Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Design | Journey

I will be the first to admit that I have been l...a...z...y... when it comes to keeping this blog alive over the past couple of months. So much has happened in my personal life that it's hard to even know where to begin. Changes with family, keeping up with friends, starting an amazing new job with a design studio I love and respect, traveling, and making time for my health and well-being all while maintaining a busy freelance career... I've been tired y'all! 2012 has only just begun but it feels like I've crammed an entire years worth of activities into January, February and March. Now that I'm getting into more of a routine it feels like an appropriate time to share the things I love once more.

This particular post is a bit outside of my norm. Video games were a hobby of mine when I was younger but somewhere along the line, when games started getting almost too realistic, I started losing interest. It's funny being a graphic designer because I'm constantly interacting with new forms of technology, but with my video games I want it old school. I miss the days of Donkey Kong, Zelda, and Mario Kart. I miss my Gameboy and Super Nintendo!

I came across this article on Yahoo this morning and thought to myself, "I want to play this game like yesterday!"

Created by acclaimed independent developer thatgamecompany, Journey is an exploratory adventure that sees players wandering across a massive desert as they slowly make their way to a beacon of light atop a faraway mountain. They'll come across other online players along the way, but in what's considered a significant breach of gamer protocol, no talking is allowed, forcing players to find other ways to communicate with one another.

Even though I don't keep up with video games and reviews I will say that Journey is receiving some of the highest praise and is being considered, "The most beautiful game of its time," according to IGN.

Rainy days like today make me want to go home and whip up a pot of chicken meatball minestrone in my crock pot, bust out my roommates' PS3 and download Journey.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Dessert | Poppy Seed, Bourbon & Butterscotch Bread Pudding

I have a whole list of great excuses for not posting lately, but I'm just going to say Happy New Year!!! 2011 wasn't my favorite to say the least, but 2012 feels good so far. Really damn good!

I've made this recipe 3 times in less then a month. I don't know if that's something I should be admitting seeing as my roommates already voice their concerns about the amount of heavy whipping cream and eggs I've been keeping in the fridge. It's just sooo good. Really damn good! This dessert couldn't be easier to make and will literally have friends drooling and/or squealing like children with the first bite. And just when I go and get (even more) hooked on bread pudding, I find out that someone is opening a bread pudding bakery in my neighborhood. Rumor has it that there will be 108 flavors. I just, can't!

This magical recipe comes from the 2011 November issue of Bon Appétit. "Based on a dessert that Anita Lo serves at Anissa, this custardy bread pudding is shot through with poppy seeds for a stunning visual and textural effect." Seriously, MAKE THIS, you can't mess it up and you won't regret it.

PECAN, BOURBON & BUTTERSCOTCH BREAD PUDDING  |  Recipe inspired by Chef Anita Lo of Anissa

Butterscotch Sauce
1 cup (packed) light brown sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon bourbon

1 pound day-old rustic white bread, crusts removed, cut into 1/2” cubes (12 cups)
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
2 tablespoons plus 1 1/2 cups sugar
5 large eggs
4 cups heavy cream
1 1/2 tablespoons poppy seeds
Pinch of kosher salt
3 tablespoons bourbon
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise

Butterscotch Sauce

1  |  Bring brown sugar, corn syrup, butter, and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, whisking to dissolve sugar. Boil until mixture is syrupy and measures 1 1/2 cups, about 3 minutes.

2  |  Remove from heat; add cream and bourbon, if desired, and stir until smooth. Let cool. Let cool completely, cover, and chill. Rewarm before serving.


1  |  Toss bread, melted butter, and 2 tablespoons sugar in a large bowl and set aside.

2  |  Using an electric mixer, beat eggs and remaining 1 1/2 cups sugar in another large bowl until pale yellow and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add cream, poppy seeds, and salt; beat to blend.

3  |  Place bourbon in a small bowl; scrape in seeds from vanilla bean (reserve bean for another use). Whisk to distribute seeds, then add to egg mixture, whisking to blend well. Pour egg mixture over bread mixture in bowl. Toss to coat well. Transfer mixture to a 13x9x2” glass or ceramic baking dish, spreading out in an even layer. Cover with plastic wrap and chill overnight.

4  |  Preheat oven to 325°F. Remove plastic wrap and bake until top is browned in spots and a tester inserted into center comes out clean, 1 1/4–1 1/2 hours. Serve bread pudding with butterscotch sauce.

I was never able to get a good picture of the actual baked bread pudding. It always ended up being eaten as soon as it came out of the oven. No joke.

Design | Bartholomäus Traubeck: Years

YEARS from Bartholomäus Traubeck on Vimeo.

This music - which sounds like a moody piano soundtrack for a existentialist movie about a rainy day - is made by slicing a tree in cross-section, sticking it on a turntable, and dropping a tone-arm with a PlayStation Eye Camera in the head, and processing its output through Ableton Live. It’s called Years, and it was created by Bartholomäus Traubeck.

via BoingBoing