Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Fisher Fair Scone

Fisher Fair Scones

I had not heard of Fisher Fair Scones until I picked up the mix from my local grocer's aisle and read the info on the side of the box.  Apparently Fisher scones have been served at fairs and festivals in the NW since 1915.  Any of my NW friends out there have stories to tell about these?  I'd love to hear them!

The boxed mix turned out well.  All it took was the mix, some water and some extra flour for the hand work.  (Warning:  These make sticky dough!)  The scones were light and fluffy and sweet.  If you want to whip them up from scratch, check out the original 1930's recipe (from Labour of Love's blog).

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

A New Lunch Bag

Even though I'm no longer living in a college town, fall seems like a new start to me.  I've had fun donating school supplies to a local drive.  And I wanted (and needed) a new lunch bag.  I whipped this one up from a pattern in this book.  I love the way it works and the size. You can see below that I was able to carry a sandwich, cheese stick, yogurt and container of granola.

The way the bag works is cool - the handles allow you to tie it off and secure everything snugly.  This works great for my bike commute. 

Now for those of you with a focus on details, you might notice my raw edges are showing.  I messed up.  Nonetheless, it works fine!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Wildness in the City

The DH and I recently discovered a forgotten nursery, a wild spot in the midst of the city!  Roses escaping...reaching for the sky, the sun, the rain.  Up, up, out, out!  I love this bit of wildness in the city! A forgotten place of beauty that delights me.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Boxes and Tins of Tea

Boxes and tins of tea are so pretty and colorful!  I keep an eye open for the interesting ones.  Here are a few I've found...

Two spellings for tea, depending on which side of the tin you show. 
From Turkuaz in my beloved B-town.

An overwhelming number of choices at an Asian market

A marketing/art department with a sense of humor.
Found along the Oregon coast.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Tea Explorations

I've been having lots of fun exploring new (and old) teas lately! 

A few weeks ago, I had the chance to try some unusual matcha-styled (powdered) teas with Lindsey, of Vee Tea.  She's had special training in the preparation of matcha, and I loved watching her whisk up the fine powder to a froth.  These teas were non-traditional matchas, in that they were chosen for their high antioxidant levels and made into powder.  The thought is the powdered tea will offer even more health benefit when a person ingests the whole leaf.  I'm not able to comment on the validity of this claim, but I find it an interesting concept.  One of the teas, a white, made a lovely froth and silver-green color (reminding me of a silver artemesia plant).

We started with a high-quality matcha, Matcha Hekisui, then progressed to the non-traditional ones.  Here is Lindsey whisking up the first matcha.

The powdered white tea, after whisking

Today we had a puerh sampling session.  We tasted two special varieties, one packed in a bamboo stalk and the other in a pomelo rind.  These are the "old" teas I referenced above because puerh tea is aged.  It was fascinating to loosen the brick-like tea from its container and then notice the aroma of the dry leaf, the wet leaf and the flavor differences both within the same tea at different brew lengths, and between the teas.

Tea will continue to be a life-long study and passion.  There is so much to learn and explore.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

A Temporary?? Pleasure

I recently had a very nice lunch at a local antique store/cafe near me.  When I shared my pleasure with the server, she let me know that there was a good chance the place would close in January.  My heart sank. 

I had a delicious lunch (sandwich, soup, heavenly marionberry scone with cream, well-made English Breakfast loose tea and milk and sugar).  I was excited about making this a regular thing.  It's very close to where I live.  I don't know the drivers for the closure, could be a victim of the economy...could be the owner has inspiring plans elsewhere.  Selfishly, I hope it stays open, but I know that my desires might not be for the greater good.  Nonetheless, I can hope and enjoy it while it's here! 

Note:  I'm leaving the restaurant nameless in case it remains open!  At that point I will celebrate and share the name!

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Public Art, Tea Themed

I love public art!  Imagine my happiness when I found this gem in Portland, near PGE Park.  So cool!

Thursday, August 05, 2010

1000 Layer Cracker

On a recent Trader Joe's shopping excursion, these "1000 layer crackers" caught my attention.  According to the package, they've been enjoyed in China for ages.

While there may not actually be 1000 layers, these are very delicious and simple crackers.  In fact, I was super impressed by the short ingredients list: wheat flour, palm oil, sugar, sesame, salt.

I really, really liked the sweet-salty-sesame mix of the crackers, and the texture was also fantastic.  However, each cracker is wrapped individually in plastic.  Excessive.  I probably won't buy them again because of that.  Dang it.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

What Is Cobbler to You?

Blackberry Cobbler, Dear Hubby Style

What is cobbler to you?  To me, it's made in a rectangular pan, pie crust on bottom and top (the more the better; we fight for the corners!), and fruit filling in between.

To the DH, it's fruit on bottom with a biscuit topping that allows room for the fruit filling to bubble up.

Both are delicious.  Which style is yours?  (See Poll at right.)