Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Etsy Hearts: Spring Mint

1) Pony Oxfords (made to order!) by golden ponies; 2) Macaron Photograph Print by Ara 133 Photography; 3) Enjoy the Journey Pencils by Carbon Crusader; 4) Vespa Illustration by Jolly Edition; 5) Air Plant Pod by Sea & Asters

I don't know about you, but I am loving everything minty fresh for spring. Here are some of my favorite pale green Etsy finds. How amazing are those oxfords? You can choose your color and they will be made to your size—so awesome for only $39!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Mozart + Fizzy

My friend Alexandra recently asked me to create a portrait of her much-loved kitties to give to her man for Valentine's Day. I've already been able to follow the lives of these two through her Instagram, so doing research was easy, plus she provided me with a long—er, EPIC—email about their personalities and likes/dislikes. So the heart, squirrel, bird feeder, and mouse toy were all a part of what makes these two special.

The art started with some watercolor washes, and the piece was finished digitally.

I'm so happy with how it came out, and it makes me even MORE happy since she loves it. I've done a few of these lately and I'm really loving it. So if you have a furry friend that you'd like to turn into a portrait, drop me a line!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Etsy Hearts: Valentine Love

1) Set of Valentines by Amy Marcella 2) Heart Cookie Studs by Petit Plat 3) Hot Pink Envelope Clutch from MaeJean Vintage 4) Valentine Felt iPhone Sleeve by ShibaNg Designs 5) Love Pillow Cover by lovemaki

Just in time for Valentine's Day tomorrow, some love-themed favorites from Etsy this week. Happy love day to all of you...hope your day is full of candy and sweetness!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Recipe: Ricotta Ravioli with Brown Butter and Almonds

For Christmas this year, I got a pasta machine that I've always wanted, and finally got to make my first batch of ravioli with my mom. We made this a little while back but haven't had the chance to share the recipe until now. It's another Michael Symon recipe and it was just as delicious as you'd expect from him! I don't have a link to share since it's from his cookbook, so I typed all of the instructions below.

I recommend a couple glasses of wine with this one, as it was definitely time consuming (but a labor of love).

(Serves 4)

I N G R E D I E N T S :

1 cup sheep's-milk ricotta
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 large egg
Grated zest of 1 orange
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for pasta water
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Your favorite homemade pasta dough

1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
1/4 cup sliced almonds
Grated zest and juice of 1/2 orange
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

D I R E C T I O N S :

1) Before prepping the filling, put the ricotta in a fine-mesh strainer and set over a bowl to drain (preferably overnight) in the fridge.

2) In a large bowl, stir together the ricotta (without the liquid), Parmesan, egg, orange zest, salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate while you prepare your dough.

3) If using a pasta machine, divide the dough into four chunks and roll each through the machine on the widest setting. Repeat until the sheets end up being about 4-5" wide and 18" long.

4) If you have a ravioli attachment (like we did), follow the instructions to fill them that way. If not, lay the sheets out flat on a countertop dusted with flour. Along one long half of each sheet of pasta, place four 2-teaspoon size dollops of filling. Moisten the edges of the pasta with water, fold the unfilled side of the dough over the filled side, and press around the perimeter of each mound to seal. Using a round ravioli or 2-inch cookie cutter, cut out the ravioli - you should have 12 to 16 raviolis at this point.

5) Bring a large pot of water to a boil, and salt it enough so it tastes seasoned. Add ravioli to the water and boil until the float. Once they float, cook for 1 minute longer.

6) While they're cooking, you can prep for the sauce. In a large saute pan, heat the butter over medium-high heat until it starts foaming. Then add the sliced almonds and saute until golden brown, about 2 minutes.

7) Scoop the ravioli from the cooking water with a slotted spoon, leaving excess water clinging to the pasta (this helps forms the sauce), and transfer into the saute pan. Add the orange juice. Toss once or twice until the contents of the pan are well acclimated.

8) Remove the pan from the heat, add the parsley and orange zest, divide into bowls and serve.