Food

cena

May 12, 2021

My husband and I have always loved eating, but neither of us were much for cooking. In our twenties, we lived on take-out Pad Thai, Peek Freans and the pasta recipes Jason picked up while living in Italy. The odd chicken thigh landed in our oven when we had children, (the oven was previously storage for shoes) and we both became a dab hand at eggy bread and smashed bananas. In the last few years, we could always count on a flavourless filet of salmon and a floret or two par-cooked broccoli if I was cooking. Occasionally, I’d knock it out of the park with, no, I can’t finish that sentence. Everything I made was dull as dishwater. The good food, the food that excited us, came from eating out; Giulietta’s polpe e fagioli, Bar Raval’s serrano and shishitos, Donna’s rice and shrimp, Sakai Bar’s Oshinko pickles. And then Covid came into our lives, and well, our lives got turned upside down, and Jason started to cook. And when I say cook, I mean bake bread. Stuff and grill whole fish. Make bone broth and Bolognese from scratch. Homemade Tahini, coming up. Jason has cooked a meal everyday (minus the odd take-out Sunday) since last March. A good meal. A balanced meal. A meal with colour and imagination. He follows recipes, some passed down by his grandmothers, and others that he’s found online. Feeding his family has been centering, purposeful. As Julia Child put it, “I think careful cooking is love, don’t you?”

around and around

April 27, 2021

Kings of British jellies, BOMPAS & PARR.

The extraordinary home of AXEL VERVOORDT.

AGNES VARDA dressed as an ivy bush.

Summer florals by CHRISTIAN WIJNANTS.

JESSIE FRENCH’s algae based bioplasic vessels.

CECIL TOUCHON’s abstract collages.

CHARLES-ANTOINE CHAPPUIS’ vases made from reclaimed linens and yarns. (They can be turned upside down and hold water at both ends!)

say cheese

April 16, 2021

As a kid, I spent my Friday afternoons handpicking candy from glass jars at Wormley Wheelers in South Kensington. This local sweet shop –– home to all the penny sweets imaginable ––  was the high point of my week. Fast forward 35-years, and this gorgeous cheese shop would be my grown up version of Wormley Wheelers. With as many cheese varieties as Wormley’s had sweets, Formaje in Madrid, is a turophile’s paradiso. The Tablas de Quesos are so beautiful I’d frame one. And the shop itself –– designed by Cobalto Studio –– is breathtaking. Owner, Clara Diez calls herself a “cheese activist”; improving industry standards, and maintaining a positive impact on the community, and the environment, at large, are central to the company’s ethos. Every Friday may be a stretch, but worth a visit one day.

Around and around

April 13, 2021

RINNE ALLEN’s ethereal light drawings.

LLADRO’s porcelaine rings.

Watch textile artist, CLAUDY JONGSTRA’S beautiful process.

KIVA MOTNYK’S gorgeous framed patchworks.

SARAH ELLISON’S Banda collection looks like striped shortbread.

A gourmet beach barbecue on Margaret River.

And below, FENELLA ELMS’ exquisite ceramic sculpture.

Around and around

March 30, 2021

VIVIAN SUTER mixes paint with mud, rainwater and fish glue.

NANCY & BURT‘s Yunomi style teacup.

How to make hot cross buns.

CELIA BERNARDO‘s floral spring frocks.

Peonies as big as fried eggs.

GEORG ÓSKAR infuses his paintings with humour and childlike enthusiasm.

“If I can give one piece of wisdom to my children, ‘it’s just be your biggest fan,'” actor, MARTIN SHORT says on Off Camera with photographer, SAM JONES.

GARY CALTON chronicles his solitary walks around the North York Moors.

Another roundup of art, decor and a rather adorable duck.

March 16, 2021

Jubilant paintings by Aussie artist, CHARLOTTE ALLDIS.

Holi recipes over at Bon Appétit.

A modern country kitchen by designer, PANDORA TAYLOR.

Colourful napkins with a scalloped edge by designer, MATILDA GOAD.

CELIA DOWSON’s exquisite ceramic seascapes.

Nasturtium in a sun hat.

Beautiful recessed wall shelves by PAMELA SHAMSHIRI & SONIA BOYAJIAN.

KIT KEMP’s home in Hyde Park.

Another roundup of buttons, boiled eggs, and woolly jumpers.

March 9, 2021

Writer and chef, BLANCHE VAUGHAN speaks movingly about her relationship with food.

Mustard sweaters and persimmon capes over at Spanish textile brand, Babaà.

LUCIE RIE’s beautiful wartime buttons.

DAVID RUMSEY’s amazing collection of maps.

JULIA BUSUTTIL NISHIMURA’s one pot chicken roast.

JANE THOMPOSON’s beautiful dog portraits.

The South kaibab trail (Grand Canyon) to Phantom Ranch.

jelly

February 18, 2021

I write everyday, even on days when I have nothing to say. Which lately, is often. I figure the daily exercise will come in handy when I do have something say. Some days, all I can muster is a sentence or two about a kettle or a chair, or the Rowntree’s jelly cubes I used to eat straight out of the packet on the school bus. Even the bus driver looked at me oddly when I’d bring them out of my lunchbox. I think he asked me to put them away once lest my sticky fingers ruined his moquette upholstered seats. “But your hair will shine,” my Mum used to say when I’d tell her about the peculiar looks. It’s funny what we remember. And what we write about. When we have nothing to say.

and around we go

February 16, 2021

Barren beaches and mountains in Lanzerote photographed by SALVA LOPEZ.

TANGUY TOLILA‘s weird and wonderful wooden bird sculptures.

This beautiful tree.

Perfect little guest houses, ensconced high up in Mallorca’s Tramuntana mountains.

Dressing for summer.

ANGELA ALLEN’s monochrome world.

Porcelain hearts by FOS CERAMICHE.

Dried sunflowers.

Italian Sculptor, MARIO CEROLI, photographed in New York, 1966.

round and about

February 9, 2021

Another week, another roundup of swans, summer berries and ceramics.

Artist, Mia Lerssi‘s soft and magical glass pebbles look like therapy in the hand.

This loo, specifically the vintage strawberry wallpaper, in designer, Matilda Goad’s London flat reminds me of an English country garden in July.

I love the the bold, graphic lines in this sculpture by Swedish artist, Tove Tengå.

This boat full of swans made me smile. They’d been removed from the river in preparation for the Henley Regatta. June 1900.

Josh O’Connor and Jessie Buckley playing I Have Never amused me.

This image by Giulio Corinaldi of children rollerskating on a street in a Venice in the 1960s whisked me back to playing in the back alleys of tiny Greek choras.

This photo, Florida 1973, made me think of aquafit classes at the JCC. And Florida.

And, of course, I am bonkers about these tiles.

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