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Friday, October 30, 2009

Bed Bass & Beyond*

We mosied on down to Bed Bath & Beyond for new cookware today, and got a lovely non-stick Calphalon pot which I was very pleased to break in soon after. Querido's mom showed me how to prepare a Chilean sea bass Moroccan style, with turmeric, ginger, peppers, and so much other goodness. We threw potatoes in there which soaked up all of the juice. For dessert, she made a plum compote which we served with vanilla ice cream. We started with a grape and herbed baked goat cheese salad (baby arugula, bitter big arugula leaves and red leaf lettuce) with toasted pinenuts, red onion and a lemon and balsamic reduction dressing.

Sadly ("but Oooooh not that sad") I was too busy enjoying all of the delicious flavors to take non-leftover photos of all the food.

*Title thanks to Querido's savvy, silver tongued brother

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Down By the Pearl River Mart

Took a detour into Pearl River Mart today on my way down Broadway.
I could spend an entire day just looking at the dining wares section. In fact, I think I might have.

Unrelated to eating paraphernalia, these were my two favorite finds: quasi-70s silk robes and the different colored cups pictured below.
My camera phone doesn't do the finish on the cups justice.

Awww, You Shouldn't Have!

After telling me to prepare for the delectable leftover pastries he was bringing me from a restaurant he was at, Queridis bestows these table napkin swaddled savory goods upon me... squashed up.... in the smeared white cloth.... and delicious!:

First row, right: This one was some form of green tea mousse garnished with sesame seeds. The base tasted like Fruity Pebbles.
Second row, left: A tartlet with succulent raspberries and an exceptionally delicious crust.
Second row, right: A fruit paste type of thing with walnuts, although when I look at the website for said restaurant it looks as though it might have been a brownie.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

"Skullduggery Here"

Arthur Rothstein, Cattle Skull, Badlands, SD, 1936.

I've just read through The Case of the Inappropriate Alarm Clock series over at the Errol Morris Blog on the NY Times. Although I knew about the dissension surrounding Arthur Rothstein's skull, one of the more famous examples of photo-trickery, Morris extends the discourse to include other renown photographers in the agency, such as Walker Evans and Dorothea Lange. He explores the notion of authenticity using the propaganda produced by the Farm Security Administration (FSA) as a springboard, as well as the still relevant controversies surrounding them. In Part One Morris briefly notes, "If one can imagine the political animosity that would have been generated if, as part of the current stimulus package, President Obama introduced a national documentary photography program, then it is possible to understand the opposition that the F.S.A. faced..." Personally, I find this point in American History the most appropriate time since the Great Depression to revisit these works and the era they reflect.

Left: Dorothea Lange, Migrant Mother, 1936; Right: Walker Evans, Allie Mae Burroughs, 1935 or 1936

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Just When We Thought We Had Enough...

After a weekend of one delicious meal after another, from Bozu bombs to a Vinegar Hill House meat fest, we opted for a small, quiet dinner at home. Querido's mama made a delicious seafood spaghetti with clams, scallops and shrimp and a heavenly salad with hearts of palm, sweet cherry tomatoes, parsley and a light, savory Dijon dressing. I made Cappellini white bean toasts a'la Richardson and fig and goat cheese ones a'la the goat cheese I was trying to get rid of in our fridge. Querido picked up a delicious white wine that sealed the deal.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Lartigue and Surprise Guests at the Howard Greenberg Gallery

Despite the cold rain and a tight Saturday schedule, we managed to make our way over to Midtown to see the Jacques Henri-Lartigue exhibit, A New Paradise, at the Howard Greenberg Gallery. It was well worth the schlep, and for our troubles we were rewarded with adjacent smaller rooms showing more photos of a barren, early 1900s Paris by Eugene Atget, immortalized relationships by Brassaï and architectural compositions by Charles Marville. Lartigue, practicing photography from an early age (around 10 or younger I think) came from a privileged upbringing, granting him access to exclusive subject matter such as fancy ladies and upper classmen sporting around town.

If the Howard Greenberg Gallery's dot com functioned properly, I'd urge you to check the thumbnails out on the website. Unfortunately for them, they haven't yet realized that the 2000s have made excellent non-Shockwave Flash innovations; however, they offered me an enjoyable experience so I will say that if you click on that link above and exercise some patience, you'll get to catch a glimpse of a few of my favorites like Suzanne Lenglen, Nice, France, taken in 1915, Carriage Day at the Races at Anteuil and Queridis' favorite, a 1930 photo of a frequent model of Lartigue's Renee Perle (Meh... wasn't too happy about that preference). They also have a photo of Atget's gorgeous and grainy Le Quais, Hiver on there that I wish I could blow up and frame over our dining room table.

(We saw Coco Avant Chanel afterwards, further transporting us back to early 20th century, bougie France. The film offered several lovely landscapes, textures and costumes, but fell short in terms of character and plot development. If you don't mind an almost two hour period piece with Miss Tatou's constant, intense pout and the heavy handedness of Gabrielle Chanel's wild-child-always-in-control tendencies (ironically enough, she is concurrently at the mercy of men throughout the film), then check it out)

From left to right: My Cousin Bichonnade, Paris, 1905 and The ZYX 24 Takes Off..., 1910

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Notebook of Patterns Deux
Status: Christened

These Escherian socks that I spotted at Topshop lent some inspiration for the very first entry:

I set out to make a more peaceful version of the classic pattern, one that would make an appropriate
first page for this friend-of-the-Earth of a notebook.

(Sidebar, my other sketchbook got a little surprise visit from the above painting's
leftover grey and black ink)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Saturday Night Fever

A post title that is apropos in more ways than one. Firstly, I really did feel a little on the sick side this weekend, particularly Friday and Saturday morning, but not enough to keep me from a quasi-disco dance party at Webster Hall. The disco ball could easily be one of my favorite objects:

It makes for a fine pairing with this tune:

Ω and Α

The first of many pattern notebooks to come is complete:

I mixed some pretty weak purples, but I learned to deal with it.
I'd like to introduce to you, the Notebook of Patterns, Part II:

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Houk Let the Art Out (Houk! Houk! Houk! Houk!)

I hope it's the "HOO'k" gallery and not the "HOW'k, for blog title sake... Today I made it a point to catch the Brassaï exhibit at the Edwynn Houk Gallery before it ended, especially since my most favorite period of photography was during the early 1900s (namely Lartigue, Atget, Cartier-Bresson, Kertész and Moholy-Nagy). Below are some of the highlights (according to me), plus a random one I took of Annie Leibowitz's photo of Keith Haring. If you missed this one, be sure to catch the Lartigue exhibit at the Howard Greenberg.

Backstage at the Folies-Bergere

Couple Amoureux, Rue Croulebarbe, Quartier Italie

Keith Haring

I couldn't find the images for my other favorites like Pavement Reflection at Place de la Concorde, Toilette, Chez Suzy and a slightly distorted one of the two people next to a car under the rain, but you can glimpse everything here under Brassai (probably for a limited time): Houk Gallery.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Last Days of Summer Salads

Pretty soon, my tangy salads are going to be replaced by warm soups. Tonight's dinner featured my new favorite dressing: sesame oil, honey orange juice, soy sauce, tarragon vinegar, Sriracha rooster sauce, garlic, ginger, shallot, salt and pepper. This concoction completed the shrimp salad I made tonight, tossed into a bowl of baby spinach leaves, shredded carrot, pre-peppered avocado, and radish. I marinated the shrimp in some of this dressing and added lemon onto them at the end.

We ate it with a "chicken wings in peanut sauce" like the one I made a couple weeks ago for a little surf 'n' turf.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Chocolate Ibarra

I am anticipating my first New York winter, even though autumn has only just begun to make itself at home. I've started to adjust to the colder climate quite comfortably, truly loving the fall except for long subway station walks demanding the treading of multiple stairways that never fails to leave me shvitzing under my sweater, scarf and jacket. Other than that, I welcome this weather so long as whatever I'm wearing has warm pockets. Upon arriving to my apartment and situating myself, I felt a little cooler than I normally do around that time of night. I instinctively knew what was called for.

My mother normally made/makes Ibarra for my siblings and myself during cold weather. If we were sick or just wanted to feel cozy, it was a go-to guilty pleasure. Surely copious amounts of sugar and dairy do nothing to fight a common cold, but the amount of happiness that one sip of this Mexican hot chocolate brings me is enough to ward off anything negative inside my body (I feel much the same way about Premium brand saltine crackers... Swine flu? A box of those and you're as good as new).

When I moved out of my house the first (and then second) time I kept asking my mother for her molinillo, which is that wooden stick pictured below that is used to beat the drink to a frothy consistency. I think I stole her old one and then lost it somewhere along one of the moving processes. Here I am, on my third move out in a brand new city with a brand new molinillo that she and my dad brought back for me from Mexico, and gave me on my last trip back to LA. You could make this drink with a regular whisk or wooden spoon, but for me, at least, it never tastes as good without the molinillo.

Hecho: Chocolatito caliente. Visto: The final pages of a book I haven't seen in a while... that I'm very happy to revisit. A fitting read, considering the mom-related reflections roused by this late night libation.

Buenas noches!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Penultimate and the Ultimate

Time to look for a new notebook of patterns. I'm looking at you, Muji store.

Salty vs. Sweet

A Sunday brunch where the best of two worlds collide on my kitchen table:

Left: Red onion, garlic, chili and feta omelette.
Right: Mini toasted coconut, cinnamon, and carmelized sugar french toasts.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Elger Esser

I caught Elger Esser's most recent show at the Sonnabend Gallery earlier this year, which mostly exhibited his Combray series, from what I remember. It was a delightful discovery since I had just started reading In Search of Lost Time not too long before my visit. I get the urge to google image search his photos from time to time, and two hours ago was one of those occasions. This particular selection consists of dreamy hazes and opalescent hues; calm settings where the material is concurrently vivid and soft as it comes to meet the massive bodies of water.

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I'm an LA transplant now living in Brooklyn. I develop film projects by day, write at night, and have a dangerous predilection for vintage Robinson Golluber scarves- this blog serves as a tiny window to everything else I do when I'm not satisfying those first three passions. I'm trying to blog more and tweet less @annabelleqv. What about you?


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