If using coconut, add in the last 15 minutes of baking.)

7. Prepare any late-addition ingredients: Roughly chop any dried fruits and roasted nuts being added after baking.

8. Stir in late-addition ingredients: Remove from the oven and add the chopped dried fruits and any roasted nuts at this time. Stir to combine.

9. Let the granola cool: Let cool before enjoying. The granola will continue cooking just a bit in the cooling process — it will firm up/dry out, so if it seems a little too wet don't worry.

10. Store the granola: Store in an airtight container and it should stay fresh for 7 to 10 days. For longer shelf life, store in the refrigerator.

Additional Notes:

1. Want Clumpy Granola? The key to getting chunkier granola is not to mix the granola as it's baking. Pat the wet mixture down into the baking sheet with the back of a spatula and don't mix it or disturb it while baking. Then, after cooking, you can remove it from the pan in granola chunks and store as indicated above.

2. Nuts and Fruits: I love working with sliced almonds, pecans, walnuts, pistachios, hazelnuts and sesame seeds. As for fruits, dried cranberries, cherries, apricots, raisins and currents are all great choices. Experiment with different combinations to find your favorite!

3. Consider Your Oats: Make sure to use old-fashioned oats for your granola, not quick-cooking oats. quick-cooking oats are less substantial and will cook differently and result in an almost dusty granola texture.

4. Bulk Spices: When buying spices for your granola, buy in bulk! It's almost always the freshest.

5. Mixing Techniques: While granola is absolutely a one-bowl affair, you want to mix all of your dry ingredients together before adding your wet ingredients so as to avoid clumping of salts and spices.

6. Don't Fear the Salt! Salt enhances the flavor of your granola — most people don't use enough of it! Use it.

7. Experiment with Savory Additions: I use olive oil for my granola which gives it a special toastiness. I also love using cacao nibs and a little extra salt, all of which result in an almost savory granola. Explore that savory edge!

I copied and pasted their recipe.  However the photos are all mine.  I have made this many times and make it different each time.  Enjoy! 

granola recipe
best granola ingredients
parfait

My favorite way to eat granola, fruit and yogurt combo!

Easy to take on the go using a mason jar. 

Chihuly at the New York Botanical Garden Part II

Glasshouse Fiori

Glasshouse Fiori

As I mentioned in my last post about the Chihuly Exhibition at the New York Botanical Garden, it is so awe-inspiring that I took quite a number of photos and I would break my post up into 2 sections. If you didn't get a chance to read the first post you can click here.   If you did get a chance to read the post you can proceed with the eye candy. Enjoy!

Sapphire Star

Sapphire Star

White Tower with Fiori

White Tower with Fiori

Macchia Forest

Macchia Forest

Macchia Forest

Macchia Forest

Persian Pond

Persian Pond

Persian Pond above is created as a fantasy garden.  I kept my daughter in the photo as a scale comparison.  Chihuly learned a method creating Persians in which a wrap or mold is used to create an undulating pattern on the surface of the glass.  They look so fragile and paper thin, it seems unbelievable that these are glass objects delicately balancing on the water. 

Neon 206 

Neon 206 

Glasshouse Fiori

Glasshouse Fiori

I have asked many people what their favorite piece is.  Do you have a favorite?  I think mine might be the one above, the Glasshouse Fiori.  The way the glass art is placed among the plants is so organic, I can feel it moving, dancing.  The Chihuly exhibit at the NYBG is available to see until October 29th.  It is a short ride from Grand Central Station in Manhattan.  I hope to make it to Chihuly nights where the glass is lit up.  I think this would be a whole other experience.  To find out more about the exhibit you can click here

Have a great day!

Tracey

Inspirations, Garden, Color

Chihuly at the New York Botanical Garden

sol del citron

Breathtaking is one word. Awe-inspiring, another.  Dale Chihuly, an American artist who works with glass,  has created dramatic new pieces inspired by his Artwork Installations of 1975 in Lewiston, NY.  I first saw his work when I lived in Portland.  It's always overwhelming and beautiful and I can't help think, how does he do that? What he does with glass is unbelievable and inspirational.  The New York Botanical Garden always has amazing art exhibits.  They never seem to disappoint.  And this summer is no different.  Chihuly has pieces are scattered throughout the New York Botanical Garden complementing and enhancing.  A wonderful place to escape to during a hot summer in the city.  

Polyvitro Crystals

Polyvitro Crystals

Float Boat

Float Boat

the native garden

the native garden

Koda Study #2

Koda Study #2

Harper in front of the Red Reeds on Logs

Harper in front of the Red Reeds on Logs

There are so many photos I am going to break them up into 2 blog posts.  

Enjoy!

Tracey