Monday, May 27, 2013

Blueberry Rosemary Lemonade

When life hands you lemons, you probably just found lemons.

When life hands you your best friend on a bus from Cleveland with wind pipes
stuffed to the brim with excited squeals and terrible windy city puns, you
had better make her some lemonade. 

I was lucky enough to get to spend the weekend with my favorite person
under the sun on her 21st birthday.

Tradition has it that every year on this occasion, we celebrate 
with a picnic somewhere quiet
with fistfuls of dead dandelions to wish upon and
playful summer winds to combat our efforts to light birthday candles in
sweet confections. 

And it's always perfect. 

Life didn't hand me any lemons,
 so I had to go get some at the Jewel Osco. 
I'd sure have to have a lot of issues to earn enough lemons
to execute this recipe, so let's be happy for that. 

I'm a big fan of lemonade that makes you feel it. 
Not the sugar water you get out of the soda gun at Applebees 
or the ye' olde lemonade where they shake sugar water with
 a whispy piece of lemon at the county fair. 

I want my lips to purse and tingle and my tongue to worship my
creation as the lemonade dances across it on the way to my tummy. 

This lemonade does that to me. 

The hints of rosemary aren't overwhelming, but they bring a savory warmness
that dances well with the muddled blueberries. 

It's sweet, it's tangy, and we drank it with every meal for days. 

Grab your best friend by the arm and drag them out on a picnic with you. 
You'll feel delightful. 

And enjoy this playlist all the while.

Until the next, dears. 


Saturday, May 18, 2013

Around the Neighborhood- Glazed and Infused Doughnuts


This week has been a tangled knot of doing things that I don't want to do,
and not getting any sleep. 

In other words, it was finals week. 

Red Bulls were drank, pizza rolls were eaten for breakfast. 
I was one tacky classic rock poster and game of frisbee in the quad away from 
acting like a full-fledged college student. 

Lord help me. 

But as any human knows, vices are the key to success in these trying times. 
And with that I say, bring on the doughnuts. 

Glazed and Infused is located in the neighborhood right next door, Wicker Park.
The doughnut shop fits itself into the backside of the Italian eatery Francesca's Forno, 
but it is hardly apparent that they share the space.  

Glazed and Infused occupies a humble little nook 
with a counter and a rack stacked high with fresh doughnuts. 
With both cake and raised options, they boast doughnut flavors that make 
make you want to find more bad feelings within yourself 
so you have an excuse to eat more. 

Creme Brulee

Bar Snacks

Strawberry Shortcake

Maple Bacon Long John

Their doughnuts are dense and not overly sweet,
but some of the best that i've had. 

Get on board. 

Monday, May 13, 2013

Campfire Stick Bread

This weekend I followed my inner woodland creature all the way to
the mountains of Pennsylvania.

Being the weekend before finals, past Hattie 
thought that going on this camping trip would be a great way 
to take a load off before the stress rolled in. 

Present Hattie, who is stuck cramming her final assignments into, well, today
 thinks that past Hattie is a stupid idiot. 

We'll let them duke it out. 

In spite of the rain filled nights, and a few leaky tent/soggy socks situations,
it was a great time. 

Nobody got eaten by bears, no one died of dysentery, 
and we didn't have any altercations with the natives. 

That's pretty much as successful as you can get. 

In honor of this wilderness weekend, I present you with bread on a stick.

With the texture and flavor of a sweet biscuit, 
this stick bread dough is simple to make and easily cooked wrapped 
around a stick over a campfire flame. 

Saturday, May 4, 2013

White Cheddar, Apple & Honeycomb Grilled Cheese

Chapter 1- Hattie Is 21 going on 45. 

I was taking my nanny kids to tennis practice, and a group of teenagers on 
bikes rode past us asking me if I was their mom. 

"No" I said. "I'm just their nanny."
to which they said 
"Aw yeah, get that paper!"

In less than 2 seconds I was calling for the kids to stop walking
as I dropped frantically to my knees to search under the SUV for said paper,
deeply concerned that I had dropped an important
receipt, or god forbid one of their sticker books and/or paper cutouts of cats. 

Later, on the bus, I heard a rap song through some kid's headphones where 
he sang about getting paper. 

That means money, guys. 
Paper is money. 

Like, could I borrow some swag from somebody for a little bit? 
My deficiency is killing my street credit around the tennis club. 

So in honor of the sticky glory of paper motherhood, 
I give you a sweet, sticky, and playful little sandwich. 

Apples and honey are classically perfect for each other, only to be 
made more handsome when they let the sharp, saltiness of aged white cheddar
into the club house. 

My friends, that is a club house I would like to stay in all day long. 

This sandwich tastes great grilled up in a bit of butter and served as a breakfast 
or afternoon snack. 

And to boot, it leaves an incredible aftertaste in your mouth to carry you through nap time. 
Judge away, kids. Nap time rocks. 

There isn't much to explain as far as a recipe goes. 
Simply spread some honey, or in my case some thick, sweet honeycomb on two
slices of your bread of choice (I used a french loaf.)
Layer thin slices of tart apple and sharp white cheddar. 
Grill it on the stove top with a bit of butter, 
or throw it in the oven at 350 for 5-7 minutes.
Nibble. Rip the crust off.
 Let cheese and honey drip all over yourself
in a gorgeous cascade of mess. 

Be 5. Or 45. Who's counting.