I picked up a huge bag of haricot vert on Saturday from Frank’s Quality Produce stand in the Market. The French green beans younger and thinner than regular green beans, I find them to be less starchy and packed with flavor. We also like to prepare them very simply at first and have them at the ready for the week as the veg for other dinners adding to them for a little variety.
Initially I salt a big pot of water and bring it to a boil. While that is heating up, cut both ends off the bean and discard. When the water is rolling, add all the beans and cook until the desired of done-ness is achieved. Really only a few minutes and they will be finished. I sample along the way so it is timed spot on. When done, I transfer them to a big bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Quickly take them out of the ice bath and dry. A simple big dollop of butter and a liberal sprinkling of sea salt and they are pure heaven. For later meals they get slightly reheated in the microwave or the stove top. Nuts and cheese work beautifully with these. Off the heat add blue cheese and walnuts or feta and hazelnuts. The haricot vert also are divine at room temp or slightly cold as a solo vegetable salad. They are great this way as a healthy snack when putting together nibbles to serve with cocktails.
In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous.
Wow. It has been quite a wet week here in Seattle, but what I love most about that is just how green it becomes. I am sitting in our comfy blue striped ticking chair, my very favorite, at WestWard typing this and I am looking out onto a myriad of greens–the trees, the grass, the water. The way the cloudy light changes all the varying shades of green. All really so poetically pretty. Yesterday my Saturday morning stroll through the Market had my eyes catching more and more variations of green. The herb basket at Frank’s just so hearty and verdant. The white parrot tulips almost more green than white, with layer after layer of greens throughout.
Thursday & Friday were devoted to cleaning up, pricing and displaying tons of vintage finds that have been acquired for the shops. Weaving in vintage is one of my very favorite display tasks. The soul of the ‘old’ item really shining through when set amongst all the new offerings we sell. I find it a visual resting spot for the eye. The same could be said for those very same things once they find a permanent home. Interspersed into your belongings, vintage items really do just make a home sing.
So often you read about the importance of looking up. Which is always a great thing to do. Really looking all around you. Details, glorious details. I have written a bit before about also looking down. Stairs, floors, tiles, rugs–all have such great detail. All can be learned from. Here are a few of my favorite “looking down” shots I have taken in the last while. Shoe tip and all. Looks like it has been a very L.L. Bean boot season…
Kale is the “IT” food of the moment, which I am so happy about, because more and more folks are giving it a try. Better yet, it is so, so good for you. Tasty and uber healthy, yum. So I was ever delighted when a new book, Fifty Shades of Kale, showed up awhile back as a new title for the new year in our offerings at Watson Kennedy. We can’t seem to keep this book in stock, it has been so popular. Over 50 recipes with kale taking center stage. While the title might be a wink and a nod to another popular book, the recipes are quite well-thought out, beautifully photographed and all really quite doable. Recipes with tons of ingredients always make me a bit nervous and I usually pass. These are quite approachable, using kale in all of its glory.
Cavatappi is a Washington State winery that we have long been a fan of, and is my pick for this Wine Wednesday post. We were first introduced to it at a ‘meet the vintner’ wine dinner hosted by our friends Steve & Catherine at Cafe Juanita more than 10 years ago. The wine glass stain makes for a very clever and memorable label. I spot it whenever I am out shopping for wine. Their Sangiovese is fresh, light-bodied, and lovely solo or with food. It falls in that under $15 range that makes it nice to serve for parties or large gatherings. Lovely to have with a roast chicken or to serve the next time you order pizza in.
This is a test. I have wanted to include a Flipagram video into a daily blog post, and today is the day to give it a go.
Let me know what you think. I had hoped it would be the cover image that you could just click on, but I was not figuring that out. I have really been having fun playing with this app and wanted to share some of them with you. Look for more on upcoming posts. Happy Tuesday!
I spent part of the day on Saturday at the Market shop organizing & straightening things. This basket of rubber stamp font sets looking all refreshed and orderly after a little re-do. These mini sets are so handy to have on hand. Great for labeling a host of things, and really nifty for craft projects. The large variety of fonts making them versatile for whatever your taste in fonts might be.
A lovely Sunday to all of you. If that means watching The Academy Awards this evening, enjoy, enjoy. If that means watching it curled up in your pjs or dressed up in a tux at a swanky party, enjoy, enjoy. I know folks who take this all quite seriously and others who think it is all completely silly. I think it is just a festive reason to hang with friends, laugh, drink a little Champagne, and watch the show. Such a fun night spent with Oscar.