1. Love this “Vegetable Soup” recipe poem by Polish artist Malgorzata Lewandowska-Zcyh — her name’s quite a mouthful, isn’t it? Just like a big spoonful of yummy soup containing carrots, celery, potatoes, beans, cauliflower and parsley. “Malgorzata” = Margaret. This is one of the best illustrated recipes I’ve seen at They Draw & Cook.
2. Speaking of which, there’s now a They Draw and Cook for Kids! Ebook available for download on your iPad. You get 20 recipes for only $1.99. Here are three samples:
3. Have you started your holiday shopping yet? I’ve already ordered several of these adorable macaron trinket boxes via Waiting on Martha. You can purchase them individually (light pink, rose, pistachio, lavender, yellow, peach) or as a set of 12, which comes in a pretty lavender presentation box. Great stocking stuffers or bridesmaids gifts. Which reminds me, I haven’t actually eaten a macaron in ages. If you feel like sending me some, feel free :)!
4. So, what’s for lunch? Something funky! Imagine a child’s surprise and delight discovering one of these fun, delicious, and amazingly creative sandwiches in his/her lunchbox! You gotta love Hermione, Harry and Ron — and what’s that giraffe so happy about? The bread crust frame on the Mona Lisa is perfection and I totally identify with the Queen (I’ve told people who have trouble pronouncing my first name they are welcome to call me, “Your Highness.”)
Funky Lunch: Happy Food for Happy Children (Absolute Press, 2010) contains 50 great ideas to take away the blahs and stress associated with the same old, same old. Choose from animals, TV characters, rocketships and mermaids — all made using healthy ingredients. Check out the Funky Lunch website gallery for more. Makes a nice companion to Hawaii’s Bento Box Cookbooks. ☺
5. When I grow up, I’m going to live at the Plaza in NYC, where I’ll take tea in the Palm Court every afternoon and order a special room service dinner every night, prepared by some of the city’s finest chefs. Of course it’ll be served on Book tableware like this — each course a new chapter:
6. I’m a sucker for decorated cookies and marvel at the endless creativity displayed by artisans all over the country. Recently, Angela at Oh Sugar Events invited some of her talented friends to create cookies for a “Play With Your Food Collaborative Project,” spotlighting classic toys and games.
My favorites by Angela herself are Mr. Potato Head, with his interchangeable parts, and Wooly Willy — loved both when I was little (I now have a Wooly Bear version).
The Fisher Price toys are also cool, but I think I like Arty McGoo’s Paper Doll Cookies best of all. Click here to read her backstory about them. Such exquisite work! (Hat tip to Liz Jones for the link.)
7. From the sweet and innocent to the macabre: Melodye Shore gave me the heads up about, A Zombie Ate My Cupcake!: 25 Deliciously Weird Cupcake Recipes by Lily Vanilli (Cima Books, 2010). UK baker/cake designer Lily Jones is known worldwide for her wildly creative off-the-wall novelty cakes which have been commissioned by the likes of Elton John, Alexander McQueen and Sadie Frost. Any of the ghoulish recipes in the Zombie book is sure to impress your Halloween party guests, and lucky for us, the measurements are listed in both metric and U.S. standard.
8. Last Friday I watched the live webcast of, “Siting Julia: A Julia Child Centenary Symposium,” sponsored by the Radcliffe Institute’s Schlesinger Library at Harvard, and loved every dang minute of it ! What a fabulous gathering of authors, restaurateurs, TV producers, friends and neighbors who all knew, loved, studied and worked with Julia. They shared insights, info, candid behind-the-scenes stories and many fond memories.
I especially enjoyed listening to Alex Prud’homme, co-author with Julia of My Life in France, the three women on the Cambridge panel (Dorothy Zinberg, Michela Larson, Jane Thompson), who helped me understand the Cambridge culinary and social landscape in the 60’s, and Laura Shapiro, who delivered an incisive, inspiring keynote which you can see in this video (about 20 minutes in). Most interesting were her comments about Julia’s prejudices against gays and vegetarians!
No matter how much I read, hear, and learn about Julia, I always want more. (Thanks, Cathy, for the heads up about the webcast!)
9. Bob Dylan (!!!) just released a new CD, “Tempest,” on September 11! It’s his 35th studio album marking the 50th anniversary of his eponymous 1962 debut album, and it’s gotten incredible reviews far and wide. They’re calling it, “musically varied and full of curve balls,” “spirited and vigorous,” and AP says, “It’s one of the best discs you’ll hear by anyone this year.” High praise indeed! His current touring band is THE BEST, and I’m so looking forward to seeing Dylan in November — he’s performing just for my birthday.
Give a listen to this sampler:
10. I’m really excited about the exceptionally good looking, talented guests who’ll be dropping by to talk about their new books in the next few weeks. In addition to Julie Paschkis (Apple Cake), stay tuned for Grace Lin (Starry River of the Sky), Melissa Iwai and Denis Markell (Hush, Little Monster), Nikki McClure (Apple), and Janna Matthies and Kristi Valiant (The Goodbye Cancer Garden). Such an abundant harvest of good books. Can’t wait!!
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“One of the secrets of a happy life is continuous small treats.” ~ Iris Murdoch
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Copyright © 2012 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.