Author Archives: krissy o'shea

APPLE GALETTE WITH CARDAMOM CRUST

October 19, 2018

I love greeting the first few chilly mornings of autumn and can usually be found, shoulders wrapped, sitting in the kitchen alone with the steely blue light, hands clasped around a mug of tea. These moments of transition are always my most favorite. My attention pointed sharply at the changes happening, in the light, in the air, in the smell of the earth. There is no time like those first few days of a new season to awaken the senses and renew faith in the beauty of this life.The kettle seems to take just a bit longer to boil in the cooler kitchen and in those few extra moments I find my mind wandering to thoughts of cinnamon scented breads, oven roasted pumpkin and pots of soup on the stove. My closet and spice cabinet are inevitably rotated, those summer things, those summery flavors moving to the back in favor of the warmth of sweaters and cardamom pods.  Though our garden is waning I know there will be lots of lovely things at the farmers market soon and I’m looking forward to the new seasons produce. Nothing quite captivates me or captures the essence of the season here in New England, quite like apples. I unabashedly devour them in everything – soups, salads, roasted, raw, sweet, savory. I fairly live for that first bite into the first apple of the autumn season. Of course that’s first bite is even better on a slightly crisp, sweater needed, sunny, orangish leafy sort of day. Below is the recipe for a lovely rustic galette – just the sort of thing I find myself wanting to make when that unavoidable pull of the universe calls for baking.I like to use a mix of apples for this galette , skins on, textures and flavors all melding together. I also shy away from store-bought in favor of more local, older school varieties of apples. I find the flavors richer and the textures more diversified. Check out the local farmers markets or farm stands – I like Macs, Macoun, Cortland and Cox.

Apple Galette

350 for 55-60 min

Crust (adapted from the brilliant Linda Lomelino

  • 1 2/3 Cups or 200g flour
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2/3 Cup or 150g very cold butter
  • 1 tsp fresh ground cardamom
  • 4-5 Tbsp ice water

 

Filling

  • 4 medium sized / 725 g mixed apples 
  • ¼ cup or 35g golden raisins
  • Zest ½ orange & ½ lemon
  • Juice of half an orange, 3Tbsp
  • Juice half a lemon, 1Tbsp
  • 1Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp heavy cream or milk (to wash the edges of the crust)
  • plus more granular sugar for topping

instructions:

to make the crust – mix flour, sugar, salt and cardamom together in a large bowl. Begin with very cold butter and finely dice butter with a knife or finely slice with a cheese slicer (a trick i learned from Linda Lomelino)

gently rub butter with clean hands into the dry mixture until it is combined and resembles the texture of wet sand. Some larger pea sized pieces of butter are ok.

Slowly add the iced water, one tablespoon at a time, until the dough just comes together to form a ball. Pat into a disc and wrap in wax paper and a clean kitchen towel. place in the refrigerator to chill at least 30 minutes or up to 24 hours

To make the Galette – Preheat the oven to 350

slice apples into 1/8″ thick slices, cores removed and skins on. Then toss the apple slices with the zest, juice, cinnamon, sugar and raisins.

remove dough from refrigerator and let stand a few minutes or until its easily rolled out but not warm. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough until its about 13″ in diameter. Carefully transfer to a parchment lined 9″ pie pan or baking sheet.

add the apple mixture on top of the dough (arrange in a fan pattern if desired, or simply pile it on) leaving about 2 1/2″ from the edge with no filling.

carefully fold up the edge all the way around and press a little to seal. Brush on the milk or cream across the top of the folded edge and sprinkle generously with granulated sugar. this will help the edges brown nicely

Pop the galette into the oven and bake 55 – 60 minutes our until the crust is cooked. You may need to cover the center apples with a bit of extra baking parchment if the edges begin to catch.

Remove from the oven and let stand about 10 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature

Cottage Farm Nursery Reveal

October 4, 2018

This post has been a long time coming, but today I’m excited to share the reveal of the Cottage Farm nursery. As our renovation on the city cottage progressed this past year, it became clear that we would need to move out in order to complete the remaining work… ah the best laid plains. So, while we had planned to spend the early weeks after baby in the city, things didn’t quite shape up that way – instead of having baby come home to life in the city, we set up a sweet little nursery at the farm.

I’m so thrilled to introduce Pehr Designs and Kalon Studios – and delighted to have been able to partner with these two amazing businesses for our nursery. I love them both for their elegant, beautifully understated designs and the level of sophistication their products brought to our nursery. They helped me achieve the serene cocoon I was hoping the nursery would be and put together a space we all love spending time in.  I’m excited to share it with you here – 

My design plan for the nursery was to create a space that was both elegant and serene while still being baby fun and inviting. I wanted a space for us to tuck baby in at night, a space where we could bond altogether as a family. Above all, I wanted the vibe to be peaceful and comfortable for all members of the family, visually pleasing and incredibly functional/practical. That translated to a quiet base palette filled with lots of different neutral textures, a bit of contrast and a touch of whimsy.

After many a late night Pintrest session, it was Pehr Design’s fun, sophisticated  Ivory Pom Pom Rug that became the anchor for the entire nursery. I quite literally built the design plan from this ground up. Next came a vintage chair – a gently rounded shape, with a lovely padded back, low arms and a hidden swivel. It was perfect, except for the bright, highly textured floral fabric covering it. I swapped its 80’s ensemble for a very soft and heavily textured  Kravet linen.  Next was to find the perfect crib –  I searched a variety of style, finishes and colors before coming to the Studio Kalon Caravan Crib It is a work of art unto itself, I loved it super clean lines, classic sensibilities and neutral finish. This Studio Kalon piece is crafted in the USA and doesn’t use toxic materials or finishes. It is a thoughtful, exquisite asset to our nursery and something we will be able to have in our home for years to come as it transitions with Ruairi well into his toddler years. 

Ruairi has slept in this crib since his first night at home after rejecting all the newborn pieces we had for him. I think, in large part, this is because of the Studio Kalon Dream No. 1 Mattress Before I began my research for the nursery, I had no idea just how many scary materials made up mattresses, especially those designed to be waterproof/flame retardant. But this mattress, like the crib, is thoughtfully crafted with only nontoxic and natural materials. And, on top of all of this, it feels incredibly luxurious and supportive for our little one’s growing and developing body. Given its small stature, multi use pieces and great storage are of course key in the nursery. I chose Pehr’s natural soft storage bins in a variety of sizes to help keep the order. They kept to my color palette (which I love) while adding that touch of whimsy with the understated pompom design. The variety of sizes is great for versatility and can change and grow as the little one’s needs change. The largest of the bins is currently doing duty as our hamper – for all the baby laundry, crib sheets and mattress covers. Something I hadn’t anticipated needing to change so very often! The smaller bins are perfect now on the changing table filled with diapering necessities and a medium one beside the nursing chair for swaddles and burp cloths.  The quilted changing pad cover is another place to add a bit of lightheartedness to the design of the room. It makes such a lovely touch to the changing station with it sweet pindot design 

Other textures came into the room with the addition of Stork blanket, and the Pom Pom pillow which is such a lovely size and shape for the nursing chair. The stork blanket is not only beautiful but makes a perfect little play mat when laid out on the PomPom rug 

I also fell in love with the Little Lamb Mobile – sophisticated and still playful with its nearly black and white scheme. Ruairi loves staring at when he wakes up in the morning. And, there have always been sheep at Cottage Farm, so its a whimsical nod to whats going on outside his window

The walls are painted in one of my favorite colors – Skimming Stone by Farrow & Ball. I have used this color elsewhere in the farm-house and love its calming yet chameleon qualities. Spending lots of time in this room at different times of day necessitated an interesting wall color!

I really didn’t want the space to feel cluttered or over designed so I’ve added just a few other bits to round out the nursery. A very playful circular end table and a fun changing basket – which has proven clutch for a couple of unexpected on the go diaper changes. I also love the soft stuffed bunny & a simple striped throw blanket for chilly autumn mornings.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this revel of the Cottage Farm nursery space. Its been wonderful to share it with you.

 

*this post is sponsored. all opinions and reviews are my own.

 

 

 

Summer Grilled Sandwich

July 4, 2018

In New England, the celebrations surrounding the 4th of July are palpable; parades, center of town concerts, strawberry shortcake festivals. Weeks in advance, the white clapboard houses lining the proverbial main street, north street and south street don their festive regalia in preparation for independence day celebrations. Flags and buntings unfurl from their wintry storage places, with a brisk dusting off, they begin to don the front porches and entryways of various houses. Planters and hanging baskets begin to fill with red white and blue petunia or begonia and window boxes are outfitted with miniature flags on little gold-capped wooden sticks, the very same that line the brick pathways leading from street to the front doors of many houses this time of year. While the 4th of July conjures this very specific imagery, it celebrations also manifest in the form of backyard picnics, cookouts and potlucks.

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rhubarb skillet cake

May 3, 2018

This recipe is the result of one of those happy accident moments. The kind where you set out with one intention and are left with an entirely different (read not bad, just not expected) result. What started as a batch of scones, somewhere along the way lost its true scone-ness and became instead this equally good but different skillet cake. The very first round wasn’t good exactly but it held the promise of possibility and to my mind that warrants, if nothing else, at least another try. You see, I’m a big believer in happy accidents, in leaving room for magic and the promise of possibility, both in life and in the kitchen. It is precisely the potential in these between spaces that keep the everyday interesting, exciting and fresh. If I don’t leave space for the unexpected or what I more fondly prefer to think of as an everyday sort of magic I find that is when a staleness creeps in and a rigidity of routine and shortsightedness creeps in. This quickly becomes stifling and a vicious cycle which leads to nowhere except feeling uninspired and not being able to see the elegance in the everyday. And so back to our skillet cake. No, it did not turn out to be a batch of scones and yes the first incarnation of the batter was, quite frankly a runny, gummy disaster, but I baked it anyway and tasted and what I found was that I loved the flavors and the hearty delicateness of the cake. There was spark of something there, a hit that something more was possible, and so a few tweaks and few more tests and this lovely rhubarb skillet cake became something all its own. 

It’s perfect to use up the glut of rhubarb this time of year and a lovely fluffy breakfast or brunch dish (of course you could serve it with fresh berried and a dollop of cream for dessert too) sort of thing. It comes together incredibly quickly with rather little effort, especially if using a food processor. But, you don’t need one to make it. And as it bakes the smell fills the kitchen and permeates the rooms beyond adding only to the magic of these brightly light spring mornings 

Breakfast Rhubarb Skillet Cake

  • 2C | 250g flour
  • 1/4C | 65g sugar
  • 1 TBSP baking powder
  • 5 TBSP | 74g butter
  • 1 C |150g Rhubarb – sugared with scant 3 Tbsp / 35g
  • 1/2 C + 1T buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 ½ tsp vanilla
  • demerara sugar or other course grained sugar for sprinkling over the top plus a Tbsp or so extra buttermilk (optional)
  1. preheat your oven to 425F/ 220C
  2. grease a 9″ pie dish or round baking pan, line the bottom with a circle of parchment.
  3. Slice rhubarb stock into 1/4″ or so discs and toss with the 3 T | 35g sugar
  4. in a food processor or large bowl combine the flour, 1/4C|65g sugar, baking powder, butter. Pulse together until the texture of peas and turn out into a large bowl. Do not over work, some chunks of butter is ok. If doing it by hand, rub butter into the flour mixture with the tip of your fingers.
  5. toss the rhubarb with the flour and mix to coat well. make a well at the center of the dry mixture and add in the buttermilk. Stir to combine, then add the egg lightly beaten and vanilla. stir until everything is just combined and turn out the mixture into the baking pan
  6. with the back of a spoon spread mixture evenly in the pan and score crosswise about 6 times
  7. Brush the top with a little extra buttermilk and sprinkle with demerara sugar
  8. Bake 30-35 mins

A Spring Wardrobe Update and Giveaway with J.Jill

April 9, 2018

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It’s no secret that I favor effortless everyday essentials in my home and in my wardrobe. Nor is it that I prefer a few stylish, practical and comfortable pieces – give me a good white button down any day! – over a wardrobe crammed to the gills with items rarely worn or too particular.

These preferences coupled with the rather demanding daily requirements of my career as photographer, recipe developer, stylist – mean I want items in my closet that are functional and layer seamlessly with one another. I like lots of choice from just a few items, and those pieces must also be chic and polished. I want pieces that look elegant and make me feel that way, even when Im elbow-deep in a bucket of flowers in a warehouse at 5am.

Naturally, I was thrilled to learn about J.Jill’s collection pieces. Each month just a few pieces are released and in turn those pieces compliment the rest of the line. I like to think of them as elevated pieces for my capsule wardrobe. April’s collection pieces could not be better timed as I look to reinvigorate my wardrobe. I will be adding a key piece or two that I know will carry me through this season of transition here in New England and through the entire spring.  As a company with its roots in New England, J.Jill seems to perfectly understand the need for versatility in a spring wardrobe with easy essentials, perfect for layering on and off as the temperatures spike and dip.  J.Jills style is versatile, a style for life and their pieces gracefully help me shift into the spring season.cottagefarm.krissyosheaphotography.2018-12On a particularly brisk morning recently, I made an early run to the flower market in search of blooms to fill the city cottage ahead of the weekend. And while I knew rows of stunning blooms would be there waiting, there is nothing like spring flower season,  I also knew it would be quite chilly. I popped on the Tab Sleeved Top  from  J.Jills recently released April collection and donned an extra layer in the Drawstring Jacket (love its many pockets!) and headed out in search of a few bundles of flowers.cottagefarm.krissyosheaphotography.2018cottagefarm.krissyosheaphotography.2018-9cottagefarm.krissyosheaphotography.2018-11cottagefarm.krissyosheaphotography.2018-2

Give Away is now closed. Congratulations to the winner of the give aways Sonya. J.Jill is generously providing a $300 gift card to one luck reader. To enter please leave a comment below telling us what essentials you love for Spring. (Open to legal US residents only) winner will be chosen at random in one week. In addition, a small donation has been made to the J.Jill Compassion Fund which that helps support community-based organizations who assist disadvantaged and homeless women on their path to self-sufficiency.

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This post is in partnership with J.Jill. All thoughts and opinions are my own

poached rhubarb and two superfood sprinkles

April 5, 2018

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“Well thats a sure sign of spring” the woman uttered as, unloading my basket, I handed her a fistful of slender bright pink rhubarb stalks. And its true, rhubarb is perhaps the one thing that emphatically signals the transition into the spring growing season. That, and possibly fiddlehead ferns, the elusive (once wild grown only, now cultivated) foretellers of spring’s arrival in New England. So in fact, my clutch of rhubarb really did warrant the elated, if not somewhat surprised response from the woman at the market.

Rhubarb, I have found, is also one of those items a bit like cilantro, either loved or hated. I fall unequivocally into the yes, can’t get enough rhubarb camp. In sweet or savory (see my rye berry salad with pickled rhubarb here) its equally austere and unique with a  flavor that can’t really be nailed down but you know it when you taste it. Eyes closed, I would always know its was rhubarb.  continue reading

Spring Green Bread Salad with La Brea Bakery

March 20, 2018

This year, spring has been slow in coming and only just now is it beginning to show itself. The slightest hints are trickling in at the markets, tucked amongst the wintry root vegetables are a few tender green stalks of asparagus and the brilliant pinky reds of slender rhubarb. But even still, as these items shyly make their way to market, there is snow on the ground and low digits temperatures awaiting us each day. Winter’s persistence has me reluctant to shun it’s comforting meals just yet but I do so long for those first few tastes of spring. So, I’ve folded the two seasons into one to create the recipe below – A spring green bread salad. It ticks all the boxes, fresh and light with distinct flavors of the new season and a nourishing hearty backbone. This delicious backbone comes from one of my favorite foods, really beautifully made bread. Give me all the crisp crusts and invitingly chewy centers and I couldn’t be happier.  La Brea Bakery breads, with their Big Sky Montana grown single origin wheats and stunning sourdough starter create some truly wonderful artisan breads. And their Reserve sourdough demi-baguette  was the perfect choice for this recipe, crisping up beautifully in the oven. La Brea Bakery breads are consistently delicious and accessible nationally (something else I love!) and they have been using the same starter since 1989. Look out for their new Reserve breads like the sourdough in this recipe at Krogers Markets specialty cheese counters – distinguished cheeses and artisan breads in one place, yes please. Find out more here & look for a little coupon too! continue reading

chocolate pasta with a brown butter hazelnut sauce

February 14, 2018

Valentines day tends to be a blur of petals, paper and chocolate. And so, years ago we decided to take the mania out of the day and try to really embrace the true sentiment of it all – a  sentiment that at its core, without all the fluff and pink and red ribbony, is genuine.  It is a unique moment each year to celebrate one of the sweetest delights of the everyday, love. Not the ambiguous, cerebral sort, but the specific, deep down sort of love that is given freely and wantonly. For us, valentines day has become a moment to pause and make an effort to give ourselves over to just being together, intentionally making space to honor that everyday love that we have built together over the last twelve years. Of course, it could be said that this should be done everyday, and I do agree, but life is messy, complicated, quick and does not always lend itself to acts of celebrating. So really, I embrace this as time to stop and celebrate, enjoy and revel in the love part.  We try to spend the most amount of time together in one of our favorite places, doing something that we enjoy and elevating it just a bit to feel celebratory – this inevitably means time together in the kitchen. We have cooked some incredible meals over the past decade (a seriously gorgeous cioppino in SanFrancisco and  handmade pizzas on the grill in a New England snow storm may top the list) and have had more fun than we ever did rushing to reservations at overly crowded, maxed out restaurants. continue reading

Roast Cauliflower with Crispy Caper, Jalapeno & Olive 

January 29, 2018

Cauliflower is often on the menu here. In fact, it is rather affectionately nicknamed  – “the king of vegetables” if that gives you any idea how much love there is for cauliflower in our kitchen. And this roast cauliflower with capers and jalapeno is one of our go-to meals. A simple one pan dish (little cleanup = always a winner ) its a meal that is satisfying on those cold wintry nights and not so time-consuming, i.e. perfect to be made on a weeknight. It fills the house with warming aromas and is good at chasing those chilly empty spots from the belly that always seem to creep up in subzero temps.

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Gotland Workshop 2017: A Recap

January 19, 2018

 The light in Gotland is unlike the light anywhere else, or anywhere I’ve ever been. Silvery, mercurial nearly translucent even in the height of summer, at noon. Perhaps is because Gotland is an island, surrounded by the reflective powers of the sea but whatever it is, the light of Gotland is something in a realm unto itself and a photographers dream.

Our farmhouse home during the workshop made it even easier to love the light – with its soft plaster walls, heavy stone sills and perfectly directed windows.  Thought and care had clearly been put into the building and more importantly the position of the building just so as to capture every last single liquid drop of light. It easily enticed the first few slivers of daylight and ensnared the last rays of evening. Its painted floors bounced light into all corners including the eves of the most charming room in the house  – a whitewashed bunk room of sorts with sheepskin rugs and blue ticked duvets. Scandinavian to the letter and charming beyond measure. continue reading