Tuesday, December 31, 2013

New Year's Eve

Wishing you a wonderful New Year's Eve — have a lovely time whatever you do (including possibly swinging from the chandeliers).

(photo by tim walker)

Good Cheer: This is Glamorous

Roséline of the utterly lovely This is Glamorous shares her delectable recipe for Chocolate Hazelnut Pavlova with Marinated Raspberries — perfect for a romantic New Year's Eve dinner for two.

Chocolate Hazelnut Pavlova with Marinated Raspberries

Serves: 8 // Preparation Time: 30 minutes, plus cooling time // Cooking Time: 30 minutes

4 egg whites
280g icing sugar, plus extra for dusting
1 tbsp cornflour, sifted
100g ground hazelnuts
2 tbsp cocoa, sifted
875ml single cream
200g dark chocolate, chopped
500g mascarpone

For the marinated raspberries:
250g raspberries
1 tbsp icing sugar
2 tbsp white rum

1 To marinate the raspberries, place them in a bowl with the icing sugar and rum, and mix gently. Set aside.

2 Preheat the oven to 120°C/gas mark ½‎. Place the egg whites in an electric mixer and whisk on high until stiff peaks form.  Gradually add 240g of the icing sugar, a tablespoon at a time, whisking for 30 seconds between spoonfuls. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and whisk for further five to seven minutes, or until thick and glossy. Add the cornflour, hazelnuts and cocoa, and whisk until well combined.

3 Cover two baking trays with baking paper and draw two 18cm circles on each one. Divide the mixture between them, using a palette knife. Bake for 30 minutes, or until just crisp. Turn the oven off and allow to cool inside for 30 minutes. Remove and allow to cool completely.

4 Place 375ml of cream in a pan over high heat and bring to boil. Remove from heat, add the chocolate and stir until smooth. Allow to cool completely, then place the mixture in a bowl with the mascarpone and whisk until stiff peaks form. Place the remaining cream and icing sugar in a separate bowl and whisk until soft peaks form.

5 Top one pavlova round with a third of the chocolate cream and a third of the plain cream, and repeat with the remaining pavlova rounds and creams. Top with the marinated raspberries and dust with icing sugar to serve.

— Roséline of This is Glamorous

Monday, December 30, 2013


A warm and tranquil start to your Monday — and a small pause before the New Year's Eve festivities begin. Have a good one.

(photo by lisa cohen for country road. via 79 ideas)

A Little Swiss Chalet

The Geneva-based architect Charles Pictet triumphantly overcame a host of building constraints and site challenges when he designed this small chalet, located in the Ormonts valley in Switzerland. The honey blond wood used throughout is a lighter and more modern take on the woodsy interiors of traditional chalets, while the low ceilings and huge fireplace give the space a warmth and cosiness that'll surely be much appreciated after a day outdoors in the snow. Those views are pretty spectacular, too. More here on Marie Claire Maison.

(photography by vincent thibert

Friday, December 27, 2013


Happy weekend! Hope it's a peaceful one. We'll be enjoying a little quiet time between holidays to relax and savour the season — how about you?

(photo by mikko ryhanen for artek. via coco lapine)

Lofty Ideals

Fashion photographers Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matalin were intent on making what was a plain white industrial-style Manhattan loft into a warm and elegant space — more so when they started a family. Love the results. More here on Share Design.

(photography by simon watson)


A little inspiration for New Year's Eve — Audrey Hepburn in costume for the 1964 classic film My Fair Lady.

(via pinterest)

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Boxing Day

It's Boxing Day here in Canada, so I'm still on holiday — hope you're enjoying a lovely relaxing day and see you tomorrow. And if you're hungry — recipes for the delicious holiday cookies in the box are here.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas

Wishing you a very happy holiday — have a wonderful day.

(photo and design by me)

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Eve

Wishing you a warm and wonderful Christmas Eve — hope it's lovely.

(photo by the happy heathen)

Good Cheer: The City Sage

For this week's Good Cheer post, Anne of the beautiful blog The City Sage shares her delectable variation on the classic gingerbread man — this one will definitely become your new holiday favourite.

When Lori asked me to contribute a holiday favorite to her 'Good Cheer' series, I didn't have to think twice about what I wanted to share! These chocolate gingerbread men and I go way back. I first discovered the recipe in high school and it became my standby teacher gift. Present the history department with a tray of these fellows and boom, a guaranteed an A+ on the winter exam. 

Okay, maybe these treats are more likely to guarantee good graces than good grades. In any case, the learning curve on this recipe is a cinch. It yields cookies that are moist and chewy with just the right balance of warm cocoa, zesty spice, and rich molasses. The dough holds its shape well if you're inclined to cut out shapes as I've done, or if you really want a strong hit of chocolate you can stir in a full bag of semisweet chips and make drop cookies.

Finally, I recommend making a double batch and freezing the extra dough. You may not have any exams in your near future, but you can never be too prepared for a baking emergency!

Chocolate Gingerbread Men
(adapted from The All-American Cookie Book)

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp each ground ginger and ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp each ground cloves and salt
2/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup each white and brown sugar
1/4 cup molasses
1 egg
1/2 tsp finely grated orange zest
semi-sweet chocolate chips

In a large mixing bowl combine dry ingredients. Cream butter and sugars in a smaller bowl, then add molasses, egg, and orange zest and blend thoroughly. Stir wet ingredients into flour mixture until fully incorporated. Let dough sit for at least ten minutes to firm up. Roll to 1/4 inch thickness on parchment paper and cut shapes, decorating with chocolate chips as desired. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 10 minutes, or until edges are just barely brown.

— Anne of The City Sage

Monday, December 23, 2013


A warm and lovely corner to begin your holiday week gently. Have a good one.

(photo by pernille kaalund)

Global Holiday Style

Filled with antiques from travels throughout Asia and Europe, a Danish home shows that the spirit of Christmas knows no boundaries when it comes to decorating for the holidays. More here on Femina magazine.

(photography by mikkel adsbøl)

Friday, December 20, 2013


Happy weekend! Hope it's a lovely one — and hope that you find a little quiet time here and there between all the holiday preparations, too.

(photo by lina östling)

Nordic Minimalism

Even minimalists like to celebrate Christmas. The lovely Danish home of Janne delights in pretty, understated decorations that celebrate the natural beauty of the surrounding countryside — all displayed to advantage against a tranquil backdrop of white walls. Beautiful. More here on Femina magazine.

(photography by pernille kaalund)


Vintage 1930s Christmas sweater. Who knew they've been a holiday tradition for so long?

(via pinterest)

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Sweetness and Light

Love the soft gold shimmer of these dishes — perfect for holiday entertaining.

(photo via tinekhome)


This week's links. Enjoy.

Top Christmas Installations of 2013
Wallpaper magazine rounds up the most spectacular Christmas installations from around the world, from Rei Kawakubo's Tweedledum and Tweedledee to the Rijksmuseum's hologram light tree by Droog.

Let It Snow: Behind the Scenes of It's A Wonderful Life
Have a look at these rare photos taken during the filming of Christmas classic It's A Wonderful Life. Fun fact: movie sets in the 1940s used white-coated cornflakes for snow; the crunching was so loud underfoot that dialogue had to be overdubbed. (via the morning news)

Designer's Cookbook: Louise Fili
Legendary designer Louise Fili shares the moment of epiphany that set her on the path to becoming a designer, and a recipe for Pasta al cartoccio (Pasta Baked in Parchment), too.

Architectural Cabinets of Curiosities
Co.Design review of Wunderkammer, a wonderful new book by Todd Williams and Billie Tsien, who took the fascinating concept of personal curiosity cabinets and invited architects and designers from around the world to create one of their own for the book.

The Inventor of Karaoke
Fascinating article about how Daisuke Inoue, an underemployed Japanese drummer, invented karaoke — all the way back in 1968.

Magnificent McQueen
W magazine has a great mood board feature on their site where you can check out photos of various designers, such as this one for Alexander McQueen. Lovely way to take a little fashion inspiration break.

A Century Later, a Female Architect Gets Her Due
Louise Bethune, the first woman to work as a professional architect in the USA, was honoured this week with a memorial grave marker. An overdue tribute to a pioneer.

Christmas Recipes From Around the World
Looking to add a little international flavour to your Christmas menu? Have a look at this collection of sweet and savoury holiday recipes from Saveur, ranging from Bûche de Noël to Viennese Christmas Goose.

(photo by suvi viitanen)

Handmade Holidays

Feeling crafty? This pretty twisted felt garland is the perfect way to while away a cold December afternoon — and you can adapt it to make bracelets and necklaces for holiday wear, too (great for stocking stuffers). Tutorial over here at Purl Bee.

(photo via purl bee)
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...