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Pencil Reed Bamboo Furniture


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I can’t think of another material I’m having a newfound love affair with right now more than pencil reed bamboo. I find myself checking every thrift store in the city, and running a daily search for it on Craigslist.

The material was a staple of 1970’s and 1980’s design originally constructed by famed Italian designer Gabriella Crespi. While my style falls into being a mix of mid-century and eclectic boho, I love the refined, warm organic element it adds to every space.

Here are some of my favorite pieces I’ve found around the net, with my heart especially set on the lamps and nightstands.

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Mixology Monday

Mixology Monday Digestif Roundup

I really just want to thank everyone who joined me this month and shared some original recipes, and some of their favorite digestif cocktails with us for Mixology Monday. Amaro played a large role this round, in addition to some whiskeys, overproof spirits, coffee, and even some Aquavit with a curry powder simple syrup.

Here’s a roundup of this month’s submissions:

Craig E. over on the Egullet forum created the Notte Bene with Spanish Brandy, Amaro CioCiaro, Vecchio Amaro del Capo garnished with a generous lemon twist and brandied cherry.

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Fred Yarm of the Cocktail Virgin Slut blog made The Bitter Swagger from Brad Parson’s Amaro book. A riff on a Pisco Sour, the drink contains Amaro Nardini, Pisco, Cocchi Americano, Lemon Juice, and an Egg white.

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Forrest Cokley from the A Drink with Forrest Blog came up with two drinks to celebrate our Digestif theme, the first one being the Jamaican Valet, with Rum Fire Overproof Rum, Amargo-Vallet, lime juice, and simple syrup. His second cocktail, the Heated Conversation also contained Rum Fire overproof Rum, Fino Sherry, and Amaro Montenegro.

 

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Adam over at Mr. Muddle created the Prison Tattoo with Ramazzotti, Averna, Ginger Liqueur and Rock and Rye.

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Michael over at the Drunken Diplomacy blog created the savory Golden Compass with Aquavit, Curry Powder Simple Syrup, and Gin.

Katie over at the Garnish Girl blog made her favorite disgestif served at SRV in Boston, The Innocents Abroad with Fighting Cock Bourbon, Amaro Nonino, Gran Classico, and Kina L’Aero D’Or.

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Gary of Doc Elliott blog made two creamy drinks, the Danny Boy, and the Coffee Amaro Flip. The Danny Boy contains cold brew coffee syrup, Tullamore Dew Special Reserve 12 year, Licor 43, and Montenegro. The Coffee Amaro Flip contains White Rum, Amaro Nino, Cream, Simple Syrup, Coffee Liqueur and a whole egg.

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Lastly, yours truly. I created the Betsy Ross and the Flag by swapping in Madeira for the Ruby Port called for in the recipe.

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And there you have it. Our Mixology Monday roundup. Thanks for participating.

Mixology Monday

Betsy Ross and the Flag

dsc_0872Here’s a digestif cocktail perfect for this month’s Mixology Monday. No, the famed flag-maker Betsy Ross did not create this boozy-based number. I think it’s delicious, nonetheless.

I first came across the Betsy Ross cocktail this afternoon while flipping through my copy of the PDT Cocktail Book. The original recipe is a mixture of Cognac, Ruby Port, and Grand Marnier topped off with Angostura bitters and garnished with some grated nutmeg. The combo intrigued me, but I didn’t have any port.

What I did have on hand was some Madeira. Flips are my drink of choice this time of year, and my favorite recipe of the bunch is the Boston Flip. A beautiful combo showcasing equal parts peppery rye and sweet, nutty Madeira. A whole egg. Lots of grated nutmeg. A lazy bitch’s eggnog if you will.

Being the resident rule breaker that I am, I totally bastardized the recipe and used what fortified wine from Portugal I had on hand. They’re different products, but they’re similar enough and from the same country. How off the mark could I be?

The truth, it wasn’t that off the mark at all. Matter of fact I was pretty pleased with the results. I can’t get enough of Pierre Ferrand Cognac right now. Once I mixed it with some Madeira, a special kind of magic happened. The dried fruit and nut notes worked with the nutmeg. Delicate and smooth.

Betsy Ross and the Flag

Ingredients:

  • 2 ounces Pierre Ferrand Ambre Cognac
  • 3/4 ounce Madeira
  • 1/2 ounce Grand Marnier
  • 2 dashes Angostura Bitters
  • Freshly grated nutmeg, to garnish

Instructions:

Stir ingredients in a mixing glass until chilled. Strain into a chilled cocktail coupe and grate fresh nutmeg on top as garnish.

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Mixology Monday

Mixology Monday Announcement: Digestifs

It’s December. There’s a chill in the air, and if you’re located in the U.S. like I am, we are smack dab in the middle of a busy holiday season. This time of year is known for calorie laden holiday meals surrounded by family and friends, so it seemed like the perfect time to explore the vast combinations that can be found by discovering and making cocktails from ingredients known for their digestive properties.

Digestif’s are pretty popular in my world – they usually include a touch of sweetness and/or a higher alcohol percentage. They help settle a meal and bring the night to a close.

Options to use classic digestive products are endless here, from smooth whiskey and bourbon to brandy, port, sherry, and many liqueurs. Many products (like Fernet, aromatized wine, and other amaros) have been created for this sole purpose.

Let your imagination run wild, and make a beverage highlighting at least one product known for its digestif qualities. You can create a cocktail of your own, or you can post about digestif recipes you find in literature. Want to stick with Cognac, go for it. Does the idea of crafting a cocktail with Barolo Chinato, or another Italian Amaro come to mind? The possibilities are truly endless.

Make your digestif cocktail and share it one of three ways with us!

Here’s how to participate:

  1. Make a cocktail highlighting at least one digestif ingredient.
  2. Post the recipe on your blog, or if you don’t have one, you can post it on the egullet spirit and cocktail forum thread here with a photo, recipe, and thoughts of your drink.
  3. Add the MxMo logo to your post with a link to both the Mixology Monday website, and back here at Stacy Markow.
  4. Submit a link to your post here in the comments of this announcement post, or you can tweet @stacymarkow, with a link to your post and tag MxMo on Twitter by Monday, December 19th.

Posts must be submitted by midnight on Monday, December 19, 2016.

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Desserts

Key Lime Bars

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I made these bars last Spring when I spotted key limes for the first time at the supermarket. They’re a little out of character for me this time of year (this is pumpkin spice season after all), but key limes were on clearance last week, and I love a good sale.

Cook’s Illustrated never disappoints, and this recipe is no exception. These bars are so bright and chock full of sweet lime juice and zest, which makes them rich yet refreshing. One of the best desserts highlighting the fruit I’ve had. Only paid subscribers can see their recipes online, but I found this recipe on here for free.

Key Lime Bars

Ingredients:

Crust:

  • 5 ounces animal crackers
  • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter, cooled slightly

Filling:

  • 2 tablespoons cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon Key lime zest
  • pinch of salt
  • 1-14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • ½ cup fresh Key lime juice

Garnish:

  • toasted coconut pieces, whipped cream, and/or thinly sliced key limes (optional)

Instructions:

Position oven rack to the middle and preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cut about 12-inch length extra-wide heavy-duty foil; fold cut edges back to form 7½-inch width. With folded sides facing down, fit foil securely into bottom and up sides of 8-inch-square baking pan, allowing excess to overhang pan sides. Spray foil with nonstick cooking spray or grease with melted butter.

For the crust: In a food processor, pulse the animal cookies until they resemble coarse crumbs, this took about ten 1-second pulses, making sure they’re evenly fine. Remove food processor lid and add brown sugar and salt; process to combine, ten to twelve 1-second pulses (if large sugar lumps remain, break them apart with fingers). Drizzle melted butter over crumbs and pulse until everything is evenly moistened with butter, about ten 1-second pulses. Press crumbs evenly and firmly into bottom of prepared pan. Bake until deep golden brown, around 18 to 20 minutes. Cool on wire rack while making filling. Don’t turn off the oven.

For the filling: while the crust cools, in a medium bowl, combine the cream cheese, lime zest, and salt with a rubber spatula until softened, creamy, and thoroughly combined. Add the can of sweetened condensed milk and whisk vigorously until it’s completely incorporated and no lumps of cream cheese remain. Whisk in the egg yolk. Whisk in the lime juice slowly until it’s fully incorporated. You’ll notice the mixture thicken. This is totally normal.

Pour the filling into the crust, and spread to corners and smooth surface with a rubber spatula. Bake in the oven until the edges are set and are beginning to pull away from the sides, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Cool pan on a wire rack to room temperature, about 1 to 1½ hours. Cover with foil and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 2 hours.

Loosen edges with paring knife and lift bars from baking pan using foil extensions; cut bars into 12 pieces. Top with whipped cream, toasted coconut, or key lime slices, if using, and serve. The bars can be refrigerated for up to two days. Let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving.

Cocktails

Passionfruit Gimlet

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A few weeks ago I enjoyed this drink while celebrating a friend’s new job at Victor Tangos. I love passionfruit, and this cocktail was fruity and refreshing. I knew more of them would be in my future.

So when I found this recipe online I got really excited, and took a stab at making them at home. I’m sad to report that it’s not the same as the drink I had at the restaurant. This one was more pineapple than passionfruit, but it was still tasty nonetheless.

Passionfruit Gimlet

Ingredients:

  • 2 ounces vodka
  • 3/4 ounce simple syrup
  • 1½ teaspoons passionfruit puree (I found a package of this at Fiesta in the freezer section)
  • ½ ounce fresh lime juice
  • 1 ounce fresh pineapple juice
  • 2 fresh thyme sprigs, divided

Instructions:

In a cocktail shaker, place passion fruit purée, simple syrup, pineapple juice, lime juice, vodka, one of the thyme sprigs, and crushed ice. Shake the mixture, then double-strain (strain into a fine metal sieve to catch any ice chips) into a martini or coupe glass. Serve garnished with remaining thyme sprig.

Life

Happy Halloween

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I dressed up this year as Rosie the Riveter to celebrate a friend’s birthday on Saturday night. It was an affordable DIY costume that mostly used stuff I already owned. When I started googling some info on putting the look together, I came across that picture of Beyonce. Doesn’t she look amazing!

Here’s what I used to make it possible:

  • Chambray Shirt
  • Dark Wash Jeans
  • Red Bandana
  • I wore some bright red Keds, but lace-up boots would work well too.

I found this great hairstyle tutorial, and I kept my eye makeup minimal, but chose a bright red lip. I’m happy with how it turned out. I hope you have a wonderful Halloween!

Fashion

Bohemian Salt Jewelry

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One of my favorite shops for unique earrings and necklaces is Bohemian Salt on Etsy.

Based in Portland, Oregon, Bohemian Salt specializes in lightweight, delicate accessories made from mixed metals, minimalist shapes, and raw materials. The pieces vary and incorporate raw gemstones, sea urchin spikes, and tanzanite. Her supplies are ethically sourced from American suppliers, and no two pieces are exactly alike. I love that about it.

Here are a few of my favorite pieces from her shop:

  1. Tumbled Jade Gold Hoops $32.00
  2. Antiqued Brass Sea Urchin Spike Hoop Earrings $38.00
  3. The Jupiter Earrings: Textured Brass with Sterling Earwire $40.00 
  4. Raw Amethyst Hoops $30.00
  5. Amethyst Crystal Slab Pendant Long Layering $48.00