Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Dazzling Ornaments


This week's Pinterest finds had me obsessing over ornaments for this driftwood deer head, which can be found in our shop. Follow our Dazzling Ornaments! board for links to these and more fun and fancy ornaments.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Turkey Meze

mezeCatherine and Abit

For another look at Thanksgiving, we asked Catherine Bayar of Bazaar Bayar, how she celebrates as an expat living in Istanbul and married to a Turk. Catherine and her husband Abit are vintage textile historians and experts. Their mission is about "Saving ‘endangered’ handmade textiles, reviving + reinterpreting disappearing handcrafts, employing local women artisans, and promoting cultural exchange between Turkey + our global visitors." You can read more about Catherine and Abit, their travel stories, find out about workshops and check out the textiles here.

About Thanksgiving, Catherine says:

"We do celebrate Thanksgiving, either in California with family, or here with American friends in Istanbul. Not sure what I'm taking this year, but the big hit with family when we're stateside are Turkish meze. Since most of my family has never been here, I like to share what we're thankful for eating here. I make 3 or 4 of the basic meze –hummus, saksuka (eggplant), pancar ezme (beetroot), but the favorite is muhammara (acuka, ah-ju-ka, in Turkish). What I love about this is the mix of vegetables, nuts and fruit - roasted peppers are of North American origin, walnuts bring prosperity, and pomegranates denote abundance. Pomegranate molasses is an essential ingredient in our house - it also makes the best salad dressing ever with lemon and olive oil.

I love Binnur's Turkish Cookbook – good versions of all mezes mentioned above can found in it. I use this recipe but add a healthy tablespoon of the molasses and chopped fresh mint as a garnish."


1 tablespoon red pepper paste,  or 2 roasted red peppers
 3/4 cup walnuts
4-5 tablespoons breadcrumbs
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic
1 tbsp crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon cumin
juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon molasses

Directions for this recipe and others can be found here.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

On the Side

Thanksgiving is my favorite U.S. holiday. I love to cook, entertain and like most of us,  see the look of pleasure on the faces of family and friends around the table when the conversation, food, wine and company are just right.

The sides dishes are the stars for me because they often reflect the image of multiple generations. Our family curveball side dish has always been coleslaw. My grandmother, Minette, whom I barely met, made coleslaw every Thanksgiving. She had four sons – my dad was one of them – and all of their wives ended up incorporating Minette's coleslaw into their own holiday celebrations. Everyone made it a bit differently and everyone thought theirs was the best. Of course.

My Thanksgiving memories are not about how this ever-present coleslaw worked with the turkey and stuffing for dinner. Like my mom says, the coleslaw is really for the day after Thansgiving. With crispy, New York deli rye, mayo, delicious leftover turkey, coleslaw, and even some heated stuffing smushed in, it's an East Coast delight. And by all means, make enough for your deli sandwich that night or for day two!



2 cups green cabbage finely shredded
1 cup red cabbage finely shredded
2 medium carrots peeled with veggie peeler
4 scallions sliced – save some of the tops for garnish
1 tablespoon white or cider vinegar
1 tablespoon freshly-squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard (I sometimes leave this out)
1/2 cup or more Hellmann's Mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream
1 tsp celery seed
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp sugar

Whisk together mustard, vinegar, lemon juice, sugar, salt, mayonnaise, and sour cream in a small bowl. Refrigerate dressing, covered, until ready to use, or up to 2 days.
Put cabbage, carrots, and onion (if desired) in a large bowl. Pour in dressing, and toss thoroughly. Refrigerate, covered, until slaw begins to soften, 1 to 2 hours. If not using immediately, refrigerate, covered, up to 2 days. Just before serving, toss coleslaw again.


Sunday, November 11, 2012

Don't Forget the Hostess

Sugar Spoon

Whenever I am invited into someone's home for a party – cocktail, dinner or otherwise – I try to show my appreciation by bringing a small something for the host or hostess. My strategy with hostess gifts is two-fold: it has to be something I personally like and it has to have an element of function. You can never have enough tea towels or candles and an extra pair of scissors around the house is always helpful. The secret is to have gifts on hand so you're not stressing yourself out by last-minute shopping. I have a small cupboard just for this purpose. The gifts are inexpensive and I pair them with fresh flowers, a bottle of wine or my new favorite from Trader Joe's, yummy fig butter. Throw a ribbon around it and you're done!

Mpingo Loop Sugar Spoons, handmade by artisans in Kenya

Other gifts we like with great form and function....
Ferm Tea Towel // 2 Hammerpress Art Print // 3 Scotch Scissors // 4 Voluspa Candle // 5 Govino Shatterproof Wine Glasses

hostess gifts