It's Easter! The lovely thing about having lots of family close by is you can share events. Sky and I hosted Easter our first 2 years back in LA, Sky's mom did something last year, and this year we all congregated at Brock, Kristina's and baby Dashiell's place. He's 5 weeks already!!! How did that happen?? He couldn't tell me.
I didn't buy a new dress for Easter this year but if I were to, I think I'd choose this by Steven AlanIt's so styley and comfy at the same time. Kinda vintage kinda not. I love.
This was one of those lovely affairs where everyone brings something, we eat outdoors, dishes are a group effort, and the whole time felt unfussy, low-key and completely enjoyable. An incredible reminder that every party does not have to be a prep-for-3-weeks and stress out til guests arrive whirlwind. Kristina and her mom made deliciousness, Kristina's grandmother and Brock's mother made deliciousness, my mom made deliciousness (her amazing famous cookies which you, my friend, can and should order in the mail), and, if I dare say so myself, I made deliciousness too. So the day was....delicious! I brought the ginger scones a told you about a few weeks ago (only I ran out of flour so subbed 1/2 c bread flour and a cup of whole wheat flour---a little different but actually reaaaaallly good) and my new favorite thing to whip up: popsicles.
I borrowed the book "Pops!" from my friend Ami and now I must own it. The author is so creative and as much as I want to try most of her recipes I am also in love with all the things she uses as molds---stick-together Christmas balls for example. And silicone pastry molds. The little round orbs the Christmas balls made just make me want to sit on Eames furniture in an A-line dress in a house decorated in pastels. Or maybe if I make them for Matthew Weiner he'll write a part for me in Mad Men! HMmmmmmm.......
I made tangerine/blood orange and mint tea pops from her book and look how pretty they are!
It was funny (right Sky? I wasn't stressed at all was I? Don't answer) transporting them to Brock and Kristina's without a cooler but they made it. I put them in the freezer and after brunch took them to the table, we let them sit in their little molds (pictured) for a bit and after 5 or so minutes, voila.
Seriously these are the perfect thing for any party. The possibilities are ENDLESS.
After brunch I came home and finally took the stickers off the bottoms of the wine and beer glasses we got as wedding presents. We've used some of them but haven't had a dinner party for 12 yet so those ones we haven't served out of were sitting in the back of the cabinet waiting for me. And now they're guest-ready. Then there was an earthquake! I thought it was the landlord's grandkids running around upstairs because all the pots on my hanging rack were knocking into each other---not in any scary way but more than they've ever done. I couldn't hear the kids up there so I didn't know what was going on. An hour later as I was leaving the house I learned from my landlord the whole house was shaking from the quake in Baja. Dad keeps telling me to move to New Mexico and I gotta say today I wish I had a Harry Potter porthole to get me there. Or at least to get the glasses to a safe cabinet......
And now it's Sunday night; I've got a script to read for a reading coming up; I didn't get everything done this week I thought I would and that gets to be OK for now.
Here's how to make mint tea pops, adapted from Pops! by Krystina Castella
3/4 c sugar
1/3 c loose decaf green tea leaves, or 5 tea bags
12 sprigs fresh mint
juice of 1/2 lemon
handful of edible flower petals
Boil 4 1/2 cups water to a boil. Pour into heat-resistant pitcher along with the sugar and stir to dissolve.
Add tea, 10 mint sprigs, and lemon. Cover and let steep one hour. (I let mine sit longer than this while I went to the gym and they were fine)
Strain into a bowl and add honey to taste
Add a few mint leaves and flower petals to each mold. Pour in tea and freeze an hour or two until the pops are frozen enough that you can insert the sticks and they won't fall over
Keep freezing--at least 6 hours total but overnight is even better
Remove from freezer and let sit at room temp about 5 minutes before removing from molds
In her recipe she uses blanched almonds which would be wonderful---I just didn't make the time for that. Next batch. One of my favorite things about these pops, though, is the mint and flowers floating in the ice. The tangerine/blood orange ones have tangerine segments in them. And you can get creative while they're freezing and kinda manipulate the pieces so they're artfully placed in the mold or, if the pops are darker like the citrus ones, surprise the eater when they hit it. FUN. And warm weather food should be fun.