5 Things I'm Loving Right Now

Hi my loves! I hope you're having a Saturday morning filled with strong coffee, cozy socks, and plenty of breakfast foods. Weekends for me have been busy and I'm beyond excited to have a few days to catch up and bum around.

Here's a few things I've been recently loving:

1. Earlier in the summer we had our new sofa delivered! We ordered the Eliot Reversible Sectional in Bella Navy from Joybird and it's GORGEOUS. It's firm but still incredibly comfortable, easy to get cat hair off of, and so huge! The color is bold but not too in your face. Now we just need new pillows...

2. I spent a lot of last year trying to find the perfect black leather boots. After trying to find affordable dupes online that were never perfect, finally ordered the Pauline Boots from Madewell. They're exactly what I was looking for and very comfortable. 

3. After searching for a liquid lipstick that worked for me, I finally found one! On a whim I ordered a lipstick from The Drop Deads who sells LipSense and I'm now completely hooked. All other liquid lipsticks stay on the outside of my lips but wear off in the center also immediately. These babies last all day with minimal touch up. I can eat tacos in them. It's insane. Blue Red and Sassy Z are my favs, but I also own and like Salmon and Purple Rain. 

4. Recently repurchased a handful of Glossier skincare and cosmetics and it's just aces. I forgot how much I loved the boy brow, the stretch concealer in great, and the birthday balm, milky jelly cleanser, and primer are new favorites.

5. We've had a few cooler days here in Philly and I'm loving dressing for fall. I've broken out my boots and sweaters and denim jackets. I'm ready for layers and cool mornings drinking hot apple cider. I'm ready for fall clothes.

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Recipe: Chai Snickerdoodles

It's 90 degrees this week in Philadelphia but we are jumping into Fall head first. I'm looking forward to breaking out that cinnamon and nutmeg and getting back into the kitchen. I've got a lot of ideas bouncing around in my brain for Fall recipes—pumpkin ice cream cake, pear galette, chai white russians—but let me know if there's anything you would like to see this season!

We're kicking off Fall recipes with these Chai Snickerdoodles because we're not quite ready for pumpkin everything yet and I haven't made it to the apple picking yet.

On an unrelated note, every time I've typed "chai" during this blog post, I've most definitely typed "chia" and had to go back and fix it. But we're pushing through!

Chai Snickerdoodles

Makes a dozen to a dozen and a half cookies 

1 1/2 sticks butter, unsalted and room temperature
1 1/2 cup sugar
2 large eggs
2 3/4 cup flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon cardamon (separated)
2 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
3 tablespoon sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a nonstick baking liner.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar until fluffy (about 5 minutes). Add in eggs one at a time and mix until combined. 

In a separate bowl, combine flour, cream of tartar, salt, and 1 teaspoon of cardamon. Add dry ingredients to the butter and mix until dough is formed. Chill dough in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes. 

In a small bowl, mix together 2 1/2 tablespoons of cinnamon, 3 tablespoons of sugar, and 1 teaspoon of cardamon. Once dough is chilled, begin forming balls of dough that are 1 tablespoon in size. Roll each dough ball in the cinnamon, sugar, and cardamon mixture and place 1 inch apart on the baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the bottoms just begin to turn golden brown. Let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before cooling completely on a cooling rack. Store in an airtight container.

Recipe: Cinnamon and White Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookies

As I'm writing this, the windows are open and a cool breeze is blowing through my living room. I'm drinking hot tea and an Anthropologie catalog is lying on my coffee table with some serious cozy vibes. Fall is beginning and we're jumping in head first with some oatmeal cookies. 

These little gems are stuffed with chunks of white chocolate, cinnamon chips, and a handful of spices. We're keeping them soft and chewy because that's what I'm looking for in an oatmeal cookie. Hope you're into it.

Cinnamon and White Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookies

Makes 2 dozen cookies

1 1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 cups old fashioned oats
3 oz white chocolate, chopped into small chunks
3/4 cup cinnamon chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place a nonstick baking mat onto a baking sheet. 

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and brown sugar until fluffy and creamy. Add in egg and vanilla and mix until combined. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Add the dry ingredient to the butter mixture, large spoonfuls at a time, until just combined. Using a rubber spatula, mix in oats by hand. Once combined, add in white chocolate chunks and cinnamon chips and mix until they are evenly distributed throughout the dough.

Place rounded tablespoons of dough onto the baking sheet about an inch and a half apart. Before placing in the oven, press the circles of dough down slightly on the top, making them the shape of small hamburger patties. Bake 8-9 minutes until the edges and bottom are golden brown. Cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before cooling fully on a cooling rack.  

Recipe: Peach Ice Cream

I know that summer is officially over, but I needed to make one more recipe with the summer ingredient I have on hand: peaches. What you'll read below is my second attempt at making peach ice cream. The first attempt ended up way too vanilla, not enough peach, and definitely over churned. But this second try, it's damn good. 

French-style ice cream can seem mildly intimidating. Your trying not to burn cream, get a perfect custard consistency, and it takes a lot of cooling. But I promise, this ice cream is the creamiest I've ever made at home. Definitely worth the extra work and not as intimidating as you would think!

Let's hold on to summer for just a few more hours and make this peach ice cream, okay? Do yourself a favor. 

French-Style Peach Ice Cream

Yields 6-8 servings

1 cup 1% or 2% milk
1 cup heavy cream
3 large egg yolks
3 peaches, peeled and roughly chopped
1 peach, peels and chopped small
2 tablespoons sugar

The technique for making this French-style base is from the Sweet Cream and Sugar Cones cookbook. I highly recommend this book for anyone interested in making ice cream. The techniques mapped out in this box are incredibly detailed and helpful (pictures!).

Make your ice cream base: In a medium-sized bowl, whisk egg yolks and half of the sugar until just combined. Set aside. Fill a large bowl with water and ice. Also set aside.

In a medium saucepan, stir together milk, heavy cream, and the remaining sugar. Heat the mixture over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Bring the mixture to the brink of a simmer with small bubbles beginning to form along the edge of the pan. Turn the heat to medium and ladle about 1/2 cup of the hot cream mixture into the bowl with the eggs, whisking constantly. This will temper the eggs and keep them from scrambling. Repeat with another 1/2 cup ladle of hot cream.

Using a rubber spatula, stir the saucepan while you pour the egg mixture in. With the heat on medium, continue to cook on medium while stirring constantly until the mixture changes to a slightly thicker consistency. Once you feel a little more resistance as you stir, test the readiness by removing your spoon/spatula from the saucepan and running your finger across it. If the path created by your finger holds for a second or two, it's ready.

Remove from heat and pour into a plastic container or measuring cup through a fine mesh strainer. Place into the ice bath, stirring often with a clean spoon, until cool. Remove from the ice bath, cover with plastic wrap pressed against the custard, and refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours. 

Make peach puree: In a blender, blend together the 3 roughly chopped peaches and sugar until smooth. 

Make your ice cream: Pour peach puree into the custard and mix together. Pour mixture into ice cream machine and follow manufacturer's instructions. Once ice cream has mixed, quickly mix in chopped peach pieces with a spatula. Pour ice cream into a loaf pan. Place a piece of plastic wrap over the pan, pressing it lightly into the pan so it touches the top of the ice cream. Place in the freezer to set for 2 hours (or overnight). Once frozen, scoop into a bowl or ice cream cone.

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Cocktail: Watermelon Mojito

I'm holding on the fleeting end of summer with both hands right about now. While everyone else is dreaming of sweater weather and muled cider, I'm over here buying up all the summer flowers and product I can find. It's been a busy summer (as you probably have realized by my lack of blogging) filled with road trips and beach days and a lot of rosé sipping. And as much as I can live without the horrible humidity we've had this summer in Philadelphia, I'm my happiest when it's warm and sunny. 

So in celebration of summer were whipping up the perfect summer cocktail: Watermelon Mojito. Muddled mint, fresh-squeezed lime juice and pureed watermelon shaken together with rum and a lot of ice. Essential for lazy summer days. 

Watermelon Mojito

Makes 1 cocktail

1 large handful fresh mint
1 oz lime juice
4 oz watermelon puree**
2 oz white rum
ice
lime wheel and sprig of mint for garnish (optional)

In a cocktail shaker, add large handful of fresh mint and muddle. Add in ice, lime juice, watermelon puree, and rum and shake thoroughly. Strain the cocktail over a tall glass filled with ice. Garnish with a lime wheel and a sprigs of mint. Cheers!

**To make watermelon puree, place pieces of watermelon into a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth and no larger pieces appear. At this point you can strain your watermelon puree if you prefer, but I never do. Store in the refrigerator. 

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