I had never cooked with beetroot before 2009. Now I can't stop. Beetroot risotto, beetroot salads, beetroot and goats cheese with bread, and of course borscht. I love this recipe that I found, cooked and loved last week.
Kenneth Clarke's Civilisation
This is the first six minutes of Kenneth Clark's 1969 BBC TV show "Civilisation." It was one of the first shows in colour and apparently, since colour tvs were so rare, people would go round to their friends' houses to watch it and have Civilisation parties. I love this sweet anecdote in Clark's Wikipedia entry: "Clark attended an early public screening of one of the programmes and was received with huge applause and cheers. He was so overwhelmed by this recognition that he hid himself away in the lavatory and wept for fifteen minutes; he had long been respected in academic circles but was utterly taken aback by the response of the public at large." from here.
Leather looks way better old. Two years ago I got a Mulberry Bayswater second hand - now that I have carried out to pubs, on planes and in the rain, it is just hitting its stride.
Sometimes you need a little drink before you go to dinner, but a glass of wine or a gin and tonic is too much. This is why the clever residents of Venice invented this drink.
Taking from the NYT's recipe...
50-60mL of Aperol
1 green olive.
In a rocks glass over three or four ice cubes, pour the prosecco, a dash of sparkling water and the Aperol, being sure to follow that order lest the Aperol sink to the bottom without mixing. Garnish with a slice of orange, a twist of lemon (or both) and an olive.
The best place to have one in Melbourne is the Gertrude Street Enoteca
Brotherhood of St Laurence op shop in Melbourne's Brunswick
I have been going here ever since I was little. My mum shopped in op shops long before it was considered even slightly cool and normal, and the Brotherhood was her favourite. I always go there for books, and cheap glass jars and vases for flowers.
Alice Walker's Art of Simple Food
This is the best cookbook I have ever bought.
I work in advertising and in a few weeks I get to go to the Cannes Lions, the international advertising festival. I think it could basically an excuse for men in their thirties with expensive sneakers and iPads to congregate in the South of France. But I get to hang out with my colleagues, listen to amazing speakers (umm, like Yoko Ono!) and soak up new ideas like a sponge so I am pretty excited.
Reading blogs like books
I only discovered the West Wing after its seven brilliant seasons had concluded. Can you imagine the sense of bonanza I felt watching season 1, knowing I had loads to go? That is the feeling I get when I find a great blog and it has months, years even of archives. I find most of them through So Much to Tell You actually. I recommend Tomorrow Museum, ii-ne-kore, M.Dash, An Apple a Day, Emily Magazine, and the tumblr of my friend (and writer) Jean.
Proust was a Neuroscientist by Jonah Lehrer
I listened to this on audiobook travelling on bullet trains and ferries across Japan. It was exactly what I felt like listening to, and now that I'm back in Melbourne I dip into it now and then to remember how good it is - even though the very American voice reading the audiobook is quite annoying. It's about how writers and artists understood deep truths about the human brain long before neuroscience developed the scientific proof. The author Jonah Lehrer blogs at The Frontal Cortex http://scienceblogs.com/cortex/.
Daily Mail animal stories
I love the Daily mail animal stories. They always described the animals as "tiny" and ascribe them human motivations. If you're new to them, try "Fox cub gets his head stuck in a watering can" and "Meerkats use their mate as a backrest".