Friday, July 10, 2009

From the sketchbook…

I haven't done a whole lot of drawing lately and haven't done any drawing on site in a very long time. I had set some time aside yesterday and the weather was so nice, I decide to draw in town. Here is the result. A little rusty, but it felt good! I am hoping for more drawing time today. I hope you all have a great weekend and I'll be back Monday. Cheers!

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Motown and biscuits

I thought I'd share a couple of photos from my day in Detroit. I really enjoy exploring there. There are some unique finds, though you really have to hunt. The storefronts along Woodward Ave. had some interesting displays going on… though there was no signage to explain whether this was some kind of organized exhibition, or even who the artists are.

I was intrigued by this colorful synagogue downtown with oddly matched curtains in the windows of the seemingly empty top floors.

And, as promised, the chive biscuits from last night.
I'm realizing now, that I already shared this biscuit recipe once before. The last time I had substituted dill for the chives. This time I cut the recipe in half and added parsley to the herbs because I had less than a 1/4 cup of chives. Delicious!

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Off to Detroit…

400 year old oak tree in Airlie Gardens. Wilmington, NC

Just a quick note to share this lovely tree with you. If you ever get to Wilmington, these public gardens are worth a long leisurely afternoon visit. But now I have to dash — I'm off to explore Detroit a bit with my Design*Sponge guide in hand and to meet Chef Norberto of El Barzon for EdibleWOW. I plan to make biscuits with chives from our garden tonight so check back tomorrow for the results and recipe. Cheers!

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Salad by the handful

The boy did a great job of tending the balcony solo in my absence and I returned home to happy, healthy garden. Given the nature of balcony gardening, our yields have been by the handful.

The radishes are literally bursting out of the soil. I think because I couldn't bear to thin things out enough, the plants are all fighting each other — so instead of yanking the young seedlings, I am making them suffer in their teen years, hah! Many of the little radish tops are above the soil and none of them have gotten very large. I suppose that's to be expected of a root vegetable planted in a window box. That said, they are spicy and delicious. Yesterday I made a salad with tuna and Bibb lettuce, radishes and parsley straight from the garden:

In the space where I pulled the lettuces, we have spread out our basil collection in the hopes that they will grow even bigger than they already are. Our snap peas have been growing tall, though with only four plants, the harvest was small:

Yes, very small. Eight pods, in fact. (Seven shown above, one eaten straight from the vine.) The boy doesn't eat these, so thankfully we didn't have to split them down to four a piece — these beauties were all mine!

The one area where the growth has been booming — surprise, surprise — mint. We whipped up frozen mojitos as part of our Fourth of July celebration:

These things are addictive. My brother made this recipe for us a few years back and with all the mint growing and hot weather, it is the perfect summer drink. I don't know where the recipe came from, but try it!

Frozen Mojitos
Makes 2.

4 shots light rum
1/2 can frozen limeade

1/4 cup mint
1/2 tray of ice cubes

Whir it all together in the blender and serve.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Eating my way through Wilmington, NC

Hello, everyone! I'm finally back at my desk. After more than a week away, I am happy and refreshed to be back to blogging and work. I got back from North Carolina on Thursday night and was anxious to jump right in, but with the holiday weekend and all, it just didn't happen. I hope everyone had a festive holiday. I know here the weather is magnificent — I hope it is where you are, too.

Wilmington and visiting my parents was wonderful. The trip revolved around good food, lots of beach time and visiting. I thought for today I would share some of the fantastic meals I had…

Within an hour of landing, I was lounging at Dockside staring at the Intracoastal Waterway about to dig into this fried flounder sandwich and cole slaw. Vacation is good!

We had what I think of as the quintessential summer meal from when I was growing up: barbecue chicken, rice and beans and salad. The best!

Of course I had to have my fill of shrimp while in town. Above is my mom's beer-marinated shrimp on the grill with local corn picked that day.

More shrimp in this fantastic salad at The Basics in Wilmington: Spinach salad with horseradish ranch dressing, pesto marinated, grilled and chilled shrimp, fried green tomatoes and bacon. Decadent!!

A corn and tomato pie. It took longer to cook than expected, so with an extended cocktail hour, my shot of the finished result is blurry to say the least — but it was delicious!!

Incredible fresh grouper salad, enjoyed dockside in Southport.

Final night's meal in Wilmington at Indochine. This Thai/Vietnamese restaurant is so fantastic — we were seated outside in our own little hut. If you are ever in Wilmington, this would be the go-to spot!!

And that's all for now from my North Carolina eating adventure. Have a great day!!