June 28, 2013

Brunch Recipe | Pancakes

It's weekend time again and here's another brunch recipe to try.  We (us Brits) usually have pancakes on Shrove Tuesday (aka Fat Tuesday) but I don't think it should be saved for just once a year.  It's quick, simple and easy and a change from the usual eggs and bacon.  

Serves 2-3

What you'll need

- 1 Cup/4oz/110g of plain flour

- 2 large eggs

- 200ml/7 fl oz milk

- 75ml/3 fl oz water

- 2 tbsp butter

- Clear runny honey

- Strawberries

- Blueberries

- Lemon

- Butter or oil for frying

How it's done

Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl, this helps get air into the flour to make the pancakes light and fluffy.

Make a well in the centre of the flour and add the eggs.  Whisk with a fork until the eggs and flour are combined.

Combine water and milk then gradually add to the flour and egg mixture to form a batter.  Once all the milk has been added, ensure that all the remnants of the flour on the side of the bowl are incorporated (a rubber spatula works a treat).

Melt the butter in the microwave for approx 30 secs or until melted, taking care not to let the butter boil or burn.  Add to the batter.

Whisk again until all the mixture is combined and the batter is smooth.

Set a pan on a high heat until the pan is hot, then turn down to medium. Add a small amount of butter or oil to lightly and evenly coat the base of the pan.

Add a small ladle full of batter to the centre of the pan then quickly move the pan from side to side to make sure the batter is evenly distributed.  

Fry until slightly browned on one side and then flip over using a fish slice or palette knife, or you could just flip it by tossing the pan (this is where the fun starts).  Be warned, many a pancake has landed on heads/floors/ceilings using this method, but it's by far the best and most fun.  Cook for a few seconds until golden brown and then serve.

Don't worry if your first pancake doesn't quite turn out like you'd expect it, the first one is always a little suspect looking.

Pick out some strawberries and blueberries, squeeze a little lemon and drizzle a generous amount of honey on top.  I like to stack my pancakes up and then add the toppings but you can eat them individually too.  Experiment with toppings! :)

Happy Friday
{Recipe adapted from Delia Smith online}

This post was also aimed to work on photography skills in preparation for the photography styling challenge.  If you don't know about it already you should check it out here.  The first post is going up on Monday.  (I'll let you into a secret... I've not even started it! Ooops.  A busy weekend ahead for me!)

June 24, 2013

Blogshop LA

Photo credits:

This weekend I helped out with Blogshop: a two day intensive Photoshop course for bloggers, run by Bri from Designlovefest and Angela from Angela + Ithyle.  I have used Photoshop for several years now, so it was a joy to be able to use those skills to help others.  Whilst Bri and Angela lead the class, my job, along with Camille from Planning Pretty and Julia, Angela's intern, was to help people when they got stuck.  Some people picked it up quicker than others so we were there on hand to help those that took a little longer to understand.

Blogshop is known for its attention to detail and this weekend didn't fail.  The whole space was adorned with cacti, succulents and other greenery from Twig and Twine that sat in little terracotta plant pots that had been painted with coloured stripes.  There was a Smilebooth with a folding wooden screen that had been painted with white and mint geometric shapes for the backdrop.  And a cute staging area with a wicker lounger and side table, a rug and a huge paper garland that had been hand cut and sewn together on a sewing machine.  All the decoration was done by Natalie Shriver.

Each students desk area was set up with a blogshop magazine guide, a bkr water bottle and a goodie bag containing a set of earrings from Amano Studio, a packet of coffee beans from Handsome Coffee (we also had three big pitchers of iced coffee to keep us all going over the weekend), a grey and gold ceramic dish from Canvas Home, a pack of notecards from Think & Ink Studio and some watermelon nail wraps from Scratch (Angela got me to put them on (which I have never done before) so she could photograph them.  All I can say is thank God for photoshop clone stamp for touch-ups).  All the goodies were presented in blue stripy Baby Baggu's.  Pretty awesome goodies if you ask me.

I met some really cool and inspiring people and it's amazing how blogging has become so popular.  I exchanged details with a few people so I'll hopefully meet up with them for coffee at some point soon.

June 20, 2013

Things I Love Thursday

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

I'm mixing a splash of colour with some more neutral imagery this week.  I love the deep coloured floral print in image #1.  I don't often go for chintzy floral patterns, but I like this because of it's depth and shades of blue.  I was using a chunky pencil to write on the walls of the Fig House site the other day and it was pretty satisfying to scribble with. Much like when you get your first set of Crayola's as a kid, and why I like the wooden pencils in image #2.  I have been researching timber moulding of recent and my eye was drawn to the detail of the timber doors of image #3.  The light feature in image #4 is simply awesome and works well in this tall, bright and airy space.  There seems to be more and more textile designers coming up on my internet research of late, which is making me want to design my own fabrics.  There are lots of DIY's for napkins out there, but these ones (image #5) are already avail to purchase.  

Image #6 firstly gets its very own paragraph, as the dude in the picture is one of my very best guys in the whole entire world.  Theo is a bit of a sickly puppy and often suffers from asthma attacks.  He has a bit of a crooked jaw from it being broken when he was found on the streets.  When I say he's a sickly puppy, he is also the sweetest little puppy ever.  He lives for his treats which he gets after his morning walk, loves his belly rubs and often wears little sweaters when he gets cold.  I've never seen a tail wag as fast as his does and never seen someone so keen to get upstairs to bed when all he does is sleep all day.  I was staying away one night last week and he had a little sickly moment, so PC took a photo of him and sent it to me (notice the spit up between his front paws).  He was totally fine afterwards but now has a little cold and keeps sneezing.  I didn't grow up with dogs and when I moved to LA I wasn't just moving in with PC, I was moving in with this guy and his older brother Bubba.  Even though they take over the bed and have stinky breath they inspire me everyday.  I never understood the term 'puppy-dog eyes' or 'a dog is a man's best friend' until I moved here.

June 19, 2013

Interior Inspiration | Studio Hatch

I'm sorry for my MIA, I took a few days off blogging to hang out with some friends who were in town visiting.  We spent most of out time relaxing and sitting in the sunshine... believe me, it's not like this all the time! 

Anyway, I'm back and will endeavour to continue with my regular posts.  In the meantime, I wanted to share some great photos/interiors/styling images from Studio Hatch, a design company based in San Francisco.  I just love the blue chair along with the brass lamp used in image 7.  And also really appreciate the simplicity of the house in images 4-6.  There is something about interior styling that really makes me want to de-clutter everything and go for the minimal approach.  Never gonna happen though, I like having 'things' around me.  Still, it's nice to get inspiration all the same. Enjoy...  

All images from Studio Hatch {with thanks}

Happy Hump Day!

June 14, 2013

Brunch Recipe | Courgette and gorgonzola frittata

Whether it's cooking up something hearty to nurse a hangover or taking the time to experiment with a new recipe, brunch on a Saturday is my favourite meal of the week.  I usually get a big pot of coffee on (King's Blend is my number one choice) throw on some music, (if I'm not beaten by the boys to baseball on the TV) and pull out the eggs.  Brunch for me always has to involve eggs, unless I'm really hungover and in which case it's a trip down to Maccy D's for a Big Mac, Fries and a DC (Diet Coke) What? ... we all have our own guilty pleasures!

Last weekend I rustled up this number using some of the courgettes (zucchini) we got from the Farmers' Market.  Check out the recipe below and try it this weekend, you'll not be sad if you do and it's better than hopping for burger, pop and chips down the old Ronald McDonald's.

Serves 2 (generously)

What you'll need:

- 1 Medium sized courgette | Thinly sliced

- 4 Eggs

- 2 Spring onions | Finely sliced

- 1 Handful of gorgonzola cheese | Crumbled

- 2 Handfuls of cheddar cheese | Grated (I hold my hands up, I did use the pre-grated stuff, not my usual preference but that's what was leftover in the fridge from BBQ baked potatoes)

- Salt and pepper for seasoning

- Knob of butter for frying.

How it's done:

Melt the butter in a large frying pan on a medium heat and add the courgette.  Season with salt and pepper.

Cook for a few mins on both sides until slightly browned but not too soft.

Meanwhile whisk the eggs then add all the remaining ingredients and mix well.

Once the courgettes are cooked add the egg mixture ensuring the gorgonzola is evenly spread around (almost like when you add it to a pizza)

Cook on a medium heat until you can run a spatula cleanly around the edge of the frittata.

Put the grill (broiler) on a high heat

Place under the grill and cook until all the egg has set and the cheese starts to bubble and brown.

Cut into wedges and serve.

You can pretty much eat it with anything... a crisp green salad with tomatoes, some crusty bread and butter or a stack of potato wedges.  We did the simple thing and ate it on it's own.

You wanna know the best part?  Watching the gorgonzola ooze out.  Yum!

Happy Friday!

This post was also aimed to work on photography skills in preparation for the photography styling challenge.  If you don't know about it already you should check it out here.  The first 'proper' post is going up at the beginning of July.  I'm still wondering what I've let myself in for ;)

June 13, 2013

Things I Love Thursday

I am loving timber and texture this week, a bit on the more masculine side.  I was asked to put together a mood board for a project and these are some of the images I found.  I particularly love the blue sofa (I mean who wouldn't) with the raw timber firewood in the background it really makes this colour pop. It's a very regal blue and I could totally see Lizzy wearing this shade to one of her many soiree's.  Since I've been hanging out with The Fig House girls, my eye has been drawn to vintage paintings which is why I love the greyhound picture.  I usually hate (strong word I know) greyhounds. They're skinny and so sleazy looking to me but this guy looks like he's got some meat on his legs, so he can stay. The textured hexagonal wooden tiles, in my book are amazing.  I featured the gold ones on the blog a few weeks back. I would really love to use any of these somewhere, preferably my home.  The walnut furniture in image 4 has a real modern meets mid-century vibe which I adore.  I'm becoming more aware of my home style and mid-century is high on the list. The last image is of a restaurant in New York.  I just love the dark wooden panels and the taxidermy.  It makes me think of somewhere you'd find in a old Scottish castle, all that's missing are a set of bagpipes, a glass of Scotch and a tartan kilt (Macdonald Clan of course!)

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

June 11, 2013

Collection 14 | Cocktail Hour

1. Bar Cart | 2. Cocktail Shaker | 3. Bar Spoon | 4. Gold Jigger | 5. Ice Bucket

I'm all about having a cocktail in the evening, as a matter of fact I'm sat here drinking an ice cold vodka-soda with fresh lime... so what if it's only the beginning of the week!  It has been said to me on occasion, that you know you've come of age when you start craving a G&T around 5pm and have a fully stocked bar in your house (and I'm not talking about a sticky bottle of Malibu and a few old cans from parties past).  Sadly, or not, we do have a a few bottles of the good stuff (in my opinion) in the cupboard.  After all, dare I say it, I am turning 30 this year.  GULP. Literally.  Vodka down in one at the thought of that.  So whether you are coming of age or just fancy enough to have yourself a fully stocked bar, here are a few essentials and some yummy recipes to try.  Now, where's the rest of that bottle?!

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

June 10, 2013

Colour Inspiration | Yellow Love

Even though 'June Gloom' is fully under way, the sun is managing to break through and reveal those blue skies.  I keep seeing lots of sunshine yellow accent pieces on my various internet journeys and actually starting to love it.  I've never really been into yellow until recently.  Maybe it's because I see the sun more now than I used to.  Either way it's a great accent piece for brightening up a space.  Here are a few of my favourite finds.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 |

June 07, 2013

Happy Priday

It's LA Pride this weekend and I'm heading there to watch the parade on Sunday.  Cannot wait!  This post is dedicated to all my gay friends back home.  Miss you guys xXx

June 06, 2013

Things I Love Thursday

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8

White | Grey | Beige.
Back to neutral tones this week, I'm feeling natural materials like timber and soft fabrics like wool and cashmere.  With June gloom hitting LA this week I feel like I want to be wrapped up in a handmade jumper and eat homemade chips with plenty of salt and ketchup (for my American friends, when I say chips, I mean steak fries).  

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