Loving…

Usually, as soon as Friday hits, all I want to do is look forward to the little things (a book, a song, a trip to Ikea) that I will get to do over the weekend. With that in mind, welcome to the first installment of a new weekly post – Loving…(aka Friday Faves). Here you’ll find a brief list of things that are currently making me smile, or occupying my mind, or are just generally awesome.

Listening:

My “F you, winter!” jam.

Reading:

kelly oxford is my new hero

Kelly Oxford is hilarious in 140 characters on Twitter. She’s equally funny in a more free-form, unlimited book format. I got to meet her at a book signing earlier this week and she’s such a nice, funny woman that I’m an even bigger fan now. I’m almost done with Everything is Perfect When You’re a Liar and can’t recommend it enough – if for no other reason than she’s a Canadian and references it proudly (you won’t get a Kids in the Hall callout from any other memoir). Totally in the vein of Tina Fey’s Bossypants and Mindy Kaling’s Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) – I love books by honestly funny women.

Baking:

I haven’t made these in a while, but I’m looking forward to whipping up a batch of Zucchini Muffins this weekend for next week. A lot of people make a crinkled-nose face when I mention these muffins, but they are amazingly delicious. Perfect breakfast food, unique flavour and the bonus is that they freeze really well (so you can enjoy for a bit longer).

Love this recipe from Martha Stewart - I would modify slightly by removing the banana and replacing the flaxseed with pecans.

Love this recipe from Martha Stewart – I would modify slightly by removing the banana and replacing the flaxseed with pecans.

Planning:

To plant a springtime, apartment herb garden. I’ve promised myself I will have a green thumb once we get a house (even if it kills me), so I’m going to start practicing now. Thanks to my other-other half (Alli) I’m all set up…

Get ready, pasta!

Get ready, pasta!

Wanting:

To be here right about now…

Paris

“Paris is always a good idea” – Audrey Hepburn

Happy Friday everyone!

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I Take Thee…Pie

This past September, one of my very best friends (and the second half of my future business venture in…well, we’re not quite sure what our business will be yet, but it will be great) got married. Their theme was Vintage Travel, and it was a beautifully decorated, attention-to-detailed wedding that was so completely “them”. I don’t think there was much more they could have done to show how in love they are, while also showing off their amazingly unique style as a couple and as individuals. Surrounded by their closest friends and family, they exchanged vows and then we all ate, drank and danced the night away in celebration at the Academy of Spherical Arts (I suggest visiting one day for lunch or dinner…it’s right next to one of my favourite furniture stores, West Elm in Liberty Village).

One of the best parts of their wedding was the cake cutting…because they actually cut a pie! The two met in university and their first date was simply “let’s procrastinate from studying for exams and instead go on a campus-wide hunt for pie”. And pie has been a favourite dessert (and theme) throughout their relationship ever since. In honour of their upcoming second wedding – more of an extended first wedding, really – in New Zealand, I’d like to share my favourite pie recipe:

Blueberry Pie with Lattice Crust

(from Epicurious)

Thanksgiving Pie(s)

Thanksgiving Pie(s)

Crust (makes 2 disks, for top and bottom):

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 2/3 cup solid vegetable shortening, frozen, then cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 6 tablespoons (or more) ice water
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

Blend flour, sugar and salt in processor. Add shortening and butter and cut in using on/off turns until mixture resembles coarse meal. Transfer mixture to bowl. Mix 6 tablespoons ice water and vinegar in small bowl; pour over flour mixture. Stir with fork until moist clumps form, adding more ice water by teaspoonfuls if dough is dry. Gather dough into 2 balls; flatten each into disk. Wrap each in plastic and chill 30 minutes.

Filling:

  • 4 1/2-pint baskets blueberries
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Position rack in lowest third of oven and preheat to 400°F. Combine first 6 ingredients in large bowl. Crush a few berries in bowl with back of rubber spatula; toss to blend. Let stand until dry ingredients are moistened, about 15 minutes.

Roll out 1 pie-crust disk on lightly floured surface to 12 1/2-inch round. Transfer to 9-inch-diameter glass pie dish. Trim dough overhang to 3/4 inch. Spoon filling into crust. Roll out second pie-crust disk on lightly floured surface to 12-inch round. Using scalloped pastry cutter, cut dough into generous 1/2-inch-wide strips. Arrange dough strips across top of filling. Form lattice by arranging more dough strips at right angle to first strips, weaving strips if desired. Trim dough strips even with overhang on bottom crust. Tuck ends of dough strips and overhang under; press to seal. Crimp edges decoratively. Brush edges and lattice lightly with whipping cream.

Place pie on baking sheet. Bake 40 minutes. Cover crust edges with foil to prevent overbrowning. Continue to bake until filling bubbles thickly in center, about 50 minutes longer. Cool pie on rack at least 2 hours and up to 8 hours.

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