Well, hello there. It's been a been a while, at least 10 days feels quite long. I know I'm new around here but when starting this blog, my goal was post something food, music or makeup related at least once per week. It didn't seem lofty at the time, and some ways it still doesn't, but clearly, I've been slacking a bit. I'd like to blame it, like everything else that hasn't gone according to plan these last couple of weeks, on the scorching LA heat that's reared its head earlier than expected. Actually, it's only hit about 90, but two months ago I moved—from Downtown LA to Larchmont—and while I love so much about my new place, it does not have central air. Man, did I take that for granted all these years! I have a few fans, which of course is better than nothing, but even with them on and every single window open, I still sweat as soon as I do anything other than sitting on my couch. So, I've done a lot of that (sans my laptop) this last week and a half.
But, I've baked, cooked, and listened to music too! Makeup not so much—aside from ordering Jaclyn Hill's Morphe pallette (!)—there's nothing worse than feeling like your concealer is creasing and foundation is dripping all over your face. In fact, I've made and received some great goodies in my Sift & Shout absence: sourdough starter and three types of flours from King Arthur, a new pairing knife and half sheet plans from Williams-Sonoma, new music from Iron & Wine, The Lone Below, and SZA (which deserves its very own post), just to name a few. I've made my first Dutch Baby (a sourdough one at that), Ina's Chicken Piccata and Herb-Roasted Onions, Everything Dutch Oven Bread, and Buttermilk & Honey Roasted Fig Ice Cream. I promise I haven't completely checked out. I've just unintentionally kept from writing about it.
Despite my last preemptive post, summer is officially here. And, today is my (not so) baby brother's 25th birthday. Come to think of it, perhaps I was just waiting for a very special day to give you a rundown of all I've been up to, which essentially comes down to lots of reflecting (thanks to SZA's Ctrl), recipe planning and remaking. Lot's of 'covers' if you will. Whether making music or food, covers aren't easy. The latter might seem like less of a feat when the ingredients and directions are laid out in front of you, but surprises, messes, and mistakes are unavoidable—successes, always hoped for. Without all of the above, however, you don't learn. That's what I am and have been doing all this time. Doing my best to cover my favorite dishes, desserts or [makeup] looks. Every now and then I get so bold as to branch out on my own. And, every now and then I come out with stunning renditions like Eva Cassidy's "Over The Rainbow" or "Songbird"—and well, any and everything she sings but I'll save that for another day—José Gonzalez's "Heartbeats," James Vincent McMorrow's "Wicked Game," James Blakes' "A Case Of You," Kimbra's "Plain Gold Ring," or Nina Simone's "Here Comes The Sun" for that matter, Chance The Rapper's "Feel No Ways," and Childish Gambino's "Into You," and Lianne La Havas', "He Loves Me," or "Say A Little Prayer."
Covers celebrate the beauty in change. They allow us to express ourselves, show appreciation for those that came before, and add to the ever-evolving cycle of creativity. Sometimes we stick to the original, other moments we take off keeping only a bit of inspiration in mind. Either way, even the most innovative individuals gained some sort of influence from their predecessors.
Below is an older playlist I made about a year ago, featuring my favorite covers. And, at the moment, everything I make in the kitchen are recreations of recipes I've admired, even this Buttermilk & Honey-Roasted Fig Ice Cream I'm quite proud of—I've chosen to share it out of everything I've made during this "lull" because of said pride. That might be because it's keeping me a whole lot cooler than the pancakes and pizza's I've whipped up with my Sourdough started discard!
Repeat, reimagine, and recreate so long as you pay respect where it is due. That said, thank you, Deb Perelman, for inspiring me daily, for making feel that I can conquer even the most difficult recipes, although you're keen on celebrating the basics. Your food [happily] keeps me in the kitchen on even the most sweltering days.
Buttermilk & Honey Roasted Fig Ice Cream
Ever so slightly adapted from The Smitten Kitchen.
FOR THE ICE CREAM BASE
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 1/4 cup sugar
- 10 large egg yolks
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla or half a vanilla bean, scraped and simmered with the cream
- Pinch of salt
FOR THE HONEY ROASTED FIGS
- 10-12 ripe fresh brown figs
- 2 tbs unsalted butter
- 4 tbs raw honey
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Meanwhile, halve and quarter the figs, place them on a baking sheet (with a piece of parchment paper underneath).
- Scatter small dollops of butter to each piece of fig, then drizzle raw honey over them before placing in the oven for 10 minutes.
- In a large, heavy saucepan, combine the heavy cream and one cup of sugar and bring to a simmer over medium heat.
- Remove the cream mixture from the heat and allow honey roasted figs to steep in it for 20 minutes.
- Drain the figs from the cream mixture and place them in a food processor. Give them 2-3 short pulses, just until they're in small, thick pieces.
- In a large bowl, whisk egg yolks and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar.
- Cream mixture should still be warm. Drizzle a small amount into the yolks, slowly, and whisking constantly to keep the eggs from curdling. Do this a few more times to warm up the yolks before pouring the yolk mixture back into the cream, whisking constantly.
- Cook over low heat until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Strain the mixture and whisk in the buttermilk, vanilla, and salt. Cool completely and freeze according to manufacturer’s directions. Be sure to fold in the figs in during the last 5 minutes of freezing! (before placing finished ice cream in the freezer).
- Enjoy after a few hours, or (for best results) the next day, if you can wait that long.