Sunday, May 19, 2013

Two women in Welsh National costume drinking tea, 1875.
From the National Library of Wales.

Last Sunday E. held her annual tea party to mark the blooming of the magnolia tree in her yard. It was a little bit chilly so we were set up inside.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

These beauties -bonnet, sweater, booties- were crocheted by my Mum in 1972, They're the ones I came home from the hospital in, replete with pink ribbons about the neck of the sweater, edge of the bonnet and ankles of the booties. This week I laundered them, getting them ready for my first tiny one to come home in. In August!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Deviled Eggs Mimosa

It's been so beautifully warm here! The blossoms on the trees have popped: apple, crab, cherry, lilac, mayday, and the magnolias just finished. I've really been getting into picnics after that long winter we all endured and these two delights have made appearances: deviled eggs and jelly roll.

Deviled Eggs or Eggs Mimosa 

8 large eggs
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup plain thick yogurt
1 Tablespoon Dijon or Creole mustard (I like Zatarains)
a pinch of cayenne or a couple of shakes of Tobasco or Crystal hot sauce
finely snipped baby scallions, halved cornichons, pickled pearl onions and / or paprika for garnish

Boil the eggs for 15 minutes. Transfer the whole pot to the sink and let the cold tap run over the eggs  until the pot is cold. Let the eggs sit in this bath for 5 minutes. If you're assembling everything right away you can peel the eggs now or, if you're readying them for the next day, dry them with a tea towel, set in a bowl and refrigerate overnight. Once the eggs are peeled, slice them with a sharp knife lengthwise and gently remove the yolks, placing them in a medium bowl. Lay the white halves in a low-sided dish. Using a fork, mash the yolks, then whisk in the mayonnaise, yogurt, mustard and cayenne or hot sauce and beat until smooth. Spoon into the waiting halves and garnish. Cover with plastic wrap and chill up to 4 hours.

Jelly Roll

This is a super easy, fun, delicious, and pretty dessert.  

Lemon Jelly Roll
cake adapted from Paula Deen. Curd adapted from Gourmet.

For the lemon Curd (this batch makes a lot: enough for 2 jelly rolls + 1 small jar of curd!)
finely grated zest of 2 medium lemons
fresh-squeezed juice of 4 medium lemons (about 1 cup)
1 1/3 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 3/4 sticks (3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon pieces

Whisk together the zest, juice, sugar, eggs, and a pinch of salt in a 2-quart heavy saucepan set over medium heat. Continue whisking so the eggs don't lump. When hot to the touch, add the butter all at once and cook over moderately low heat, whisking constantly, until curd is thick enough to hold the marks of the whisk and the first bubbles appear on the surface, about 10 minutes. Immediately pour curd through a fine sieve into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and chill.

For the cake:
4 eggs, separated

finely grated zest of 1 medium lemon
juice of 1 medium lemon
3/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
3/4 cup cake flour, sifted
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Powdered sugar, sifted

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a 15 x 10 x 1-inch jelly roll pan or baking sheet with parchment paper and butter the parchment well.  

In a medium bowl beat the egg whites until stiff but not dry and set aside. In a large bowl, beat the egg yolks until light. Add the lemon juice and lemon zest. Gradually add the sugar and vanilla, and mix well. In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add the sifted flour mixture to the egg yolk mixture. Fold the egg whites into the egg and lemon mixture and pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake 10-15 minutes or until the cake is golden.

While the cake is baking, prepare a surface for rolling: place a dry, clean tea towel on a countertop and dust it well with powdered sugar.  Invert the cake onto the dusted towel using your hands and a wide, flat spatula. Don't fret about flipping the cake, it'll be quite flexible. Trim 1/4-inch edge off each long side and, beginning with the end closest to you, roll the cake and towel up together and set seam-side down. Let this sit and cool to room temperature, about 15–20 minutes. 

Once the cake has cooled, gently unroll it and spread generously with the chilled lemon curd. Roll it up kind of loosely (sans towel of course), to keep as much of the curd in as possible. A lot will run out the sides and far end but most if it will stay inside. Lay the jelly roll seam-side down again, keeping it on the towel, and sprinkle with powdered sugar. Transfer to a clean sheet of parchment, gently wrap the roll up and chill it for at least an hour or overnight. 

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Tilda Swinton.
She was sleeping in The Maybe at MOMA NYC this past March.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Gaylord artefact storage box.