I’m curious so please entertain me… Are any particular color palettes catching your eye lately? I’m getting bored with the usual suspects (black and white, hot pink and gray, pastels with copper, summer-y citrus hues) and am looking towards a more Autumn selection in an earthy palette with flecks of pale muddy rose and some purple. Here’s what I’m attracted to at the moment…
Photographer Nicole Franzen, whom I just love.
What is your color crush at the moment? If you write your own color crush post, please link it in the comments section below so I can see it – only something you’ve written for Fall 2013 though, please. Thank you!
(images linked to their sources above, all via Pinterest.)
Hello everyone! Jillian here with this month’s Delicious Bites column for decor8 where I’m going to show you how to make Fig + Raspberry Frangipane Tarts. It’s spring time in Sydney but I know that autumn is coming to the Northern Hemisphere. So for the next few months I’ll be making treats using winter and autumn produce. This month, I decided it was time to make something a little fancier than usual so I combined 2 of my favourite fruits with an almond flavoured filling to make individual fig and raspberry frangipane tarts.
Frangipane is an almond flavoured butter cream and I use it all the time when making fruit tarts. I make different varieties depending on which fruit is in season and use different nuts as well. If figs aren’t in season where you live you can make this with any other kind of berry or soft fruit. Rhubarb, pear or plum frangipane tarts are particularly delicious but if you come up with any other flavour combinations, I’d love to hear them.
I put a layer of jam in the bottom of the tart shell which matches the fruit used to top the tart. I decided to use raspberry jam this time but you could always use fig jam or some other red berry jam. If the thought of making pastry terrifies you, you can always buy pastry from the freezer section of the supermarket and I’ll let you in on a secret, you can make the frangipane tarts without pastry. Just grease and flour some muffin or friand tins and bake the filling in those topped with the fruit and you’ll still end up with a yummy treat. When the tarts come out of the oven I brush the filling with a little jam to make them look glossy.
FIG AND RASPBERRY FRANGIPANE TARTS (makes six 10 cm tarts)
Note: The pastry makes enough to line a 23 cm tart shell so there will be some pastry left over. If you’d like to make this into a 23cm/9 inch tart you’ll need to double the filling.
110 g (4 oz) cold unsalted butter, diced
1/4 cup icing sugar (confectioner’s sugar)
1/4 cup almond meal
1 3/4 cups plain flour
1 egg, lightly beaten
75 gm (2 1/2 oz) unsalted butter
75 gm (2 1/2 oz) caster sugar
1 large egg
75 gm almond meal
1 tablespoon plain flour
1 tablespoon rum or orange juice
1/4 cup raspberry jam
6 – 8 figs (depending on size)
1 punnet raspberries
1/4 cup flaked almonds
Thick cream to serve
Extra raspberry jam
To make the pastry, combine all the dry ingredients in a food processor, and whiz for a few seconds until well combined and free of lumps. Add the cold butter and whiz until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the egg and sufficient cold water and whiz until a soft dough just starts to form around the blade. Remove the dough from the food processor and gather the pastry into a ball; flatten slightly before wrapping in plastic and placing in the fridge. Refrigerate the pastry for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F.
Place the dough onto a lightly floured surface (I use greaseproof paper) and roll out thinly with a rolling pin. Grease six 10 cm loose bottom fluted tartlet tins. Line the six tins with the pastry and trim the edges of the tart tins with a sharp knife. Lightly prick the pastry surface with the tines of a fork and return to the fridge for another 30 minutes. Line the tart shells with muffin liners and fill with pastry weights or uncooked rice. Bake for 10 minutes and then remove paper and weights. Bake for a further 5 minutes or until the shells are golden. Cool the pastry shells on a wire rack. While the tartlet shells are cooling, make the frangipane filling.
Place butter and caster sugar in a food processor and whiz to combine. Add the egg, the almond meal, the flour and the rum or orange juice, then pulse to combine. Spoon 1 – 2 teaspoons of the raspberry jam over the base of the cooled tart shells. Evenly divide the frangipane filling between the tarts and gently spoon over the jam. Place 2 or 3 fig halves cut side up into the frangipane filling. Tuck in a few of the raspberries and sprinkle a few flaked almonds over the tarts.
Place the 6 tartlets onto a baking sheet and place on the middle shelf of the oven. Bake at 190°C/375°F for 30-40 minutes until the frangipane filling has slightly puffed and is golden brown. Baking time will depend on your oven so start checking the tarts after 20 minutes. Remove the tray from the oven and cool the tartlets on a wire rack. Gently remove the tarts from the tins and serve with cream and remaining raspberries. If you like you can glaze the cooked figs and raspberries with some warmed, strained raspberry jam.
I love individual tarts but if you’d like to make one 23cm/9 inch tart, the pastry recipe is enough to line a 23 cm tart shell. You’ll need to make a double batch of the frangipane mixture and you may need to adjust the baking time a little.
I hope you enjoy the tarts. See you all again next month! – Jillian
(images: jillian lieboff)
Hello everyone! How are you? I’m doing great! Today I’m off to the farmers’ market to buy some lovely “props” for my home – tomorrow and Friday we are doing shoots here for my next book which releases on my birthday next year, March 21, so I have to get the photos in asap so they make the book. I’ve been too ill up until now to style and shoot anything, so I’m glad my head is above water enough so I can work. This is such an important book to me – it’s going to be really unique and full of color, I just know that you will love it.
Leslie Shewring and I have been working non-stop since May – so we’re about ready to wrap it up now and move on to other projects – so we’re in the twilight stages. We just can’t wait to see it in the upcoming months printed and ready to go out into the world. Next year will be an exciting time for me with a new baby arriving in January, a book in March and then a book launch party in London in May with some book tours and stuff to follow. I really want to bring the baby to the launch party in London – though it will be so tiny, I think it would be wonderful to share something so special with someone so special – and to have the baby meet everyone and be in one of my favorite cities – bliss! I have so many dear friends in London, I’d love to share the joy and also to meet my uncle who lives nearby. So we’ll see. It’s only a 50 minute flight and depending on the baby’s sleep schedule, we’ll know by May whether or not a plane ride is feasible and good for the health of the little one. If not, no problem – I’ll leave little cutie with daddy and escape for a day or two on my own. We’ll just have to see how I feel and where I’m at in May. Still a long way off…
Oh and by the way… My ultrasound yesterday went wonderfully and we found out that though I’m still not gaining any weight, the baby is growing and is the right size, kicking around and doing so beautifully. My doctor said the growth is perfect according to the charts. Yay! I’m not nearly as nauseous (though I still have nausea) either, which is such a relief. I laugh because I thought by now I’d be a beached whale but I lost 20 lbs and look great – though it’s obvious when you look at my stomach that I’m pregnant. The doctor thinks she knows the gender but wasn’t sure because of the position the baby was in during the u/s – so we will know when I have the 3D u/s in two weeks during my 21st week. I have to say, Germans have no problem giving regular ultrasounds – I think I’ve had 5 already and I’m only 19 weeks! Here you have to see your doctor every 4 weeks and then towards the end of December, I’ll have to go weekly. They monitor pregnancy closely here and watch for every possible sign of problems. What she predicts though, gender-wise, made me smile because I’ve had this funny intuition from the start that came naturally but I’m happy either way so I don’t care what the gender is. My mother didn’t know when I was born if I’d be a boy or girl, but she knew instinctively that she was having a girl so when I was born and the nurse told my mother, “It’s a girl!”, she said she replied, “I know, and her name is Holly Elizabeth”. She said the nurse was surprised and my mother told her she knew from the first day she found out she was pregnant. Funny! When it comes to gender, maybe I would care if I already had children and for instance, had 3 boys – I may want a girl. Or vice versa. But when it’s your first, how can you really have a strong preference either way? I just want a healthy child who is happy and who thrives in our home. I know that even u/s can be inaccurate with determining the gender, so I’ve decided to go neutral in the nursery so that if there are any surprises at birth, I can swap out accent colors and not be bothered with it. And that works for me because that’s my design style in the rest of the house anyway.
I’m also planning to buy clothing that can go either way, boy or girl, so I have the necessities at the hospital to wrap my little bundle in so if there is a surprise, we are prepared and not putting a girl in a boy’s outfit or a boy in a little Liberty dress. Though, hey, anything goes these days right?! It will be the dead of winter so I’ll need to bring a few things to the hospital though so the baby has proper attire. I’m not a big planner and tend to be really spontaneous, so I have to admit that thinking ahead about any of this is a trip for me – I’m just not a planner type, but I guess this will come with parenting and also with parenting in Germany where everything is timed with precision and planned so expertly. Up until now though, I’m pretty relaxed about the whole thing. Plus, I have a wonderful midwife so I have an expert to go to for all of my questions because though internet opinions are well-intended, I am keeping my circle pretty tight when it comes to who I’m listening to when it comes to advice. And thank god because the internet is full of wannabe medical experts!
I want to wish you a lovely day – I’ll be back with some more posts later on. I have a new recipe for a delicious Fig and Raspberry Frangipane Tart to share from Jillian Leiboff, a second recipe and video to share from Liz & Jewels, a new contributor to tell you about whom I’ve signed on for a year to do home tours on decor8, and lots more to talk about. See you later! xo
(image: holly becker)
Hello everyone! Today is Labor Day in the US and though I live in Germany, I still observe American holidays so I’ve elected to take today off to begin organizing my home for some upcoming projects. And tomorrow is the BIG DAY… The big ultrasound! I can’t wait to know if I’m having a boy or a girl but more importantly, to check in on the baby and make sure all is well. I have no idea about the gender, some moms instinctively know but I haven’t been able to determine that at all yet. I wonder if any of you had a feeling and then you were right? I am 50/50 – and thrilled in either case.
Today it is cloudy in Hannover, but a happy kind of cloudy. And very cool outside, though we are promised a heat wave at the end of the week so I’m basking in the moody weather today with candles on and favorite French tunes playing in the background. I’m beginning to sort things in my studio and prepare my home for Fall. It’s a ritual I enjoy each year, the big shift, and I love it very much. I’m actually ready for Fall now, are you? I crave all of that cool weather and crunchy leaves, comforting hot drinks and warm blankets and clothing. This year is a little different though, as I am planning a total redux at home since I’ve missed changing things up (haven’t redecorated since 2010) and feel a huge need to make some changes. I never go this long before I alter rooms at home, but now with a baby on the way, I am more motivated that ever to simplify and organize so that I can enjoy my home more this winter when the little one arrives.
The only thing I cannot do now, that is really hard to hold myself back from doing, is to push my furniture around! Argh! This bit drives me crazy because I love moving furniture but it’s not advisable when pregnant to move 300lb bookcases, is it?! So I guess I will be asking my husband and his body builder friend to come by as I play the role of bossy bear and point to stuff. Now that I think about it, that actually doesn’t sound so bad. :)
Have a nice day!