Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Spice it Up

It has finally hit freezing in New York City and all I want to do is drink red wine, roast sweet squash and apples, saute bitter greens, down a good juicy steak, and daydream about the upcoming holidays. 

In the past week I've made cranberry sauce (that's practically a pie filling) by mixing about a cup and a half fresh Pine Barren cranberries, with a generous 1/4 cup of beet, apple, carrot, lemon and ginger juice (a blueprint juice), a heaping 1/2 cup of cane sugar and a dash each of cinnamon and freshly grated nutmeg. I've sauteed spicy mustard greens with lots of garlic, and roasted cubed kabocha squash, purple Hawaiian sweet potatoes (who knew there was such a thing!), onion and apples for a knockout side dish. And most recently added a little nutmeg to my pancake batter, fried them up in a little coconut oil, and separately peeled and sliced up two sturdy baking apples, tossed them into my rice cooker with a couple tablespoons light brown sugar and some more coconut oil, cooked until soft and golden, and piled them on top of nutmegy flapjacks for a breakfast that will get you through to dinner.

I want spicy, winey, coziness.

And with all this blustery, eye watering weather I want to stay indoors wrapped in a wool blanket drinking hot cider, and in doing so I've been browsing some of my favorite blogs and websites looking for gift ideas and holiday cheer and just thought I'd share my favorites. A little gift guide, of mostly local, made in the US delights, if you will. 

1. For those who sew, knit and crochet like champs, or would like to learn how:

2. For Wine and Spirits from the always helpful and knowledgeable:

3. For something sweet, decadent and a little over the top:

4. Everything for the home you will never find at crate and barrel:

5. For the cooks who can't get enough:

6. For the coffee buzzed:

7. For the special lady in your life:

8. For clothes, hats, scarves and everything else wearable, the New York standard:

9. For those in need of healing hands:

10. For a beautiful, one-of-a-kind botanical illustration to hang on the wall:

11. For unisex soaps, candles, lotions and potions made in New York:

11. And to spread much needed cheer to those near and far: