October 29, 2014

FALL BOOTS

ST LOUIS // YOKO // BRYANT // CULLEN // SIV // YAGI

We all love Fall for the changing weather and our changing wardrobe. Bundling up and layering with knitted sweaters, scarves and jackets. For me those are all swell, but my favourite part about Fall are the boots. Flat boots, heeled boots, leather boots, suede boots, doesn't matter to me, I love them all. And I love all of the Fall boots the French brand, sessùn has designed for this season. Designer Emma Francois who works out of Marseille, carries out sophisticated designs with a feminine, urban feel. Not only are her boots beautiful, but you can step easy knowing Emma is passionate about using raw and organic materials as much as possible. Plus they're French, so what more could you want? Hard to choose just one, so my top picks are this, this and this.

October 28, 2014

TEA FOR TWO


I may live in France and love baking and eating French pastries, but my English background comes out from time to time and all I want is a traditional tea time, complete with fine china and fresh scones. Drinking tea is something I enjoy everyday, but sometimes it is fun to get a little fancy. Dress up the table, brew that special tea you were saving for when guests come over, and sip from the fragile tea cups you keep stowed away in the cupboard. 

Go get fancy, invite a friend over and sit back and sip. It is time for tea for two.








Traditional English Scones

cooking time: 13 minutes
prep time: 25 minutes
makes: approximately 8

INGREDIENTS
225g | 8oz self rising flour
pinch of salt
55g | 2oz butter
25g | 1oz sugar
150ml | 5 fluid oz milk
1 beaten egg

INSTRUCTIONS
1. Preheat your oven to 425°F | 220°C
    In a large bowl combine flour, salt and rub in butter. 

2. Stir in sugar then milk, mix until you get a soft dough.

3. Put dough onto your floured work surface and knead lightly. Flatten out to a thickness of about      
    1inch/2.5cm. Take a round cutter (I used a round glass) about 2inch/5cm and place on a buttered 
    baking sheet. Once all the scones are stamped out, knead together remaining dough, pat out and 
    stamp out the rest of the scones.

4. Beat the egg and brush the tops of the scones. Bake for approximately 13 minutes, but keep an eye 
    on them so they don't get too brown. 

5. Serve with butter and your favourite jam, enjoy! 


October 23, 2014

MILLENEUFCENTQUATREVINGTQUATRE



Milleneufcentquatrevingtquarte or MNCQVQ for short, is a french label of beautiful and unique printed squares of silk. All of the prints are hand drawn and painted by the talented design duo, Amélie Charroin and Marie Colin-Madan, both born in, you guessed it, 1984. Each scarf is really a piece of wearable art, woven and printed in the birthplace of traditional French scarves, Lyon, France.




As the cool weather arrives, I love to wear scarves more to help keep warm and to style up my jackets. These silk scarves would make such a beautiful addition to my accessory collection. A bit of an investment, but because they are silk, they will transition amazingly through each season.

Shop them online at MNCQVQ or find a shop near you here.

October 22, 2014

YSÉ



Finally, Ysé has come through for us small breasted woman. Ysé has created the first French lingerie brand for woman with size A and B cups, hallelujah! For women like me, it can be difficult to find lingerie that fits me properly, while still being beautiful, comfortable and affordable. I either end up not wearing a bra because let's face it, I don't need much support, or I do wear a bra but it never really feels right. With the collection of bras Ysé has designed, I can finally wear a bra made specifically for my smaller size, that will enhance my natural look. The best part is, their lingerie is so pretty and delicate, and so classically French. 


Once I can decide on which bra and panty set I want (or should I say need), I will be treating myself very soon.You can shop online at their e-shop or visit them in person in Paris, oh la la! 





October 21, 2014

CRÈME BRÛLÉE À LA FLEUR D'ORANGER

Ah crème brûlée, is there anything better? Cracking that top layer of hardened sugar with the tip of a spoon, to me, is the best part. I have only ever tried the traditional kind, that sweet taste with a hint of vanilla, such a delicious classic. I knew if I was going to make it at home, I wanted to spice things up a little and pick a recipe that was unique and oh so French. Of course I had to venture into my trusty Ladurée Sucré recipe book to find the perfect, alternative version. Not to my surprise I found one and made it right away. Normally I am not the biggest fan of any orange flavour in my desserts, but the orange flower water used in this brûlée is very light and subtle. This dessert would be perfect to make for the upcoming holiday season, who wouldn't love a twist on an old favourite? 







Crème Brûlée à la Fleur d'Oranger

cooking time: 1 hour
prep time: 15 minutes
resting time: 2 hours
makes: 6

INGREDIENTS
3/4 cup + 1 tbsp | 200 ml whole milk
1 cup + 1 tbsp | 250 ml heavy (double) cream
6 egg yolks
1/2 cup - 1/2 tbsp | 85 g granulated sugar
3 1/3 tbsp (50 ml) orange flower water
about 1/4 cup | 50 g brown sugar for finish

Equipment: Crème brûlée moulds

INSTRUCTIONS
1. In a saucepan, bring the milk and cream to a boil.
    In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar until pale. Gradually add the milk and cream mixture    
    and the orange flower water.

2. Preheat your oven to 210°F | 100°C.
    Pour mixture into moulds. Put them into a roasting pan or on a high rimmed baking sheet. Place 
    in your oven and pour water in pan or sheet to 1/5 inch | 5 mm below the rim of the moulds. Bake (in 
    a bain-marie) for 1 hour. 
    The custard is cooked when it is softly set. Check to see if it is done by inserting the tip of a knife; it 
    should still jiggle slightly in the center.

3. Remove moulds from one and allow to cool completely. Cover with plastic wrap to prevent moisture  
    from collecting on the surface, and refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours.

4. When ready to serve, preheat the oven to broil setting. Meanwhile, remove custards from the 
    refrigerator and sprinkle the tops evenly with brown sugar. Place in the oven and caramelize for 2 
    minutes under the broiler, keeping a close eye that they do not darken too much. When sugar has a 
    deep caramel colour, remove from the oven and serve immediately. 

Bon Appétit!

(Recipe from the decadent LADURÉE Sucré cookbook)

October 20, 2014

SAND BETWEEN MY TOES





There is a certain sadness that comes with knowing something you love is happening for the last time of  the year. Even if the warm weather and sunny days continue well into the winter in the South, yesterday may have been the last time I take a dip in the sea and have the sand squish between my toes.
I spent a lovely Sunday soaking up the sun and floating amidst the waves, with good friends, good food and great weather. The day quickly wound down as the tide rolled in and the wind picked up. So we moved onto a beach patio to enjoy beers and cheers this memorable summer goodbye. Till next year...

October 17, 2014

SNAPSHOTS OF THE WEEK



Is it just me or does October seem to be flying by? We're half way through already! 
This weekend I am spending some time doing mini home improvements, mainly in our bedroom and dressing room. Saturday night James and I are going to try and see the new movie, Get On Up. It looks awesome! Then Sunday we are taking advantage of the remaining summer heat and hitting the beach with friends. We will see if I will be brave enough or not to enter the sea, hopefully I am. This will probably be my last chance this year (sad face).
I hope you have some fun and exciting things planned as well, let me know. Bon Weekend!

In case you missed them, here are some sweets to treat yourself to this weekend:
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