By Christoph

Taking the lane with our green cargo - Christmas tree transport by bike

Pia mentioned as a joke sometime last week at the dinner table that we should go buy our Christmas tree by bike. Everybody laughed, and went "why not?". Pia immediately texted Thomas about the crazy idea, who responded he wanted to be part, and so we were committed. Today around lunch time Thomas arrived and we took off for Miramar Nursery despite a light drizzle.

A large plate full of bacon-wrapped brussel sprouts

This was our Thanksgiving Day appetizer and stole the show. Sorry Mr. Turkey!

Saturday Morning Scones ready for breakfast

This is my take on the Corn Scones recipe from the Moosewood Restaurant Collective. I normally leave out their cornmeal, substituting it with our freshly ground spelt flour. The currants and lemon zest can be replaced with whatever you have on hand and feel like. In our kitchen we often use walnuts, dried cranberries or apricot paste (a thick sheet of fruit roll-up available at Arabian markets).
On weekends when we feel like something special for breakfast, this is our go-to recipe.

Zen background in display frame

Inspired by a page sent to us by our dear friend Susi Niederberger I set out to rework the display frame. The goal was to use vertical sticks, loosely placed, and randomly placed horizontal sticks to create a zen-like backdrop, on which to display just a few select photos.

the versatile art frame adorned with travel photos

I stole this idea from a flower shop in La Jolla where they had long stems of exotic flowers artfully displayed in a bamboo frame, but I extended the concept. You can put just about anything into this frame, just use your imagination. In our house we have mounted flowers, tree branches, cloth, origami pieces and much more, all with great results.

The secret of this basic bread dough is that flour is added to the liquids, rather than the other way round, which is what most regular bread recipes call for. Adding flour into the liquid allows the gluten and fibers to absorb more water, and as a result you get a more pliable dough and a moister, less crumbly bread. In other words, your bread tastes better! We learned this technique through Patricia Wells' excellent book At Home in Provence. In our house we use freshly ground spelt flour, but any good quality bread flour will work. Be creative and try to add other grains than wheat or spelt. Just keep wheat or spelt to 50% or more to provide gluten which makes your bread springy.