Great internet finds. Beautiful books. Phenomenal photography. Filling foods. Every week, I’m sifting through amazing content on the world wide web – great recipes, interesting articles, beautiful photography, and hilarity galore. I’m reading great books. I’m eating some tasty foods, sweet and savory. From time to time, I want to take Friday to share with you my five favorite finds, gems of pixelated, penned, and plated perfection.
This week, with the countdown to Thanksgiving in its last days, if you’ve been online, you’ve been bombarded with all things Turkey – or Tofurky! – Day. Decor. Side dishes. Sweet dishes. Savory dishes.
You get the idea. Instead of rambling on the lingering days until the guests come over to feast upon your edible labor, this week’s Friday Five is going to focus elsewhere – with just a hint of Thanksgiving commentary.
So, here’s my favorite bits of awesome this week:
Joy the Baker Podcast with Tracey of Shutterbean
I downloaded some recent episodes of this podcast earlier this month. I’d been meaning to drive into it months ago, but as life often does to us, I was pulled in other directions. I’ve never been a big podcast listener. I’m more of a book person – I want to read your words, not listen to them, although I’ve always been a fan of NPR. My thought: “I’m not going to pay attention to this.”
Nonetheless, life pushed me back to Joy of Joy the Baker and the podcast that she teams up with Tracey from Shutterbean to deliver. I listened to the most recent episode from November 14th, “It’s Monday, or whatever.” And I adored it. Sure, it’s not print, but I was engrossed. This podcast, as one might expect, is not all about baking and sautéing. In this episode, Joy and Tracey talked about the proper way to order a drink, being pulled over, and the life of a self-employed person, among other topics. It’s fun; it’s light while still content driven. When I listen to this podcast, I’m transported to Joy’s living room, a glass of wine in my hand and a giggle on my lips. Check out this podcast.
Culicurious – Apple and Cranberry Hand Pie Recipe
The new trends surrounding bite-size and edible-by-hand food have me entranced. These small pints of the dessert world are deliciously single serve. When plotting my Thanksgiving dessert menu, my concern has been not to make an overabundance of food. Our only guest this year is going to be my mother, and with just three of us devouring the feast, making three desserts is ridiculous. I can’t eat pie and cheesecake forever. (Well, maybe I could.)
So, my focus has been on tarts and small desserts. And I am in love with the Apple and Cranberry Hand Pie recipe from Culicurious. These hand held wonders combine two of the greatest tastes of fall: Granny Smith apples and plump cranberries in a dessert that is as beautiful as it is portable. Admit it, you want your dessert to be tasty, but you also want that wowsers! factor. These hand pies are, well, cute. Combining ginger, apples, cranberries, and some fun edge effects, Addie has made a fantastic hand pie that I can hardly resist adding to my Thanksgiving sweets list.
Blue Plate Special: An Autobiography of My Appetites by Kate Christensen
I’m a bibliophile. You should know this about me now. Books are a big part of my world, and I’m a big fan of works that place food center state, tales in which food is like another character. This week, I read Blue Plate Special: An Autobiography of My Appetites by Kate Christensen a second time. This book is a look at the author’s life from her youngest years to the present framed by food, and it is executed beautifully.
First, I can’t praise Kate Christensen’s work enough. From her novels to her blog that focuses heavily on her love edible delights with vivid detail, Christensen is a powerful and dynamic voice. And that remains true in this, her most recent novel, Blue Plate Special: An Autobiography of My Appetites, she takes through her life from her plate. With reflections of her mother’s “blue plate special” dinners to meals shared with lovers and friends, she gives us a bite of both her plate and her heart. I was so hungered by this book, both in my heart and in my belly. This is a must-read.
This shop featuring handmade pottery on Etsy is fantastic! It’s the time of year that it’s time to start thinking gifts, and this was my first online destination. Amy Droste, the shop’s Michigan-based owner, creates unique and affordable hand thrown pottery that is beautiful, colorful, and distinctly one-of-a-kind. Her work is definitely on my shopping list.
Greek Yogurt meets Cranberry. They’re Pals.
I don’t wait for Thanksgiving to start devouring cranberries. I start consuming that red berry as soon as I can get my hands on it. Relish, sauce, raw, juice. I’ve adored cranberries since I was a toddler. So, my current favorite snack? Mixing a container of Chobani Greek yogurt, preferably the pineapple or raspberry varieties, with a couple of spoonfuls of cranberry relish.
My love of cooking and baking doesn’t mean I don’t also appreciate the convenience of a grab and go snack (or improvised meal.) The combination of these two foods is absolutely delicious – creamy meets tart, silky cultures meet cranberry crunch. This a great idea for those after-holiday leftovers or for that person in your life that isn’t a huge cranberry fan like those of us with more refined taste buds. Ha.
Want to see more of my favorites any day of the week? Check out Flour and Fancy on Pinterest!